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Topics - Purplexus

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Feature requests & roadmap / Hauppauge HD PVR
« on: June 08, 2009, 06:49:05 pm »
Models 1212
models 1213
models 1219 (canadian french/english version)

all should be readily available on the marketplace today

A linux driver is being ceated for their use with Myth

Hauppauge HD PVR driver is on it way to being completed

follow this link to get the driver (was alpha stage when I read this)

This is the first of its kind.  It does not need to bypass any  encryption as it is recording the raw data from the component cables and records it as H. 264 codec requires 13.5 MB instead of the 19MB that mpeg-2 uses

Installation issues / Port Forwarding
« on: June 08, 2009, 05:49:59 pm »
Noob question
Would someone point me where I can Learn more about the router's Firewall settings please?
I have entered this into my firewall settings in hopes to get my Remote Desktop Connection going

portforward port 3389 on both UDP and TCP protocols yet neither of them are seeming to reach their destination.

The address of the computer was looked up by using ipconfig (WINXP pro) on the computer I am trying to port forward to; and that address was

To be more specific the new entry into the Firewall settings appear like this

Protocol=TCP   Source Port=3389 to 3389   Destination Port=3389   Destination IP =   Rule Type= Port Forward
Protocol=UDP   Source Port=3389 to 3389   Destination Port=3389   Destination IP =   Rule Type= Port Forward

All help is much appreciated thanks

Feature requests & roadmap / Graphics Tablet as an orbiter
« on: May 28, 2009, 09:38:18 am »
Here's an idea to throw out to everyone.

Has anyone considered a graphics tablet as an orbiter?  They are fairly inexpensive compared to the gyro remotes and web tablets.  Yes you can't see what you are pointing at on the tablet itself but you would be able to on the tv.

Developers / Discussion on true Multi-room Solution (continued)
« on: April 22, 2009, 05:59:08 am »
Initially this topic was posted on the users forum pages and I am making the move to move it to here.

First off the question was asked if we could use 8 media directors to play just audio and output the audio line out into 8 high output 2 channel amplifiers.

The way this would work in detail :

- All audio stored on the core as normal:
- Use barebones cheap CPU's because you only need audio playback.
- Use good -> great quality speakers 2 from each amplifier
- use the line out on the cpu and Y split from a 3/8 mini stereo (2 black lines on the connector) headphone jack to a left/right stereo RCA plug
- Use an orbiter, a MD with a gui interface on the TV etc. to control the AUDIO MD's

Should work right?

YES and it does.

 in that the system does not sync audio playback when using more then one MD to play the same song.
the only time this actually becomes an issue is when you are able to hear more then 1 zone of audio at a time.

I work for a high end home automation where our clients are not going to put up with this at all.

We very often install 12 or more zones of audio in a home in order to create sound ambience.  Very often these zones are capable of being heard in transition zones.  (The hallway between Zone 1, Zone 2, Zone 3 and Zone 4)

Some ideas I have thought of that might be possibilities.  Please give me your ideas on wether or not these might be possible.
Please keep in mind I have been researching this as best as I could in order to figure this out and that I am not normally a linux programmer.

first Thought....  If I incorporate a flash memory cards into my Media director can we buffer the audio file on each media director and then give them a simultaneous play command when selecting them all to play a particular playlist?   This should ensure synced playback if this is at all possible.

Second possible solution....  If I hook up 4 computers into a 4 source in and 4 source out Multi-room amp could I write a script that would check to see if more than one zone is playing the same file.  Then if there is could I then send a RS-232 command for both of those particular zones to play the selected file from only one MD.  (pretty sure this could be done and fairly easily but this is a more expensive solution)

I don't understand linux MCE code at all as I have never even seen it.  But in order to give back I could do the leg work on this project if someone is interested in taking this on and give me direction.

Developers / Rack Mount Multi-room Solution
« on: April 21, 2009, 10:23:27 am »
Alright I am at a loss.

I have done many sleep deprived nights trying to find a lot of questions out. Perhaps maybe I can ask.

I am wondering first of all about control on a Linux MCE multi-room.  The setup I attempting is this.

I would like to use 1 core for a 7.1 Theatre, 5 TV/Audio Media directors where all of these units will be placed at the TV/ projector locations.   
Now the Questions I am wondering about is this... 

Question 1   If I have 8 other media directors all located in a RACKMOUNT media closet... Can I control each media director from the ones located at the TV's?

Question 2.  Is there a replacement remote anyone knows of for the FIIRE cheif that is capable of using the follow me function?

Question 3   Will it be possible to use RS-232 for a Lutron Radio-RA lighting system with LINUX MCE

Question 4   has anyone looked into the Samsung Omnia for being a Orbiter (IPHONE KILLER) (possible remote)


Question 6   HOW ABOUT NOW?

Thanks in advance;


Feature requests & roadmap / Multi-room Sound Systems Even possible?
« on: April 07, 2009, 08:42:16 am »
NO! why would you want to?

I have seen numerous requests for linux MCE to control Russound ACA-E5, Russound CAV6.6, Nuvo Multi-room amplifiers

HERE IS A COMPARISON as well as a solution for homes already prewired for these systems.


A lot of Homes are already prewired with Multi-room Audio Matrix amplifiers in mind.

Now lets wire our homes with a Linux MCE system in mind

Lets say we have 23 rooms with 2 speakers in each in mind.  All of the wiring in a typical multi-room system would have 46 Speaker wires and 23 Cat 5e wire wired into a Home theater rack of some sort with these all going into the Multi-room amplifiers such as Nuvo, Russound, Control 4, ETC.

We have to think out of the box when prewiring for a Linux MCE system as our brains for the house.

WE first off have a core capable of 1 HD video out and 1 audio out. Using our typical millionaires house with 23 rooms of sound and 1 home Theatre.... we use the core to run to the Home theatre in this example.
We throw in a 24 port GIG switch and run 23 Media directors off the core JUST to control the other 23 rooms of sound!!!   Sounds expensive...  YES!!!.. but this is the alternative....  Lets assume all we need is 2 channel audio... any barebones computer will do 2 channel audio.  no need to go get something with video needs it is not necessary... now we need 23 2 channel amps  UGH!!! lets assume 23 SONY STRDE-197 200 watt 2 channel amplifiers at $150 a piece... and a cheap barebones computer at $200 a piece.... that is $350 a room. = $8050.

Option 2...  (3) 8X8 multi-room amplifiers.  = $10500 and that is at a wholesalers cost point.  ( I am a Automation specialist)

DIFFERENCE in Options....
LINUX MCE = numerous networked inputs distributed to all 23 Audio zones + your Home theater.
8X8 Multi-room amplifiers = 8 sources to 24 audio zones

Linux MCE is also VIDEO distribution
add your $700 Media Directors for this feature as we need Video quality too.
and if this is an area where you have audio and video keep them combined by running the Audio back to the Sony amp you have located in your centralized closet.  to do this you will need 2 RCA's.... or 1 COAX with the audio now being decoded by a 5.1 AMP... if you have a CAT-5e to spare... there are baluns that convert cat 5e to RCA.  (balun = Balanced / unbalanced).


The current problem
The home I am currently working on has 10 Zones of Audio and 7 Rooms in which have Televisions planned for Whole Home Audio/Video Distribution.  This home was prewired by a different company which had in mind a Russound (8X8) audio Matrix with a (8X8) video Matrix and (2) 2 channel amplifiers to combine 2 of the audio zones and have in wall volume controls to control the seperate zones.  They also have a Dedicated Theater room in which all of the wiring was run to a Home theater rack.

The solution
In the Home Theatre Rack we are going to have 1 core. and 1 2 channel amplifier with RS-232 control for each zone of Audio that has AUDIO ONLY.  For these zone we attach a barebones CPU loaded with LINUX MCE.  (barebones requirement is an Audio out.  does not matter if it is a 1/8 mini plug or 2 channel RCA.  If your barebones has coax out make sure your amplifier can except coax input and that you set your Amplifier to spit out only Stereo audio) in our case we have 5 Zones of audio only.  we now also have 5 Zones in which have TV's and 2 channel audio.  (For these 5 cases we use a $700 mini cpu which we shall hide behind the TV itself. )   In our special case because the previous company was planning on doing Distributed audio through cat 5 we have cat 5 behind the tv's.  In our case the previous compnay was also going to use IR using cat 5 to the TV we again can use this in conjunction with balun's to send audio back down to our Theatre rack to power up the 2 channel amp in that zone.  Our System also has a 5.1 sound system and a TV in the family room.  Again we have 2 cat 5 for control and video behind the TV.  This time our Mini computer MUST HAVE digital coax out in our to send it again back down to the Rack in the Theatre.  Our last ZONE is the theatre itself in which there is no problem with any wiring as it is all there already.


Linux MCE system costs (equipment only what would be relevant to switching to a Multi-room system (speakers and tv's etc would eb the same regardless)
5 Barebone computers at $200/ cpu = $1000
5 mini computers at $700 / cpu =$ 3500
10 (2 channel) amplifiers @ $150 =$1500
1 5.1 Amplifier @ $800 = $800
1 7.1 Amplifier @ $1800 = $1800
5 (pairs as you need one on both sides of the cat 5) RCA baluns @ 60 = $300
1 (16 Port) Gb switch @ $215 = $ 215
5 remote controls @ $1500 = $1500

TOTAL COST = $10,615

Multi-room cost (note these are at My companies cost yet. If you are buying retail expect these prices to be marked up %40 or so
(8X8) multi-room amp with 40 watts per channel no keypads = $3600
2 (2 channel) amplifiers @ $150 = $300
(8X8) video matrix switch = $2100
zone keypad @ $420 each = $3360
media server(pictures and cd's only) = $3200
400 Disc DVD changer = $1500
RF Controller @ $1400
5 Remote controls @ $500 = $2500

Approx (40 hours for non profressionals to program this) $3000 or more for you to get a pro to do it for you

TOTAL COST $17,960 (and it still doesn't even compare to what the linux mce system can do!!!!)
RETAIL APPROX = ($25,144) + 3000 for remote programming
$18000 more for a much lesser system.


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