[mythtv-users] 2021: Good cheap frontends for sports?

Paul Gardiner lists at glidos.net
Fri Jan 29 16:46:48 UTC 2021

On 29/01/2021 10:44, John Pilkington wrote:
> On 29/01/2021 09:21, Paul Gardiner wrote:
>> On 28/01/2021 02:26, Tom Harris wrote:
>>> On Wed, Jan 27, 2021 at 9:38 AM Josh Rosenberg <mythtv at desh.info 
>>> <mailto:mythtv at desh.info>> wrote:
>>>     Hey, all. My Zotac ZBOX-ID84 that I bought used 4 years ago might be
>>>     biting the dust, so it's time for a new frontend again. Since I
>>>     watch a fair bit of sports, I don't think Raspberry Pi or the
>>>     Android-based frontends give quite the oomph I need for 720p/1080i
>>>     sports, let alone higher quality. (See my previous thread at
>>>     https://lists.archive.carbon60.com/mythtv/users/626703
>>>     <https://lists.archive.carbon60.com/mythtv/users/626703> .)
>>>     My instinct is to buy another ZBox and use VDPAU again, but I
>>>     haven't kept up on the latest developments with VAAPI or NVDEC. From
>>>     a quick search, it seems like buying hardware with a plan to use
>>>     VDPAU might not be the best option in 2021. Does anyone have any
>>>     specific suggestions for something that's Zbox sized or smaller and
>>>     would make a good frontend for a sports fan in this day and age?
>>> I also had a Zotac Ion frontend that I used for years with VDPAU.  It 
>>> was very good, but crapped out on me.   I tried a few alternatives, 
>>> including the Pi 3, which was pretty good but had noticeable judder 
>>> on sports panning views.
>>> I ended up with the Nvidia Shield Pro -- the version that was updated 
>>> last year, and I find it to be excellent.  Using the Mythfrontend 
>>> app, it's very snappy and has excellent video playback.  My 
>>> perception is that it's as good as the Zotac, but without comparing 
>>> side by side it's hard to say 100%.  Much of my viewing is HD sports, 
>>> and I have no problems with the Shield.  Also, the Shield gives you 
>>> access to all the streaming apps (Netflix, Prime Video, HBO, etc.) 
>>> which makes it the ultimate frontend in my opinion.
>> I'm interested in the Shield, not so much for mythfrontend (I have 
>> that covered), but for Amazon Prime, Netflix and iPlayer. I have a 
>> fairly new Fire Stick 4K, but it's terrible for frame rate matching. 
>> It's shockingly bad. I have to make the "Match original frame rate" 
>> setting every time I turn it on, and also if I power cycle just my 
>> AVReceiver. Worse, the Netflix and iPlayer apps don't respond to the 
>> setting, so I have to use the special engineer's menu to find the 
>> right rate before entering the app. It's probably not affecting most 
>> people because modern TVs have all sorts of horrible smoothing 
>> algorithms that can hide this, although at a price of making some 
>> video motion look artificial. I'm wondering how the Shield fares for 
>> frame rate matching.
> My Firestick 4K appears to retain its 'match frame rate' setting, and 
> both leanfront and mythfrontend announce that they are using 50 fps when 
> playing material from my DVB-T/T2 channels.  I haven't used streaming 
> services much.

Actually, I stated the problem inaccurately. The setting is retained, 
but Amazon Prime Video ignores it if I power cycle either the AVReceiver 
or the Fire Stick. To get APV to respect it again, I have to set to a 
specific display setting other than auto, then back to auto and (which 
unsets the "Match frame rate" setting) and then reapply the Match setting.

> The clip that you uploaded recently was mp4 1440x1088 with a video data 
> rate of  9998 kb/s, significantly higher than my old 1920x1080 
> recordings of similar material.  leanfront on the firestick wasn't as 
> clean as UPnP, but not distressingly so.

I forgot it was1440x1080. The BBC went through a phase of using that 
res, but later gave up on it. The higher bit rate must have been my less 
than ideal choice of parameters for transcoding.

> Quite a lot of my recent recordings have been from the SkyArts channel, 
> 544x576 progressive mpeg2video.  Some have rapid action scenes, but they 
> still give pleasing playback at a video data rate around an eighth of 
> that in your clip...
> Now back to framerate matching and the really hawk-eyed watching... :-)

Sadly I don't have to look for it. If it's not perfectly smooth, it 
looks terrible to me. Possibly not helped by my TV having no smoothing.

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