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Newer codec compatibility ???

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Newer codec compatibility ???   

Postby biscuit » Wed Mar 13, 2013 5:23 am

Hi All,

Is there an update for this that can renew the codecs that work on it ?? Only asking because I seem to be downloading more and more media these days that the audio does not work on. Works fine on PC's etc. but when played on my WD player, it has no sound. :(

Any thoughts anyone, or am I being a fool and missing something ?!

TIA,
Andy.
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Re: Newer codec compatibility ???   

Postby recliq » Wed Mar 13, 2013 7:00 am

Nothing you can do about, except re-encode the videos. The codec can not be updated, except by WD (which doesn't support this device any more for quite some time now.)
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Re: Newer codec compatibility ???   

Postby biscuit » Wed Mar 13, 2013 7:34 am

Thanks for the quick reply Recliq. :)
It is a shame, I suspected this may be the answer, but was hoping that perhaps somewhere along the firmware update line there may be a way to shoehorn some new codecs into the beastie, but if not.... booooo.

Bit of a random one here and im sure it has already been thought of and is not doable, cus otherwise im sure it would have been done, but...
do the newer WDTV lives or latest versions have newer codecs on them ?? and assuming so, could one of the big WDlxTV brains find out a way of grabbing them off the eprom (or whatever the codecs live upon inside the device) and doing a firmware update or similar/pushing them out to overwrite the older devices ??

Like I say, I dont know the specifics of how the WDTV's work, but cant help but think that WD cannot be the only ones with the power to update codecs giving some of the incredible homebrew hacks people have come up with for these devices.

Sorry recliq if this seems like im thanking you with one hand for your answer, and slapping you in the face with the other by completely refuting the fact that it cannot be done... just seems a little restrictive considering some of the amazing tweaks that have been able to happen for the WDTV Gen2. But like I say, if it was doable, then I'm sure you guys would have already done it by now.

Anyway,
thanks again.

Andy.
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Re: Newer codec compatibility ???   

Postby mad_ady » Wed Mar 13, 2013 11:07 pm

Well, let me add some arguments in favour of recliq's answer:

There are a few (good) reasons why the codecs can't be changed by us (and most likely can't be changed by WD also). I'm not sure where the codecs live - most likely part of the codecs are implemented directly in the hardware (video decoding is done by specialized chips) and some part (most likely container decoding) is done in software. The software decoding part is done in a proprietary binary by WD - MediaLogic. They've had some issues with supported formats (like MKVs with header compression, some MP4 issues, etc) and they've fixed them in software upgrades.

The entity that can add support for new codecs is Alpha Networks - the company that created the hardware board and reference software. WD just did some minimal integration and slapped their logo on the board, so I don't have much expectations from them (even the OSD is based on the prototype from Alpha Networks). The WDLXTV team just opened up the box, added some linux tools, and in the case of WDTVExt - did some hardcore hacks on the OSD to be able to run plugins.

So - for any hardware accelerated video player, don't expect any community to be able to provide such codec support. It will either come from the hardware manufacturer, or not at all.

There is a loophole though - if the box has enough resources to do transcoding, then you can probably build a system to do on-the-fly transcoding and generate a stream that can play. There have been tests done with the WDTV (there is an extensive thread in the UMSP forum) with ffmpeg transcoding and the WDTV does not have the horsepower to transcode video on the fly - it can barely do container transcoding.

In conclusion - the WDTV will never support newer codecs (like VP8 for instance) because of the closed-source nature of the box. Even if it were completely open source, you would probably have to find some verry skilled people to be able to write a codec from scratch...

Edit: with regard to your original problem (sound) try different sound settings (stereo, etc). Also check what audio codec is used with mediainfo. Some audio codecs are not supported in some containers, even if the audio codec is generally supported. This is something WD can fix, but the WDTV Live is EOL.
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Re: Newer codec compatibility ???   

Postby biscuit » Thu Mar 14, 2013 2:27 am

Much obliged for humoring me with the expanded explanation of why its a no. :)

I guess my question was proof of the fact that a little knowledge can be a dangerous thing! lol, ..... enough knowledge to question the why's, but not enough to know the real limitations of what my brain has imagined should be doable.

I will have a bit more of a fish about in the audio properties and see if I can nail it down to a specific audio codec. etc.

Thanks again for the expanded explanation.
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Re: Newer codec compatibility ???   

Postby mad_ady » Thu Mar 14, 2013 6:07 am

No worries - we all had to learn these things at one point in time...
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Re: Newer codec compatibility ???   

Postby jomjom79 » Thu Mar 14, 2013 6:40 am

There is a root bin (Usb non flash) version of the newest official fw 1.06.43 on this forum.. You can check if the files you are having trouble with works with that version.

I have that root bin stored on a small usb thumbdrive. When i encounter files that 1.05wdlx wont play properly (Doesnt happen often, and if it does its a mp4 with sync issues) i just plug it in and reboot to official version. When im done i pull it out and reboot to wdlxtv 1.05 again.

Not a very elegant solution but it works for me..
http://www.2shared.com/file/qEetZawm/wdtvlive_10643_V_rootbin.html

Jomjom79
Last edited by jomjom79 on Thu Mar 14, 2013 1:47 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Newer codec compatibility ???   

Postby recliq » Thu Mar 14, 2013 8:37 am

jomjom79 this is G2 we are talking about not Live/Plus, there is no newer firmware for G2 than 1.01.77 (12/2009)!
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Re: Newer codec compatibility ???   

Postby jomjom79 » Thu Mar 14, 2013 1:42 pm

Whops! :o Sorry about that..

I just checked active topics and took it for granted that it was the live. I will start checking what subforum these posts are posted in..
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Re: Newer codec compatibility ???   

Postby recliq » Fri Mar 15, 2013 4:24 am

nvm, happens to the best of us :lol:
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