[mythtv-users] Apple iTV - potentially great HD frontend

cossaboon.mythtv at mac.com cossaboon.mythtv at mac.com
Fri Sep 15 13:37:54 EDT 2006


MythTV Records, creates RSS feed via myth2ipod, iTunes subscribes to  
them, and offers them to iTV.

cool way to get my video content easily around the house.

On Sep 13, 2006, at 11:08 AM, Ivan Kowalenko wrote:

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> On Sep 12, 2006, at 17.32, Matt Porter wrote:
>
>> On Tue, Sep 12, 2006 at 05:03:51PM -0400, Mike Frisch wrote:
>>> On Tue, Sep 12, 2006 at 04:27:34PM -0400, A JM wrote:
>>>>    I thought it already was concluded that HD via wireless is not
>>>> an option as there wasn't enough bandwidth???
>>>
>>> The box could contain a hardware h.264 decoder, in which case I
>>> think there would be sufficient bandwidth for HD over wireless.
>>
>> Well, it has to...since they are selling h.264 videos.
>
> I'm not totally convinced. Sure, Apple sells their videos using H.
> 264, and H.264 HD would take up significantly less bandwidth than
> MPEG-2. However... see below.
>
>> The other point
>> is that the box is not going to be based on some x86 chipset like a
>> full-blown mac. Not at a $299 price-point.
>
> I'm not totally convinced of your logic. You're probably right, that
> it won't be built out of generic computer parts, but Dell seems to
> manage to sell x86 machines at $300. There's no reason Apple couldn't
> develop a box cheap enough to do this with an x86 chip.
>
>> It's essentially going to have a bill of materials much like the
>> other network video appliances that are out now. It's just going to
>> be tuned around Apple's content delivery mechanism. Most likely
>> this means a Sigma Designs - based design... it's a small embedded
>> processor with hardware support for mpeg2 high profile decode and
>> mpeg4 (h.264) decode.
>
> Ahh, alright. Now to what I was talking about above. H.264 decoding
> requires a good chunk of power. The iPod can do it because of the
> dedicated decoder chip. Fine. But that chip is only capable of a
> maximum of 768 Kbits/sec with 76,800 pixels. That's below DVD
> resolution. It takes a LOT of power to do 1080p H.264 according to
> Apple. >2 GHz on an x86 chip is what I think they were recommending.
> Do you think it's feasible that a dedicated decoder could do this and
> be inexpensive? (I'm asking this seriously! I have little experience
> with dedicated chips like this)
>
>> BTW, the *only* reason to put HDMI on the box (with HDCP) is to
>> allow them to deliver HDTV content in the future. No one would add
>> that expense unless they planned to use it. The content providers
>> require that going forward to get HD quality content out of a box.
>
> And here's hoping the system isn't too locked down because of them
> (content providers) that we can make use of it!
>
>> Keep in mind that it has Ethernet too, so if they can't design for
>> someting better than 54G you can always stream nicely over that as
>> all of us with HDTV myth boxes do.
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Kevin Cossaboon
17293 Magic Mountain Dr
Round Hill, VA 20141
540-338-5598
kevin at cossaboon.net


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