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Questions about transcoding over 4G


Scott750
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I'm having stuttering and buffering issues while playing mkv's and VOB's over 4G. Playing over wifi has little to no buffering. My server shows the process FFMPEG maxing the CPU at 95% during transcode. I have cellular bitrate set to 850 kb/s and wifi set to 6 MB/s. My server is running an Ivy Bridge i5-3570K @ 3.8 Ghz, 8GB DDR3-1600 ram, & Samsung 830 128GB SSD,so it should have plenty of horsepower. 

 

Verizon Samsung Note 2 Android v4.3

Android MB3 v1.0.45

MB3 Server v3.0.5267.16902

 

Redshirt, I'll PM you my server and transcode logs since they contain my IP address.

Edited by Scott750
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Koleckai Silvestri

What is your hardline internet upload speed? If you don't know www.speedtest.net can tell you. 850 Kbps may be flooding your upload speed if it is too low.

Edited by Wayne Luke
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Upload is really crappy right now

 

TWC Roadrunner Turbo

Upload=0.89 Mbps

Download=22.75Mbps

Ping= 19ms 

 

Its supposed to be 20Mbps down / 2 Mbps up. Guess I need to call into TWC and complain. :)

 

But there's still the issue with 95% CPU during transcoding. Because its that high even on wifi on my LAN.

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Koleckai Silvestri

Your LAN is probably direct streaming most of your content at 6 Mbps. That is higher than a lot of DVD and most 720p compressed video. Even some 1080p video can be compressed under that limit. It would need to only transcode for subtitles a lot of times. 

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If he's playing to and Android client over lan, then it's still transcoding.

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Yes playing to the Android client if I tap on the video while playing, in the upper right hand corner it says video & audio are transcoding.

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Koleckai Silvestri

Even with transcoding, it is a lot less work to fit something into a 6 Mbps stream over a 850 Kbps stream.

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Just so were all on the same page. The buffering issue appears to be with the ISP and not the client.

 

Regarding the CPU usage. That is purely the server implementation of transcoding with ffmpeg. Something that Luke is already striving to improve.

 

 

Even with transcoding, it is a lot less work to fit something into a 6 Mbps stream over a 850 Kbps stream.

 

That is essentially correct, but may not be readily apparent to the end user. Ffmpeg will still use as much CPU as it can if the server is using the default settings. In this situation the source video has a bitrate of nearly 7000kb/s and was transcoding at approx 90-100 fps. Transcoding to 6 mb/s would still have pinnned ffmpeg but the framerate would have been substantially higher meaning the ffmpeg process finishes quicker.

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I got the same 95% cpu usage from streaming a Video_TS vob DVD rip that has a source video of 1800kb/s. I would think that would be easier to transcoding than the Blu-ray rip at 7000kb/s.

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Also if it was trying to transcoding at 90-100 fps, the picture quality had a lot of pixelation.

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Koleckai Silvestri

When my server transcode, it will be done when I have watched about 20% of the video. I have it set to transcode at best quality. Doesn't matter if I am using my iPhone, Kindle Fire Tablet, the Roku or Web Client. Even at 95-100% core utilization the server doesn't pause or stutter. It just switches other tasks to cores 3 & 4.

 

Are you saying the transcode lasts for 100% of the time while watching? Your processor is newer than mine.

Edited by Wayne Luke
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Well I, haven't made it thru an entire movie yet, but while watching at least up to half of a movie the cpu is at 95% the whole time. Even when I pause the movie it's still up there. I figured it would transcode a certain amount ahead of what I'm currently seeing but if I pause it should cease until I reach that threshold again.

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I've never tried it at best quality. Always left it at Auto. Even at fastest speed/low quality cpu was at 95%.

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Koleckai Silvestri

If you pause, FFMPEG will keep chugging along. It stores the transcode files as hundreds of clips on your server's drive. Those clips are what the system feeds to your device. Pretty much the same way web video is done online by a lot of sites.

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Regarding the CPU usage. That is purely the server implementation of transcoding with ffmpeg. Something that Luke is already striving to improve.

 

 

 

That is essentially correct, but may not be readily apparent to the end user. Ffmpeg will still use as much CPU as it can if the server is using the default settings.

So I've been reading a lot of older threads and I'm starting to understand what you're saying about cpu usage. The transcoding will take all of the cpu like you mentioned, it's not a flaw in the server. I'm still trying to get everything setup with the Android app and streaming from the server, so I get worried when the cpu gets maxed. Usually it means something isn't running right.

 

Now for my Internet connection, I currently have 20 Mbps down / 2 Mbps up. Should I be l9king to upgrade to a faster package? TWCs next step up is Roadrunner Extreme at 30 Mbps down / 5 Mbps up. I'm wondering if that's what I should be running.

 

What's everyone else's Internet speeds that are using this app?

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Koleckai Silvestri

As long as you're not hitting maximum temperature or TJ Max on your processor, running at 100% isn't going hurt things. My Sandy Bridge i5 gets to between 50° and 60° Celsius while transcoding the Maximum is 98° Celsius. When it is done it rapidly cools off down to around 30°.

 

AS for Internet Speeds, I am on Time Warner's Extreme 30/5 package. They've been saying they were going to update the Los Angeles Network to 100/20 and 300/20 but haven't seen any traction yet.

Edited by Wayne Luke
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Mine gets up to 75* but quickly cools down once not doing anything, TDP is 105*. Yeah as soon as Google mentions cheap 1Gbps Internet every ISP who said it's not possible to go any faster suddenly is saying how they can offer free upgrades like the LA network. :rolleyes:

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  • Solution

So just a quick update: I figured out my poor upload speeds. My routers QoS had the uplink speed set manually to 1Mbps. I switched it to Auto and retested my internet speed.

 

Upload = 2.38 Mbps

Download = 22.75 Mbps

Ping = 20 ms

 

Success!!

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Koleckai Silvestri

Glad you resolved the upload speed., Playback on the device going better now?

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Yes much better. Thank you for all of your help! :)

 

I have the Android app cellular set to 1.4 Mbps and the server set to maximum quality and playback looks pretty good. Just an occasional buffering once in a while. Not like it used to be.

 

I'm wondering if I should upgrade to RR extreme to get the 5 Mbps upload speeds if that would help a lot more. Whats your take? Is it worth the $60/month? Its $10 more than turbo.

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Next time if you could state up front that you have transcoding set to max quality on the server, that would help prevent us from chasing our tails thinking there's actually a problem :) when you set that setting, it's pretty much always going to max out.

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Originally I had transcoding set to Auto then tried low quality but was still getting a lot of buffering. Only until I resolved the upload speed did I experiment and increase to Max quality. Sorry for the confusion.

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Koleckai Silvestri

My family enjoys the 30/5. Last month we did almost 800 GB in downloads. But we we do a lot of online video with Netflix, Hulu, HBOGo and Time Warner Cable App. Most of it over Rokus. We hardly ever notice a slowdown. We don't do a lot of streaming upline but need to reset my daughter's computer and get her on the Windows 8.1 App and we'll see how it goes as she streams stuff to her school occasionally. 

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Luke, I hope you don't take what I wrote above to sound rude. I really am sorry that I didn't state in the first post I started out as Auto transcoding. I re-read what I wrote in post #22 and to me it sounds like I was being condescending. I'm truly am glad we have people like you and Redshirt dedicated to this forum to bring us excellent products! Thanks to both of you guys for being patient with me as I try to master everything mediabrowser has to offer. :)

Edited by Scott750
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I've read that post and I can't speak for Luke, but I didn't read it as condescending at all.

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