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SageTV Mac Edition Discussion related to the SageTV Media Center for Mac edition. Questions, issues, problems, suggestions, etc. relating to the SageTV Mac edition should be posted here.

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  #1  
Old 07-10-2009, 01:58 AM
p0ddie p0ddie is offline
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Mac Pro as SageTV server + Mac mini as clients?

Hi there,

forgive my buffon-like question, but I plan on setting up a network with SageTV. The idea is to have a server with two or even three DVB-C tuners with a CI module for PayTV and have many Mac minis as clients. From what I've learned, I should be able to watch at least 3 different tv channels at the same time on different machines.

Can I go with a Mac Pro as a SageTV server and use the FloppyDTV DVB-C cards (http://www.digital-everywhere.com/en...sid=1190057723) or will I need a Windows/Linux server?

Thank you for your help!
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  #2  
Old 07-10-2009, 07:11 AM
freedml freedml is offline
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You should be able to do it on Macs, but I can't help you with tuner compatibility.
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  #3  
Old 07-10-2009, 10:51 AM
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Crashless Crashless is offline
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Seems a bit overkill to me - there are much more cost effective ways to accomplish this. Unless of course you already have the hardware and no other uses are available.

I just can't imagine using a workstation-class system like a Mac Pro for something that a $300-$400 WHS system is capable of, then using $600 mac minis where a $200 HD Theater would suffice.

All that said - there's no reason whatsoever why this wouldn't work.
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  #4  
Old 07-10-2009, 10:01 PM
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sandor sandor is offline
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yeah, sounds quite overkill.

my server is no where near the horsepower of the mac pro, and i use it as my display machine too... you would really be well off with a new mini as the server with a big ass NAS (5x2 TB drives) on a gigabit network, and then HD200's in all the locations you want to watch tv.
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  #5  
Old 07-11-2009, 01:53 AM
p0ddie p0ddie is offline
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Hi,

the Mac mini are not just to watch tv, they're also for Plex and to be used as a Mac to surf the web and all... the Mac Pro will also act as file server and OS X Server machine to manage clients...

Would it have any benefits - e.g. added functionality or easier setup - to use a small 1U Windows server and FireDTV DVB-C tuners? I will still need to use a Mac Pro for OS X Server... :-)

Thanks!
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  #6  
Old 07-11-2009, 10:59 AM
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Crashless Crashless is offline
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Like I said - no reason why it wouldn't work.

I haven't used the Mac version of SageTV, so I can't comment on it's relative ease of setup/use compared to a windows box.

But given Sage's overall quality of product, if you already have the hardware, I'm sure the Mac Pro would make a great SageTV, file, render and kitchen sink server.
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  #7  
Old 07-12-2009, 05:13 AM
p0ddie p0ddie is offline
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Great! Thanks for the infos, will install and see if it works :-) This is going to be a very fun project, if you can spill out the cash you will have a kick*ss setup :-)
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  #8  
Old 07-15-2009, 11:51 AM
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sandor sandor is offline
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cool, if you want HTPC utility on the viewing machines, you will want the mac minis -- makes perfect sense.

with regards to your tuners, it seems that they only have Windows drivers - so that right there will throw a small glitch in your all-mac setup. you may be able to run Virtualbox/ on the mac, and have an instance of XP running concurrently to OS X, but you would have to test it well to see if the drivers will work in virtualization. this would allow you to setup the tuners as network tuners, and allow the Mac SageTV server to utilize them (this is my theory).


In terms of overall SageTV setup, i ran a windows server from 4.x ---> 6.x with OTA ATSC and two clients, then switched to a Mac server @ 6.x with OTA and just added QAM as well.

So i am now all mac, with one server and two laptop wireless clients, two HDHR QAM units and one HDHR ATSC. (6 total tuners, as the HDHR's are 2 tuners each). works splendidly, and i was able to copy my wiz.bin directly from the old windows server, and keep it all chugging.
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MacBook Core2Duo 2 ghz
nVidia 9400M GPU
46" Sammy HLP4663 720p DLP
2x HDHR, all OTA
QNAP TS-809:
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HD200 via 802.11n in Living Room
802.11n client in bedroom
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  #9  
Old 07-15-2009, 12:00 PM
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oh, and so i have all my needs met by the retired (broken screen) macbook - now serving up 7? TB of storage.... timemachine for three other machines, sage, software dvd backup, itunes, all my dvds, etc. it doesnt hiccup at all - so your mac pro should be quite at home.

the only down side to the mac sage software has been remote controls - there is no good and easy answer. the apple-supplied one works, but doesnt have enough buttons. so what i ended up doing was painstakingly using **insert software i cannot remember right now** but i would love a simpler solution.

i would also love an iphone sagetv remote app =)
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MacBook Core2Duo 2 ghz
nVidia 9400M GPU
46" Sammy HLP4663 720p DLP
2x HDHR, all OTA
QNAP TS-809:
12.5 TB for Recordings/Imports/TimeMachine/Music
HD200 via 802.11n in Living Room
802.11n client in bedroom
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  #10  
Old 07-15-2009, 01:03 PM
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mayamaniac mayamaniac is offline
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Concerning SageTV software on OSX, I'm only using the Placeshifter to connect to a Windows server, and from my experience, it does not perform as well as the Windows version of the placeshifter. So placeshifter wise, the OSX version does not work as well as the Windows version. I'm not sure about SageTV Server and Client though.
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  #11  
Old 07-15-2009, 02:40 PM
p0ddie p0ddie is offline
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mayamaniac, could you elaborate a little on why the mac version does not work as well as the win version? Thanks!

Also, because I still can't really understand: What is the true difference between SageTV timeshifter and SageTV client? I still don't get it...

As to the tuners for a Mac server: I figured the Digital Everywhere FireDTV / FloppyDTV devices will be the right tuners for my needs - in Germany, even basic digital cable comes with a smartcard you need to plug into a CAM to watch all TV channels. Turns out those are not on the Mac supported list for SageTV, so I will probably end up using the small Mac Pro as a server for general stuff and using a cheap core2duo pc with a firewire card and enough firewire ports...that should work, and it's even cheaper than the big Mac Pro behemoth doing everything solution.
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  #12  
Old 07-15-2009, 02:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mayamaniac View Post
Concerning SageTV software on OSX, I'm only using the Placeshifter to connect to a Windows server, and from my experience, it does not perform as well as the Windows version of the placeshifter. So placeshifter wise, the OSX version does not work as well as the Windows version. I'm not sure about SageTV Server and Client though.
what issues do you have with placeshifter? one of my clients is placeshifter only (only LAN though, no WAN connection) and i dont seem to have any issues... though i have never used the windows version
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MacBook Core2Duo 2 ghz
nVidia 9400M GPU
46" Sammy HLP4663 720p DLP
2x HDHR, all OTA
QNAP TS-809:
12.5 TB for Recordings/Imports/TimeMachine/Music
HD200 via 802.11n in Living Room
802.11n client in bedroom
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  #13  
Old 07-15-2009, 03:17 PM
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mayamaniac mayamaniac is offline
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The main purpose of the Placeshifter is for WAN usage, otherwise the Client version is better for LAN because picture quality is better and also you can play DVDs. The mac version of the placeshifter stutters a lot when transcoding 720P HD, meaning streaming HD recordings through WAN to another location. When I switch to the Windows version, playback is a lot smoother.
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  #14  
Old 07-15-2009, 03:20 PM
p0ddie p0ddie is offline
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thanks for clearing that up. So this only affects a) HD material and b) streaming via WAN? Is your bandwidth sufficient? May other transcoding options work?

Anyway, I'm off the hook in this case because my planned solution will be on a Gigabit LAN and in medieval Germany, we (still) don't have regular HD tv - just a couple of PayTV channels for a rediculous price...

Thanks for the explanation!
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  #15  
Old 07-17-2009, 02:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by p0ddie View Post
thanks for clearing that up. So this only affects a) HD material and b) streaming via WAN? Is your bandwidth sufficient? May other transcoding options work?

Anyway, I'm off the hook in this case because my planned solution will be on a Gigabit LAN and in medieval Germany, we (still) don't have regular HD tv - just a couple of PayTV channels for a rediculous price...

Thanks for the explanation!
I think this is right...


Placeshifter puts more load on the server, as it transcodes audio/video for the client machine.

Sage Client is more "standalone" in that the server just pushes out the raw av and the client machine deals with the processing.

Hence, Placeshifter is designed to deal with WAN and Client LAN... though it gets a little foggy, since you can set Placeshifter to *not* transcode the video Regardless, i have had no issue with either on a LAN (with both a Windows and a Mac server).
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MacBook Core2Duo 2 ghz
nVidia 9400M GPU
46" Sammy HLP4663 720p DLP
2x HDHR, all OTA
QNAP TS-809:
12.5 TB for Recordings/Imports/TimeMachine/Music
HD200 via 802.11n in Living Room
802.11n client in bedroom
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