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Problem streaming Emby Live TV channels on TCL Roku TV


Sam865
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Sam865

I just bought a TCL Roku TV (uses built-in Roku interface as the primary control for the TV). I've been using the Emby Streaming Channel (app) on several Roku 2 and 3 devices with no problems to watch live TV (using the Emby server with Silicon Dust HDHomeRun Prime cablecard network tuners). For the most part, Roku looks and works exactly the same on the TCL TV. However, some (but not all) of the Live TV channels are not streaming. They start to load and appear to be buffering, but they never start playing. Hitting the Roku back button displays a message in the Emby app saying that the media player closed prematurely. Several channels work normally, but others do not. These same channels ALL work on a Roku 2 or 3 device. Is there a setting that needs to be changed in the Emby server to eliminate this problem?

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I just bought a TCL Roku TV (uses built-in Roku interface as the primary control for the TV). I've been using the Emby Streaming Channel (app) on several Roku 2 and 3 devices with no problems to watch live TV (using the Emby server with Silicon Dust HDHomeRun Prime cablecard network tuners). For the most part, Roku looks and works exactly the same on the TCL TV. However, some (but not all) of the Live TV channels are not streaming. They start to load and appear to be buffering, but they never start playing. Hitting the Roku back button displays a message in the Emby app saying that the media player closed prematurely. Several channels work normally, but others do not. These same channels ALL work on a Roku 2 or 3 device. Is there a setting that needs to be changed in the Emby server to eliminate this problem?

This is obviously the blue neon app. Make sure the play method is set to auto-detection. To find out what is happening you need to enable debug in the options of the roku app. Now recreate the problem, after doing so immediately go to the "debug logs" button on the home screen of the roku app. This will show the logs of the roku to you. You can use the left/right and rewind/fastfwd buttons to move through it. It should show the text "::Configuration:: Video Player" when an item is played. You should see, total 1 - skipped 0 - added 1. After this spot should be the debug from the videoplayer.

 

What it sounds like is the transcoding preferences might need adjustment. Ffmpeg is transcoding to a codec the rokuTV doesnt like. Can you paste a transcoding log from your emby server when this happens?

 

Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk

Edited by speechles
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Sam865

I can reproduce the problem consistently on both the blue neon app AND the standard Emby app. I enabled drbugging logs on the blue neon app and was able to see the text you described. However, looking through the transcoding log files on my Emby server, I searched through files that were created at the appropriate time, but could not find the text.

 

(I assume that the log file that I view on the Roku TV must be stored on the Emby server under Users/<me>/AppData/Roaming/Emby-Server/. Is that right?) I've attached four transcoding log files that MAY contain information that will shed some light on the problem.

 

It's really strange that at least half of the cable channels play flawlessly with a very high-quality picture, but others won't play at all. For example CNN Headline News loads and plays flawlessly, but Fox News Channell (an adjacent Charter channel) won't play at all. Maybe this is some sort of political conspiracy!

ffmpeg-transcode-db015e2c-c8c9-40aa-b8a5-5005666b5c18.txt

ffmpeg-transcode-485b71ae-075e-4a39-ad6e-52257e2db9c6.txt

ffmpeg-transcode-f99083ca-0b35-41a6-a6fd-534d5314bf5b.txt

ffmpeg-transcode-5f96d58a-8c28-4e84-aa26-29af26831eee.txt

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does roku on the tcl possibly not have as much horsepower as the dedicated devices? we might have to dial somethings down a notch.

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I think I see the problem. It appears rokuTV may not like level 50 & 51. The capabilities.brs presently has this set to support up to 51 and tells the server. The server lately is choosing level 50/51 when before it was always using 41 as a max. This is likely the issue. I can make a setting in preferences to set the max h264 level (40,41,50,51) this should fix the issue and force the server to use a lower level to encode with.

 

The roku os7 sdk has a function to get supported video types as an roassociativearray. This would alleviate the setting since the device reports its capabilities directly. Eventually all these guessing games and settings can be done away with.

Edited by speechles
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I updated the app and set the h264 MAX level to 40 but unfortunately, it seemed to have no effect on the problem. I've attached four FFMPG Log files that may be helpful in seeing what's going on. The first file is a failed attempt to play an HD channel. The second file is a successful attempt to load and play Chicago channel WGN. However, the program was an infomercial with 4x3 aspect ratio. The third file is a failed attempt to load a local ABC channel. The fourth file is a successful attempt to load and play a local CBS channel. This time the program was in 16x9 HD.

 

I hope you are enjoying a long Labor Day weekend. Maybe you'll come up with a solution next week. Thanks for all the great work you do at Emby!

 

ffmpeg-transcode-50b5b80f-abe2-4457-981d-b7b537c84014.txt

ffmpeg-transcode-b52ccd34-d991-4010-814e-1767fdd82985.txt

ffmpeg-transcode-679bbeb5-885d-4c5b-85f2-2638e7dfa923.txt

ffmpeg-transcode-3b531e10-21f7-4e14-a791-6bc8c2eca855.txt

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  • 4 weeks later...

I can share that I have this problem as well. Channels work fine on Roku 3. Some work on the TCL TV, others don't. The screen loads to full bar, then freezes and eventually kicks back to the menu.

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I'm sure there aren't a huge number of TCL owners out there that are using Emby, so this may be a difficult problem to solve. I suspect that it affects anyone who owns a TCL tv. The September 3 update to the Emby Blue Neon app did not fix the problem. Setting the h264 MAX level to 40 seemingly had no effect. A large percentage of the Live TV channels simply will not stream. BTW, the "standard" Emby channel has the same problem. 

 

I did identify another strange problem with the TCL television that is unrelated to my original post. Whether I use the Blue Neon Emby channel on the TCL's built-in Roku or the Blue Neon Emby channel with a Roku3 plugged into the TCL HDMI port, there is an intermittent, annoying popping sound. (I saw this problem reported in a separate post on this forum recently.)

 

If I use the Standard Emby channel (on either the built-in TCL Roku or the Roku3 plugged into the HDMI port of the TCL tv) the audio popping problem goes away – there is no popping sound. This is a reproduceable problem and probably something that would not show up in a log file. Are there differences between blue neon and standard Emby apps.as far as the way audio is handled?

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I'm sure there aren't a huge number of TCL owners out there that are using Emby, so this may be a difficult problem to solve. I suspect that it affects anyone who owns a TCL tv. The September 3 update to the Emby Blue Neon app did not fix the problem. Setting the h264 MAX level to 40 seemingly had no effect. A large percentage of the Live TV channels simply will not stream. BTW, the "standard" Emby channel has the same problem.

 

I did identify another strange problem with the TCL television that is unrelated to my original post. Whether I use the Blue Neon Emby channel on the TCL's built-in Roku or the Blue Neon Emby channel with a Roku3 plugged into the TCL HDMI port, there is an intermittent, annoying popping sound. (I saw this problem reported in a separate post on this forum recently.)

 

If I use the Standard Emby channel (on either the built-in TCL Roku or the Roku3 plugged into the HDMI port of the TCL tv) the audio popping problem goes away – there is no popping sound. This is a reproduceable problem and probably something that would not show up in a log file. Are there differences between blue neon and standard Emby apps.as far as the way audio is handled?

The blueneon app defaults to AAC. The standard app instead uses MP3. You can make the blueneon app use mp3 instead. Change the "default audio" and "unknown audio" to mp3. Also set "convert mp2/mp3 to aac" to no. This will make the app prefer mp3. If you have surround sound, you should make "default audio" and "unknown audio" both ac3 and change "force surround" to yes.

 

Also, the rokuTV can directly play liveTV with h264 or mpeg2 streams. Use the "force directstream" option and see if streams play. Also enable the "direct-play MPEG2" preference for auto-detection to allow it.

Edited by speechles
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roberto188

The blueneon app defaults to AAC. The standard app instead uses MP3. You can make the blueneon app use mp3 instead. Change the "default audio" and "unknown audio" to mp3. Also set "convert mp2/mp3 to aac" to no. This will make the app prefer mp3. If you have surround sound, you should make "default audio" and "unknown audio" both ac3 and change "force surround" to yes.

 

Also, the rokuTV can directly play liveTV with h264 or mpeg2 streams. Use the "force directstream" option and see if streams play. Also enable the "direct-play MPEG2" preference for auto-detection to allow it.

What are you talking about? Roku doesn't support MPEG 2 streams, only h264. Unless the TCL Version has an mpeg 2 decoder I don't think direct playing MPEG2 will work. 

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roberto188

I can reproduce the problem consistently on both the blue neon app AND the standard Emby app. I enabled drbugging logs on the blue neon app and was able to see the text you described. However, looking through the transcoding log files on my Emby server, I searched through files that were created at the appropriate time, but could not find the text.

 

(I assume that the log file that I view on the Roku TV must be stored on the Emby server under Users/<me>/AppData/Roaming/Emby-Server/. Is that right?) I've attached four transcoding log files that MAY contain information that will shed some light on the problem.

 

It's really strange that at least half of the cable channels play flawlessly with a very high-quality picture, but others won't play at all. For example CNN Headline News loads and plays flawlessly, but Fox News Channell (an adjacent Charter channel) won't play at all. Maybe this is some sort of political conspiracy!

Do you have the actual server log files? The transcodes look ok. 

Edited by roberto188
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The blueneon app defaults to AAC. The standard app instead uses MP3. You can make the blueneon app use mp3 instead. Change the "default audio" and "unknown audio" to mp3. Also set "convert mp2/mp3 to aac" to no. This will make the app prefer mp3. If you have surround sound, you should make "default audio" and "unknown audio" both ac3 and change "force surround" to yes.

 

Also, the rokuTV can directly play liveTV with h264 or mpeg2 streams. Use the "force directstream" option and see if streams play. Also enable the "direct-play MPEG2" preference for auto-detection to allow it.

I made the changes that involved  switching defaults from ACC to MP3 and it seems to have fixed the audio problem. However, the "force directstream" & enabling "direct-play MPEG2" preference did not help. IF Roku TV is supposed to support direct-play MPEG2, TCL, Sharp, Insignia and other Roku TV suppliers should probably be made aware that users are experiencing problems. (I can only speak from experience about the TCL brand, but I would be willing to bet that other brands will have the same issues.) Since I purchased through Costco, I still have a little time to return the TCL and see if there is a better option. Fortunately, well-known brands such as Samsung and LG work great with an ordinary Roku 3 attached to an HDMI port. Thanks again for your effort in troubleshooting and fixing this issue.

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I can confirm in my testing that my TCL RokuTV 50UP120 does indeed DirectStream local MPEG2 source content (MPEG2/AC3/mkv) DVD rips.

 

I recently purchased this TV from Costco and this is my only Roku device. I reported the above to speechles just the other day. He has made some changes to support this automatically, but I haven't been able to fully get it to work automatically. If I view Movie content from my server, select the More... button and change to Force DirectStream, my DVD rips play back with no transcoding. Keep in mind there are various subtitle settings that could still cause the file to be transcoded. I haven't been able to determine if TCL RokuTV is at all able to direct play dvdsub content.

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roberto188

I can confirm in my testing that my TCL RokuTV 50UP120 does indeed DirectStream local MPEG2 source content (MPEG2/AC3/mkv) DVD rips.

 

I recently purchased this TV from Costco and this is my only Roku device. I reported the above to speechles just the other day. He has made some changes to support this automatically, but I haven't been able to fully get it to work automatically. If I view Movie content from my server, select the More... button and change to Force DirectStream, my DVD rips play back with no transcoding. Keep in mind there are various subtitle settings that could still cause the file to be transcoded. I haven't been able to determine if TCL RokuTV is at all able to direct play dvdsub content.

 

Wow that's incredible. I'll have my cousin try it with the mpeg2 TV feeds. He has a TCL. This is not a minor thing, they should really be using this as a selling point. 

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roberto188

I can confirm in my testing that my TCL RokuTV 50UP120 does indeed DirectStream local MPEG2 source content (MPEG2/AC3/mkv) DVD rips.

 

I recently purchased this TV from Costco and this is my only Roku device. I reported the above to speechles just the other day. He has made some changes to support this automatically, but I haven't been able to fully get it to work automatically. If I view Movie content from my server, select the More... button and change to Force DirectStream, my DVD rips play back with no transcoding. Keep in mind there are various subtitle settings that could still cause the file to be transcoded. I haven't been able to determine if TCL RokuTV is at all able to direct play dvdsub content.

 

Are you sure it's direct streaming? Did you open task manager on your server and check to see that there was no encoding going on while it was playing? It woulnd't strain your PC much, encoding DVDs to h264. I just find it hard to believe it can decode mpeg2. No where in any literature does it say it can do that. 

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Are you sure it's direct streaming? Did you open task manager on your server and check to see that there was no encoding going on while it was playing? It woulnd't strain your PC much, encoding DVDs to h264. I just find it hard to believe it can decode mpeg2. No where in any literature does it say it can do that.

What is so hard to believe? It is also possible it supports mpeg1 as well. The licenses for rokuTV are issued by sigma. The rokuTV has to have mpeg2 support because of its built in tuners. There should be two tuners and this allow PiP. It does mention it in literature. It just doesnt in tcl's docs. Roku forums does show both mpeg1 and mpeg2 can direct stream to a rokuTV. This is the advantage of these devices.

 

Here is the literature:

https://www.roku.com/separatelylicensedcode

 

USE OF THE TELEVISION IS LIMITED TO PRIVATE NON-PROFESSIONAL USE BY CONSUMERS FOR LICENSED CONTENT. NO RIGHTS ARE GRANTED FOR PROFESSIONAL USE OR FOR USE OF THE TELEVISION IN COMBINATION WITH TELEVISIONS NOT LICENCED UNDER THE MPEG-1 OR MPEG-2 AUDIO STANDARDS.

Edited by speechles
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Are you sure it's direct streaming? Did you open task manager on your server and check to see that there was no encoding going on while it was playing? It woulnd't strain your PC much, encoding DVDs to h264. I just find it hard to believe it can decode mpeg2. No where in any literature does it say it can do that. 

 

I am 99.9% positive it is working for my DVD rips. There is no additional CPU usage on the server, no transcode log is created by Emby, and the roku interface, while 'Force DirectStream' is used on this content, says Direct Play. Please bear in mind this is the Blue Neon app.

 

I have not done extensive testing, nor tested other sources. I was acutally hoping this would work when I bought the TV. 95% of my content is MPEG2/AC3/mkv, and almost no streamer out there supports this (Nexus Player discontinued, Shield? expensive, Xiaomi MI Android TV TBD). I've been using DLNA to get my Bluray players and PS3 and XBOX to direct play these, but lack of 'pretty' apps has low WAF...

 

With the realization that Roku is built into these TVs and they natively support MPEG2 not just OTA, but via streams, I may just buy a few more. If I could just figure out the subtitles/closed captioning that would be icing on the cake. I can turn them on, but they force a transcode. I'd also like to be able to change audio streams while playing this content. When using my Bluray players, PS3, XBOX One I can change audio streams mid-playback. All of them also support enabling subtitles, minus the XBOX One, with no transcoding.

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roberto188

What is so hard to believe? It is also possible it supports mpeg1 as well. The licenses for rokuTV are issued by sigma. The rokuTV has to have mpeg2 support because of its built in tuners. There should be two tuners and this allow PiP. It does mention it in literature. It just doesnt in tcl's docs. Roku forums does show both mpeg1 and mpeg2 can direct stream to a rokuTV. This is the advantage of these devices.

 

Here is the literature:

https://www.roku.com/separatelylicensedcode

 

Well if it really direct plays mpeg2 then that's balling as hell. All the streams from live TV can just pass right through with no encoding. Has anyone got this to work with direct stream?

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Well if it really direct plays mpeg2 then that's balling as hell. All the streams from live TV can just pass right through with no encoding. Has anyone got this to work with direct stream?

I'm an early part of the baby boomer generation (born before 1950) so I'm not as technically astute as some of you younger people. I normally don't rip movies to mpeg2 format. I typically store them in H.264 format (mkv or mp4). However, today I captured a short HD YouTube video in what is supposedly MPEG1 format. I have no idea if this is even similar the the MPEG2 format that is delivered by cable TV. I've attached all the information I could find about the file I captured.

post-63971-0-33991000-1475251691_thumb.png

 

This file does stream flawlessly from my server to the Roku TV using the built-in Roku interface with either the regular Emby channel or the Blue Neon channel. (It also streams to a Roku 3 that is attached to the TV. I don't know if that has any bearing on the MPEG2 discussion or not.

 

With that said, I still have not had any luck with the original issue that I started in this thread one month ago. Some HD channels will stream to the Roku and others will not. (I'm talking about only channels that should be "Copy Freely" according to information regarding my cable subscription.)

 

As for two built-in tuners in the Roku TV...? (To me, the word "tuner" implies something with the ability to select or "tune" TV channels on different frequencies.) I don't see evidence of ANY built-in tuners on my Roku TV. It powers on to a Roku interface with the usual Roku "channels." One of the built-in "channels" is a connection to the TV's HDMI port. Using system settings, you can assign other external connected devices such as a cable box, an external Roku device, a Bluray or DVD player, etc. to an HDMI port. You can also adjust basic picture quality, connect to a wireless (but not wired) network, and control the TV volume. All the other buttons are used to navitage through the Roku channels. There doesn't seem to be any path to using PiP, and it's not mentioned in the very sparse documentation that came with the TV.

 

I hope this contributes to the discussion and a solution to the original problem.

Media Info.txt

Media Info.txt

Edited by Happy2Play
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roberto188

I hear ya. A bit frustrating. I've had to use both Plex and EMBY for a TCL TV in order to stream all the channels I want. Really wish they would take a quick look to see what exactly is going on. Would love to get this working properly on the Roku TV.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I don't really know what was done to fix this problem, but thanks! After the Version 3.0.8100.0 server update, I tried Emby Blue Neon on the built-in Roku on my TCL TV on the off chance that the problem I've been having might have been fixed. Amazingly enough, something made the problem go away. I can now stream every Live HD TV channel that I have tried! The problem appears to be fixed. It would be nice to know the root cause, but in my case I guess ignorance is bliss. Thanks to the Emby team for making this problem go away!

 

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I don't really know what was done to fix this problem, but thanks! After the Version 3.0.8100.0 server update, I tried Emby Blue Neon on the built-in Roku on my TCL TV on the off chance that the problem I've been having might have been fixed. Amazingly enough, something made the problem go away. I can now stream every Live HD TV channel that I have tried! The problem appears to be fixed. It would be nice to know the root cause, but in my case I guess ignorance is bliss. Thanks to the Emby team for making this problem go away!

I can give away the answer. I silently snuck it through on the last blue neon update. Now it correctly sees the mpeg1/2 streams direct playable when you enable the setting in preferences. When I make the next blue neon update that setting is going to disappear, but dont worry. I am going to use the deviceinfo().displayproperties().internal=true flag for the next release. This is the detection if the hdmi is internal which rokuTV is. This lets the app instantly know its a rokuTV. Just letting you know what it was and you can have bliss even with knowledge.

 

Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk

Edited by speechles
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roberto188

I don't really know what was done to fix this problem, but thanks! After the Version 3.0.8100.0 server update, I tried Emby Blue Neon on the built-in Roku on my TCL TV on the off chance that the problem I've been having might have been fixed. Amazingly enough, something made the problem go away. I can now stream every Live HD TV channel that I have tried! The problem appears to be fixed. It would be nice to know the root cause, but in my case I guess ignorance is bliss. Thanks to the Emby team for making this problem go away!

How does it look? I would think if you direct stream mpeg2 interlaced content it would look bad as Roku typically only handles progressive content, but maybe since it's the ROKU TV, it has deinterlacing capability? 

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