Example setups

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Revision as of 03:04, 12 April 2007 by CityK (talk | contribs) (added Omid455's comment from the Kaffeine article)
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This page lists example software configurations that you might find helpful as a suggestion of what you can do with your system.

For a complete list of programs, see the commented software list page --- here, you'll find solutions, not just simple programs. For testing purposed or small systems, have a look at the First steps with a budget DVB card.

In order to be most useful for the reader, this page is diveded into three sections:

  • setups for full featured cards (DVB cards with hardware decoders)
  • setups for budget cards (DVB cards without hardware decoders) -- see here for USB DVB adapters
  • setups for analog TV cards (hey, shouldn't that sort of stuff rather be in the video4linux wiki?

A sample solution for a system with a budget DVB card

My system is a Twinhan DTV Mini Ter on a cheap HP Pentium 4 1.2GHz. The graphic card is only an on-board Intel 82810E with shared memory, so nothing fancy.

After installing the card drivers, I tried several solutions. I didn't get the VDR Software Decoder Plugin working so I tried xine -- which worked on the first trial and provides much functionality (for watching) on an easy and intuitive interface.


I use a Twinhan Express compatible card Axtrom which works great with linux. So far kaffeine is the best choice to use with a budget card. Since xine does not let you to record and it's interface is buggy and VDR is very hard to setup and startup I decided to stick to kaffeine. It lets you record un-attended. you can even record and watch multiple channels within same transponder.

A sample solution for a system with a full-featured card

My system is a Mythtv pc installed with Fedora Core 6 following this howto [1]. I use the Technotrend Premium DVB-C 2300 Hybrid dvb-c card [2]bought from Dvb shop in Germany [3]. I was thinking buying the Technotrend Budget C-1500, but it was out of stock from Dvbshop that time [4].

The Linux 2.6 kernel had already support for Technotrend Premium DVB-C 2300 so the card was autodetected after first time boot. The firmware for the card was not in place so you must download the correct dvb-ttpci-01.fw-2622 (or newer) firmware file from this place [5]. Place this file in the hotplug directory /lib/firmware and rename to dvb-ttpci-01.fw. Change the permission on the file. After a reboot you should get some file in /dev/dvb/adapter0/

Using Fedora, assume root privileges then install the dvb utilities with

  # yum install dvb-apps

Scan will need some idea of where to start searching; for this reasons it takes a file for your location as a starting point. Therefore, you need to find channel information for your locality. Again, the location where they are installed may vary. In the following examples, the directory is /usr/share/doc/dvb-utils/examples/scan/dvb-t/; other installations also use /usr/share/doc/dvb-apps-1.1.1 or /usr/local/share/dvb/scan/dvb-t/. DVB-S users should use the folders /usr/share/doc/dvb-utils/examples/scan/dvb-s/, /usr/share/doc/dvb-apps-1.1.1 or /usr/local/share/dvb/scan/dvb-s/. In each case, the name of the file you're looking for is of the form cc-Ttttt, where cc is a two-letter country abbreviation, and Ttttt is the name of the location of the transmitter. So in Adelaide, Australia, you'd look for a file called au-Adelaide; the following example relates to Oxford in the United Kingdom.

I live in Norway and use Grimstad cabeltv. I did not find any channel information file I could use. But I find one for Norwegian UPC which I first take a copy of and then edited it. I got the correct frequency setting, QAM and so on from the cable box Grimstad cabeltv has delivered me.

[mythtv@mythpc ~]$ cat no-oslo-UPC
# no-oslo-UPC (cable)
C 410000000 6875000 NONE QAM64
C 418000000 6875000 NONE QAM64
C 426000000 6875000 NONE QAM64
C 442000000 6875000 NONE QAM64
C 450000000 6875000 NONE QAM64
C 458000000 6875000 NONE QAM64
C 466000000 6875000 NONE QAM64
C 474000000 6875000 NONE QAM64
C 482000000 6875000 NONE QAM64
C 490000000 6875000 NONE QAM64
C 498000000 6875000 NONE QAM64  

After I have edited the file no-oslo-UPC I did a scan.

 $ /usr/bin/dvbscan /home/mythtv/no-oslo-UPC

This should produce output saying "WARNING: >>> tuning failed!!!" if a signal was not found on that particular frequency. Eventually, a list of services found should be displayed. Here is a sample list:

dumping lists (7 services)
NRK mP3:410000000:INVERSION_AUTO:6875000:FEC_NONE:QAM_64:0:706:1515
NRK Stortinget:410000000:INVERSION_AUTO:6875000:FEC_NONE:QAM_64:0:705:1514
NRK Sami Radio:410000000:INVERSION_AUTO:6875000:FEC_NONE:QAM_64:0:49:1510
NRK Klassisk:410000000:INVERSION_AUTO:6875000:FEC_NONE:QAM_64:0:703:1507
NRK P3:410000000:INVERSION_AUTO:6875000:FEC_NONE:QAM_64:0:702:1505
NRK P2:410000000:INVERSION_AUTO:6875000:FEC_NONE:QAM_64:0:701:1504
NRK P1:410000000:INVERSION_AUTO:6875000:FEC_NONE:QAM_64:0:35:1503
NRK1 sorlandet:410000000:INVERSION_AUTO:6875000:FEC_NONE:QAM_64:512:640:3507
ZTV Norway:410000000:INVERSION_AUTO:6875000:FEC_NONE:QAM_64:2161:2162:2160
TV3 Norge:410000000:INVERSION_AUTO:6875000:FEC_NONE:QAM_64:1111:1112:1110

This is a list with both radio and tv channels. You have both encrypted and unencrypted channels her also.

Next try to create a "channels.conf", a file in a hidden (dotted) directory off your "home" directory. I make a directory called .czap because I shall use czap to tune in the channels. Czap is only for cable broadcasting, then you have tzap for terrestial and then szap for satelite.

 $ mkdir ~/.czap
 $ /usr/bin/dvbscan /home/mythtv/no-oslo-UPC > ~/.czap/channels.conf

Next display the contents of the channels.conf file to make sure the file creation proceeded correctly

 $ cat ~/.czap/channels.conf

Then you can try to tune in one of the channels:

 $ /usr/bin/czap  -r -c ~/.czap/channels.conf "ZTV Norway"

which in turn displays lines similar to (terminate with Ctrl-C)

 using '/dev/dvb/adapter0/frontend0' and '/dev/dvb/adapter0/demux0'
 tuning to 177028615 Hz
 status 1f | signal 0000 | snr ff28 | ber 00000000 | unc 00000000 | FE_HAS_LOCK
 ... (repeated output) ...

The rest of the wiki I am going to document in the Mythtv Wiki[6] because it is involving the howto use the channels.conf file in Mythtv for setting up channels in Mythtv.

A sample solution for a system with an analog card

write it down if you have one -- I can't do it cause I haven't

See also