Silicon Dust attempt at a DVR capable of recording protected content?

Page 3 - Seeking answers? Join the AnandTech community: where nearly half-a-million members share solutions and discuss the latest tech.
May 7, 2002
10,378
1
126
#51
Where are you getting that number from? I know Openelec alone has tens of thousands of installs total.

Plus the some of the smartest people in this hobby are on the Linux side. It would be nice to leverage that talent.
Just speculation mostly. I was thinking it would be a bit more than what steam on linux gets, which is about 1%.

First I have heard of Openelec.

Its called the analog hole and a HD PVR hooked up via component or HDMI to a cable box. Its sad that is the more flexible method to record content.
I though that was limited to lower resolutions, not 1920x1080?

I am also wondering if SD's program will use multi-rec or not.
 

Fallen Kell

Diamond Member
Oct 9, 1999
5,251
11
91
#53
Its called the analog hole and a HD PVR hooked up via component or HDMI to a cable box. Its sad that is the more flexible method to record content.
I though that was limited to lower resolutions, not 1920x1080?
The HD PVR is fully capable of 1080 resolution over component. I believe the HD PVR2 (or the gaming/console edition) is even able to record 1080p over non-HDCP HDMI (which requires a little work to get to, but is possible).
 

Slug

Senior member
Oct 12, 1999
800
0
76
#54
Does anyone know if the SD DVR software will support Xbox 360s as extenders like Windows MCE does? I can't find the answer on the kickstarter website. I'm currently using 3 xboxes with remotes and it works very well. I really want this software to succeed. The HDHomerun Prime works great with MCE as almost all of my TWC channels are protected content.

Thanks
 
Nov 18, 2005
28,418
59
126
#55
Does anyone know if the SD DVR software will support Xbox 360s as extenders like Windows MCE does? I can't find the answer on the kickstarter website. I'm currently using 3 xboxes with remotes and it works very well. I really want this software to succeed. The HDHomerun Prime works great with MCE as almost all of my TWC channels are protected content.

Thanks
I'm going to say No, it is almost guaranteed to not be supported. WMC and it's Extender capability are very much WMC-specific, and the DVR software will have nothing to do with WMC.

That is not to say that the 360 is impossible to support in the long run, but that too is somewhat unlikely, as if anything, it will be the Xbox One due to the true modern app compatibility that Windows 10 will bring to it.

There won't really be a standard "Extender" setup so much as every client is a native client accessing one shared recording pool, regardless of where it sits, be it on a NAS or a Windows machine previously used for WMC. Instead of requiring extenders, any certified device can essentially pull the same duty without the limitations of the "WMC Extender" format.
 

Slug

Senior member
Oct 12, 1999
800
0
76
#56
Ok. Thanks much for the info. Would love to see Xbox one app.
 
Nov 18, 2005
28,418
59
126
#57
Ok. Thanks much for the info. Would love to see Xbox one app.
For that I have no guarantee they'll ever be able to achieve that, or anything to do with consoles. Ideally they can, and I hope they go about it with a universal app because they can tackle Windows on desktop, phone, tablet, and Xbox One.

But they will certainly go with a standard Windows desktop app at first, and who knows if they'll decide to make a modern app. Perhaps they'll support Plex in the future, which could be one way to broaden device support.

The only real "guarantee" is a Windows and perhaps a Mac application, especially at launch, but with their stretch funding they might be able to afford to sink further development time into those goals.
 

Slug

Senior member
Oct 12, 1999
800
0
76
#58
I love the concept. Obviously a PC at every television would be unrealistic. I do have firesticks, but looks like Fire TV box will be needed. I'm certainly not opposed to buying more hardware for protected live TV though. As long as TWC doesn't get any extra cash from me!
 
Apr 8, 2001
32,470
27
106
#59
I'd expect a Xbone app (unless MS blocks it) fairly soon given the win10 update coming to it.

Somehow allowing all those 360s out there to continue working would personally be a near mandatory goal but no idea of what would be needed since they are putting out so few actual details.
 
Nov 18, 2005
28,418
59
126
#60
I'd expect a Xbone app (unless MS blocks it) fairly soon given the win10 update coming to it.

Somehow allowing all those 360s out there to continue working would personally be a near mandatory goal but no idea of what would be needed since they are putting out so few actual details.
Remember that this isn't Microsoft or another large corporation making this.

This is a small company that is developing this based on a community desire, so they have to get applications going from the ground up and target more specific platforms. They can't and won't be developing applications for every single possible client, at least not from the get-go, not if they want quality applications for the first lead platforms.

The 360 had WMC capability because Microsoft built in the Extender API or whatever it was that provided the Extender capability. That was a Microsoft in-house system that was strictly for WMC. SD has no starting point with 360 support, so it's yet another platform for which they'd need to develop a new client application.

It would be nice, I agree, if they can add that support as numerous users already use the 360 for the Extender capability, but that will be up to them to determine which platforms get their initial focus and where they expand from there.
 

Dirigible

Diamond Member
Apr 26, 2006
5,946
0
81
#61
Obviously a PC at every television would be unrealistic.
I have a PC at every television. Have for years. A cheap used computer functions as my cable box, DVR, streams everything, plays back any format, and with Steam in-home streaming, also works for gaming. I wanted a Roku or something like that to be an easy and cheap solution, but none of them did what I want so I gave up and got computers.
 
May 7, 2002
10,378
1
126
#62
The HD PVR is fully capable of 1080 resolution over component. I believe the HD PVR2 (or the gaming/console edition) is even able to record 1080p over non-HDCP HDMI (which requires a little work to get to, but is possible).
While that device might be capable, I was saying that I thought that if you hook up component cables from a device that has HDCP, that it wouldn't deliver 1080 content, and instead be lower.


Anyway, seems that SD is now offering this:
Silicondust has teamed up with WD® to offer 4TB to 24TB of NAS based DVR storage when paired with HDHomeRun tuners.

The WD® My Cloud functions both as an advanced media NAS and the DVR storage for your home. Your favorite TV shows record to the NAS automatically. No PC required.
So, with these NAS devices, they say no PC is required... but, how do you schedule a show to record with a NAS device? Are we talking a web interface to all this?
 
Apr 8, 2001
32,470
27
106
#63
Imagine PC not required means more along the line of "input device not limited to PC". Either you run their pc software or an app that does the same. But since you most likely need a home network for you to connect to the tuner via app, it goes back to my earlier statement.
 
Nov 18, 2005
28,418
59
126
#64
While that device might be capable, I was saying that I thought that if you hook up component cables from a device that has HDCP, that it wouldn't deliver 1080 content, and instead be lower.


Anyway, seems that SD is now offering this:


So, with these NAS devices, they say no PC is required... but, how do you schedule a show to record with a NAS device? Are we talking a web interface to all this?
Imagine PC not required means more along the line of "input device not limited to PC". Either you run their pc software or an app that does the same. But since you most likely need a home network for you to connect to the tuner via app, it goes back to my earlier statement.
The client app is storage-agnostic, if you will.

The recording engine and the front-end app are separated. On supported NAS devices with the processing power, all the actual recording and execution of schedules is managed by the recording engine.

To make the schedules, and otherwise interact with the DVR in any capacity, you use the front-end app that can be used on the devices they say they'll support. Their goal is Windows, Mac, and Android (mobile and STB's like Fire TV or Android TV) for the start.

So if they are successful, you can truly have a no-PC environment.

You could set the recording engine to record to a PC or Mac or possibly any Linux box (QNAP NAS's are Linux-based, not sure about WD's My Cloud series), and then any client apps on the network can access the storage, regardless of what device you chose to use for storage.

I am curious how the My Cloud NAS devices will stand up to recording. There are Intel CPUs in the QNAP boxes, so those can stand up to the demand of recording multiple streams, but what about the dual-core CortexA9 chips in the consumer My Cloud devices? Perhaps simply recording MPEG2 streams without transcode may not be that intensive, so it may be easy enough to achieve.
 

hoorah

Senior member
Dec 8, 2005
747
6
81
#65
The client app is storage-agnostic, if you will.

The recording engine and the front-end app are separated. On supported NAS devices with the processing power, all the actual recording and execution of schedules is managed by the recording engine.

So if they are successful, you can truly have a no-PC environment.
That was my understanding as well. I think they are trying to use this setup both for convenience and as a loophole to the DRM thing - record to the NAS, then the nas can stream to a device. Not sure how thats going to work out in the long run, but I like the attempt.

I am curious how the My Cloud NAS devices will stand up to recording.
At every major change, medium/high end hardware was needed to make the step up, then it became cheap shortly after that. The jump from 480P to 720P h.264 content required an expensive 'dual core', then pretty much everything could play it back. Multiple HD streams required beefy hardware, then the basic systems could run it. Transcoding used to only be for quad core systems, now a $50 dual core can handle at least 1 stream...

I suspect within a year or so common nas boxes will handle multiple records/playbacks. Its the transcoding thats still going to be taxing into the future.
 
May 7, 2002
10,378
1
126
#66
At every major change, medium/high end hardware was needed to make the step up, then it became cheap shortly after that. The jump from 480P to 720P h.264 content required an expensive 'dual core', then pretty much everything could play it back. Multiple HD streams required beefy hardware, then the basic systems could run it. Transcoding used to only be for quad core systems, now a $50 dual core can handle at least 1 stream...

I suspect within a year or so common nas boxes will handle multiple records/playbacks. Its the transcoding thats still going to be taxing into the future.
If this all works out as they say it will, I can see SD making a new tuner with hardware accelerated h.265 encoding.
That would be one heck of a one-two punch vs everyone else.

Maybe they will have a kickstarter for that as well. ;)
 
Nov 18, 2005
28,418
59
126
#68
If this all works out as they say it will, I can see SD making a new tuner with hardware accelerated h.265 encoding.
That would be one heck of a one-two punch vs everyone else.

Maybe they will have a kickstarter for that as well. ;)
Well they do have one that transcodes ATSC signals to H.264.
https://www.silicondust.com/products/hdhomerun/hdhomerun/

A CableCARD device with immediate hardware transcode... I'm curious if that would be possible.
 
May 7, 2002
10,378
1
126
#69
Anyone kick the tires on this yet? I saw that people who supported them on kickstarter have been getting beta builds...

How good is it, does it compare to WMC at all?
What did the protected content end up being saved as, I mean, what format/container?

Oh, can you do offline recording as well?
 
Last edited:
Nov 27, 2001
28,855
14
126
#70
I have beta builds, but I haven't started using them yet. The biggest reason why is that it doesn't support protected content yet. I'll probably get around to installing it this weekend to see how well it works. Another thing is that I'm not sure how the viewing works. I think you still use their View program to do it.

EDIT:

I went through and installed it finally; however, I forgot about one of the other limitations right now... you can only use the DVR aspect through Kodi right now, and... well, I don't use Kodi. :p
 
Last edited:

Dulanic

Diamond Member
Oct 27, 2000
9,496
54
116
#71
I'm about to jump in for this. I think this would be a easy simplified way for me to record. With the defeat of WMC, I wanted to setup something. I think I am going to swap my media server over to Linux (I am a complete Linux newb) and I think this would be a easy to way get a good DVR solution for me.

I am planning on cutting the cord fully in October and this launches in... August? So perfect timing. I have Fire TV Stick and/or chromecasts on all my TV's so I think this would make the ultimate DVR soution if I cna just use chromcasts as playback devices for me. $30 a month is well worth it IMO and I already own a HDHomerun Dual... I hope that is the equivalent of the "Connect" and just renamed? Knowing my luck, it won't work /w the dual.
 
Apr 8, 2001
32,470
27
106
#72
if you're cutting the cord why would you be looking into this?
 
Sep 12, 2004
16,852
0
86
#74
I'm about to jump in for this. I think this would be a easy simplified way for me to record. With the defeat of WMC, I wanted to setup something. I think I am going to swap my media server over to Linux (I am a complete Linux newb) and I think this would be a easy to way get a good DVR solution for me.

I am planning on cutting the cord fully in October and this launches in... August? So perfect timing. I have Fire TV Stick and/or chromecasts on all my TV's so I think this would make the ultimate DVR soution if I cna just use chromcasts as playback devices for me. $30 a month is well worth it IMO and I already own a HDHomerun Dual... I hope that is the equivalent of the "Connect" and just renamed? Knowing my luck, it won't work /w the dual.
Unless you have the latest version of their OTA tuner, the HD Homerun ATSC, it won't work in this setup.
 

mvbighead

Diamond Member
Apr 20, 2009
3,793
0
76
#75
if you're cutting the cord why would you be looking into this?
My answer to this would be somewhat simple.

I cut with DirecTV. One of the main reasons is all the recurring B$ costs. If I could actually get a line up of channels for $40 a month and run it from my own DVR platform, I would really consider signing back up.

As it was, I was on a fairly modest plan with a DVR and a set top box that could stream from the DVR (very shady performance) and was paying just north of $100. A chunk of that was $8-10 for the DVR, $5-10 for the DVR 'service', another $5 for the streaming capability and another $5 for the set-top box. If you cut out ALL of the DVR costs, a plan with any provider likely becomes at least somewhat reasonable.
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY

TRENDING THREADS