Is anyone on here running TVHeadend on a Raspberry Pi?

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elsmandino Offline
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Post: #1
Hello,

I am currently considering running TVHeadend on a Raspberry Pi as opposed to my headless server - one of the reasons being that having switched over to Linux, from Windows, I have had nothing but constant trouble trying to get sleep mode working.

I could just leave the server on 24/7 but that is going to be quite a hit on my electricity, unless I upgrade some of the hardware.

I have read lots on using a RPi for recording purposes, as they sip electricity and can just be left on permanently.

I currently have internal tuner cards in my server, so I realise that I shall have to swap these for network tuners like Silicon Homeruns. I need four tuners, so would have to get two of these.

Two things that have also been puzzling me:

Storage

Is it better to record to a Hard Drive connected directly to the Pi or can you record to a server (which can be woken up via WOL)?

Throughput

The Pi's 100Mb ethernet connection worries me, as well as the low spec CPU and 1GB Ram. Will it be able to handle recording/streaming multiple HD streams?

Any advice from anyone who has tried this would be much appreciated.
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clarkss12 Offline
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Post: #2
Inexpensive Amlogic devices make great tvheadend servers, if you don't already have a Pi.
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DarrenHill Offline
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Post: #3
I've got it running on a Pi 2 as part of an openmediavault server. It has a 2TB we my passport drive connected to it, and gets its input from a hdhomerun.

For me it runs fine, feeding to another pi 3 running LibreElec as the main Kodi box on the lounge TV.

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elsmandino Offline
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Post: #4
I have to say - your running OMV and TVH on a RPi has really inspired me.

I have a spare Pi2, so am really keen to give this a go. I am currently running on OMV and TVH on a Haswell-based system with 12GB RAM - is the Raspberry Pi2 really up to the job?
(This post was last modified: 2017-05-11 17:50 by elsmandino.)
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cabbresson Offline
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Post: #5
I'm running on a Pi 2 also with my hdhomerun. Its recoreds to my NAS. This my main TV DVR and it runs great 24/7.
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rpcameron Offline
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Post: #6
I'm transferring my TVH server back to my C2. I'd personally stay away from the Pi, especially if your recording target is a NAS, and doubly so if your tuner is a network tuner like HDHR.

The C2 has GbE and 2GB RAM, far superior to a Pi, and only nominally more expensive. Add to that its GPIO header is essentially Pi-compatible, as is the hardware layout so cases are equally compatible.
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DarrenHill Offline
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Post: #7
@elsmandino - it has been running for about 6 weeks now with only one reboot (and that because I forgot to set up watchdog on it). It's been solid so far, OMV image with TVheadend installed into it. OMV runs a Plex server and SMB/NFS for the drive plus a webgrab plus daemon for an 8 day TV guide and it sits quietly on my desk beside my Pi 1 OpenVPN and WINS server. Both are headless and don't need much by way of work.

Tvheadend playback on the Kodi Pi3 is fine and it's set up either from the Kodi PVR or a tablet app.

So far it works fine for me. The only two things it lacks are transcoding and ad skipping.

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(This post was last modified: 2017-05-11 21:59 by DarrenHill.)
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elsmandino Offline
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Post: #8
This is great - I think I am going to have a go with TVHeadend running on something like a Pi (or equivalent).

I wasn't quite sure why the Homeruns were that much better than a couple of dual DVB-T2 usb tuners in a Pi, but having done the research, I can see why they are the much better choice for so many reasons.

One thing that I am having trouble getting my heard around:

If I set up TVHeadend on a Raspberry Pi, Openmediavault on a regular x86 server (that contain my hard drives) and a HomeRun, does it matter if the Pi only has 100MBps ethernet?

Does the Pi not merely direct the signal from the HomeRun directly into the server? Or have I got this wrong and the signal has to come from the HomeRun, into the Pi and then back out to the server?
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rpcameron Offline
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Post: #9
(2017-05-12 13:41)elsmandino Wrote:  This is great - I think I am going to have a go with TVHeadend running on something like a Pi (or equivalent).

I wasn't quite sure why the Homeruns were that much better than a couple of dual DVB-T2 usb tuners in a Pi, but having done the research, I can see why they are the much better choice for so many reasons.

One thing that I am having trouble getting my heard around:

If I set up TVHeadend on a Raspberry Pi, Openmediavault on a regular x86 server (that contain my hard drives) and a HomeRun, does it matter if the Pi only has 100MBps ethernet?

Does the Pi not merely direct the signal from the HomeRun directly into the server? Or have I got this wrong and the signal has to come from the HomeRun, into the Pi and then back out to the server?
Yes, the feed from the HDHR goes into the Pi, then out to OMV for storage. That bandwidth is doubled if your timeshift buffer is on the NAS, as the feed then must go back to the Pi for TVH to read the buffer, then back out to the network to the client. So, for every feed you need 2x the bandwidth just to consume it/record; and another 2x the bandwidth of the feed to send it to each client.

So, for an average HD stream of MPEG2 (~12Mb/s, but could be as high as 18-22Mb/s), you need 24Mb/s of bandwidth to record a single channel, and an additional 24Mb/s of bandwidth to stream that channel to a client. Want to watch one channel and record a second: that's 72Mb/s of your Pi's 100Mb/s ...
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nickr Offline
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Post: #10
The pi should work fine for 1 tuner, but 4 tuners creates a lot disk io as well as network io. All this is done on the pi's usb bus. Go for a c2.

If I have helped you or increased your knowledge, click the 'thank user' button to give thanks :) (People with less than 20 posts won't see the "Thank you" button.)
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elsmandino Offline
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Post: #11
Thank you all very much for that - I completely see why I would definitely need a device with Gigabit Ethernet now.

I had never heard of the C2 but it does seem to be the best suited ARM device for the job.

What do you think the best set up would be with a C2:

1. Install TVHeadend on the C2 but have it record to my current Openmediavault server, which has all my hard drives in it. The Server can be in sleep mode when not used but can be woken by WOL or

2. Install both TVHeadend and OMV on the C2 and plug the hard drives directly into the C2 (essentially using the C2 as the new server).
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rpcameron Offline
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Post: #12
Your OMV server is probably SATA, while the only hard drive interface you get on the C2 is USB2, so you might be better keeping your recordings on the NAS. As for sleeping, the C2 doesn't really sleep. There have been some recent modifications to its uboot to allow it to re-awakened/powered on via IR/CEC, but I'm not certain if the same works with suspense/resume/WoL; and with such a low TDP, it may not be necessary.
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elsmandino Offline
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Post: #13
Sorry - my earlier post was a bit vague.

I am more than happy to just leave any ARM board, like the C2, on all time - 2-3w is easily low enough to be on 24/7.

It is more my NAS, that I need to sleep (32 w when idling). I was hoping that if the C2 could just be on all the time and wake the NAS to record to its hard drives. The NAS could then be set to go into sleep mode after, say 15 minutes of inactivity - hopefully that could save some power.

As you say, the major downside of using the C2, instead of a separate NAS, is that you can only connect the hard drives via USB 2.0, which is a bit slow.

That being said, I had a look at the other Odroid devices you can get and found the XU4 - http://www.odroid.co.uk/hardkernel-odroi...odroid-xu4

Not only does it have the Gigabit network speed but also offers USB 3.0 as well, so hard drive I/O would be much faster,

Do you think I could use an XU4 as a workable replacement for my NAS?
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rpcameron Offline
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Post: #14
I suppose you could, but the XU4 4.9 kernel is still in beta, but it will bring hardware transcoding. However, the XU4 also has USB3->SATA adapters.

My NAS is a commercial Synology, but it sleeps and the C2 wakes the NAS when needed.
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nickr Offline
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Post: #15
Transcoding is unneeded, but yes the XU4 is a better choice for a NAS than a C2.

If I have helped you or increased your knowledge, click the 'thank user' button to give thanks :) (People with less than 20 posts won't see the "Thank you" button.)
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