[mythtv-users] IPad and mythtv.

Phil Linttell phil.linttell at rogers.com
Fri May 28 13:06:57 UTC 2010

> Date: Thu, 27 May 2010 22:58:12 -0400
> From: Jarod Wilson<jarod at wilsonet.com>
> Subject: Re: [mythtv-users] IPad and mythtv.
>>>> >>  >  On 5/27/2010 08:33, Phil Linttell wrote:
>>>>> >>  >>  There's a whole variety of mobile devices and
>>>>> >>  >>  embedded TV front-ends these days, and it's simply not practical to do
>>>>> >>  >>  static transcoding of all recorded content to each potential target.
>>>>   >
>>>> >>  >  Why not?  iPods, phones, PSPs, are all going to have similar capabilities
>>>> >>  >  in terms of their hardware decoders (and none in terms of software
>>>> >>  >  decoders).  TVs are likely able to playback anything you record directly.
>>>> >>  >    That means its a single transcode to support most devices available.  A
>>>> >>  >  near term plan for MythTV by one of the devs is to rework the storage of
>>>> >>  >  recordings, to allow multiple files to be stored against a single recording.
>>>> >>  >    This would significantly improve management of multiple transcodes.
>>> >
>>> >>    It would be wonderful if a single encoding could be used with all devices,
>>> >>  but I don't think it is realistically possible.  The bit-rates and
>> >      Elgato seems to be taking this approach with the iPhone/iPad support.
> I'm not quite clear if you're saying "this approach" to mean "a single
> encoding" or a multiple encoding route...
> In any case, their new HD-PVR-alike toy says something about recording
> at least two separate files for each recording, one for the iPad, one
> for the iPhone/iPod. From
> http://www.elgato.com/elgato/na/mainmenu/products/EyeTV-HD/product1.en.html:
> "EyeTV HD features a unique dual-format capture mode and can record in
> both the iPad and iPhone formats at the same time. This feature
> supports super-fast exports to iTunes from EyeTV, and facilitates the
> streaming of live and recorded TV to an iPhone or iPad using the
> optional EyeTV app."
> It also mentions being able to record "full HD" as well. Appears you
> may have to pick between the two -- "full HD" or "dual lower
> resolutions".
> I'm actually somewhat interested in getting one of these and playing
> with EyeTV some. They've got some pretty spiffy additional transcoding
> and streaming support that can be set up to use their turbo.264 hd
> encoder stick (which I have one of), making real-time video
> transcoding not that hard on the cpu, which was what it seems many
> people were citing as the main reason real-time transcoding for
> streaming wasn't practical...

Real-time transcoding for mobile devices is practical these days, either 
with more powerful multi-core / high-performance CPUs, or increasingly 
through platforms like the ARM/Tegra.  I can run the AirVideo Server 
under linux, on a dual-core, 3GHz AMD CPU and transcode on-the-fly 720p 
HD-PVR recordings for streaming to an iPod Touch.  In fact, I've been 
able to do it while watching TV via a remote MythTV front-end and while 
transcoding/streaming to an iPod and commflaging a the same time.  So, I 
think the argument for real-time transcoding is no longer valid.

For those who are interested, using MythicalLibrarian to provide 
sensible directory/file name access to myth recordings, and AirVideo 
Server for Linux (free) and the AirVideo client ($3) is a great solution 
for streaming to iPods/iPhones (and there's a version for the iPad now), 
but at this point it's only for Apple devices....  and a bit of a 
challenge to set up.  It would be nice to provide similar functionality 
integrated with Myth that could support a broader range of devices.

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