My old Toppy still works and is plumbed in if I need it. Had the sense to
make sure the new TV had a SCART socket. But both the TV and Humax do
i-player etc. The TV FreeView playback which is very easy to use.
*We are born naked, wet, and hungry. Then things get worse.
Dave Plowman email@example.com London SW
That's not much use when, like us, you often record a whole series
before watching the first episode, so that if it is any good, you don't
have to keep waiting for the following week's. By the time the last
episode of a six part series is broadcast, the first episodes have
disappeared from iPlayer et al.
On Tue, 20 Jun 2017 00:22:18 +0100, Dave Plowman (News) wrote:
Only two things at once? Pathetic! How about 11 things at once? :-)
 Not that I'd normally need to record more than 3 things at once (a
maximum of 6 during simultaneous "Padding Conflicts" when all three BBC
channels of interest happen to be showing back to back programmes of
Admittedly, that was SD material I was recording with my work-a-day
desktop computer using Kaffeine as the "PVR 'app'". I deliberately
scheduled all 5 BBC channels on the Beeb's SD mux and another 5 or 6 from
a commercial SD mux which, amongst other TV streams, carries Channel 4's
I tried to include padding overlaps but, afaicr, I was only able to
include one at the time I was testing the 'limits' of the "PVR app" and
I'm happy to say I didn't discover any during that test. Quite frankly,
ICBA to try a more extreme test than that until I've at least upgraded
the twin tuner DVB-T PCI adapter to a twin tuner DVB-T2 PCIe card.
I've tested it to 10 channels simultaneously (all SD)
The most I've used in anger is 5 recordings.
With the ability to record so many channel back to back programs each
with their pre and post padding times are recorded separately with no
That describes Kaffeine to a T. :-)
I'm currently in the middle of testing a DVB-T2 upgrade on my alfresco
test rig (more modern MoBo - the one pulled out of my current desktop
machine just over two years ago after having completed the standard 5
year 'tour of duty' that its two predecessors had gone through).
Being essentially a Linux related task, I've been posting to the ucol
news group for help and advice only to discover that I'm now being
regarded as "An Expert" in this matter by the tone of a lot of the follow
I've managed to select a good Linux supported DVBSky T982 PCIe dual DVB-
T2 adapter, download and copy the firmware files into the /lib/firmware
folder on a freshly installed Linux Mint 18.1 distro (Kaffeine 2.x.x PPAs
aren't available for the older LM 17.1 setup on my desktop machine),
figured out that *both* aerial sockets need to be fed from the aerial
source in order to avoid odd surprises. The existing Kaffeine version
(1.3.x) doesn't recognise T2 tuners, hence the OS and Kaffeine upgrade.
I've gotten as far as proving that I can schedule recordings from the HD
epg in spite of the huffman coding issue scrambling the programme names
and descriptions - the start and duration times aren't subject to this
issue which is all that is essential to scheduling a recording from the
By using the channelname/date/time variables for Kaffeine to compose
filenames from and consulting the broadcasters' web based TV schedules
(or bleb.org) by which to pick the correct time slot and rename the
recordings afterwards, I have myself a work-around solution until a
suitable epg plug-in to overcome the coding issue becomes available.
I'm now tinkering with the alfresco test rig to decide whether it's
going to be worth the trouble of blowing away a perfectly good LM17.1 KDE
desktop setup in favour of the LM18.1 KDE one which needs some serious
work to fettle it into something less objectionable than the default.
When I started this T2 upgrade, I hadn't realised quite what I was
letting myself in for. :-(
On Wed, 21 Jun 2017 16:46:30 +0100, Capitol wrote:
I should imagine quite easily if my experience with Kaffeine on a Linux
box is anything to go by. Hell! even my ancient 12 yo Acer Aspire 3660
laptop with its pokey 1.6GHz clocked single core mobile Celeron cpu could
manage 3 TV channels from a USB tuning stick even with padding overlaps
due to scheduling a pair of back to back programmes on each TV channel (6
media files being written simultaneously to an IDE interfaced 250GB
laptop HDD) - it only choked when attempting to record 4 TV channels at
once *without* padding overlaps. USB2 can be a real CPU cycles stealing
vampire if you don't have an obscenely powerful CPU to absorb such
Of course, an entry level desktop machine of recent vintage (say less
than 6 or 7 years of age) should be able to do much better, even using
USB2 DVB-T tuning sticks. Basically, every single TV channel going
through each mux (anywhere from 6 to 8 or more channels) should be do-
able until you hit another limit, if ever, of the desktop's system
Until discovering, quite by chance, that you *don't* need a tuner per
channel being simultaneously recorded if the channels are in the same mux,
I too used to believe in that myth of a tuner for each TV channel you
wished to record simultaneously.
Prior to changing over from win2k to Linux Mint 17.1 just over two years
ago, I had been dabbling with Ubuntu on an al fresco test rig for a year
or three beforehand in anticipation of win2k being kicked aside for lack
of hardware driver support on my next impending hardware upgrade. I'd
been using this test rig as a scheduling conflict resolver making good
use of a KWorld twin tuner DVB-T adapter I had planned on using in the
win2k box until I'd discovered the complete lack of driver support for
this venerable OS.
One day, a few months prior to the massive upgrade, I realised I had
forgotten to properly enable *both* tuning modules in Kaffeine *after*
successfully recording two different but conflicting TV programmes (both
BBC channels). Somehow Kaffeine, in spite of having access to only a
single tuner,had managed to record both TV programmes in a feat that was
denied to windows based PVR software. If ever there was a "Killer App" to
justify the move from windows to a Linux distro, Kaffeine was *it*! :-)
 The more adventurous of us who used to (or still) own Toppy and Humax
PVRs will remember the piss poor performance of their USB interfaces by
which to transfer recordings to a PC. In the case of the Humax PVR, it
was so piss poor as to not work at all reliably without an add-on utility
to effectively make it send the data twice (at half speed) so it could
correct the errors.
Even the more powerful Toppy (same reference design but obviously fitted
with a more powerful cpu as evidenced by the faster and more reliable USB
performance) was still excruciatingly slow compared to a regular entry
level desktop machine of 15 years vintage.
The cpu horsepower on both of these machines (at least initially in the
case of the Humax) was more than ample to the task of recording two TV
channels to their hard disks and allow the user to watch either another
TV channel live if it happened to be in either of the tuned muxes or else
watch an earlier recording off disk. In spite of having CPUs more than up
to their primary task, they were barely able to satisfy the demands of
the USB2 interfaces they'd been cursed with.
Each terrestrial tuner tunes into a multi-channel MUX and then
everything on the MUX can be recorded. My box has 2 terrestrial tuners
and 2 satellite tuners. The satellite tuners work in a similar way.
I'd never need that. Based on what I've wanted to record over many many
years. I don't see the point in recording something I'll never watch.
I can easily do four. But never ever have needed to record more than 3 -
and that's rare too.
I really couldn't be bothered using a PC as the basis of a TV recorder. I
don't have one in the living room. I can look at things from the PC on the
TV - but it was something just tried out of interest then forgotten.
*If all is not lost, where the hell is it?
Dave Plowman firstname.lastname@example.org London SW
I have been told that some refurbished TVonics ones are well sought after at
the moment. only the psu capacitors go, and one can fit a bigger hard drive
I wonder if perhaps there was a golden age of chipsets which has now past in
favour of cheap and cheerful rubbish.
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