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brief observations about hdhomerun dvr kickstarter


nrf
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in case anyone is interested, I thought I'd mention how this looks - note that it this software is still not even at the beta level 

 

Recording Server:

 

I installed the recording component on my 2012R2 w/essentials server. It is also able to be installed on a NAS from windows by setting up a nas share but I don't have such a NAS. The setup utility will be familiar to those who use HDHR on windows, with the addition of a new tab labeled 'dvr'. That tab is very sparse, not even including the ability to set the destination folder for recordings, which must be done in the registry. When shows are recorded a folder is created for each series and each show in a .mpg file. A detailed log is available, one per date, in the top level folder selected.

 

The actual Recorded Shows:

 

These appear as .mpg and my first two 1-hour recordings were 100% clean in spite of any other activities the server was doing. I have adjusted my stablebit disk scan to not interfere with 'prime time' given some issues I have had recently with that utility.

 

Win10 Client:

 

This is a good first try, not really ready for prime time. The functions here are fourfold:

  • watch recorded shows
  • browse and search listings (discovery)
  • watch live tv
  • manage the queue of scheduled recordings

Since this is the main way you set things up, it is definitely a critical component. As such it is minimally functional. When playing recorded material there is no progress bar to poke for skipping commercials etc. When setting up recordings, it is missing important functions like being able to specify only record new and only record on one particular channel. If you tell it to record a series it splatters all of the instances on all the possible channels, not (initially) detecting duplicates or re-runs. As a result I will have to go in from time to time, pick each series, and scan through the entries available to spot the new episodes in HD that I want recorded. Not something I want my wife and son to have to deal with.

 

Android Client:

 

I side loaded this once, after using it the app did not appear in my app tray so I could not get back to it. This app is an enhanced version of the hdhr player, once you give it the secret handshake it will let you access pretty much the same functions as in the win10 app. Since I can't get back to it I will not speak further ill of it...

 

So my MO right now is to check the listings once or twice a week for new items on the radar, and watch the shows thru a share with VLC.

 

Conclusion:

 

So far the functionality they have let out of the cage is pretty stable if limited. Besides achieving WAF acceptability, I cannot embrace this as my family's replacement for Windows Media Center until they support the DRM crap my cable company puts on most channels. Note that the HDHR android app already lets you watch the DRM channels 'live' so they know how to do it legally. I suspect their energy is more focused on getting it onto NAS boxes etc. So like all kickstarters, I will cross my fingers and hope they get around to what I need someday, hopefully before the end of the free win10 upgrade interval.

 

nrf

 

ps: and so far win10 has not been a bad experience either

Edited by nrf
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yesterday was not so good, none of the three scheduled shows recorded and no indication why in the logs :(

had to watch them online

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Some progress already, updates to win10 client and the recorder software.

Rummaging thru the forums I found a 'workaround' to the limitations of the recording setup page. You can go to my.hdhomerun.com and access a page in each tuner to mark channels as disabled or favorites. By choosing the hd channels as favorites and disabling the duplicate SD channels I am getting approximately the desired behavior by doing the series recording then setting to 'recents' at which point it masks out any undesirable entries. Fingers crossed. Still a bit of an arcane interface on that tab and my wrist is sore from disabling hundreds of channels. of course I will have to redo many of those clicks once DRM is supported by the product/service.

 

I plan to give it several weeks before showing it to my son and wife for consideration.

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I will be doing more testing with the client ap on android as I have learned there is a 'sideload launcher' that lets me get an icon for the apk. will advise after I get time to test enough.

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  • 1 month later...

Update: I got a "new" laptop which i quickly upgraded to w10. I will continue using sd for my local recordings and view on the laptop. I have reverted my desktop to wmc8.1 and will record tnt,bbc,syfy, etc from there. I can play the sd recordings with vlc. So far the sd has been rock solid.

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and how long has this HDHR project been going on? Seems like forever.  Tablo. Channel Master. Tivo Roamio. Simple TV.  I know they are popular and I use the old ones to do OTA via Media Center but if all my Media Center stuff died today I would go to one of these newer boxes.

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I love my TiVo Roamio.  It works, the smartphone apps work, I don't have to futz around.

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those who only need OTA, locals over cable, or are fortunate to have a cable provider that is not retentive enough to put DRM on absolutely everything, there are many many choices. SD seems to be trying to grab the biggest audience possible and have thus left us cablecard-dependent folks hanging fire. sadly we already invested in their hardware so I guess we are not important to them.

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those who only need OTA, locals over cable, or are fortunate to have a cable provider that is not retentive enough to put DRM on absolutely everything, there are many many choices. SD seems to be trying to grab the biggest audience possible and have thus left us cablecard-dependent folks hanging fire. sadly we already invested in their hardware so I guess we are not important to them.

Ok, so this is a cable card thing.  I get it now. (slow this week)  Yes, you are in a pickle! At least you have Discovery Channel! I watch it every time I travel!

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