[mythtv-users] Build a robust FE - irritated with IONs

Brian Wood beww at beww.org
Fri Dec 24 14:56:16 UTC 2010

On Thursday, December 23, 2010 09:06:29 pm Ramkumar Prakasam wrote:
> While Iam using a Atom 330+ION as a combined BE/FE, I do notice video
> freezes or pauses every 20-30min. Just grown to accept it.
> Another alternative will be to use mythtv BE as a dedicated server
> and combine with one of the commercial media players as a dedicated
> FE. They cost ~$100 For eg.
> Apple TV2
> Asus O'play
> WDTV Live
> These boxes claim to have a good HD play back capability and decent
> reviews. I haven't tried setting them up with mythtv server but they
> claim UPnP support and so I expect they will work ok.
> Has anyone had a good experience interfacing these to mythtv BE?

Do you mean to use one of these as a UPnP renderer/control point? That's 
the only simple way I can see to use them to play Myth content.

I haven't used those particular devices, but I've used similar ones, the 
D-Link DSM-520, the Myka and a Roku box. (Roku is a little more complex 
to get working in this way, I use it with PlayOn and the local media 

They all play content well, as they are all Sigma or similar hardware-
based decoders.

The problem is you do not get the full benefit of a Myth frontend, you 
can't get commercial skip for example, it's pretty much select a file 
from a list and play it. No variable rate, no other fancy Myth features.

If you go this route, you might as well get a unit that will play Netflix 
natively, I don't think the WD does that, not certain about the others.

I see it as an OK solution for a bedroom or kitchen, where you  do not 
need/want a full Myth F/E, but for a main LR player you would be giving 
up too much of what Myth can do.

The best answer would be to be able to build a full frontend into one of 
these devices. The Myka would seem to have the best chance, as it runs 
Linux and has a telnet interface you can get into and play with.

Myka is similar to the Popcorn Hour and other NMTs (Networked Media 
Tanks). I know there was talk a long time back of trying to build a 
frontend into one of those, not sure what if any progress has been made 
in that area.

They all make good media players, that's what they are, after all, but 
none of them are Myth frontends, and can't easily be made into them. You 
have to decide what you are willing to give up I guess.

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