Over the coming weeks, a new series of home automation guides will be released, starting with an overview of what you can expect to achieve and the products on offer. This industry is about to explode with new products, features and ideas, and your Mythbox HD can be the glue that brings these products together.
A channel organisation technique has been added to a new guide here, along with scripts to merge the Freesat HD and Freeview channel lineup into a more manageable schedule.
A new guide around putting together a Mythbox HD has now been added to the site, days before the launch of MythTV 0.25. Check out our new guide here and release notes of MythTV 0.25 here.
With the collapse of the DC-DC convertor in the original Mythbox, it was decided to go ahead and build the new Mythbox HD. A successful prototype has now been built, so new guides will be appearing here soon. In the meantime, why not read over the release notes of MythTV 0.24 which includes rewritten OSD and surround sound modules, as well as additional Blu-ray support.
With the discovery that the Gigabyte GA-E7AUM-DS2H has now be discontinued (along with most other MCP79 based motherboards) we are eagerly awaiting news from Nvidia of the MCP89 chipset scheduled for release in Q1 of 2010. This will house Geforce 200M series graphics rather than Geforce 9 series, so it will be worth the wait.
With MythTV 0.22 now released, we felt it was a good point to finalise the MythboxHD specification and start building. The final spec can be found here - check back here soon for new guides on setting up the new MythboxHD.
The release candidate for MythTV 0.22 has now been released. Check out the MythTV website here for more details.
Although news about MythTV 0.22 has been somewhat quiet, further investigation shows that it is progressing nicely. From what we've seen of the new interface, we'll be treated to newer themes and a more aesthetically pleasing interface with less rigidity and more animation. With VDPAU support too, it is the perfect time to finalise the MythboxHD specification.
Our older Unichrome guide has been replaced with a nice new guide on Openchrome instead. Recently the newer Openchrome driver was packaged up for use in Xorg 7.x, making it trivial to install the display drivers and take advantage of the onboard hardware decoding. Check out the Openchrome guide here.
A Linux flavour of the BBC iPlayer is now available. Previously the BBC only allowed shows to be streamed at a lower quality, with high quality downloads only being offered to Windows users. However, both Mac and Linux users can now download shows through the new BBC iPlayer which is based on Abode AIR. Details can be found here.
The BBC Freesat service has officially launched today, providing HD content without subscription. BBC HD is available now, with ITV HD and Five being launched soon. Along with the launch, the official Freesat website has been updated to include more information and an up-to-date channel list (available here).
Proposals for the new MythboxHD specification are now constantly being updated. This will allow playback of Freesat broadcasts, and also enable the playback of Blu-ray/HD-DVD content, and output this over HDMI or DVI. Current proposals include using the new Intel Flying Creek DG45FC board. Check out here for more details.
A new service from the BBC called 'Freesat' has been announced, which will provide free transmissions over satellite to UK viewers, in a similar way that Freeview does over an aerial. However, programmes on Freesat will be transmitted in High Definition, giving households with a HDTV the chance to utilise their television to it's full potential by providing high resolution image quality. Given this, work has begun on drafting the spec for a new potential Myth Box v2 which would utilise both Freesat and Freeview - building on the original Myth Box v1 design. Check back here soon for more details.
MythTV 0.20.2 has recently been released which includes various fixes - most notably an improvement to the memory usage of mythfrontend, reducing memory consumption by upto 75%. For non-UK readers, other new features include support for the new Schedules Direct TV listings which is a major reason to upgrade since Zap2It now cease to exist. Ebuilds are now available in portage.
A migration guide for upgrading to Xorg 7.2, GCC 4.1, and MySQL 5.0 has now been created and can be found here. This update is strongly advised as it provides much better performance with the newer Unichrome drivers, and newer GCC and MySQL. Check back here soon for an update to the existing guides.
With the introduction of the MythTV 0.20.1 tag in subversion, I felt it was time for an updated ebuild which can be found here. Work has begun on updating the MythBox (and hence the website guides) to work with the newer Xorg 7.2 and MySQL 5.0 so that stock ebuilds can be used straight from portage. Check back here for more updates.
An updated version of the mythburn package has been uploaded here. Now, only the video and audio streams are parsed by ProjectX, making mythburn faster and also more resilient to stream errors.
Finally, a guide has been added to the site showing you how you can create a backplate for you MythBox. Since the EPIA MS10000 doesn't have all of the built-in header connectors, you probably have cables hanging out of the back of your case - read the backplate guide to find out how to attach your connectors neatly and securely.
A problem has been identified with mythtranscode, which in turn affects the MythArchive package. Hence, I have uploaded a new version of the mythburn tarball that should now carry out commercial cutting in MythTV 0.20. Read the Myth TV guide for more information on this.
After using MythArchive, I have found that there is a bug where the 'hard of hearing' audio track that is transmitted in the UK is chosen during the DVD creation process (since it has a lower PID). A second bug found in the Myth TV libraries occasionally causes the correct audio track to be missed during stream detection. Bug reports have been submitted, but in the meantime check out the Myth TV guide on this site for further details and patches to fix both of these problems!
The guides for getting a wireless network up and running have been updated. They are now based on the newer linux-wlan-ng package and version 2.6.17-r8 of the gentoo kernel. This newer kernel contains a more recent version of the Unichrome DRI driver, which has several worthwhile bug fixes.
An update to the previous custom Myth TV 0.20 ebuild has been provided in the Myth TV guides. This will be kept up-to-date with the current gentoo portage ebuild, and will support Xorg 6.9!
All guides have been updated to reflect the changes in MythTV 0.20. This includes an ebuild to get the new version installed on top of Xorg 6.9, as well as an updated version of Myth TV Burn to work with the newer MythTV 0.20 recordings.
MythTV 0.20 has officially been released! There are many worthy additions including MHEG support, DVB radio channel support, and improvements to the speed of channel changes. Updates to the guides on this site will be published in the near future. For full details of the new release, see www.mythtv.org.
The ability to have your MythBox pass Dolby Digital and DTS soundtracks to an external decoder is precious. A guide has been added to tell you exactly how.
Since the release of MythTV and MythWeb 0.19, the Myth TV Burn package has been rendered useless until it's next release. An interim patch has been added to the troubleshooting section that will allow Myth TV Burn to work with the newer version.
Added a section on how to use gensplash to make your mythbox a little more polished. Gensplash allows you to display a progress bar and graphic while your mythbox boots up and shuts down.
Updated all of the guides to reference the 2.6.14 kernel, which in turn has allowed for an update to both the speedtouch section and the Unichrome DRI section (so that they use the kernel drivers). In the case of the speedtouch modem, boot time is greatly reduced since the kernel doesn't have to wait for the firmware to be uploaded.
A small section on how to fix the SI parser when the PMT/PAT are broken has been added.
After encoutering problems with the older mythburn scripts, I have decided to use the newest versions based on ProjectX. I have updated the guides to reflect this, and also uploaded a tarball which includes versions of both mythburn and ProjectX which I know work together. The tarball also includes modifications I have made that give some very useful features (see here).
After one and a half years, I've finally got the remote working on the mythbox! It turns out that my IR sensor has been dead since arrival. :S I've updated the mythtv guide so that it outlines exactly whats needed to get yours working, along with useful troubleshooting indicators.
A section has been added describing how to setup mythtvburn on your mythbox. This allows you to archive your recordings to DVD, and include nice looking menus and animated image icons. How to setup an FTP server has also been added under the Network Shares section.
The custom RGB has been tested and works! There is a slight problem with the unichrome driver, in that when RGB mode is activated, motion compensation doesn't work. Check back later for progress on this. Also, the mythtv setup guide has been update to reflect the new functionality
myth offers, including retrieving the programme guide data automagically. :)
The guide on setting up ppp for the broadband modem, along with the dyndns setup, have been updated to ensure a reliable constant connection rather than period connection drops.
Details of how to setup your box to use Ampache have been added to the guides. Now you can stream your music wherever you are, and even make login's for all of your friends!
Added section on how to set up your hardware sensors. Check out the epia kernel guide for details.
Myth TV is usable with hardware decoding, along with Xine! Information on how to compile an EPIA based kernel, along with details of how to get the Unichrome drivers up and running have been added to the guides. A provisional RGB cable wiring table has also been added, but has yet to be tested. Check back in the next few days for verification that the cable works, as well as details of how to patch your kernel so that the temperature sensors work.
TV-Out is finally working! I also have sound output through the analogue jack socket. This confirms that the S-Video socket version works (I have yet to make the RGB cabled version), as well as the audio connectors. The main problems that occurred were (as usual) in software. Make sure you follow my EPIA kernel guide and video guide before giving up!
The mythbox is now up and running Gentoo, along with the speedtouch modem and the WUSB12 wireless networking card. The guide on how to set up the WUSB12 usb-pen has been added to the site.
After a long period of inactivity, I have finally got my power supply back from mini-itx, so development of the initial mythbox should progress very rapidly over the next week.
A month has passed and I'm still waiting for a replacement power supply from mini-itx.com after the one I received was faulty. It's a shame the initial mythbox development couldn't continue over easter - hopefully the replacement will come soon.
A section has been added on how to assemble the connectors for SPDIF, audio jacks, and USB sockets.
Added information to the Broadband modem section on using dyndns's service. It explains how to automatically update the dynamic IP on your sub-domain name on dyndns's servers.
Added section outlining some things that can be done to make gentoo more secure.
After finding that VIA wasn't going to supply any backplates, and I couldn't find a supplier of them, I decided to investigate what was involved in connecting the TV-Out pin headers and what formats were supported over SCART. A guide on connecting the pin headers for TV-Out has been added.
A guide on how to set up samba has been added to the website under Network Shares.
Added nicer image previewer to the site.
The box has now been built (apart from the backplate), using some careful positioning of the cabling. Look out for images later today in the gallery section.
Gallery page added, with pictures of all the components used to build the box.
Started to upload some pictures of the components, and inserted these into the guides. Look out for a gallery section soon. Assembly of the box has begun, although a few items are still to be obtained (namely a backplate which no-one seems to know anything about).
The new version of MythTV (version 0.17) has been released today. Features include DVB channel scanning and updating, programme guide database population through the EPG data, and other cool stuff. Makes MythTV setup a little easier.
Investigated how to simplify the setup process and include icons in the schedule guide. Updated the guides accordingly. Also, the hardware to complete the initial project has now been ordered.
MS boards are now appearing on some distributors websites, see here and here!
The EPIA MS series of boards has now been sent to their distribution channels! I received an email directly from via this morning.