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Member Since 20 Nov 2016
Offline Last Active 17 Sep 2020 00:20

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Pls recommend hardware for remote fallback tuner setup

8 September 2020 - 14:23


I'm looking for two hardware recommendations. I'm currently using VuPlus
devices with OpenPLI firmware. This combination is doing 95% of what I
want, so I'm very happy. However, I'm about to buy new hardware to
install in a different place, and I wonder if I should get what already
works for me, or if I can reach 100% with different hardware.

Currently I have one "fat" tuner box in the center, and several lightweight
viewer devices around it. The viewers are connected over ethernet only
(no antenna cables).

To view live-TV I use the enigma2 remote fallback tuner function, for
recorded TV and I use a samba share that I auto-mount during boot, to add
timers I use the remote timer plugin, and for my movie library I use a
read-only samba share.

Live-TV in my case means DVB-S and DVB-T (probably switching to DVB-T2 in
the next few years). My "fat" box is currently a Vu Solo4K and I use
the built-in FBC tuner with a unicable LNB to get up to 8 arbitrary
channels simultanously, which is plenty enough. For DVB-T however, I can
plug only one dual DVB-T/T2 card, which guarantees me two arbitrary
channels. I often run into this limitation and get a black screen
because "no tuner available" on the fat box. This happens mostly when
I am recording in the background, or when someone forgot to turn off a
viewer device somewhere in the house.


If you think there are better ways to make this work over ethernet, please

let me know.



Question 1 - Tuner box:

Basically I need more DVB-T/T2 tuners in a device that also handles one
FBC DVB-S at the same time. I understand that DVB-T/T2 is not compatible
with the FBC concept because the various frequency slots are filled by
physically separate emitters. The wildly different signal strengths
on the channels require filter/AGC adjustments to properly single out
one channel. Therefore I must have an individual tuner for each frequency
that I want to view simultanously, and the best cards that I can buy
give me two tuners in one slot. Correct?


Can you recommend a box that I can use instead of the Solo4K to get
FBC DVB-S, plus TWO (or THREE) slots capable of driving the dual
DVB-T/T2 cards? That would give me 4 (or 6) tuners, which should be
enough. It also needs to have a good gigabit ethernet chip to stream
it out, and an internal 2.5" SATA to fit an SSD for recordings.

Question 2 - Viewer box:

Currently I use Vu Zero4K for this purpose. There exists a variant
with integrated DVB-T/T2 tuner, which I have installed in the few places
that are near an antenna outlet. This is how I tried to remedy the
"no tuner available" problems as good as I could. My main problem

with the Zero4K is that it supports only very few codecs. It is ok to

view live-TV and many modern .mkv and .mp4 files. However, it does
not support the older files in my movie library which may be .avi, .xvid,


I think this is actually a licensing problem, and the broadcom (?) SoC
is capable of decoding those other formats, but it has been disabled
in the driver. I believe there are kernel/driver patches for other
devices where the limitation was introduced after the fact, but to
my knowledge no such patch exists for the Zero4K. Correct?

I like the fact that the Zero4K is small and not very expensive, and
that I can opt to get it with DVB-T/T2 tuner. But none of that is a
hard requirement. Can you recommend me another box that is better
suited to my kind of usage?

Thanks, and be reminded that I want to keep using OpenPLi on all the
hardware that you recommend. I'm not afraid of compiling a custom
image if that helps with the codec problem.