Author Topic: wdtv live and dns 323 (hard) networked - hd stutter and freeze... HELP!!!  (Read 4703 times)

March 10, 2010, 03:19:57 AM
Read 4703 times

_alvin_

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Hi all/anyone,
I've been up, down, around and over so much material that i'm suffering overload/burnout badly here.

I've got a gigabit network, a dns 323 in raid 1 (mirrored) and i get stuttering, freezing problems mostly on blu-ray content (but sometimes also on dvds).
At the moment i'm just running a full blu-ray movie as an m2ts file and dvd's as vob files.
On a usb connected drive (mostly) all these files play fine, but over the gigabit network, it's just shite, with sometimes immediate (sometimes delayed) freezing and loss of audio.

I've tried a number of things including running the NAS box with a direct ethernet cable to the wdtv live box, but nothing seems to work.

Could someone please give me a blow by blow on how to solve this incredibly annoying problem, without having to resort to re-packaging all my vids to mkv?

I did notice that initially it seemed that DTS audio looked like it slowed things, but even in AC3 format it invariably starts to play up at some stage as well.

I was under the impression that blu-ray was a no brainer and didn't raise a sweat on the ethernet cable, but i've read the odd feedback that it has the potential (if the file is packed with to many options/add-ons) that it may exceed the bandwidth.

Now is this urban myth or not and could someone give me an idea where the bloody problem is.

PS. both the NAS box and the WDTV Live box are up-to-date with firmware.

Many, many thanks... _alvin_  

March 10, 2010, 09:20:57 AM
Reply #1

Gaston

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Hi alvin,

I also use my DNS-323 for streaming DVDs (VOBs and ISO) to the WDTV live via gigabit ethernet. I have not tried any bluray content so far, except some demo files (1080p) for testing, which all played smoothly.

Do you use network shares or the media server for streaming? I had some problems with the media server of the DNS-323, so I switchted to network shares and my personal impression is, that it runs better than the media server.

Have you tried to activate jumbo frames in your DNS-323 to increase throuput? Your network needs to support jumbo frames also, otherwise you may have the opposite effect. My switches support 9k frames, so I was able to increase throuput by enabling it. (You can use NASTester to compare the result of your settings).

Hope this helps...
Gaston



March 10, 2010, 11:26:29 PM
Reply #2

_alvin_

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Hi there Gaston, thanks for the helpful response.
Okay...

Do you use network shares or the media server for streaming? I had some problems with the media server of the DNS-323, so I switchted to network shares and my personal impression is, that it runs better than the media server.

I initially ticked the media server box, but for some reason the WD TV Live box would never see the DNS 323 as a media server. Now i'm just a bit unsure of this feature, because i've yet to use it correctly, but i thought if i had enabled this on the DNS 323 and had all the other things right like using 'Workgroup' and auto login with the password, that's how the WD TV Live could see the NAS, but it doesn't?? Maybe you could just fill me in on how that should be set up... anyway, because i couldn't get it to go, i disabled it and just went with the network shares, which it quite happily found and runs as yours does.

Have you tried to activate jumbo frames in your DNS-323 to increase throuput? Your network needs to support jumbo frames also, otherwise you may have the opposite effect. My switches support 9k frames, so I was able to increase throuput by enabling it. (You can use NASTester to compare the result of your settings).

Ok... yes i had started fiddling around with this and had no increase in speed or stabililty, but will look into it further as i'm not sure whether my switch is capable of working with it as you have said.

Alright... a couple of things then, i'm off to the shop tommorrow to get a couple of CAT5E or CAT6 cables. I know this probably sounds dumb, but i just thought over such a short distance my signal was being sent (approx 5 mt), my old/reliable CAT5 cable would do, but after reading a couple of articles, maybe this might be the culprit?

Anyway, any further suggestions to try or be aware of would be very much appreciated.

Once again, thanks for the help so far.

March 12, 2010, 11:22:45 AM
Reply #3

vango44

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I have a DNS-323 also.

I set the workgroup on the DNS to same as WDTV - "WORKGROUP"
I disabled all the servers on the DNS(UPNP, iTunes, FTP etc...) since I don't need them.

I created a user on the DNS specific to the WDTV
I created a share on the DNS that contains all the media files and gave the WDTV user account read access.

On the WDTV, I disabled the autologin feature since  thought that was for ananonymous logons. So for 1st logon I entered the username/password I created on the DNS323. After that you won't have to enter it again but you still have to see the login screen and submit every time you connect (unless you use custom firmware and use xmounts).

This works well for me but I haven't tried it with anything more than DVD ISO's and 720P MKV's.

As for jumbo frames/cat6 cable, I don't have these and doubt it will make any difference since the WDTV is only 10/100mbit capable.

March 13, 2010, 12:01:36 AM
Reply #4

_alvin_

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Thanks also vango44,
I've just about done everything you've done, except i've tried with and without auto login and both seem to be fine.

I understand what you're saying about the actual speed available to the wdtv live, but it's interesting in that since i've put the cat5e cable on and left the jumbo frames running through a switch that is compliant, my tests with any DVD material and now with m2ts HD video, i've had no instability at all... as long as the m2ts video is in AC3!

As soon as i play any m2ts HD content with DTS audio in it, it starts to play up.

Soooo... i'm now going to try a Blu-ray to iso and just see how the wdtv live and ethernet handle that, but i'm getting a sneaking feeling that i'm going to need to convert the Blu-ray material to an MKV container.

I'm guessing here a couple of things, 1) that somehow, whether you do or don't compress the info, the MKV files data throughput doesn't exceed whatever is being tripped to cause the stuttering and 2) as someone somewhere else said, that possibly the MKV container is better handled/more stable as a file to the wdtv live than an m2ts file. That is, the m2ts file is stable from/through a Blu-ray player, but not necessarily through the wdtv live box.

Any thoughts there??

Also... could you please advise a suitable/good m2ts to mkv converter to try as i've not used that software yet.

Many thanks... _alvin_

March 25, 2010, 07:59:54 AM
Reply #5

mbryanr

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m2ts to mkv (eac3to to put m2ts into mkv container)
MKVmerge to put all streams into the mkv
http://www.videohelp.com/guides?madeby=eac3to     or
http://www.curtpalme.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=17002  (eac3to GUI)

http://www.videohelp.com/tools/MKVtoolnix


I have a Synology Ds-210j (wired) with the same issues. I actually found this thread through the search "stutter WDTV DTS" , following up on a thread I remember about stutter being caused by DTS tracks or multiple audio tracks.  Spent more time searching for answers that I could have spent converting with Handbrake ::).  It is almost the principle of it now, and I'm trying to avoid compressing the BD rips. ;D

Higher bitrate stuff really struggles on the WDTV.

Example:  http://www.makemkv.com/forum2/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=877&p=2688&hilit=bitrate#p2637

With my setup (DS-210j--->D-Link DGS 2205--->WDTV Live), playback begins to stutter ~ 5000 KB/sec or 42 Mbps (using the network monitor on the Synology)

I had the same experience (network shares was slightly better than media server). I don't know if that is a limitation of the Synology included media server, as most successfully stream at much higher bitrates using media servers such as Twonky or Playon.  Both methods stutter above a certain transfer rate. Plan to test first by removing/converting the audio tracks first.

March 28, 2010, 10:56:02 AM
Reply #6

_alvin_

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Hi there mbryanr,
Thanks for the enlightened feedback.
Yes, there are many here with a lot more in depth knowledge than i have re the wdtv live box and networking, but... in all my simple test conducted so far, it really does seem to be a problem for blu-ray when there is either a DTS track or several audio tracks in the file.

Now what's interesting is that i had a particular clip that struggled with DTS from my NAS and I ran a duplicate of it (over the network) off one of my drives from the PC as a network share and looking at the bandwidth graph in Windows Task Manager, it only pegged at a max of approximately 5 - 8 percent of  used bandwidth.

Which leads me to believe that for some reason, (as you've also suggested) if running an m2ts file, the inclusion of the DTS or extra audio tracks is a problem, particularly on a network connection for the WDTV live.

I have also found (since having to replace a stuffed usb drive that had a lot of my movies) that a new Seagate usb ext hdd, has the same problem on 'some' clips, so go figure!

It must be something to do with the file container and how it's being processed and then in turn how fast the file can be served/communicated with/handshaked from the drive to the wdtv live box... i wonder.

Any further thoughts from anyone?