[mythtv-users] Any FE to Many PCs - LAN Content Simulcasts with VLC Multicasting

Tortise tortise at paradise.net.nz
Sat Dec 12 23:05:39 UTC 2009

GOAL: Move to integrate HD into an Any to Many Model.

I've been trying to achieve "any FE PC to many PC simulcasts of live and recorded content" for some time in the new HD world.

I have enjoyed this for some time in the SD World using a dual channel modulator that puts out a UHF Channel stream as taken from a
SD AV receiver composite output feed as also displayed on the respective TV's (used effectively just as Monitors) one in the Lounge
the 2nd in my room where this kit resides.  That old world is therefore a 2 to many situation which was ok, any to many would be
even better, especially as I
move to have a PC in most rooms.

Why do this?  The typical TV program model is to sit down in one room and watch the one screen.  Sometimes I like to watch something
on the move between a number of rooms - a good example might be in the early evenings I might want to watch something, cook some
stuff and work on something in the workshop - roaming between those rooms.

With the SD model that was cool, a quick flick on of the (old!) TV in each room and tune the respective channel UHF and the stream
is replicated, be it live tv, tivo, mythtv, dvd, radio, whatever....

And HD?  Not so easy!  Some ways to do this have occurred to me:

Coaxial Transmission:
HD Modulator
If there was an economic HD modulator equivalent I'd also need HD tuners in each location.  Not so good an idea.

Existing SD Modulators
To achieve this I need to descale the HD video to SD, which can then be fed into the existing network.  Quality descaling would
result in a quality SD experience in most rooms, this would be acceptable.  16:9 HD would potentially be seen on both 4:3 SD TV's
and 16:9 HD TV's.  But getting SD from HD from each myth box?  Not so easy.  The myth boxes that I am more likely to want to see
broadcast locally feed their displays with component.  Hmmm.
I could use a VGA in / Component and Composite Out box however the quality of this conversion seems somewhat risky, one would be
required from each set of Mythtv

MultiCast with VLC:
This might work, I figure I'd use VLC as the myth media player and set it to multicast at the same time using the appropriate
command line.  Then any PC on the network could tune the appropriate multicast stream...any pc...and bingo, multicast!  Each
multicast client would need to have enough puff to play the HD streams.  (This means they need to be higher spec CPU's as can't use
vdpau)  I've tested VLC multicast and it works well out of the box.  Now I just need to set it up...and test some more....  Anyone
thought of this, tried this or any comments?

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