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Selectively using external player (e.g. VLC) to avoid problematic (freezing) files

Discussion in 'Codecs, External Players' started by fruttifrutti, July 10, 2016.

  1. fruttifrutti

    fruttifrutti Portal Member

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    Hello,



    What is the easiest way to have the ability to open a file, from within MP, using VLC?

    I use MP to playback TV recordings (UK Freeview) recorded in .TS format. HD recordings sometimes freeze during playback and too often freeze when skipping ahead or fast forwarding. It is particularly bad when my aerial signal isn't perfect e.g. during storms but this isn't the only time. Reading this forum I see many examples e.g. even on the front page active threads like the one on BBC 1 HD.

    VLC plays all these files just perfectly. No freezes, ever. Navigating to the correct file using Windows isn't very quick or easy so I was ideally hoping for a way to have MP use the VLC.exe as a backend player while within MP environment. Failing that, to have MP trigger opening the file externally with VLC application. Are either possible?
     
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  3. Holzi
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    Holzi Super Moderator

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    If VLC plays these files perfectly its most likely a codec thing. Which ones are you using (for TV)?

    I don't know if this works when playing files from RecordedTV section but you can add an external player for videos in MP Config > Videos > Tab Video Player

    If you only want to play .TS files with the external player you can add this file extension.

    Wiki Link for more explanation: http://wiki.team-mediaportal.com/1_...aPortal_Configuration/2_Videos/3_Video_Player
     
  4. fruttifrutti

    fruttifrutti Portal Member

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    Thank you for your reply, Holzi.

    All my MP codecs are set to LAV, both Video and TV. I am recording using Argus and that was the advice.

    VLC says the videos are encoded in H264 - MPEG-4 AVC (part 10) (h264).

    I will look at using the external player option but is there a way to make it selectable? I prefer using MP's internal player until I encounter frequent freezes, not all files exhibit this. With VLC there is a slight deinterlacing issue.
     
  5. fruttifrutti

    fruttifrutti Portal Member

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    No matter what I try, I can not get the external player to play .TS files. It opens up VLC for if I rename a file to avi, mpg, etc. but not as ts.
     
  6. Owlsroost
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    Can you point me at the examples please ?

    What are your system specs ?

    When you say you are using Argus, does this mean you are using their TV plugin as well ?

    If you have enough CPU power, you could try disabling hardware acceleration for H.264 (= AVC) in LAV Video Decoder settings. It might be that the hardware decoder in your GPU is hanging etc. when fed with corrupted streams. MP's TV player tries to filter out corrupted video data, but it's not possible to detect/remove all of it.
     
  7. fruttifrutti

    fruttifrutti Portal Member

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    Hello.

    Yes, I use Argus TV service/plugin to do the recording and watch recordings through MP.

    My system is i3 3220T, 4GB RAM, Win7 x64, MP 1.12.0, LAV Decoder 0.65.0. I use the integrated gpu.

    I had never checked the decoder settings in detail because everything worked fine and looked good. I had a look now, it seems none of my settings are using hardware acceleration which I had thought would have been the default. Anyway, Intel Quicksync and DXVA2 both show as available (the NVIDIA option not). I will have a play but what would be your recommendation? Will enabling hardware acceleration not suggested if the playback quality is fine (when it works and doesn't freeze).

    I checked my VLC (which never freezes) and this has hardware acceleration disabled.

    By comparison,
     
  8. Owlsroost
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    The normal recommendation is 'DXVA2 (native)' - that should give you maximum hardware acceleration and minimum CPU usage.

    Next time playback hangs, please attach the client logs here and I'll have a look at them.

    I've been watching Freeview HD via MP for several years without the 'freezing' problems you mention.

    I don't recommend people use fast-forward/rewind because the performance of it is very dependant on the behaviour of external (to MP) DirectShow filters. It's generally much faster to use skip steps to move around.
     
  9. fruttifrutti

    fruttifrutti Portal Member

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    Thank you. I will try with DXVA2 to see if it makes any difference.

    I have been using Argus + MP for Freeview HD for over 3 years and haven't changed software or hardware in over 6 months. In the last month in particular, HD channels have become problematic with this freezing behaviour. The one other issue, although very rare, is that programmes will occasionally show ridiculously long durations in MP e.g. a 2 hour recording will claim to be 10 hours.

    I do use skip far more than ffw although skip seems to freeze more often than ffw, it is especially worse if I let it play for at least a few minutes and then try to skip. If the first skip works then others immediately following work.

    Next time it freezes I will post client logs.
     
  10. mm1352000
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    mm1352000 Development Group

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    Glitches in recordings can throw out the duration calculations performed by TsReader.
     
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  11. Owlsroost
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    This suggests there is a problem developing with the hardware side of things e.g. Antenna/aerial, cabling or tuner card (or possibly the transmitter you are tuned to is running at lower than normal power level e.g for maintenance, or PC hardware problems).

    Next time you get one of these problem recordings, as well as attaching the logs, can you keep it for a while - I might be interested in a 'bad' section of it as a test file ;).
     
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