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  #1  
Old 11-16-2006, 06:59 AM
Muchacho Muchacho is offline
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Encoder Merit not enforced

Over the last few betas it seems that the encoder merit no longer works. Many shows that have been broadcast in HD are being recorded on analog encoders. I have to manually set it for each show now.

It would be nice to see these issue resolved. Now that I am recieving programs from three different sources (analog, OTA, and QAM), the program guide is getting kinda messy. It would be nice if all the analog and digital programs were collapsed into one. Default conflict mngt should be managed my encoder merit. Additionally, the user could select how they wanted the program to be recorded (Digital or Analog). Right now, it is pretty bad WAF with the same show listed three different places.

Dont get me wrong, I am a happy Sage user and often recommended it to others!

Thanks, Mike
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  #2  
Old 11-16-2006, 07:06 AM
BobPhoenix BobPhoenix is offline
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I can't help with the recording/encoder merrit problems but my Favorite Channel Lists plugin can help with the program guide channel arrangements.

BobP.
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  #3  
Old 11-16-2006, 07:24 AM
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Muchacho, I agree. As far as I know, there is no Merit setting (ie: to specify a specific source) that is accessible from the SageTV User Interface. It would be very nice if such a setting were available when setting up a recording, or editing recording options. I have 2 sources: analog cable and a digital cable STB, and for several Favorites, I would prefer that these be recorded from the digital STB.

That said, is there a way to manually "tweak" anything to "force" specific Favorites to record from a specific source?
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  #4  
Old 11-16-2006, 08:46 AM
Muchacho Muchacho is offline
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You can do it manually for favorites in the series settings. Just set it to only record from the digital channel instead of any channel. It works, but for me now that I have two different digital sources it really is not practical as I would have to make sure that nothing will be overlapping on a particular source.

I think SageTV should be able to figure it out based on encoder merit, the series priority, and whether I tell it to record digital or analog.
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  #5  
Old 11-16-2006, 09:11 AM
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srothwell srothwell is offline
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Same exact thing here. It seemed to be working fine on .13 then stopped on .14.

I now have to manually set all the shows I want recorded in HD.

:-(
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  #6  
Old 11-16-2006, 09:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muchacho
You can do it manually for favorites in the series settings. Just set it to only record from the digital channel instead of any channel. It works, but for me now that I have two different digital sources it really is not practical as I would have to make sure that nothing will be overlapping on a particular source.

I think SageTV should be able to figure it out based on encoder merit, the series priority, and whether I tell it to record digital or analog.
Hmmm. Now I'm a bit confused. Maybe we are talking about two different issues.

In my case, I'm not talking about the same show that is aired on two different channels (for example, a show on analog NBC on channel 7 versus a show on HD NBC channel 783. My situation is where you have the same show on the same channel available from two different sources.

For example, I have two sources set up: 1 analog cable (channels 2-99) and 1 digital cable STB (channels 2-399). Because channels 2-99 overlap, they are only listed in the Channel Guide once. When I go to watch live TV or to record a show, say on Channel 39, is is hit-or-miss as to which source is selected. Sometimes the analog source is used, sometimes the digital source is use. What I'm looking for is that ability to tell SageTV that unless there is a conflict, favor the digital source.
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  #7  
Old 11-16-2006, 03:02 PM
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rickgillyon rickgillyon is offline
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The other guys are talking about the encoder_merit property against each tuner in sage.properties. Sage should record from higher merit tuners first. Works prefectly for me...
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  #8  
Old 11-16-2006, 04:18 PM
tbonessc tbonessc is offline
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I noticed this too when I added a second lineup for HD recording over firewire. I contacted Sage support and was told the following:

It specifies which encoder is preferred when all other things are equal.
This doesn't include a situation where a favorite is on two different
channels.
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  #9  
Old 11-16-2006, 09:06 PM
jryan15 jryan15 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tbonessc
I noticed this too when I added a second lineup for HD recording over firewire. I contacted Sage support and was told the following:

It specifies which encoder is preferred when all other things are equal.
This doesn't include a situation where a favorite is on two different
channels.
i don't understand why it wouldn't work when a favorite is on two different channels. i would think that is the only time that it matters... whenever i make manual recordings, i'm usually doing so from the guide in which case i am specifying the channel.

i'm so aggrevated with the merrit setting, sage keeps trying to record my favorites on my hd cable box which is not tuning channels reliably. as a result, i end up with a nice hd recording of some show that was not my favorite...
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  #10  
Old 11-19-2006, 12:20 PM
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Flips Flips is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tbonessc
I contacted Sage support and was told the following:

It specifies which encoder is preferred when all other things are equal.
This doesn't include a situation where a favorite is on two different
channels.
Whoa... that blows me away. I guess that answers why it never worked quite right for me.

So when DOES it work??? I would have to have both a SD and HD channel mapped to the same channel? So 4 and 4-1 would both be in the guide as just 4? I'm not sure I really like that. Would the purple dot be there in the guide? I thought I had it setup this way at the beginning and for some reason it would use my DVICO card to tune to the analog station in some instances.

Is there a way for me to have the channels separated in the guide as 4 and 4-1, and give priority as to which channel it records? I know you can set it up to record only on a given channel, but my fear there is that if there is a manual recording in HD then it will just not record the favorite at all. Is that the way it would work?

What does Sage use to decide if it is going to record in HD or in SD? There must be something is uses.

My current mode of operation is to view the upcoming recording schedule and evaluate if it is recording in HD instead of in SD. I would love to not have to do that every 3 days.

Flips

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  #11  
Old 11-19-2006, 12:40 PM
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GKusnick GKusnick is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flips
So when DOES it work???
encoder_merit takes effect whenever there are two encoders that can tune the same channel. So for instance if you have two SD encoders that can both tune channel 4, but one has better picture quality than the other, you might give that one higher merit so that Sage will use it first. In a similar vein, I can receive local broadcast HD through both my Fusion card and my satellite box (which has a built-in OTA tuner). I would rather use the Fusion card for OTA recording, so I give that a higher merit number.

Choosing between HD and SD encoders is a separate step in the scheduling process. My subjective impression is that if a favorite is availble on both HD and SD, Sage will preferentially choose the HD encoder (unless that would cause a conflict). But I don't have hard evidence to back that up.

If you're worried that limiting your favorites to HD channels will cause a conflict, then maybe you need to add another HD tuner.
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  #12  
Old 11-20-2006, 10:03 AM
Muchacho Muchacho is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GKusnick
Choosing between HD and SD encoders is a separate step in the scheduling process. My subjective impression is that if a favorite is availble on both HD and SD, Sage will preferentially choose the HD encoder (unless that would cause a conflict). But I don't have hard evidence to back that up.
It used to do this for me, but with the recent Betas it no longer works this way.

If the encoder merit only affects things when all other things are equal, I think that another way of handling the issue is needed. SageTV is a great PVR and should be able to easily manage this sort of thing without requiring the user to manually set all this stuff up. It is a pretty simple algorithm.
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  #13  
Old 11-20-2006, 10:35 AM
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jbarr jbarr is offline
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So let me see if I understand this correctly....

If I have two tuner cards mapped with the same channels (for example, one analog cable, and the other a digital STB) then the merit setting would enable me to specify the digital STB over the analog source.

If I have two tuner cards mapped with different channels, but that air the same broadcasts (for example, NBC is mapped to analog channel 4 and also mapped to digital STB channel 10, airing the same show in the same time slot) then merit would have no effect, and I would simply limit the favorite to a specific channel (in this case, channel 10, the STB.)
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  #14  
Old 11-21-2006, 07:32 PM
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Yep. I think you got it correct. At least that is the way I understand it.

Flips
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  #15  
Old 11-22-2006, 07:27 AM
pjaffray pjaffray is offline
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What I would like to see is a option for each of my favorites that could be one of the following three settings:

Prefer HD
Prefer SD
No Preference

So, if I have a show set to "Prefer HD" but there is no HD broadcast of a particular episode it will grab it in SD or if there are more higher priority Prefer HD favorites airing at the same time than I have HD tuners, it will grab as many as I have HD tuners and the rest with the analog tuners.

Encoder_merit could still be used to establish a bias towards a particular HD tuner.
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  #16  
Old 11-22-2006, 08:08 AM
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Or more generically...

Prefer tuner 1
Prefer tuner 2
...
Prefer tuner n
No preference

In know it's the same thing, but at least it covers all scenarios.
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  #17  
Old 11-22-2006, 08:15 AM
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If it were prefer tuner 1 etc. It would be confusing in setups like mine where I have 7 SD tuners and 4 HD ones. I'd have to make sure I picked different HD tuners for each show on different channels to prevent it from moving on to use an SD instead of an HD tuner in the instance where perhaps I specified user HD tuner 1 for two different favs that are on at the same time one day.

Using prefer HD or prefer SD should cover everything. Basically it would use that criteria first then use encoder_merit to narrow it down further after that.
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  #18  
Old 11-22-2006, 08:45 AM
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<understatement>
Obviously with your setup (11 sources--holy cow!!) the complexity bar is raised a bit.
</understatement>

Maybe SageTV should have a "source priority" interface similar to how SageTV manages Favorites that would allow you to move the sources up and down in a list to assign preferred sources? Such that if one "preferred" source is being used, then it would select the next "preferred" source?
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  #19  
Old 11-22-2006, 12:46 PM
thomaszoo thomaszoo is offline
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I like the:

Prefer HD
Prefer SD
No Preference

But there is another scenario that isn't covered by that and I don't know if the encoder merit works for or not. That is when a non-HD program is broadcast on an HD channel. It is clearly a superior picture, but not HD. The channel is different than the SD channel so "all things are not equal". It seems that what needs to happen is the encoder merit should not include channel in its calculation of all things being equal, only if the program being recorded can be received on the encoder.
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  #20  
Old 11-22-2006, 01:15 PM
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ToxMox ToxMox is offline
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Good point thomaszoo.
I guess it would be better if it was just this instead:

Prefer Channel

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