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saj

Emby Theater - Use External Player Except for Live TV

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saj

Hi,

I am using MPC-HC64 as my external player for Theater. Everything works fine except live TV play. If I try to play live TV, Theater just spins forever. To play live TV, I have to disable the external player. I certainly understand MPC-HC64 not handling the live stream, but I would really like to not have to make settings changes to switch between types of content. I don't see any way to say use the external player except for live TV. If there is a way or if there is another way to make live TV work with the external player enabled, I would be grateful to be told. If not, I would suggest it would be good to implement one.

Thanks for any help.
Steve

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Luke

Hi, I thought we were already doing this. How did you configure the external player?

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saj

I'm sorry, how do you mean? In Theater or in the external player itself? In Theater I specified the external player for video and selected only video under the media types. I don't think the MPC-HC settings would have anything to do with this, but maybe I'm wrong. All I do to make my live TV play is un-select the video media type so the external player plays nothing. Then it works fine. So, to me, it looks like it tries to pass the live TV to the external player when video is selected. Do you mean it should be ignoring the external player for live TV?

Thanks

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Luke

Can you show a screenshot of that? Thanks.

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saj

Hi Luke,

OK, I did some more experimentation, and I should be more precise in describing the situation. Sorry, it had been a while since I worked on this, and I am getting back to it. First of all, if I plug MPC-HC in as the external player for video directly, then Theater will play both other video and live TV properly, except than I cannot get it to play full screen on my TV. It always still shows the taskbar at the bottom of the screen and has the image slightly smaller than the screen. So, can you offer a solution to this? MPC-HC is set to play full screen always.

To get around this, I wrote a very small Autoit script that calls MPC-HC, passes the video file name, makes sure its screen is maximized and then waits for it to finish before exiting to Theater. I plug the Autoit script name into the external player field and select video files only. In this mode all videos play perfectly and in full screen mode. Everything works except live TV. Selecting it just causes the program to spin forever. The script is as simple as it could be. It does nothing but invoke MPC-HC in full screen mode and wait for it to finish before exiting back to Theater. But apparently, having the script between Theater and MPC-HC prevents live TV from working properly. Perhaps it somehow causes Theater to act slightly differently when playing live TV. Any ideas?

If it would play in full screen without the intervening script, that would be fine too.

Thanks and sorry for the earlier lack of precision.

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Luke

Hi, so you mean mpc isn't full screen? I don't know about this sorry. I do recall a command line param to make mpc full screen, but it's been several years since i played with that.

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saj

OK, yes that's what I meant. I can continue to work on that.

Earlier, as I said, I managed to get live TV to play once with the direct call to MPC-HC, so I thought that was working. I have been trying it some more, and I cannot get it to work again. As before, all other video plays fine through MPC-HC but selecting live TV just causes Theater to spin forever, even with the direct call to MPC-HC. So, it is at least inconsistent. I know inconsistent results aren't amenable to easy debugging.

Can you tell me how it is supposed to work? When I select live TV, should it be bypassing the external player and playing the stream directly?

Thank you

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Luke

I would have to review this but I thought the way I built this way back when was to avoid using it for Live TV.

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saj

Hi Luke,

I modified my script so I would be sure whether it was being called or not and to show me the media path passed by Theater.

I did a lot more testing, and I have a conclusive answer as to what is going on, and I understand why it was so confusing to me.

I will describe how it is working, and it is completely consistent is this. I have tested all the scenarios several times.

The issue is with how the media type specifications for the external player are handled. The Blue-Ray, DVD and ISO media types are not pertinent to this issue. The Video files and Internet Streams types are critical.

1) If the Video files option is not selected, regardless of what other media types are selected, then neither other video nor live TV are sent to the external player. All the media types play properly with the internal player.

2) If the Video files option is selected and Internet Streams is not selected, then movies, recordings, etc. are sent to the external player and play properly. However, Live TV is not sent to the external player, but it will not play. When I try to play the Live TV, then Theater just spins forever.

3) If the Video files option is selected and Internet Streams is selected, then all the videos and Live TV are sent to the external player, and MPC-HC plays them all properly, including Live TV.

So, the bottom line is that I have a working solution. However, I think there are two problems with what Theater is doing. One is its failure to play Live TV at all when the Video files option is selected without Internet streams being selected. The other is the odd requirement that both Video files and Internet Streams have to be selected for Live TV to be sent to the external player.

Thanks for reading and your responses. Perhaps someone could take a look at those two issues. They are very easy to recreate.

Best

 

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Luke

If you remove the external player altogether, are you able to play live tv?

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sooty234
2 hours ago, saj said:

2) If the Video files option is selected and Internet Streams is not selected, then movies, recordings, etc. are sent to the external player and play properly. However, Live TV is not sent to the external player, but it will not play. When I try to play the Live TV, then Theater just spins forever.

I can reproduce this.

20 hours ago, Luke said:

I would have to review this but I thought the way I built this way back when was to avoid using it for Live TV.

You did, but something looks to have broken that. 

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saj

Yes, removing the external player entirely works exactly the same as unchecking the Video files option. Everything plays properly via the internal player.

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Luke

What is the source of your live tv?

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sooty234
8 minutes ago, Luke said:

What is the source of your live tv?

In my case, it's HDHR Prime.

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saj

I have two HDHR Extends and one HDHR Connect.

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Luke

Ok so it looks like the internet streams option just needs a better name.

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saj

I don't really see how that addresses the fact that playing Live TV fails completely if the Video files option is selected by itself or that the Video files option and Internet streams options interact with one another the way they seem to with regard to Live TV, but maybe I am misunderstanding.

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Luke

Well that's a different issue. That sounds like there's an issue with playing it using the internal player.

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