Author Topic: Why Do Media Directors Exist?  (Read 1915 times)

bulek

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Re: Why Do Media Directors Exist?
« Reply #15 on: August 23, 2014, 04:17:00 am »
Hi,

maybe I'm typical case matching Andrew's thoughts.

I gave up maintaining MD in living room and decided to go with RPi only as media player. Let me stress, that I don't use IP TV anymore, cause maintenance was continous headache - my ISP keeps changing setup. Now ISP provides web app to follow another IPTV stream and that is much easier. But before that, my vnc server setup was really performing well (central VNC server received iptv streams from dedicated network line and then served to any vnc client in LAN).

But now I'd just like to get simple media player working in my living room and make my TV only a bit smarter. Maybe new HTML5 Orbiter will work on RPi ? Then I could also control Dianemo system from this smart tv enhancement... It would be nice if I could make simpler version of HTML5 Orbiter with few basic commands that I need most of the time... If that fails, maybe XBMC plugin to issue those commands is a way to go...

Regards,
Bulek.
Thanks in advance,

regards,

Bulek.

Esperanto

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Re: Why Do Media Directors Exist?
« Reply #16 on: August 23, 2014, 08:34:38 am »
We already support Raspbmc in fact - the only thing on your list we don't have is an XBMC plugin to control Dianemo or the control from an Orbiter. But everything else is there. After all once you add Raspbmc to Rpi you have one of the best full featured & open media players you can buy.

Sounds good. Maybe the QOrbiter or HTML orbiter can be add as a plugin. You mean that you cannot control XMBC from another orbiter? That seems like important to be able to use TV or did you solve that differently?

What is then still missing if those 2 points are added? Maybe rs-232 and usb uirt control support? I suppose squeezeslite is already supported?

totallymaxed

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Re: Why Do Media Directors Exist?
« Reply #17 on: August 23, 2014, 11:05:59 am »
Sounds good. Maybe the QOrbiter or HTML orbiter can be add as a plugin. You mean that you cannot control XMBC from another orbiter? That seems like important to be able to use TV or did you solve that differently?

What is then still missing if those 2 points are added? Maybe rs-232 and usb uirt control support? I suppose squeezeslite is already supported?

As with most media players you can control Raspbmc using upnp control but that does not give you access to all of the XBMC UI. With upnp I can send go to a room with a Raspbmc device and stream some video content to it from my Orbiter, and I can control the playback of that content too - play, pause etc.

Yes both SqueezeLite (supports Spotify Premium) and Squeezeslave is supported and full virtualisation of sound cards too so that you can virtualise a 7.1 card in 4x virtual stereo cards etc.

All the best

Andy
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Esperanto

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Re: Why Do Media Directors Exist?
« Reply #18 on: August 23, 2014, 03:48:40 pm »
As with most media players you can control Raspbmc using upnp control but that does not give you access to all of the XBMC UI. With upnp I can send go to a room with a Raspbmc device and stream some video content to it from my Orbiter, and I can control the playback of that content too - play, pause etc.
I think the most important one is to be able to control the PVR to play tv and record etc since that would be something not possible with only the TV with upnp

totallymaxed

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Re: Why Do Media Directors Exist?
« Reply #19 on: August 23, 2014, 04:04:16 pm »
I think the most important one is to be able to control the PVR to play tv and record etc since that would be something not possible with only the TV with upnp

Oh we do that too. We support IP control of SmartTV's and PVR/STB's, we also support CEC control over IP of TV's too. None of that requires any MD's at all.

All the best

Andy
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Itsik

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Re: Why Do Media Directors Exist?
« Reply #20 on: August 23, 2014, 09:46:17 pm »
I also think that media directors are becoming obsolete. With the orbiters residing on smartphones and tablets, it is really a matter of running the wiring needed to control the Verious TV's and other devices.
BTW, the latest versions of XBMC have the ability to work as a front end to both MythTV and VDR. The only thing that remains in my view, is the complete control of XBMC from the orbiter, if that is accomplished I don't see any use for MD's.

theteju

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Re: Why Do Media Directors Exist?
« Reply #21 on: August 24, 2014, 08:04:10 am »
Well, I am still in favor of MD. reason being, I think MD can turn into a full Desktop if needed. Specifically latest intel NUCs has a lot of juice.
with properly supported SSD, MD can boot up much faster.

Not quite sure, I am still running the system with some obsolete hardware and the system is gettting pretty slow....... slower...... now,,,
I wonder how fast Rpi is getting the ui on screen?

Can you guys post a youtube video about your setup of Rpi ?

Esperanto

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Re: Why Do Media Directors Exist?
« Reply #22 on: August 24, 2014, 10:38:27 am »
Oh we do that too. We support IP control of SmartTV's and PVR/STB's, we also support CEC control over IP of TV's too. None of that requires any MD's at all.

As said before. I only have UTP cable to the different locations. If you replace the MD by PVR/STB and cables then you increasing complexity and costs instead of decreasing it imho. Even though then the MD might fail I have more trust in something open then the closed smarttv, PVR/STB. Especially if it is possible to have _one_ cheap but fully working solution so all use the same. I still feel the core needs to have all connections directly feed into it and there need to be light players/controllers that can actually be controlled (like also softwarewise) whatever that might be ;-).

totallymaxed

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Re: Why Do Media Directors Exist?
« Reply #23 on: August 24, 2014, 03:36:28 pm »
As said before. I only have UTP cable to the different locations. If you replace the MD by PVR/STB and cables then you increasing complexity and costs instead of decreasing it imho. Even though then the MD might fail I have more trust in something open then the closed smarttv, PVR/STB. Especially if it is possible to have _one_ cheap but fully working solution so all use the same. I still feel the core needs to have all connections directly feed into it and there need to be light players/controllers that can actually be controlled (like also softwarewise) whatever that might be ;-).

In these situations just place a small 4-port switch in the room behind your TV etc and the connect your devices to the switch. A switch is super reliable, low cost and very low energy. We'be used this config in 100's of professional installations and it has proven to work well and be incredibly reliable.

All the best

Andy
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tschak909

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Re: Why Do Media Directors Exist?
« Reply #24 on: August 25, 2014, 08:07:45 am »
Let me throw one thing in:

No media director? No Game Player. but it seems, I'm the only one who gives a shit about that...

-Thom

Esperanto

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Re: Why Do Media Directors Exist?
« Reply #25 on: August 25, 2014, 08:15:04 am »
No media director? No Game Player. but it seems, I'm the only one who gives a shit about that...

will that run on the raspberry pi ?

Esperanto

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Re: Why Do Media Directors Exist?
« Reply #26 on: August 25, 2014, 08:17:20 am »
In these situations just place a small 4-port switch in the room behind your TV etc and the connect your devices to the switch. A switch is super reliable, low cost and very low energy. We'be used this config in 100's of professional installations and it has proven to work well and be incredibly reliable.

Maybe I am misunderstanding you. I have UTP cables on the different locations. No coax though. and neither do I have extra PVR's / STBs. Those all bring extra complexity, costs, power and possible points of failure usage I supposed.

totallymaxed

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Re: Why Do Media Directors Exist?
« Reply #27 on: August 25, 2014, 06:30:43 pm »
Maybe I am misunderstanding you. I have UTP cables on the different locations. No coax though. and neither do I have extra PVR's / STBs. Those all bring extra complexity, costs, power and possible points of failure usage I supposed.

There are many different configurations that you can implement. You could centralise pretty much everything - Core, STB/PVR's, Suround Amps, Zone Amps etc in which case you could use an HDMI Matrix that supports Cat5/6 Baluns (ie it will send HDMI over Cat5/6) in room to send the HDMI picture at full quality to each room. You would then IP control the Matrix to route particular sources to specific rooms and control the TV over IP too (select input, vol +/-, mute etc etc). Your MD's or Media Players can then be centralised and routed through inputs on the Matrix or be located in room. If you locate them in-room then typically you would locate the controlled Amplifier in room too as it makes routing audio to them much easier.

It seems to me that the only reason to have MD's is if you want to use VDR/Myth and access live TV via them and you want to use LMCE on-screen Orbiter UI. If you only want to access recorded TV then you can use SmartTV's or Media Players to access those recordings via upnp (that works for Myth... not sure if can do that with VDR).
This would only need a single Cat5/6 cable to each room/TV location. If you need additional Cat5/6 connections in the room then use a small switch to enable that.

This doesn't add complexity at all.

All the best

Andy
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Garbui

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Re: Why Do Media Directors Exist?
« Reply #28 on: August 27, 2014, 07:54:51 am »
Andrew,
If I may weigh in. A few main points on MDs and why as a user I continue to use them and would be disappointed to see them relegated to a unsupported system.

Number one for me is Cost. An ip controllable HDMI matrix, HDMI endpoints, multiple set top boxes/STBs = multiplying the cost to every-room and every zone you add. You can add 'smarts' to any display with a relatively low cost MD and a remote.

I enjoy the ability to control any zone/room from and zone/room without having to have a dedicate room controller (ie. iPad) in each room. Call us 'old skool' but we also prefer to flick through with a remote rather than always use an ipad, ipod touch etc.

The philosophy of LinuxMCE/Dianemo is the central home control. Not just single point to point but in addition multipoint and the ability to move that media/user experience between rooms seamlessly. This includes the same UI, the same control process and access to all media in all rooms. As well as lighting, heating etc. controls. In your model, the only UI is on the mobile orbiter.

Telecom, Game player and surveillance cameras are not considered here yet within the thread. Whilst I agree that the most used component of the system is media, it is the integration of all these smart home systems in one point and turning any display device into a controller and viewer that got me so enthused in the system.

In having said this, not all times is there a need to have a UI and consistent user experience. I use media players and upnp in conjunction with squeezeslaves and traditional MD to get a mix throughout the home. I would just hate to see them become unsupported. 

Food for thought.
Cheers
Garath

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Re: Why Do Media Directors Exist?
« Reply #29 on: August 27, 2014, 10:05:02 am »
Andrew,
If I may weigh in. A few main points on MDs and why as a user I continue to use them and would be disappointed to see them relegated to a unsupported system.

Number one for me is Cost. An ip controllable HDMI matrix, HDMI endpoints, multiple set top boxes/STBs = multiplying the cost to every-room and every zone you add. You can add 'smarts' to any display with a relatively low cost MD and a remote.

I enjoy the ability to control any zone/room from and zone/room without having to have a dedicate room controller (ie. iPad) in each room. Call us 'old skool' but we also prefer to flick through with a remote rather than always use an ipad, ipod touch etc.

The philosophy of LinuxMCE/Dianemo is the central home control. Not just single point to point but in addition multipoint and the ability to move that media/user experience between rooms seamlessly. This includes the same UI, the same control process and access to all media in all rooms. As well as lighting, heating etc. controls. In your model, the only UI is on the mobile orbiter.

Telecom, Game player and surveillance cameras are not considered here yet within the thread. Whilst I agree that the most used component of the system is media, it is the integration of all these smart home systems in one point and turning any display device into a controller and viewer that got me so enthused in the system.

In having said this, not all times is there a need to have a UI and consistent user experience. I use media players and upnp in conjunction with squeezeslaves and traditional MD to get a mix throughout the home. I would just hate to see them become unsupported. 

Food for thought.
Cheers
Garath

All good points but I think you have misunderstood some of my comments here and in other threads. So let me try and clarify things;

In Dianemo & Linuxmce we have an incredibly flexible tool. We can organise and structure our installations using many different approaches/strategies. Some of those can include centralised resources like STB's with HD video distributed to each room via IP Controlled HDMI Matrices. Some might prefer no centralised traditional STB's but  instead use Myth or VDR backends running in the Core. Some might prefer STB's in each room - but that is very rare indeed. But all of these approaches and many, many more are possible.

With today's TV's you already have 'smarts' in the TV - just plug a network connection into the TV and it can be controlled from anywhere by any Orbiter. If your TV is slightly too old to have an on-board Network connection then install a Rpi running RaspBMC behind it and you can get all the same capabilities, including CEC control, on your existing TV.

Orbiters provide the ultimate in flexible control. Yes you can rely on on-screen Orbiters for all control but that means you need a TV in each room to access the UI - and what about those rooms where you may not have a TV? With portable devices we can take our Orbiters to any part of the house and control that room, and we can still control any other room while we are there. I addition we can do that without having to have MD's and TV powered up to do so.

With Dianemo or LinuxMCE we have centralised home control - but is does not require multiple MD's + TV's all over the house to achieve it. Every device type that is supported by either system can be integrated,  controlled and accessed without a single MD - they are not required to achieve that at all. But you can have an MD in any room if you want it with an on-screen Orbiter - mix & match without limitation. Orbiters running on portable devices or on PC's can be used without limitation to control any room and any device anywhere in the system. You don't need, and I have never seen, an installation where you need a portable Orbiter dedicated to each room. You take your Orbiter with you or use one that is already in the room.

There are two scenarios where that require an MD;

- Live TV streamed from Myth or VDR in the Core.
- Using the Game emulator

Everything else can be achieved without MD's and without any loss of capability, flexibility or centralised control, while at the same time reducing complexity and energy costs. But in the end of course it's your decision - that's the ultimate in flexibility.

All the best

Andy
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