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Thread: Extenders -my opinion

  1. #1
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    Extenders -my opinion

    There has been a lot of discussion of late about NPVR extenders, this has been driven by a few things, Sage being scooped up by google, A100 and A110 supplies drying up and Martin feeling that the love for extenders isn't there, so I'd like to let you know where I'm at.

    For me extenders makes NPVR amazing, I remember getting an ebay MVP for gbpvr and suddenly I saw the future of integrated media, and the PCH just made it a better experience. These days I have a PCH in the bedroom and a PC client in the Kitchen...and dare I say it but I prefer the pc client.

    Most if not all of the video render/sync issues are now gone with windows 7, and the new low power low cost APU's mean the boxes are small and in some cases silent, cost wise you can put a box together for 200 -250 and it's only going to get cheaper as time goes by, price wise it's not a massive leap over a PCH (if you can get one) and the functionality you get from having a fully blown pc is easily worth the extra cash in my opinion but the biggest issue is having to fork out for win7, it kind of kills the idea on a cost basis.

    I see that android has now been ported to x86 AMD, is this an opportunity to develop a client on a stable open source platform? or perhaps some other flavour of Linux? Of course this is easy for me to say from the simplistic view as an end user who doesn't code this stuff, and maybe I'm alone in thinking this but I'd like to know what others think.

    Anyway to summarise, my view is that the future of NPVR extenders is PC based.....I just wish the OS wasn't so damn expensive.

    Ahem...discuss
    Elmo Putney

  2. #2
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    Elmo P! Great thread but whilst I warm my Lasagne I have to totally disagree with you!

    After Lasagne is eaten I will tell you why

    Though I do see your POV, just can't agree with it more than about 1%....

    cheers

    steeb

  3. #3
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    fantastic, I love lasgne specially with tobasco.
    Elmo Putney

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elmo Putney View Post
    fantastic, I love lasgne specially with tobasco.
    Hmm Lasagne good! Have tbh never tried with tobasco, however next time will try that as like a bit of a kick!

    So to business. What PC are you suggesting I would want in my bedroom/kitchen & bathroom to replace my extenders?

    steeb

  5. #5
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    I'm also in the I don't agree camp

    I have four NMT's & also a client (sometimes two) so I have compared them.. One NMT was new so I could maybe make a small quiet client for the price it cost Two were referbs & no way could I make a clent for that price & the forth was secondhand & I couldn't even get an old p4 PC for the price it cost.

    For us by far & away the vast majority of our media playback etc. is using Next/GB- PVR located on our two servers & for us the NMT experience is far better than the client experience. The NMT's "just work" & never need anything done to them (I haven't even updated the firmware since I did it on first getting them) apart form the occasional cold boot (about once a month I would say) they just go. I can't say the same for the client(s), I can see the advantage of client playback if you are playing different videos than what are recorded with Next/GB but for those I just make sure they are compatible .mpg's

  6. #6
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    Totally with Jaggy. Why would I fork out on 3 different PC's (because of course the way we tend to build our systems up is not buy 3 identical PC's at the same time.) Then fork out on 3 Win7 licences. Then go through the whole of codec hell etc setting up the individual PC Clients when I can get 1 client that does it all for me that is out of the box and allows me to extend my client experience whenever I want? With a 10-15 minute config? I have never set up a fully working PC in less than 3 days!

    cheers

    steeb

  7. #7
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    I enjoy the challenge. Wrestling codecs into submission. Building a client so incredibly wimpy (single core Atom), that if DXVA isn't working, you are SOL... no playback, even for mpeg2. Makes you understand how to put a system together. No mysteries. What does the graph say? Finding out that XP Home does not have any of the drivers required for Microsoft remote. Tracking them down, then experiencing the joy of an operating remote... it's enough to make me put some Tabasco on my meatloaf tonight!
    Server: NPVR 3.2.9, 32" panel, W7 Pro, m-ITX, i3-2120, 4G DRAM, DCR-2650, SD EPG, xbmc "plugin" for Movies/Hulu/ESPN/YouTube/IceFilms
    Client: NPVR 3.2.9, 23" panel, Acer Revo 1600, W7 Pro, MoCA networked

  8. #8
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    Thanks Elmo Putney for starting this, hopefully it will generate lots of opinions. Although I think your experience is tainted a bit ny the EPG crash issue, which shouldn't be happening, I can definitely see situations where a full PC (and not just NPVR) would be welcome in client locations.

    Martin

  9. #9
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    I originally started this post by typing "I'm an extender fan" then I saw how it could be mis-interpreted...

    Anyway, I store all my disk and fan noises up in the attic on two old 2.66MHz celeron servers - I've got a silent and unobtrusive NMT or MVP at each of the four TVs in the house from which I can watch, look at or listen to all my media - and more importantly, so can Mrs ACTCMS... I have absolutely no inclination towards replacing any of my extenders with a PC which I would have to configure, conceal, silence and keep up to date...

    If I do have a gripe about extenders, it is that there is obviously no market for a programmable device with a 'standardised engine' which simply attaches to your own local network and delivers your own content - a la MVP - at a price point which is 'impulse' rather than 'considered'.

    As manufacturers continually push out newer and 'better' proprietory media server boxes which do things I don't really need, the 'Jewel in the Crown' for me is the work done by Martin and sub in supporting specific extenders over the 4-5 years I've been using GBPVR/NPVR - so today, with mvpmcx2 I can buy a pre-owned A-100 at a sensible price and if it arrives working, I know it will work with NPVR...

    As to the future... I've never been the 'early adopter' type, but I do eventually end up following the 'trend' - just so long as it has an NPVR interface...

    Alex

  10. #10
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    I ended up selling my SageTV extenders when hearing of the Google takeover but now have come to regret it. The extenders had perfect playback of all file types I could come up with and just worked as if you had a PC there running Sage without the headaches. I have built 3 small PCs to replace them which are very quiet, flexible, and run NPVR great. However, the occasional error messages that pop up, other things that require me to go get the wireless keyboard from the media cabinet, the necessary PC maintenance (Windows updates), etc. makes me really long for an "extender" again. So much so that I keep trying to convince myself that I can shape the new WD Live SMP device into an acceptable "extender" which I deep down know won't happen...

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