Alternatives to Slingbox for tv streaming? - Canadian TV, Computing and Home Theatre Forums
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes

post #1 of 28 (permalink) Old 2014-01-15, 03:32 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Brampton North
Posts: 63
Alternatives to Slingbox for tv streaming?

Hi,

I'm considering getting a slingbox 350 for the purpose of streaming my satellite box's output over the internet as I'll be out of the country for a few months. I'm wondering if people have had better experiences with other/cheaper devices of this sort, I'm looking for something that will hook up to the satellite receiver and stream over my wifi/wired connection to a laptop system over the internet, at resolution of at least 640x480. Google results showed some positive reviews of a Belkin @tv device, but it doesn't seem to be very popular. My upload speed is 2mb, I wonder how high of a resolution that will allow for streaming.
avgjoe is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 28 (permalink) Old 2014-01-15, 03:54 PM
Moderator
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Calgary, AB
Posts: 4,462
@BelkinTV is a rebranded Monsoon Vulkano.
I own a two Vulkano "Lavas" and one Vulkano Flow.
I am very happy with these "Place-Shifting" units and they work well with the Android App.
Vulkano boxes can lock up- which sucks if you aren't home to reboot. My $25 solution was to put a power bar with timer on the unit and have it turned on from 3:01 AM to 3:00 AM daily.
However, if you look at the "Vulkanocommunity" forums you will see that Slingbox has sued Vulkano for copyright infringement and there is some question as to whether or these boxes will be orphaned and if they will continue to work if vulkano kills their servers.

Safe bet is to put your money into a Slingbox.

When it comes to humility, I am the greatest!
magnet is offline  
post #3 of 28 (permalink) Old 2014-01-16, 08:18 AM
Veteran
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Scarboro
Posts: 6,331
Don't forget that uploaded data counts towards your cap. If you were using your full 2 Mbps speed that would use up about 0.9GB per hour.

What content are you interested in viewing? There may be other ways to get it - like Hulu for TV shows, NHL CenterIce for hockey, TV station web sites, iTUnes, etc - some of these may require a DNS redirect service like Unblockus or Unotelly. But that may be cheaper and be more reliable.
Wayne is offline  
 
post #4 of 28 (permalink) Old 2014-01-16, 10:16 AM
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Milton, ON
Posts: 704
If slingbox is in the running still, and you're willing to drive to Buffalo to pick it up from a US post box, then get on this deal right away. $39 for a slingbox which is unheard of.

News article:
http://news.cnet.com/8301-13845_3-57617321-58/get-a-slingbox-solo-for-$39.99-shipped/

Direct link to the deal:
http://1sale.com/electronics/tv-home-theater/182165/
pnear is offline  
post #5 of 28 (permalink) Old 2014-01-16, 02:03 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Brampton North
Posts: 63
To answer Wayne's question, looking to mostly stay up on some local news channels and few sports ones, i.e. TSN, Sportsnet for basketball/hockey/baseball. I've recently found out Bell has something called AnywhereTV that is free to their satellite subscribers, but their offering is pretty limited for the non-cell customers, if you only have satellite, you get the few local channels plus tsn, tsn2, few french channels, cp24 and weather network... still, better than nothing I guess.

To pnear, I guess slingbox solo doesn't allow streaming resolution to go above 640x480 though right?
avgjoe is offline  
post #6 of 28 (permalink) Old 2014-01-16, 02:08 PM
Veteran
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Scarboro
Posts: 6,331
Check and see what you can get today on the web, including tsn.ca, the CBC hockey website, etc. If that looks pretty good then you might want to look for a VPN that makes it appear as if you are in Canada. Then, assuming your web speeds are ok, you can watch everything online as if you were in Canada.

I think you can also get a lot of local news on the websites of the TV stations both in the form of text and video.

You can get HD through Slingbox with the right model. But that needs more bandwidth.

Any idea what sort of web speeds you will have? Europe is generally pretty fast, Asia, outside or Korea and Japan is pretty slow.
Wayne is offline  
post #7 of 28 (permalink) Old 2014-01-16, 02:33 PM
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 677
Avoid anything other than the 350. The 500 offers features no one can use, the HDMI port is useless because the 500 doesn't do HDCP, which is on every channel on Bell. So, you'll need to still plug in your component cables regardless.

The 350 is the best available right now. Best Buy/Futureshop just had them on for 119 over Boxing Day too. Shame you missed it but never know, Sling does do good sales in the states, maybe that starts in Canada now.

Anything beneath the 350, such as the Pro HD or Solo, is risking lack of support going forward.

If your upload is legitimately 2mb up, your picture quality is going to be decent enough to watch without hesitation on mobile devices and small screens like a laptop.
colinpeddle is offline  
post #8 of 28 (permalink) Old 2014-01-16, 02:34 PM
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 677
Also if you wanted a demo of a 350 on a bell connection, let me know and I can invite you to one of my slings to try it out for a bit and see if it's for you.
colinpeddle is offline  
post #9 of 28 (permalink) Old 2014-01-17, 12:55 PM
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Longueuil
Posts: 832
Magnet you are my all-time hero and I thank you a gazillion for the timer suggestion at a set time at night. PERIOD!

As for my preferred remote setup, I've successfully maintained a Slingbox Pro HD since 2009 and I swear by it. I enjoy its flexibility a great deal. Since most STBs still come with component out, I'M OK with the added bonus of supporting OTA and since I'm a big proponent of OTA TV, well... Also you can dedicate the Composite input to something like a cheap old NTSC camera or else, to a radio station.

These days, I use the audio in of the composite input to listen to a Kenwood R5000 receiver tuned to HF frequency 27.025 (for aurora alerts).

Going nowhere @ 220 ft
John Koenig is offline  
post #10 of 28 (permalink) Old 2014-01-17, 02:38 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Brampton North
Posts: 63
Thanks for all the replies, I'll be picking up a Slingbox 350 shortly, found a decent deal locally. Any idea what kind of resolution will a 2meg upload speed allow for? I imagine something a bit better than 640x480?
avgjoe is offline  
post #11 of 28 (permalink) Old 2014-01-18, 08:13 AM
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Longueuil
Posts: 832
A 2-megabit upstream speed will sustain an stable SD image. No better. I had a 3-megabit upstream connection for the longest time and could never get passed SD or stuttering HD

These days I enjoy stutter-free HD when I'm away thanks to 11-megabit upstream.

Going nowhere @ 220 ft
John Koenig is offline  
post #12 of 28 (permalink) Old 2014-01-18, 09:28 AM
Veteran
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Scarboro
Posts: 6,331
@avgjoe - What is your monthly data cap?
Wayne is offline  
post #13 of 28 (permalink) Old 2014-01-20, 09:48 PM
Rookie
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 12
I have a Vulkano platinum deluxe and a Lava. Great alternatives to sling at the time. An uncertain future but I will ride them until and if the servers are pulled. Magnet - my vulkanos do not lock-up, but unfortunately in my neighborhood it suffers from flash power failures that could reset the vulkanos. I've plugged them into a UPS, and that seems to fix the problem. I would probably go sling going forward as well. I've got an old Sony Location Free - also working.
Molebdynum is offline  
post #14 of 28 (permalink) Old 2014-01-21, 11:30 AM
Moderator
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Calgary, AB
Posts: 4,462
Most of my lockups occurs under the following scenarios.
1. Placeshifting LAVA to LAVA within the same house over wifi.
2. While using the Android app on my phone or tablet, having the screen auto-resize from SD to HD or HD to SD.
3. Someone doesn't log off their placeshifting session nicely.
-
The most success I have is watching FLOW or LAVA from a laptop either within the house or remotely.

When it comes to humility, I am the greatest!
magnet is offline  
post #15 of 28 (permalink) Old 2014-01-21, 03:01 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Brampton North
Posts: 63
@Wayne = my cap is 300 gb a month, should be enough I'd imagine

@ChannelMaster: so 2meg is not enough for even a 720p stream? In that case maybe I should get that Slingbox Solo after all - if all it can do is SD, then I might be throwing money away for a feature I won't be able to use...
avgjoe is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Canadian TV, Computing and Home Theatre Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools Search this Thread
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome