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AFTV Pixilated other Emby clients are not


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ieblj01

Hello Forum,

 

I am wondering if anyone else is seeing this issue with AFTVs.  I have noticed that when watching movies (or TV shows, etc., all different file types, i.e. MP4, MKV) the AFTV will be very pixilated at times (practically unwatchable) and always in the same places of the show/movie.  This occurs for files that I have ripped myself at the highest quality which surprises me and this all happens on a local gig network with every device wired in (no wireless).  If I watch the same file on a phone or use a Rasberry Pi with LibreElec/Kodi (EmbyCon) connected to the same TV as the AFTV, the picture quality is significantly better and I don't see the pixilation event at all or it is dramatically reduced.  Is this just a major difference in how the two clients handle the files when displaying them?

I am running the latest version of Emby server (4.5.4) on Ubuntu 20.04.  AFTV clients are running Emby 1.8.54a.  I attached an example comparison between AFTV and Kodi/EmbyCon at the same point in the same move on a halfway decent monitor (not as clear as my HD TVs) and you can clearly see a difference between them.  The system connections are identical (same HDMI cable, monitor port, etc.) I simply switched out the AFTV for the Rasberry Pi.

AFTV.jpg

KodiEmbyCon.jpg

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ebr

Hi.  How is the item playing?  That looks like the first one is at a significantly lower bitrate due possibly to transcoding.

 

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ieblj01

You nailed that ebr.  it is transcoding when playing off the AFTV and direct playing off the Pi.  Seems the AFTV doesn't support the codec.

image.png.28ad33ef94ef47d1efd6233a3de16a0b.pngimage.png.c19e601b9a966b69500e6718671210a5.png

Edited by ieblj01
added additional screenshots
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ebr

That actually says we tried to direct play it but there was an error so we fell back to transcoding.  The subsequent conversion from mpeg4 to h264 is probably where the quality decrease is coming from.

If you can play that item for just a few seconds and then send a log from the app, I can see what error caused the fallback.

Thanks.

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ieblj01

OK.  Logs sent at 4:22 Eastern

Playback file Terminator Salvation (2009).mp4

TRAVEL AFTV (emby User)

Edited by ieblj01
typo
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ieblj01

Noticed my kids are watching a movie in the guest room on a different AFTV.  Transcoding in effect! :)

image.thumb.png.7813ad640852cd80d780d5d55a5ec36f.png

Edited by ieblj01
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ebr

Yeah, mpeg4 again.  I believe the Fire should support that so we need to look into it.  Any chance you can get me a sample of one of these items (you can PM me a dropbox link or similar)?

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ieblj01

And my sister, this is an external internet connection to the server, just an FYI.  All AFTVs seems to be transcoding everything.

image.png.bdcb105c28debbd4eedf356d7b8791bf.png

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Luke
5 hours ago, ieblj01 said:

Sure, let me get that setup and you can grab the file.

That would be great, thanks.

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ebr

Your sample will not direct play for me on Andriod TV.  It throws an error and then falls back to transcoding.  Not sure what the problem is as I even remuxed into an mkv and had the same problem.  The Roku will play it fine.

We'll have to look into this further but for your real issue, you may want to investigate some of the advanced transcoding options to see if you can improve the quality of your transcodes.

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ieblj01
1 hour ago, ebr said:

Your sample will not direct play for me on Andriod TV.  It throws an error and then falls back to transcoding.  Not sure what the problem is as I even remuxed into an mkv and had the same problem.  The Roku will play it fine.

We'll have to look into this further but for your real issue, you may want to investigate some of the advanced transcoding options to see if you can improve the quality of your transcodes.

Glad to know it was reproducible for you and it is not just me!  I will play around with it and see if I can improve the picture quality.  I am phasing out the AFTVs and replacing them with Pi's...although IMHO, I think the AFTV UI is the best out of the Emby clients...but others may disagree :)

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jrwalte

If you have a decent CPU/GPU running your Emby server, you definitely want to reduce the H264 encoding CRF option. I use 14, which keeps the file bitrate near original.

image.thumb.png.efecdda4d5a1ccd7026c0e1b812d2a16.png

 

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ieblj01

I ended up downloading Kodi onto my AFTV and using Embycon and the Embuary skin as a stopgap for now.  Still get that great Emby client UI (mostly) and all my files are direct playing as they should and the video quality is back to how it should be without the transcoding.  So I am a happy camper again.

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ebr

Hi.  Did you try adjusting any of the advanced transcoding settings?

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ieblj01
1 hour ago, ebr said:

Hi.  Did you try adjusting any of the advanced transcoding settings?

yes I did.  in all honestly, it was still terrible picture quality regardless of how I adjusted those, even if I went to extreme values

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jrwalte

Was the hardware acceleration on or off by chance? ON can cause poor results when you're attempting high compression. GPU encoding is better for originally high bitrate with low compression. CPU does better with heavy compression.

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ieblj01
17 hours ago, jrwalte said:

Was the hardware acceleration on or off by chance? ON can cause poor results when you're attempting high compression. GPU encoding is better for originally high bitrate with low compression. CPU does better with heavy compression.

yes, I believe it was on.  I will turn it off and see if that helps at all.

Edited by ieblj01
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ieblj01

Turning off hardware acceleration made a huge difference in video quality with the more aggressive compression settings.   This comes in handy as I have a couple of first gen AFTVs that don't support hevc (in addition to 2nd gen models that do).  The Kodi/Embycon bandaid sidesteps the mpeg transcode issue, but then craps out on hevc files on the 1st models.  

Hopefully the coding gurus will figure out why the AFTV client is transcoding supported files and this problem will eventually go away :)

Thanks for the insight on the HW acc setting.  With the Premiere account it was on by default.

Edited by ieblj01
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