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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 2010-04-01, 06:18 PM Thread Starter
 
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Pvr recording time

I cannot figure out how much progamming content the hard drive can hold.

MTS says " The 160 GB hard drive allows you to record up to 120 hours of Digital TV or 25 hours of High-Definition programming."

Well I currently have 28 hours and 3 minutes of HD programs recorded (2 different movies and shows) and 6 hours and 53 minutes of SD programs (6 different movies and shows).

My PVR reports that I still have 28% space remaining.

I have had alot more on the PVR in the past - approx 40 hours of HD recordings and the unit stil said I had 10% left.

The recording directory says the programs are recorded in HD, and when I play them back they are "full screen" on my HD TV. The output to my TV is set to 1080i, and my HD TV is hooked to the VIP1216 via a HDMI cable and the blue HD light is on when the VIP1216 is on.

The picture on my TV appears to be in HD (watching both live TV or a PVR recorded show).

I've asked phone support and just get non-specific canned answers, like "so what is the problem"

Do other people see this too? Or is my unit crazy. Maybe they miss labled the VIP1216 and I have a bigger drive (by mistake). Does anyone know how to se the size of the hard drive??
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 2010-04-01, 07:00 PM
 
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Keep in mind that the amount of space a program needs changes depending on the type of program you are recording and the encoding that program uses. Fast action sports and movies will use more drive space than say news or other shows taht have less movement in them (especially the background).

It like taking a picture of a really colorful busy street and then one of a white wall. The colorful photo will be much larger in file size than the white wall photo.

Everything I have heard says the 1216 HD is 160Gb
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 2010-04-01, 09:31 PM
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Mike your VIP1216 sounds perfectly normal. AT&T U-verse in the U.S. uses the same hardware and software and they list the capacity as 133 hours of SD or 37 hours of HD.

Your experience of about 40 hours of HD sounds about right based on that. I haven't tested all-HD personally, but I have tested all-SD and got about 110 hours.
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 2010-04-02, 12:32 AM
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With IPTV, I believe the bitrate that's sent to you for one programme depends on what else you have going on. For example, if you're using the internet on your computer, watching TV and recording HD programmes, the bitrate for those programmes would be a lot less than if you're simply recording 1 HD programme and doing nothing else. Hence the variability.

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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 2010-04-02, 09:15 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 57 View Post
With IPTV, I believe the bitrate that's sent to you for one programme depends on what else you have going on. For example, if you're using the internet on your computer, watching TV and recording HD programmes, the bitrate for those programmes would be a lot less than if you're simply recording 1 HD programme and doing nothing else. Hence the variability.
57,

That was just a rumor, there have been a few people here who have confirmed that the TV bandwidth is completely seperate from Internet bandwidth.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 2010-04-02, 06:28 PM
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57 is mistaken on this issue.

MTS uses Harmonic DiviCom Electra 7000 Encoders. These units encode incoming video into MPEG-4 format on a per-channel, not per-user basis. The target bit-rate of each channel can be adjusted by the telco so that the resulting stream will not exceed the allocated bandwidth. That is why different telcos can have a different number of hours per GB of disk space.

Secondly, MTS uses VDSL2 and allocates about 35 Mbps of bandwidth consisting of 24 Mbps for IPTV and 9.5 Mbps for standard internet (7.5 down and 2 up). For the typical internet user there will not be a conflict between IPTV and internet use.

For those internet users that order the 32 Mbps internet service, IPTV takes priority over internet use. "This package leverages any unused bandwidth not used by the MTS Ultimate TV Service to be used for Internet."

Mike, to confirm that you have the VIP1216, press MENU, Settings, General, System Information and look on the System Info screen for the line that says "Set-Top Box/CPU". Motorola also makes a VIP1225 with a 250 GB drive, but MTS does not distribute that unit to the best of my knowledge.

To further explain why there can be some variation in the number of hours that fit on the PVR, if the encoder is optimized for fast-moving action scenes, then it is possible that programs that don't have a lot of action will take less space. Also SD commercials inserted into a HD program will take less space.

One other tip: Unless all your programs are marked as "Keep until I erase", the oldest programs will be erased when the available space reaches 10%.
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 2010-04-03, 12:46 AM
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Sorry people. I'm pretty sure the IPTV on Bell works the way I described, as it was tested by some people who have that service. Here's the link - post 15 onwards.

http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=114549

It appears MTS is different. Question though: does MTS TV allow for watching one HD channel and recording another HD channel, or recording two HD channels, or perhaps 1 HD and several SD on various STBs? If it does, then one HD channel would get less bandwidth under those circumstances than most channels broadcast (up to 18 Mbps) and would also explain the higher number of recordable hours, due to the lower (than broadcast) bitrate.

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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 2010-04-03, 02:18 AM
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No problem 57, it's hard to keep track of all the different technologies. I'm pretty sure Bell IPTV also gives priority to IPTV over internet traffic. I do recall reading the thread which seems to confirm that, although running a torrent while doing a speed test skews the results.

MTS allows the PVR to record 2 HD streams and 1 SD stream simultaneously. Using my own rough estimates of 10 Mbps for HD and 3 Mbps for SD would give 10+10+3=23 Mbps which would fit into the bandwidth allocation.

The rule of thumb that MPEG-4 can be up to twice as efficient as MPEG-2 would mean that 10 Mbps MPEG-4 IPTV would be comparable to 18 Mbps MPEG-2 ATSC OTA TV.

In looking up the spec sheet for the MTS encoder, I noticed that it "provides a full 30–40% compression gain over the first generation of DSP-based MPEG-4 HD encoders". This may explain why the actual number of HD hours is higher than the original estimate.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 2010-04-03, 11:18 AM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for all of your answers.

I kind of figured it was like a digital still picture, that the file size can vary. So I am assuming that the 25 hours of HD and 120 hours of SD is a "worst case"

The statement on MTS's website: "The 160 GB hard drive allows you to record up to 120 hours of Digital TV or 25 hours of High-Definition programming." makes it appear that 25 is the MAX, not the MINIMUM.

Also in my case ALL of the 26Hours of HD recordings are movies from Movie Central, and there are no commercials.

I am just afraid that I'm not getting what I paid for - True HD - that somehow (through a reduced bit-rate or something) I'm getting a "degraded" on not a full HD signal.
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