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Giving up on MythTV
PostPosted: Wed Dec 14, 2005 5:12 pm Reply with quote
cmumford
 
Joined: 07 Nov 2004
Posts: 36




Well I've had it! I was hoping to configure a stable dual HD-3000 MythTV based system, but I'm not sure it's possible. When I first got the HD-3000 card about a year ago it didn't have DVB drivers, and HDTV wasn't yet supported in the released version of Myth (17 I believe). I shelved it for eight months and finally came back to it about a month ago.

In spite of being fairly Linux literate, and closely following Jarod's instructions MythTV still crashes and hangs when playing back HDTV. I know that I'm exacerbating the problem with my current antenna location which causes the signal to be very intermittent, but what I want is a simple rock solid configuration. My wife will kill me if I force something on her that is constantly crashing or hanging - even if it's once a week.

I went and downloaded a demo copy of Beyond TV. In all of five minutes I had a working system complete with guide info, FM radio support, etc. Unfortunately it doesn't support the HD-3000 card so I have to buy another, but frankly I'd rather be spending my weekend in other ways than pulling my hair out in frustration.

pcHDTV - it's not your fault. I think your card is great. I wish you all happy PVR'ing and hope that I can return one day when there is a more stable PVR project with which to use my card.
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2005 12:27 am Reply with quote
Scott Larson
 
Joined: 15 Oct 2003
Posts: 713
Location: Portland, OR




But like, how do you know you won't be right back where you started when you plug your poorly-located antenna into your brand new card and Beyond TV starts crapping out on intermittent signals just like Myth did?
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2005 12:14 pm Reply with quote
cmumford
 
Joined: 07 Nov 2004
Posts: 36




Scott Larson wrote:
But like, how do you know you won't be right back where you started when you plug your poorly-located antenna into your brand new card and Beyond TV starts crapping out on intermittent signals just like Myth did?

True, I won't know for sure until I give it a try. I'll let you guys know in a couple of days.
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2005 2:38 pm Reply with quote
Scott Larson
 
Joined: 15 Oct 2003
Posts: 713
Location: Portland, OR




You really should try adjusting that antenna no matter what card or application you use. It's possible that you could get perfect reception with some more experimentation. It's amazing how well things work when every station comes in perfectly.
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2005 3:58 pm Reply with quote
waterhead
 
Joined: 24 Apr 2005
Posts: 298




I used Jarod Wilson's guide and set up MythTV and FC4. I have problems with
the cx88_dvb module loading automatically, but once I manually load them I can easily record programs.

I'm using a nVidia 6600GT card and I found that my xorg. config was scewing me up. I had enabled TVOut, but did not have it hooked to a TV, only a monitor.
It still will stop the front end occasionally when viewing 1080i broadcasts. But the computer no longer freezes or crashes.

I suggest you first try recording, and see if that works ok. Your problem may very well be in the video card setup.

I also have a windows box. I was a bigtime fan of BeyondTV 3. I then bought an ATI HDTV Wonder card and had to give up on BTV3. BTV 4 has HDTV support so I eagerly purchased it. I have had many problems, and many visits to their forum, just to get it to display a picture. It still won't properly show stations broadcasting true HDTV in 1080i. The picture is jerky and unwatchable. My Myth box with the pcHDTV card is much better.

Don't give up on the pcHDTV card.

Also, I talked with someone from the BTV forum, who has the pcHDTV card working with BTV. He said he loaded the drivers that are provided, following the instructions, and BTV recognized the card. I have not tried this myself, and think he may only be using the NTSC tuner on the card. Give it a try.
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2005 6:59 pm Reply with quote
cmumford
 
Joined: 07 Nov 2004
Posts: 36




Scott Larson wrote:
You really should try adjusting that antenna no matter what card or application you use. It's possible that you could get perfect reception with some more experimentation. It's amazing how well things work when every station comes in perfectly.

Granted the location of my antenna is definately aggrivating things, but I don't think that MythTV should ever just crash or hang. Even if I put the antenna in an ideal location there will always be signal inteference due to weather, etc. I can't have my wife needing to reset the computer every couple of days. I want something that works always - or nearly always.
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2005 7:07 pm Reply with quote
cmumford
 
Joined: 07 Nov 2004
Posts: 36




waterhead wrote:
I'm using a nVidia 6600GT card and I found that my xorg. config was scewing me up. I had enabled TVOut, but did not have it hooked to a TV, only a monitor.
It still will stop the front end occasionally when viewing 1080i broadcasts. But the computer no longer freezes or crashes.

I suggest you first try recording, and see if that works ok. Your problem may very well be in the video card setup.

Interesting! However xine and mplayer work just fine for me. I can see the signal occassionally breaking up, but I know that the drivers and card are working just fine. It's MythTV that's having problems.

waterhead wrote:
I also have a windows box. I was a bigtime fan of BeyondTV 3. I then bought an ATI HDTV Wonder card and had to give up on BTV3. BTV 4 has HDTV support so I eagerly purchased it. I have had many problems, and many visits to their forum, just to get it to display a picture. It still won't properly show stations broadcasting true HDTV in 1080i. The picture is jerky and unwatchable. My Myth box with the pcHDTV card is much better.

Interesting - thanks for the feedback. I'm hoping that your problems were either with your system or card and not Beyond TV. I have heard reports of fast forward/rewinding being jerky, but playback seems to work fine according to their forums. My card arrives tomorrow. I'll let you know how things go.

waterhead wrote:

Don't give up on the pcHDTV card.

Anything but. I think the card and DVB drivers are great. My only gripe is with MythTV.

waterhead wrote:
Also, I talked with someone from the BTV forum, who has the pcHDTV card working with BTV. He said he loaded the drivers that are provided, following the instructions, and BTV recognized the card. I have not tried this myself, and think he may only be using the NTSC tuner on the card. Give it a try.

Wow! very cool. That would be excellent if I don't have to buy a second HDTV tuner card.
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2005 1:09 pm Reply with quote
Scott Larson
 
Joined: 15 Oct 2003
Posts: 713
Location: Portland, OR




cmumford wrote:
Granted the location of my antenna is definately aggrivating things, but I don't think that MythTV should ever just crash or hang. Even if I put the antenna in an ideal location there will always be signal inteference due to weather, etc.

Not necessarily. The only time I have a reception problem is when a TV station's transmitter dies (which is happening about two times a year in Portland).

Do mplayer and xine fail too?

Quote:
I can't have my wife needing to reset the computer every couple of days. I want something that works always - or nearly always.

Are you saying your whole computer locks up? That's not something Myth is causing on its own.
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2005 6:56 pm Reply with quote
cmumford
 
Joined: 07 Nov 2004
Posts: 36




Scott Larson wrote:
cmumford wrote:
Granted the location of my antenna is definately aggrivating things, but I don't think that MythTV should ever just crash or hang. Even if I put the antenna in an ideal location there will always be signal inteference due to weather, etc.

Not necessarily. The only time I have a reception problem is when a TV station's transmitter dies (which is happening about two times a year in Portland).

Do mplayer and xine fail too?

Quote:
I can't have my wife needing to reset the computer every couple of days. I want something that works always - or nearly always.

Are you saying your whole computer locks up? That's not something Myth is causing on its own.

both mplayer and xine work fine. mplayer doesn't use Xvmc, but xine does.

The system is stable, it's the mythbackend that complains about the inability to change the channel, or that its ring buffer is empty, or something like that. I didn't save the error messages and Linux is now gone - I'm installing XP as I type this.

I'll let you know if BTV4 is any better.
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 17, 2005 9:25 pm Reply with quote
Scott Larson
 
Joined: 15 Oct 2003
Posts: 713
Location: Portland, OR




cmumford wrote:
both mplayer and xine work fine. mplayer doesn't use Xvmc, but xine does.

mplayer does use XvMC. In fact it uses it better than xine if you apply my interlacing patch.

Quote:
The system is stable, it's the mythbackend that complains about the inability to change the channel, or that its ring buffer is empty, or something like that. I didn't save the error messages and Linux is now gone - I'm installing XP as I type this.

So you never really found out what your specific problem was even though lots of people have no problem using Myth. Confused
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 24, 2005 1:53 pm Reply with quote
cmumford
 
Joined: 07 Nov 2004
Posts: 36




Scott Larson wrote:
cmumford wrote:
both mplayer and xine work fine. mplayer doesn't use Xvmc, but xine does.

mplayer does use XvMC. In fact it uses it better than xine if you apply my interlacing patch.

Quote:
The system is stable, it's the mythbackend that complains about the inability to change the channel, or that its ring buffer is empty, or something like that. I didn't save the error messages and Linux is now gone - I'm installing XP as I type this.

So you never really found out what your specific problem was even though lots of people have no problem using Myth. Confused

I know that mplayer can be compiled to use XvMC, but the one in the RPM that I downloaded via yum didn't seem to have it compiled in already. When I downloaded the mplayer source and ran configure it didn't detect that I had a video system capable of XvMC even though I did. I think this was because I was using the most recent 7676 drivers. I had to manually enable it before it would compile.

Also, I would rather not be patching, compiling, and manually installing software. I would really prefer to use RPM's. It makes it much easier down the road when I want to upgrade.

My real point here is that I don't want to spend a ton of time trying to get a PVR up and running. I do software development all week long and I don't have the time and interest to learn the in's and outs of a dozen software programs and libraries. I just want it to work.

I suspect that the problem that I was having was because my antenna was not properly located. The reception was very marginal which resulted in many dropped or corrupted packets. I think that this is probably the cause of many of the problems. Now that my antenna is in the attic I'm getting 98% reception on pretty much every station. My guess here is that my problem will be greatly reduced. Instead of having to restart mythbackend every minute or so, I can instead do it every couple of weeks.

I still haven't made up my mind yet. I'm tempted to give MythTV one more try just for fun. My machine doesn't have a serial port however, so I think this complicates the remote control process considerably.
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Giving up on MythTV
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