Author Topic: HDHomeRun-Dual vs. WinTV-HVR-2250 vs. HD-5500  (Read 2326 times)

MDH1966

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HDHomeRun-Dual vs. WinTV-HVR-2250 vs. HD-5500
« on: January 12, 2011, 06:57:18 pm »
I'm slowly narrowing down my gear list.  One final piece of the puzzle is the tuner/capture device.  I have done quite a bit of research into these and I have narrowed the list down to the three listed in the title.  The top pick for me is the WinTV-HVR-2250 for the following reasons:

Dual Tuners with a single cable in one slot. (I like neat installations)
It has a couple of quirks but I know what they are and I am successfully using one in my MythTV system

I know that there are advantages/disadvantages for all of them but the information that I am looking for is more about which one works best with the LMCE software.  Is there one that is better supported than the others?  My understanding is that they are all plug-n-play but does one work within LMCE better than the others.

Thanks,

M.

merkur2k

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Re: HDHomeRun-Dual vs. WinTV-HVR-2250 vs. HD-5500
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2011, 06:55:05 am »
I really like the HDHomeRun because it is two tuners that takes up *no* slots :)
you can put it in a closet or somewhere out of sight where you dont have to see the coax cable mess. and for antenna users in particular, you can mount it much closer to the antenna (even on the antenna mast itself) in order to reduce cable run loss.

totallymaxed

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Re: HDHomeRun-Dual vs. WinTV-HVR-2250 vs. HD-5500
« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2011, 09:37:26 am »
I really like the HDHomeRun because it is two tuners that takes up *no* slots :)
you can put it in a closet or somewhere out of sight where you dont have to see the coax cable mess. and for antenna users in particular, you can mount it much closer to the antenna (even on the antenna mast itself) in order to reduce cable run loss.

We also like HDHomeRun for all the same reasons as Merkur2k and also because of their reliability...power them up hook them up to your LAN and your Cable/Aerial system and just forget them...they just work. Its also very easy to add additional HDHomeRun's to an installation as you need them. If you dont need Satellite tuners - you really cannot beat them in my opinion.

All the best


Andrew
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MDH1966

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Re: HDHomeRun-Dual vs. WinTV-HVR-2250 vs. HD-5500
« Reply #3 on: January 13, 2011, 02:21:26 pm »
It's amazing how many times you can hear the same thing (HDHomeRun--put it in a closet). This time, it triggered a whole chain of thoughts in my mind that could change my entire setup. I won't detail the thought chain but here is where I landed?

Okay, follow me on this. Right now I am using a mobile broadband connection for my internet at home (I'm am grandfathered into an true unlimited plan). I can't get cable/dsl/fios because I live in a rural community.  My mobile broadband card is in a laptop running Ubuntu 10.10 (I recently upgraded from 9.04).  That computer shares it's i-net connection into a Linksys router and feeds my house with DHCP. Does LMCE 0810 support mobile broadband cards (I can't find anything on the forum or wiki) and can I use it for my network hub in my house?  I'm pretty sure that Ubuntu 8.10 supports mobile broadband. In otherwords, my setup would be like this.  LMCE laptop, with mobile broadband, acting as a DHCP server for all my machines, including my Windows Vista laptop, Windows 7 desktop, networked printer, XBox, FreeNAS, MythTV.  I would repurpose my MythTV and make it a MD so that part of the equation is fine.  Would my Windows machines be able to find the internet/email and still be able to use the network printer & FreeNAS if LMCE is the router? This would allow me netboot my Windows machines and use them as a MD whenever I wanted to watch TV.  Or, I could just bring up a browser window and access my media that way.  I could use my FreeNAS to store the media so I wouldn't need to add an external HD to the LMCE laptop and I would use a HDHomeRun(dual) to provide the tuner.

Thoughts?

Thanks,

M.

merkur2k

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Re: HDHomeRun-Dual vs. WinTV-HVR-2250 vs. HD-5500
« Reply #4 on: January 13, 2011, 04:47:59 pm »
Anything that works in ubuntu could in theory be made to work in lmce as well, so you should be ok on the broadband card.
and yes the core was designed to be the only gateway/router for a home network, so it is expected that there be a mix of devices and operating systems on the internal network. the only real difference is that your windows machines should access the nas through the core now instead of directly.
using laptop hardware for a core would give me concern for performance though, they typically have quite bad disk i/o.

MDH1966

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Re: HDHomeRun-Dual vs. WinTV-HVR-2250 vs. HD-5500
« Reply #5 on: January 13, 2011, 04:55:10 pm »
If the media was kept on the FreeNAS and not on the LMCE(laptop) HD then would that alleviate that concern?  I know that in MythTV, I can customize where the media is kept.  I think that I can even have it record it straight to the NAS.  Also, the tuner would be the HDHomeRun, so in theory, the LMCE is only acting as a traffic cop.

Or is there some other concern with HD I/O that you are concerned about?

Thanks,

M.

totallymaxed

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Re: HDHomeRun-Dual vs. WinTV-HVR-2250 vs. HD-5500
« Reply #6 on: January 13, 2011, 05:56:19 pm »
It's amazing how many times you can hear the same thing (HDHomeRun--put it in a closet). This time, it triggered a whole chain of thoughts in my mind that could change my entire setup. I won't detail the thought chain but here is where I landed?

Okay, follow me on this. Right now I am using a mobile broadband connection for my internet at home (I'm am grandfathered into an true unlimited plan). I can't get cable/dsl/fios because I live in a rural community.  My mobile broadband card is in a laptop running Ubuntu 10.10 (I recently upgraded from 9.04).  That computer shares it's i-net connection into a Linksys router and feeds my house with DHCP. Does LMCE 0810 support mobile broadband cards (I can't find anything on the forum or wiki) and can I use it for my network hub in my house?  I'm pretty sure that Ubuntu 8.10 supports mobile broadband. In otherwords, my setup would be like this.  LMCE laptop, with mobile broadband, acting as a DHCP server for all my machines, including my Windows Vista laptop, Windows 7 desktop, networked printer, XBox, FreeNAS, MythTV.  I would repurpose my MythTV and make it a MD so that part of the equation is fine.  Would my Windows machines be able to find the internet/email and still be able to use the network printer & FreeNAS if LMCE is the router? This would allow me netboot my Windows machines and use them as a MD whenever I wanted to watch TV.  Or, I could just bring up a browser window and access my media that way.  I could use my FreeNAS to store the media so I wouldn't need to add an external HD to the LMCE laptop and I would use a HDHomeRun(dual) to provide the tuner.

Thoughts?

Thanks,

M.

Hi MDH,

We often need to use a temporary WAN side connection when doing installs in new properties where the customers broadband connection has not been connected/provisioned yet by their provider. In these cases we use an external mobile broadband modem connected to the WAN side of the Core as a temporary solution and this works well - the limitation being the bandwidth available via the mobile broadband service. There is no reason why this could not work as a permanent solution at all though.

All the best


Andrew
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MDH1966

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Re: HDHomeRun-Dual vs. WinTV-HVR-2250 vs. HD-5500
« Reply #7 on: January 13, 2011, 06:29:01 pm »
Hi MDH,

We often need to use a temporary WAN side connection when doing installs in new properties where the customers broadband connection has not been connected/provisioned yet by their provider. In these cases we use an external mobile broadband modem connected to the WAN side of the Core as a temporary solution and this works well - the limitation being the bandwidth available via the mobile broadband service. There is no reason why this could not work as a permanent solution at all though.

All the best


Andrew

I'm assuming that this won't be an issue with mine since I am currently using the mobile broadband in my Ubuntu laptop.  So this means that it has already been connected and provisioned by the provider.  I am thinking that my only hang up may be the installation.  Since LMCE uses the internet to do the installation (I believe this happens even with the DVD install) that it may not see the broadband card and use that for its connection.  But since it installs Kubuntu first, then it just might work. I've downloaded the latest snapshot this morning as well as Kubuntu 8.10.  First I will do a LiveCD boot from Kubuntu and see if the card is seen and connects to the internet. Then I will do a dual boot install of the LMCE DVD onto the laptop and see if it works.  I have to do the dual boot because that computer is my internet connection. I can't afford to break it and not have a way to boot back to Ubuntu and restore the internet connection so I can ask questions, check email, download a new snapshot etc.  The mobile broadband card is a PCMCIA and that is the only computer I have that has that slot.

Thanks,

M.

totallymaxed

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Re: HDHomeRun-Dual vs. WinTV-HVR-2250 vs. HD-5500
« Reply #8 on: January 13, 2011, 06:41:06 pm »
I'm assuming that this won't be an issue with mine since I am currently using the mobile broadband in my Ubuntu laptop.  So this means that it has already been connected and provisioned by the provider.  I am thinking that my only hang up may be the installation.  Since LMCE uses the internet to do the installation (I believe this happens even with the DVD install) that it may not see the broadband card and use that for its connection.  But since it installs Kubuntu first, then it just might work. I've downloaded the latest snapshot this morning as well as Kubuntu 8.10.  First I will do a LiveCD boot from Kubuntu and see if the card is seen and connects to the internet. Then I will do a dual boot install of the LMCE DVD onto the laptop and see if it works.  I have to do the dual boot because that computer is my internet connection. I can't afford to break it and not have a way to boot back to Ubuntu and restore the internet connection so I can ask questions, check email, download a new snapshot etc.  The mobile broadband card is a PCMCIA and that is the only computer I have that has that slot.

Thanks,

M.

At the moment your broadband connection is hosted on your laptop...so why not leave it in place initially and just connect the LAN port of your laptop to the WAN port of your core. If that proves to be ok...and i cant see why it would not as its really no different to what we do with a dedicated broadband modem...then you could look into transitioning your broadband connection across to a broadband modem so that you can stop using the laptop (saves energy etc).

If you keep the mobile broadband service external to the Core then this makes it simple to reconfigure if you need to take you Core offline for an hour or two or if you have a hardware failure in your Core for example. In those situations you can quickly temporarily replace your Core with a small router while you work on your Core.

All the best


Andrew
Andy Herron,
Convergent Home Technologies Ltd
United Kingdom
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MDH1966

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Re: HDHomeRun-Dual vs. WinTV-HVR-2250 vs. HD-5500
« Reply #9 on: January 13, 2011, 08:43:40 pm »
At the moment your broadband connection is hosted on your laptop...so why not leave it in place initially and just connect the LAN port of your laptop to the WAN port of your core. If that proves to be ok...and i cant see why it would not as its really no different to what we do with a dedicated broadband modem...then you could look into transitioning your broadband connection across to a broadband modem so that you can stop using the laptop (saves energy etc).

If you keep the mobile broadband service external to the Core then this makes it simple to reconfigure if you need to take you Core offline for an hour or two or if you have a hardware failure in your Core for example. In those situations you can quickly temporarily replace your Core with a small router while you work on your Core.

All the best


Andrew

That makes sense.  Thanks everyone for all your help.  I will rethink and see where I land.

Thanks,

M.

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Re: HDHomeRun-Dual vs. WinTV-HVR-2250 vs. HD-5500
« Reply #10 on: January 13, 2011, 08:53:31 pm »
In addition to abysmal IO performance, keep in mind that your LMCE core officially needs two NICs.  From the wiki:

The Core should have 2 NICs (network interface cards) -- one for connecting to an "external" network (such as your cable modem, DSL modem, or home LAN router) and one for connecting to the "internal" home automation/multimedia network (your LinuxMCE system network).

joshpond

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Re: HDHomeRun-Dual vs. WinTV-HVR-2250 vs. HD-5500
« Reply #11 on: January 13, 2011, 09:05:26 pm »
With your wireless broadband can it be run through a USB? (Not sure what you run in the US)

Over here I have a 3G USB modem which I plug directly into a Billion Wireless 4 port GB Router. That in turn is connected directly into the external network for the core.

Also as an alternative to freeNAS have a quick look at unRAID. I find it is very good for media storage although I have read (never tried it) that mythTV doesn't like recording to rieserFS. I'm getting a HDHomeRun and planning on recording TV directly to the core as I don't keep my recordings.

Josh
My Setup: On it's way

MDH1966

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Re: HDHomeRun-Dual vs. WinTV-HVR-2250 vs. HD-5500
« Reply #12 on: January 13, 2011, 09:21:17 pm »
In addition to abysmal IO performance, keep in mind that your LMCE core officially needs two NICs.  From the wiki:

The Core should have 2 NICs (network interface cards) -- one for connecting to an "external" network (such as your cable modem, DSL modem, or home LAN router) and one for connecting to the "internal" home automation/multimedia network (your LinuxMCE system network).

With the broadband card in the machine, that is technically the second NIC.  The wired NIC on the laptop would feed the home network and act as the DHCP router.  The broadband card would be the connection to the outside world.  Of course this is all theory as I haven't actually tried it yet.

With your wireless broadband can it be run through a USB? (Not sure what you run in the US)

Over here I have a 3G USB modem which I plug directly into a Billion Wireless 4 port GB Router. That in turn is connected directly into the external network for the core.

Also as an alternative to freeNAS have a quick look at unRAID. I find it is very good for media storage although I have read (never tried it) that mythTV doesn't like recording to rieserFS. I'm getting a HDHomeRun and planning on recording TV directly to the core as I don't keep my recordings.

Josh

My broadband card that I currently have is PCMCIA only. Although, when you put it in, all of a sudden you have more usb hubs than before. so I think that it technically is a PCMCIA card the uses an internal usb bus to connect to the modem.

Thanks,

M.