New HTPC Build with 9 tuners and 4 extenders

A place to talk about GPUs/Motherboards/CPUs/Cases/Remotes, etc.

New HTPC Build with 9 tuners and 4 extenders

Post#1 » Sat Oct 22, 2016 11:10 pm

this is a new build so it would help to know ahead of time if I should do something different than originally planned.
CPU: i3-4150 3.5 GHz
Memory: 8GB dual channel
SSD: 120GB
HDD: 4TB Toshiba NAS 7200 RPM

9 Tuners Total: 3 HDhomerun tuners.
4 extenders total: Xbox 360s.

will I be able to record 9 shows and use all 4 extenders at the same time?
if not.... would increasing the memory size or would an i5 CPU help more?
WMCuser
 
Posts: 14
Joined: 22 October 2016

Post#2 » Sun Oct 23, 2016 12:07 am

Each extender requires 1GB of RAM, so you're good there.

Nothing in the hardware you list indicates any problems. That HDD shouldn't have any problem with data throughput.

Honestly, it's rare that the hardware is the problem in a situation like yours. If you see problems, the likely source is the network--your NIC, its drivers, the wiring, the switch. Throughput is king here; all of your listed hardware has plenty of throughput for the 9 streams in and 4 or 5 streams out. What's your network?

If I hear the word "wireless" or the phrase "it's too hard to run wires in my old house," I'm going to scream.

Can you have two NICs? Maybe you'd want your tuners on their own network. Might be overkill, but still.

BTW, what is your strategy for the three tuner boxes? Will you feed each one with its own antenna, or will you split an antenna across two or all three (which will require decent gain)?
adam1991
 
Posts: 2454
Joined: 11 June 2011

Post#3 » Sun Oct 23, 2016 1:43 am

what about the fact it's an i3 with only 2 cores or hyperthreading with 4.... wouldn't the Xenon(i5) TS140 ThinkSever be a safer bet because I have 9 tuners..... plus I may add a dual over the air tuner making it 11 tuners total?

I own both ThinkServers already and they are still New In box. I paid $180 for the i3 version and $250 for the Xenon/i5 version.

i3-4150 8GB ECC unbuffered memory (two ECC 4gb sticks)
Intel 120GB SSD
Toshiba 4TB NAS 7200rpm
Nvidia GTX750 low power Video Card. for HBO issues, etc...
Netgear Nighthawk R7000 Router
2 Netgear GS108E switches.

computer and all 3 HDHR prime tuners hook up to one Negear GS108E Switch (8 port)
and the 4 Xbox extenders hook up to a separate GS108E switch.
Both switches hook up directly to the NightHawk Router.
No wireless... Cat 6 cable only.

adam1991 wrote:Each extender requires 1GB of RAM, so you're good there.

Nothing in the hardware you list indicates any problems. That HDD shouldn't have any problem with data throughput.

Honestly, it's rare that the hardware is the problem in a situation like yours. If you see problems, the likely source is the network--your NIC, its drivers, the wiring, the switch. Throughput is king here; all of your listed hardware has plenty of throughput for the 9 streams in and 4 or 5 streams out. What's your network?

If I hear the word "wireless" or the phrase "it's too hard to run wires in my old house," I'm going to scream.

Can you have two NICs? Maybe you'd want your tuners on their own network. Might be overkill, but still.

BTW, what is your strategy for the three tuner boxes? Will you feed each one with its own antenna, or will you split an antenna across two or all three (which will require decent gain)?
WMCuser
 
Posts: 14
Joined: 22 October 2016

Post#4 » Sun Oct 23, 2016 1:36 pm

WMCuser wrote:what about the fact it's an i3 with only 2 cores or hyperthreading with 4.... wouldn't the Xenon(i5) TS140 ThinkSever be a safer bet because I have 9 tuners..... plus I may add a dual over the air tuner making it 11 tuners total?


You're thinking processing horsepower. Nothing about grabbing and storing 11 streams of digital video needs processing horsepower. It's all about the throughput.

Back in the analog days, when something had to encode the analog TV signal to video, you had to have processing horsepower somewhere in the system to do that. But now, no. All you're doing is taking a digital stream of TV, moving it through the network and into the system, and storing it. No meaningful processing required, no horsepower required. Just throughput. It's all about the cleanliness of your network. Think of your network as the "processor" that's meaningful, that you need "horsepower" for, that you need to pay attention to.

I have an i3 Clarkdale from 2011--and it does double duty as the GPU. I've consistently had between 4 and 6 tuners, cable and OTA. And I use ShowAnalyzer to watch the shows and mark commercial skips. That's actually a lot more processing than you're describing.

I have the HTPC plugged into a TV (so the i3 is doing some actual work there), plus I have three extenders. And the only time anything crapped out on me was when the recording HDD started dying and needed replaced.

If you're not plugging your HTPC into a TV, or if you have a good video card with its own processor, your i3 is more than adequate to help shuffle these digital streams around from antenna to disk, and from disk to video card or extender. It's just shuffling bits. It's all about the throughput of the bits themselves. And even if you do use the i3 for more work, like GPU and for something like ShowAnalyzer, my experience says it's still more than enough.

Are you doing anything else that may require the processor to transcode, like Plex or similar?
adam1991
 
Posts: 2454
Joined: 11 June 2011

Post#5 » Fri Oct 28, 2016 6:00 pm

double post
Last edited by WMCuser on Fri Oct 28, 2016 6:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
WMCuser
 
Posts: 14
Joined: 22 October 2016

Post#6 » Fri Oct 28, 2016 6:06 pm

adam1991 wrote:
WMCuser wrote:what about the fact it's an i3 with only 2 cores or hyperthreading with 4.... wouldn't the Xenon(i5) TS140 ThinkSever be a safer bet because I have 9 tuners..... plus I may add a dual over the air tuner making it 11 tuners total?


You're thinking processing horsepower. Nothing about grabbing and storing 11 streams of digital video needs processing horsepower. It's all about the throughput.

Back in the analog days, when something had to encode the analog TV signal to video, you had to have processing horsepower somewhere in the system to do that. But now, no. All you're doing is taking a digital stream of TV, moving it through the network and into the system, and storing it. No meaningful processing required, no horsepower required. Just throughput. It's all about the cleanliness of your network. Think of your network as the "processor" that's meaningful, that you need "horsepower" for, that you need to pay attention to.

I have an i3 Clarkdale from 2011--and it does double duty as the GPU. I've consistently had between 4 and 6 tuners, cable and OTA. And I use ShowAnalyzer to watch the shows and mark commercial skips. That's actually a lot more processing than you're describing.

I have the HTPC plugged into a TV (so the i3 is doing some actual work there), plus I have three extenders. And the only time anything crapped out on me was when the recording HDD started dying and needed replaced.

If you're not plugging your HTPC into a TV, or if you have a good video card with its own processor, your i3 is more than adequate to help shuffle these digital streams around from antenna to disk, and from disk to video card or extender. It's just shuffling bits. It's all about the throughput of the bits themselves. And even if you do use the i3 for more work, like GPU and for something like ShowAnalyzer, my experience says it's still more than enough.

Are you doing anything else that may require the processor to transcode, like Plex or similar?


no i'm not.. just WMC.... I settled on my original setup instead of the i3 Thinkserver even though the i5 S low power version CPU may be overkill... I only paid $140 for it new in box.

I have a lean Windows 7 Software installation with only Add-ons to WMC... no other software.
3 HDhomerun primes (9 tuners) plus I will be adding 1 HDhomerun OTA tuner (2 tuner)
4 extenders....
Gigabyte HX87 Chipset Motherboard with built in intel ethernet.
intel i5-4460s 65w CPU
8GB dual channel memory 2x4gb
Nvidia GTX750 GPU
120gb intel SSD
4TB HGST NAS 7200RPM HDD

and as you know I have also have a ThinkServer, well two... one has the Xenon/i5 and the other is the i3 version.... will the i3 be good enough for a plex server? and for the Plex.... would Windows 10 be best?

And would I be able to max out my HTPC recording 9 shows and watching 3 on extenders while at the same time stream a 1080P movie from Youtube on the HTPC computer all at the same time?
WMCuser
 
Posts: 14
Joined: 22 October 2016

Post#7 » Fri Oct 28, 2016 7:32 pm

9 tuners. I am surprised that there is enough worth while on tv to record to need 9 tuners. I used to have 2x2 tuners removed one so down to 2 and cant says I have missed any thing worthwhile

I have found the max 8 gb of memory my board supports worth while as I have found that the media browser plugin likes lots of ram to cache its media poster files in so that moving thru the 1000's of files is smooth. I run my HTPC from standby to benefit from this
mercalia
 
Posts: 89
Joined: 19 August 2014

Post#8 » Sat Oct 29, 2016 1:48 pm

mercalia wrote:9 tuners. I am surprised that there is enough worth while on tv to record to need 9 tuners. I used to have 2x2 tuners removed one so down to 2 and cant says I have missed any thing worthwhile

I have found the max 8 gb of memory my board supports worth while as I have found that the media browser plugin likes lots of ram to cache its media poster files in so that moving thru the 1000's of files is smooth. I run my HTPC from standby to benefit from this


not a good example... nice try though......
WMCuser
 
Posts: 14
Joined: 22 October 2016

Post#9 » Sun Oct 30, 2016 7:07 am

I figure I would throw my 2 cents in. The equipment that you mentioned should be plenty fast, however I will give a couple of heads up

1) If Comcast is your Cable provider, they charge $9.95 for each cable card after the 1st one
2) When you record 2 shows that are on right after each other & on the same channel, WMC will use the same tuner (thus the last 20 - 30 seconds will be cut off of the first show & will appear at the beginning of the 2nd show). To get around this, you will need to schedule a show to end "10 minutes after" (not 10 minutes if possible)
2) If you (or anybody else) is planning on recording a bunch of shows that "come on whenever" (especially if there are a bunch of shows), be prepared to possibly having to wait until the show is schedule to record (shows 3 red dots), especially with having more tuners.
choliscott
 
Posts: 524
Joined: 19 December 2011
HTPC Specs: Show details

Post#10 » Mon Dec 19, 2016 6:31 pm

mercalia wrote:9 tuners. I am surprised that there is enough worth while on tv to record to need 9 tuners. I used to have 2x2 tuners removed one so down to 2 and cant says I have missed any thing worthwhile

I have found the max 8 gb of memory my board supports worth while as I have found that the media browser plugin likes lots of ram to cache its media poster files in so that moving thru the 1000's of files is smooth. I run my HTPC from standby to benefit from this


I know this is an old post but we max out 6 tuners at 9pm every Wednesday during overlap of start / end times of programs. Only three recordings at a time can do this under certain scenarios.
Sammy2
 
Posts: 1360
Joined: 24 August 2012
HTPC Specs: Show details


Return to HTPC Components



Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests

cron