[mythtv-users] Mobile Video Player Recommendations (MPEG4)

Brian Wood beww at beww.org
Fri Jan 26 02:56:43 UTC 2007

On Jan 25, 2007, at 7:21 PM, Kevin Hulse wrote:

> Hullo,
>     I am interested in something like the video ipod. However,
> I am not interested in re-transcoding everything to be
> compatable with the video ipod. Are there any units like from
> iriver or archos that are more mythtv friendly. What exactly
> is the variant of MPEG4 being used by mythtv (since it's not
> H.264) and are there any portable video players that support
> it?

I don't have a lot of time right at the moment but I just wanted to  
mention one thing: resolution.

The small players, be they an iPod or an Archos or whatever usually  
have screens that are not "full resolution". I have a Zaurus that is  
actually 640x480 but even that is not the 720x480 that is "standard"  
for SD NTSC video. The small players are more typically 320x220, but  
I haven't looked at them recently, maybe they are getting better ?

So to play a video that was made on a Myth system you will either  
have to have Myth create a file that has sub-optimal resolution for  
display on a home TV set or reduce the resolution of the Myth file to  
"fit" on your player.

I have a GP2X with a 320x240 screen that can play just about any  
"MPEG4" file that any Linux system can, but of course the resolution  
is only 320x480, so I have to process the file anyway, and if you're  
doing that you can do anything else in the process with no real  
additional effort, assuming a reasonably fast CPU, that you have the  
codecs required etc.

I suppose you could record on the Myth system at 640x480, that might  
not look *too* bad, and a unit like my Zaurus SLC-760 could play  
them, but those units are rare (they were never sold in the USA) and  
expensive, and have limited storage as well.

It really wouldn't be hard to set things up to convert your files,  
perhaps as a "user job". Using the exact same file on both units is  
just not practical IMHO, but I'm certainly open to suggestions if I'm  
wrong here, it certainly wouldn't be the first time :-)

>      I would like to just "dock" the video player and have
> it sync overnight with minimal muss and fuss, preferably
> being able to completely refresh the 20G or so worth of
> content that could fit on it. So a simple dump/file copy
> onto the device would be ideal.

Only if the Myth-created file(s) are of the proper resolution to  
start with, which means they look lousy on your home TV.

in other words:


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