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Media Open Source Software

XBMC 12.0 'Frodo' Released: PVR-Support, HD Audio and More 146

Posted by Soulskill
from the i-will-take-the-codec-to-mordor dept.
fluor2 writes "Team XBMC have released XBMC 12 'Frodo.' Features for XBMC 12 include: HD audio support (including DTS-MA and Dolby True-HD) via the new XBMC AudioEngine (OS X/iOS not yet available), live TV and PVR support, h.264 10-bit (aka Hi10P), 64-bit support in OS X to match the 64-bit support in Linux, improved image support, support for the Raspberry Pi, initial support for the Android platform, improved AirPlay support across all platforms, improved controller support in Windows and Linux, advanced filtering in the library, video library tags to complement movie sets, advanced UPnP sharing, and more!"
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XBMC 12.0 'Frodo' Released: PVR-Support, HD Audio and More

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  • ..that haven't been working since at least RC2.

    This annoys me because the interface is such a f*ck*rse to operate with the mouse.

    • by SomePgmr (2021234) on Tuesday January 29, 2013 @09:01PM (#42733427) Homepage
      Yatse. It's far-and-away the nicest xbmc remote for android I've used. I think it's $3. It's absolutely worth it.
      • by Zouden (232738)

        Seconded. Yatse works great on both my phone and tablet and I prefer using it over my bluetooth mini keyboard.

    • ..that haven't been working since at least RC2.

      This annoys me because the interface is such a f*ck*rse to operate with the mouse.

      Man, sounds like you're paying for their product I hope you're donating something at least. The remote was fixed long time ago. Just install one of the nightlies apk's from their website [google.com] trying doing some goggling next time

    • Re: (Score:1, Flamebait)

      by Lumpy (12016)

      What moron uses a mouse? get a frigging IR remote and call it done.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      An apk of the xbmc remote for android is available to download from the google code page. It works perfectly with the last release candidate. Although I'm using a playbook so I don't know how easy it would be to install it on whatever android device you're using.

    • There are touch based skins that might operate a little better with the mouse - Confluence works, but sure, it's not designed for it. The official Android remote should have an update for Frodo in the play store shortly (it's been submitted afaik). There are other remotes out there and apk's are available elsewhere in the meantime.
    • I went on Amazon and dropped $15 on a noname IR remote, works beautifully. Are you sure you've given this a proper chance?
    • by AbRASiON (589899) *

      I find it surprisingly good with a keyboard.
      Yes a wireless keyboard, logitech Dinovo edge for me- I find myself browsing in the lounge all the time now too.
      Glorious.

    • by frente69 (1058782)
      They released a new version on the 29th. Seems to work fine for me now.
    • Sort of working version http://forum.xbmc.org/showthread.php?tid=147741 [xbmc.org]

      The remote part works for me, most of the times. It's rough though

    • Just use Yatse. It is updated frequently and worked fine throughout the entire RC releases. It offers a lot more functionality over the official app to. The user interface is also amazing and they are continuing to add big changes and try new things out which the others don't seem to bother with. You can even start xbmc using the remote as well instead of having to have a second app to do that for you. It has a lot more options as well that the official doesn't offer like having a subtitle button or a
    • A remote for a TV interface? I use LIRC. It behaves just like everything else in the house on the TV.

  • PVR (Score:2, Informative)

    by _Ludwig (86077)

    The live TV/PVR "functionality" is still dogshit, apparently shoehorned in at the last minute. I've used it with NPVR and MythTV backends and it doesn't do the most basic things like pause or rewind. Other than that it's lovely.

    • by 7213 (122294)

      Is that a limitation of the PVR API, or the PVR plugin your using?

      If it's available within the API, then I'd wager it's coming sooner rather then later, if the plugin is actively maintained.

      That's the beauty of implementing the backend client in a plugin, they can be updated far more regularly then XBMC proper.

      • Re:PVR (Score:5, Informative)

        by Lars Op den Kamp (2827885) on Tuesday January 29, 2013 @09:24PM (#42733575)
        It's a limitation of the add-on that you're using. Multiple add-ons support these features, and you can find all the information on our wiki: http://wiki.xbmc.org/index.php?title=PVR [xbmc.org] And as the dev who merged PVR support in and maintained the PVR support in XBMC for the last 3-4 years: no it was not shoehorned in. You just failed to read the documentation that is available and/or you're using a backend or add-on that doesn't support these things.
    • Re:PVR (Score:4, Informative)

      by guantamanera (751262) on Tuesday January 29, 2013 @09:14PM (#42733503)

      The live TV/PVR "functionality" is still dogshit, apparently shoehorned in at the last minute. I've used it with NPVR and MythTV backends and it doesn't do the most basic things like pause or rewind. Other than that it's lovely.

      I think you're doing something wrong. I been running frodo in a raspberrypi using mythtv backend, and I can rewind, fast forward, pause and schedule recordings. I even returned the cable boxes to my cable provider, 4 of boxes and now comcast refunds me $3 [comcast.com] per month for not renting their cable box. I could not do any recordings if the backend was tvheadend but it works just fine with mythtv and VDR.

      • What are you using for tuners?
        • What are you using for tuners?

          I am using 1 HDHomerun Prime [silicondust.com] and a HDHomeRunDUal [silicondust.com] I have the cablecard connected in cardsharing mode. I had to modify of VDR-SC [85.17.209.13] to share the cablecard with both devices, but it works much better than in default mode because all my tuners(5) can decode the channels I subscribe to, and it get rids of the copy once flag and I am able to playback in any device I want.

          • Just so i have the whole picture. You have a cableCARD fed MythTV box, outputting to Raspberry Pi frontend (with appropriate codec licenses, i assume)?

            You are recording the premium HD channels right? not just QAM?

            I ask because i have the exact same tuner setups, save i have the older 'dual'. I am using a Win7 DVR right now but would eventually like to switch to a MythTV box and output via R Pi.

            Any distro you recommend? I have tried doing Myth on ubuntu and i get stuck in an infinite menu loop in the
          • by jgtg32a (1173373)
            So do cable cards actually work now? Last time I looked into doing something like this it was 10+ years ago.
            • by Zarquon (1778)

              It's a crapshoot depending on the CCI settings of your cable provider, but yes, they do. I have the quad tuner from Ceton, and from Verizon FIOS I get locals, expanded basic, and some of the premium channels with my mythtv backend. I recently rebuilt the box; it's currently running on Ubuntu raring, with an AMD A10 and 5x3TB in a ZFS array.

              There's a small database that might be helpful:
              http://www.ronfrazier.net/mythtv/cci/index.php [ronfrazier.net]
              http://www.mythtv.org/wiki/CableCARD [mythtv.org]

              You'll also need a listings provider; I u

    • Legacy support for TV/PVR is probably one of the last things on their mind. Next you'll be complaining about their horrible phonograph support. Stop consuming your media in such and ancient, outdated manner and you'll suddenly find out how great XBMC really is. The vast majority of XBMC users don't even have Cable/Satellite subscriptions anymore. We get all our media via XBMC and/or downloads. Create your own channels and drop your carrier.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by TigerTime (626140)

        From where do you stream live Channels like ESPN, NFLHD, FoxSports?....Oh you don't? Well then quit acting like a pretentious prick and STFU.

        • by ganjadude (952775)
          Actually the XBMCWizard addon that was released in december does give me those options. I dont get "full local" streaming but i do get the 3 you referenced.
          • by ganjadude (952775)
            sorry, thats XBMCHUB Wizard
        • by jgtg32a (1173373)
          In this instance I took a page from my parents, I go to a sports bar to watch sporting events. I'm good on everything else, free cable addon has just about everything. If there was a netflix plugin I'd be golden, minus the sports thing.
      • by godefroi (52421)

        But, you see, they call them "local channels" for a reason! It turns out (many do not know this) that they just BROADCAST them, right over the air! It's like a giant WiFi with all the major networks on it, streamed for free (and legally!) right to your house!

        But seriously, why bother with paying for a usenet provider (which is dying) or run a BT client only to download illegal crappy encodes when I can get full-quality 0-day video streamed right to my house?

    • by watermark (913726)

      I agree that it still needs work (it's hit and miss on my box whether it works or not), but I'd rather have what I have rather than go back to a straight MythTv box. When it works, pausing and rewinding work fine with a MythTv backend.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    There is no genuinely free [copyfree.org] media player currently available, but from the options that are available, XBMC seems like a far more bloated option compared to good old mplayer.

    Just look at the dependencies for the XBMC port on FreeBSD (`make pretty-print-run-depends-list pretty-print-build-depends-list -C /usr/ports/multimedia/xbmc`, with all `make config` flags disabled):

    This port requires package(s) "aalib-1.4.r5_6 atk-2.0.1 avahi-app-0.6.29_3 bitstream-vera-1.10_5 boost-libs-1.48.0_2 ca_root_nss-3.14.1 cair

  • by AdamWill (604569) on Tuesday January 29, 2013 @09:21PM (#42733555) Homepage

    If you're forced to watch a lot of hi10p stuff (thanks, bandwagon-jumping fansub groups!) you may want to grab this patch:

    https://github.com/xbmc/xbmc/pull/2064 [github.com]

    it enables multithreaded decoding of hi10p content (and *only* hi10p, it won't enable multithreading for anything else, where it could potentially be buggy). Since there's nothing at all capable of hardware decoding hi10p at present, this is a huge boon for those of us trying to watch HD hi10p files on little media server boxes. It takes typical hi10p files from 'visibly jerky' to 'nearly perfect' on my zotac box. OpenELEC 3.0 rc2 has this patch built in, as it comes from an openelec dev; other XBMC users might want to add it to their setups.

    • by SeaFox (739806)

      If you're forced to watch a lot of hi10p stuff (thanks, bandwagon-jumping fansub groups!) you may want to grab this patch:

      https://github.com/xbmc/xbmc/pull/2064 [github.com]

      Bandwagon? This transition has been going on for over a year now. It's not like the beginning when it was Commie and gg and nobody else.
      You can always watch HorribleSubs, they're still 8-bit. Deadfish does 8-bit and hardsubbed MP4's and I'm pretty sure he uses the major groups' scripts.

      • by AdamWill (604569)

        "This transition has been going on for over a year now"

        I know - with scant regard to the fact that there is still zero hardware acceleration support for 10-bit. None, zip, zero, nada. Knowing 'this transition' is going on doesn't do you much good if you actually need hardware accelerated playback. My whole point is that this started with one or two groups and now lots of others are jumping on the _bandwagon_ without waiting for playback capabilities to catch up...

        Even with multithreaded software decoding yo

        • by SeaFox (739806)

          I know - with scant regard to the fact that there is still zero hardware acceleration support for 10-bit. None, zip, zero, nada. Knowing 'this transition' is going on doesn't do you much good if you actually need hardware accelerated playback.

          DXVA encoding was already rather unpopular because it required quality tradeoffs and was a support issue the groups didn't want to have in their blogs. One of the reasons THORA went to Hi10P was to get out of that. MediaPlayerClassic-Homecinema allowed hardware-accelerated playback on many files by ignoring some of the checks it should normally be making by default. As for full hardware acceleration, it's not supported evenly by all graphics processors and the results could vary even when they were.

          I honest

  • by Daetrin (576516) on Tuesday January 29, 2013 @10:18PM (#42733997)
    Even if it does run on Android, try not to get your Frodo mixed up with your Froyo. That never ends well.

    ...

    Okay, unless you like short hairy people covered in yogurt. I guess i shouldn't judge.
  • by Ark42 (522144)

    Does this somehow get my MKV files on my computer to play on my TV? Lots of features, but lots of confusion as to what XMBC actually does, if you've never touched it before.

    • by DeadS0ul (784783)
      You should look into Serviio or Plex for that. I recommend Serviio more, and Plex if you have a samsung TV smart TV, or a Roku.
    • Is your computer plugged into your TV? If so, then ofcourse. If not, does your computer support UPnP, and does it support the types of files on your computer? If so, then ofcourse (subject to the TV having a half decent UPnP client). To fully apprecieate XBMC, you want the former, not the latter.
      • by Ark42 (522144)

        No, my TV is 200' away and up a floor. There is an Xbox360, and Samsung Blu-ray player. It seems like the TV supports crappy DLNA, which doesn't work with MKV, and the Xbox is useless for anything as long as I'm not going to pay for Gold. The Blu-ray player has 4 built-in features: Youtube, Blockbuster, Netflix, Pandora.

        • Considered purchasing a cheap Android box? There's a bunch of them now that work nicely with XBMC for under $100. I'm sure you can get some info on xbmc.org as to which ones work well and which ones are best avoided. Alternatives are getting a UPnP server that will transcode - XBMC won't do that, but there's many other apps out there that will. Ofcourse, there may be other deficiencies with your TVs UPnP client to concern yourself with - thus the suggestion of a cheap client.
        • If it supports DLNA just setup a converter there are many to choose from that can cross convert in real time.

        • PS3 Media Server [ps3mediaserver.org]

          It's not just for the PS3. Pretty sure the 360 can use it. TV might be able to. PS3, XBMC, and Windows Media Player all can.

          Note that it doesn't work so great over wireless with 720p or higher content, so you'll need to have a wired connection (preferably Gigabit, especially if you want to play 1080p video) between the PC and the 360 or TV. Your computer will also need enough horsepower to transcode HD video on the fly, or you're out of luck—I've got an old dual-core Pentium D that

    • by voxner (1217902)
      Matroska format is not supported in some TVs. For my bravia i convert mkv to mpeg4 format. Unless you want to encode subtitles it could just be a copy of the video codec in the mpeg4 container. ffmpeg is your friend.
  • Can someone explain why should we care about this profile?

    From what I see there is no hardware decoding for it yet, so it doesn't seem like something I'd use for the moment. Is there anything that hi10p provides that the previous profile couldn't achieve with a slightly larger file size?

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Anime fansub groups have started using it to cut down on banding. Since cartoons often have gradual color transitions, the repeated encode process (broadcast MPEG-2 -> Capture H.264 -> Reencode H.264 with subs baked on) introduces banding on those transitions that Hi10P at least somewhat mitigates. Basically it's a way to reduce the errors introduced in encoding further generations.

      • by wierd_w (1375923)

        Uhm, that's what the fast HUFFYUV codec is for. Lossless, fast video codec. Sure, the filesize will be out of control on the capture, but it *WONT* introduce more block artifacts. It's freaking part of FDDShow's plugin pack for goodness sake! It can capture RGB formats just fine.

        Just have a decent capture rig, and off you go.

        I can capture a live source in huffyuv just fine without frame drops, and get a high quality input stream for an h264 encode run. Because it's a lossless format, you can bake your subs

      • by SeaFox (739806)

        Anime fansub groups have started using it to cut down on banding. Since cartoons often have gradual color transitions, the repeated encode process (broadcast MPEG-2 -> Capture H.264 -> Reencode H.264 with subs baked on) introduces banding on those transitions that Hi10P at least somewhat mitigates.

        That intermediary h264 step doesn't exist any more (the "raw"). I suspect it's primary function was to simply create a more efficiently encoded version of the broadcast for distribution on the Internet. But with faster Internet connections more common now and quality of greater importance than file size now they aren't used if they can't be avoided. In fact, if you were encoding from a raw, you wouldn't use Hi10P because it would be worthless since the raw was generally 8-bit.

        The better groups have their ow

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      >Can someone explain why should we care about this profile?

      In really basic terms, in Hi10p more data is used to define color which means there is less banding for a smaller file size. It's an H.264 profile which uses 10 bits of information to represent color. It's a huge improvement because there is less file size, which in the long run saves bandwidth.

      Advantages
      Significantly higher compression ratios resulting in decreased file sizes.
      Far more inf

      • by jgtg32a (1173373)
        So Hi10p is better with dark scenes even if the 8bit (wasn't it) is an equivalent larger file size? If that's true looks like it is good to have then, because the reduced file sizes really isn't a good argument.
  • has anyone watched frodo (hobbit) using frodo(XMBC) on frodo(Android)?

    • by c0d3g33k (102699)

      Doesn't quite work, but nice try.

      The android version you're alluding to is called "froyo", not "frodo".

      Perhaps you were trying to (weakly) pun-ish us?

    • by LiENUS (207736)
      You mean froyo android? afaik there was no frodo release of android.
  • I really really wish they'd add some sort of functionality to separate the media server/player portion of XBMC from the front end, and allow you to run it as a service. I have a HTPC hooked up to my surround sound system, and I absolutely love the android XBMC app. It lets you browse the entire media library and queue up stuff, and even has album art and everything.

    The only problem is, I have to turn on my TV, log in to my HTPC, start XBMC (or go to task manager, kill the process, then relaunch if XBMC has

    • by aXis100 (690904)

      Are you using the windows version?

      I've used the XBMC Live and OpenElec distros and they run all day every day for months on end without ever locking up. It would be trivial to have a headless box running them and never have to touch it.

      • by MindPhlux (304416)

        Yes, unfortunately. I'd like to continue using windows as well, as I do other things with the HTPC box, like gaming, microsoft outlook, etc. I'd certainly believe the linux versions are more stable, but can't bring myself to spend money and time to set up another box for a dedicated XBMC server when I was planning on doing just that with my windows HTPC...

        • by aXis100 (690904)

          Try OpenELEC then, it's an XBMC distro that runs perfectly well off a USB thumbdrive, and takes all of 15 minutes to install. It would at least make dual booting a snap.

          Personally I use a relatively cheap, low power Zotac ZBOX to run XBMC (OpenELEC) permanently, and keep the noisy, power hungry 3D gaming machine turned off 99% of the time. Just the power savings alone would pay off the Zotac box in a few years.

          • Try OpenELEC then, it's an XBMC distro that runs perfectly well off a USB thumbdrive, and takes all of 15 minutes to install. It would at least make dual booting a snap.

            Personally I use a relatively cheap, low power Zotac ZBOX to run XBMC (OpenELEC) permanently, and keep the noisy, power hungry 3D gaming machine turned off 99% of the time. Just the power savings alone would pay off the Zotac box in a few years.

            Another vote for OpenELEC. I used to run XBMC on a small Asus box, but after having a bucket of water fall on it replaced it with a passively cooled Shuttle running OpenELEC. Install was a breeze, small footprint. Unlike XBMC it was almost fully functional from the first boot (note, hardware changed too which might have affected this). It made a samba share with config files, changing audio configuration was as simple as dragging a ready configuration file from one folder in the samba share to another and r

        • by chill (34294)

          OpenELEC has a Raspberry Pi build that gets good reviews. The only drawback seems to be the lack of horsepower to decode AC-3 audio, but that is solved by passing it thru to the TV.

          I've just ordered one for myself to test. $35 + $10 for the case. I already have a USB charger, Ethernet and HDMI cables.

          That's cheap enough I can detach it from my main system and not care.

          • I have several Raspberry pi boards that I'm using with xbmc (different distros, versions etc). They work but in all honesty the hardware is too anemic to make it a pleasant experience. I've gone back to my mini itx computer at the TV.
  • It always perplexed me why the standard XBMC release has taken 12 major versions spread over a decade before the media centre software included any support for TV viewing/recording at all. From what I can see, pretty well every other media centre software supports that, so to miss it out for so long made it hard to recommend XBMC to people who wanted a single setup for all their media needs.

    Yes, I know the Live TV/PVR functionality was available as an extra install prior to XBMC 12 and I must give a shout o

    • You're welcome :-) These were pre-releases of Eden (11.0) and Dharma (10.0), that I originally hosted on my personal website and Launchpad while I was working on the PVR feature (see https://github.com/opdenkamp/xbmc [github.com] ). When I started working for Pulse-Eight, I took the builds with me and hosted them on Pulse-Eight's servers, where I continued to work on the PVR feature and HDMI-CEC support. I've backported all these things into mainline XBMC now, and they are included in the Frodo release. The builds on h [pulse-eight.net]
    • by Hatta (162192)

      I've always viewed XBMC as an alternative to live TV. If i have XBMC and an internet connection, I don't need live TV at all. The PVR functionality will go completely unused here.

    • by EmagGeek (574360)

      It is because PVR is a low priority. It is a low priority because there are relatively few places where you can actually record live TV, owing to the fact that cable companies rarely transmit even OTA stations in unencrypted format that can be decoded by a typical PC-based capture card.

  • Why is it called Frodo? Has XBMC had it's red ring destroyed?

  • When I tried XBMC about a year ago, there were numerous problems. There was problems with the packages not working with the most recent version of Ubuntu. After the install, there was random seg faults throughout the UI, involving everything from playing video to navigating the UI to indexing video files. There was also the huge issue of it not recognizing more than 75% of my library, and then the 25% of the library that it did "recognize", it mislabeled about 75% of that as well. So then there is the
    • Like the AC said if you're going to use xbmc you really should download a script to run against all your files that will name them to xbmc standards otherwise it's an exercise in frustration. Once that's done it's seamless in my experience. I consume all my TV and Movies through xbmc and very very rarely have a problem.
  • Just another reason I wish cable cards were more widely used. XBMC, MythTV, UbuntuTV and handful of other programs support live TV and cable cards that have a much better interface than the cable boxes given out by cable providers.
  • I installed the RC3 version a few weeks ago and been pleased with it. I have a stand alone MythTV backend and 2 frontends, so now I don't have to use Mythfrontend any more since LiveTV did not work unless it was a combo backend/frontend. I like how you can see what will be recorded next on the home screen, and I can make changes to the recording scedule which I cold not do in the Mythbox add-on.

    But it is not perfect. Commercial skip does not work for MythTV recordings, and the system is very slow to get

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