Archive for category Technology & Home Entertainment

Watch Live Premiership Football on your TV for FREE! (with the help of a PS3 and a few other tools…)

After missing last nights sensational game between Liverpool and Arsenal, I decided I needed to sort out my entertainment system to once and for all be ready to watch live Internet football on my TV. I have to admit to watching many games online through P2p services such as TVU, Sopcast, TVants etc, as geeky as it sounds. There was no better excuse than tonights must win game between Manchester United and Portsmouth.

From past experience in streaming video files from my PC to my playstation, I knew this was the best place to start. TVersity is such a great little program that allows you to set your PC up as a media server with ease. Another great feature of TVersity is the ability to stream live Internet streams directly to your PS3. TVU Player has been my TV streaming tool of choice, simply because the quailty seems to be in most cases better than Sopcast.

All I needed to do now was figure out how to set up a mini streaming server that would take the video from TVU Player and allow me to stream it as a web address. After a little bit of searching, I found the information. Here’s a link to the forum that this post was taken from: http://forums.tversity.com/viewtopic.php?f=28&t=9503&st=0&sk=t&sd=a

And here’s the text ripped to save you having to move from this wonderful website……

TVUPlayer:

1) Install TVUPlayer

2) Install VLC media player

3) Open TVUPlayer and select the channel you want to stream.

4) Right click on your “VLC mediaplayer” shortcut on the desktop, chose “properties”.

5) Target:“C:\Program Files\VideoLAN\VLC\vlc.exe” http://localhost:8901–sout “#duplicate{dst=std{access=mmsh,mux=asfh,dst=:1234}}”

6) Go to Tversity and add the video url: mms://127.0.0.1:1234

Now you should be able to stream TVUPlayer chosen channel

SopCast:

1) Install SopCast

2) Install VLC media player

3) Open SopCast and select the channel you want to stream.

4) Right click on your “VLC mediaplayer” shortcut on the desktop, chose “properties”.

5) Target:“C:\Program Files\VideoLAN\VLC\vlc.exe” http://localhost:8901–sout “#duplicate{dst=std{access=mmsh,mux=asfh,dst=:1234}}”

6) Go to Tversity and add the video url: mms://127.0.0.1:1234

Now you should be able to stream SopCast chosen channel

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This didn’t work straight away for me – I had to play around with the port numbers for a while before it would.

One thing to remember is that you should choose the channel you want to stream on TVU or Sopcast before using your VLC shortcut.

From your Playstation3, go to Video, choose your media service (should be there with the TVersity Icon) and choose Video, Internet and you should see your stream. Click on it and that’s it! Happy Days!

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UPC / NTL launch new encryption to beat the hackers

NTL Communications (Ireland) Limited
Image via Wikipedia

UPC (Formerly NTL) have finally launched their new encryption to prevent illegal access to their service. Forums are buzzing with discussions on the latest move by UPC to once and for all eradicate the pirates who use their service for free with the so called “Dodgy Boxes”.

Whether they’ve moved to Nagravision 2 or 3 is so far unclear, but most of the people on the afterdawn forum aren’t holding out much hope for a “fix” to compromise this latest encryption.

According to the forums, MUTV and the Adult Channels are the ones that have been hit first. They also suggest that over the next few days, people using Starviews, Eurovox’s or any other dodgy box will slowly see their channels disappear.

If I worked for UPC, I would so far count this as a huge success as users of the forums seem to have given up any hope of there ever being a fix. Well done you!

But I imagine a lot of people will begin to change over to Sky now as it’s a much better offering!

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Sound garbled / muffled when streaming MKV files to the PS3 (TVersity)

Yet again, I’ve been playing with my PS3. I’m constantly trying to improve the configurations to get the best from the system.

I encountered an an unusual situation today when streaming high definition MKV files to the PS3. Basically, although the picture was perfect, the sound was garbled or muffled which made it impossible to listen to.

So what’s the fix says you? Well I’m running a Windows Vista machine and the fix for that was simple. Go into your services and find the TVersity service. Change this service to run with your account as opposed to the “local system” account and voila, you should have no more issues!! :)

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Connecting an external hard drive to the PS3 (PlayStation 3)

PlayStation 3 (20GB)
Image by Nick Slide via Flickr

Ever since I got my hands on the PS3 at Christmas, I’ve been spending most of my spare time trying to set it up as my main media centre at home. Being able to use my PS3 as a blu-ray player, a DVD player and of course being access to all my digital media without having to connect my PC to it, was the ideal situation. The idea would be that I’d just connect up my external USB hard drive and go for it. Unfortunately, it didn’t turn out to┬ábe as straight forward as I had hoped.

One of the most inconvenient issues with the PS3 is the lack of support for other disc formats. When connecting an external hard drive, it can only be formatted as FAT32. So what you might say? Well it’s absolutely pointless – that’s what.

FAT32 doesn’t support files over 4 GB, so you can’t put files larger than that on the drive and access it through the PlayStation. So let’s say you have ripped your favourite Blu-ray disc to your external hard drive (for backup of course), you won’t be able to store it on an external device as the file size is likely to be a good bit greater than 4 GB. That means each time you want to watch a Blue-ray movie, you will have to get up out of your chair and insert the disc…. how inconvenient.

There is of course the option of streaming the files with TVersity as mentioned in a previous post, but since I haven’t got a spare computer, I have to turn on my laptop each time, what I’d really like is just to be able to switch on the PS3 that has the USB drive attached and do nothing else.

And before anyone else tries to tell me that the PS3 supports ext2 and ext3, yes it does, but only on the internal hard drive. It doesn’t work with the External one as I’ve tried many things for this.

So anyway, let’s say you do want to connect your external USB hard drive to your PS3, here’s what you do….

  1. Ensure your hard drive is formatted to FAT32. If you have a large hard drive, you won’t be able to use Windows to format it, so use this program : http://www.compuapps.com/download/Swissknife/swissknife.htm
  2. Create folders similar to the PS3 system on the USB hard drive e.g.;
    “Picture” (not Photo), “Music”, “Video” and “Game”
  3. Connect your USB drive to the PlayStation and voila!

I hope this saves someone the time I wasted trying many different options!

To Sony – it’s time you started supporting ext3 or NTFS formatted external hard drives on the PlayStation 3.

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LuzernTech Continue to Get Away With It

It’s been six months since I posted my first article about LuzernTech, the “Online Supplier of Refurbished Equipment”. I wrote about my experience when buying a DVD player from them, through the auction site eBay.

After contacting the National Consumer Agency, I finally got a full refund. However, they still appear to be causing a lot of people, a lot of heartache. Just take a look at their negative feedback for the last 6 months, it’s clear that they are still pulling the wool over a lot of peoples eyes.

Apart from the apparent lack of communication from them, the same issue that I had seems to have arisen a number of times yet again. The issue? Well in a nutshell, they refused to refund me the delivery cost of the item even though what they sent me was broken. This is obviously illegal, yet they get away with it because not many people seem to know their rights.

Another nasty tactic they seem to use a lot is that if one of their “auction items” sell for too low a price, they seem to send you out either a broken one or tell you that they don’t have any in stock. This is clearly a breach of the terms of usage on eBay.

It seems that neither the National Consumer Agency or eBay really care what this company are doing. For the NDA, they’re probably too small to be concerned about. For eBay, they are probably making a nice few bob from them.

So the only way things will change it seems is if people stand up and stop buying from them. Let’s face it, it would be a great service if what they say they offered was true. You can see this from the positive feedback from the lucky ones….

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