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Running TVHeadend on Raspberry Pi with HDHomeruns - Printable Version

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Running TVHeadend on Raspberry Pi with HDHomeruns - elsmandino - 2017-08-22

After a lot of deliberation, I have finally decided to go with an HDHomerun connect (with a view to getting a second one, once I have everything fully set up).

My set up is as follows:

I have a central server/NAS (running Openmediavault) with 10TB of storage, spread over 6 Hard Drives. I installed TVHeadend on the device to schedule all my recordings. The server also contained a couple of TV tuners.

The server is connected to various RPi clients, via Gigabit network, to watch recordings, ripped DVDs and live TV.

My initial thought was merely to remove the TV tuners form the server and just use the network ones instead.

However, given the flexibility of the network tuners, I was wondering what other possibilities there were.

In particular, I was toying with the idea of moving TVHeadend to a dedicated Raspberry Pi.

I could then either record directly to the server or record to a Hard Drive, attached to the Pi, and then move recordings over to the server later on.

I would not, therefore, have to leave the server on all day.

I could also make use of the HDHomerun add-on for the RPi client's, whenever I want to watch Live TV - by bypassing the Raspberry Pi, for this, I could avoid potentially saturating the Raspberry Pi's networking bandwidth.

What do you think?

Has anyone else been down a similar route?

RE: Running TVHeadend on Raspberry Pi with HDHomeruns - DarrenHill - 2017-08-22

It's precisely what I do. I have TVH running on an OpenMediaVault image on a Pi2, with a 2TB WD hard drive connected to it for storing recordings (which then get converted from .ts to .mp4 files and moved onto my NAS, at least the ones I want to keep). All fed from an HDHomeRun Connect on the network. There's also a cron job set up to grab EPG data which TVH then reads in.

For my needs it works fine, although it took a little while to find a version of TVH that was built with the necessary modules to see my HDHR - the first couple I tried didn't pick it up.

The OMV underlying image was just for convenience, I guess you could do it on Raspbian or another distro if you so desire. The Pi2 also runs as a Plex server and the folder where the recordings end up is available on my network via NFS and SMB as well.

The only thing I don't do on the Pi is the conversion plus comskip, which is done on a PC as I don't think the Pi would be up to that task so well. But those are of course optional bits anyway.

Personally I prefer the TVH PVR for Kodi to the HDHomerun one, but you can go either way as your personal tastes dictate.

RE: Running TVHeadend on Raspberry Pi with HDHomeruns - elsmandino - 2017-08-22

Thanks very much for that, Darren.

I knew that the Pi2 was a great little device but you seem to have definitely got more out of it than I thought was possible.

Just a few further questions, if that is OK (your setup has really fascinated me):

1. What model of hard drive are you using? I recently came accross something called a PiDrive, which is supposedly a HDD aimed specifically at RPis.
2. Are you running the OS off the HDD or an SD card?
3. Am I correct in thinking that the .ts to .mp4 conversion is just a container swap (i.e. no transcoding)?
4. Have you ever had any problems with saturating your network?
5. How many clients do you have at any one time accessing the Pi?
6. I assume that you only have a single HDHomerun. If you got another, do you think that would add any problems in terms of network traffic?
7. If you were to redo your setup today, would you use a Pi3 or stick with a Pi2?

RE: Running TVHeadend on Raspberry Pi with HDHomeruns - DarrenHill - 2017-08-22

1) A WD MyPassport Ultra 2TB (still NTFS formatted so I can remove it and connect it to a Windows PC if I need to bulk populate/depopulate it).
I do also have a PiDrive at home which is OK, but it's a little small for my requirements. About half the drive has media on it which is available via the Plex Server, the other half is empty and is the PVR storage area.
2) SD card.
3) It can be, but I also transcode to make the file size smaller (either via MCE buddy or ffmpeg)
4) No, but I just record SD streams, nothing fancy. Everything is lan Ethernet cable connected.
5) Normally just a Pi3, although occasionally also my Android tablet. Basically I just use it for recording, and if I want to watch something directly I use the HDHomeRun app on the tablet to bypass the Pi completely.
6) Yes, just a single connect (with dual tuner). If you try and record multiple streams at once from multiple devices then you may start to hit issues with the Pi's Ethernet limitations perhaps I guess.
7) I'd use a Pi3 if I was starting fresh. I just used the Pi2 as I had it spare (it's the former one that used to be my lounge Kodi/LibreElec device, but that was replaced by the Pi3 in answer 5).

I have this set up plus a dedicated PVR set-top box also connected to the TV. I use that box for "watch and discard" type stuff, and the TVH set-up for stuff I want to record and keep, as the set top box can't export stuff to a stick or hard drive. As and when that STB dies (it's an old box, and not an expensive one) then the Pi set-up would quite happily become the main PVR of the house, but for the moment duties are shared,

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