Network throughput test


I’ve been doing some tests in the past days trying to play videos with very high bitrates on the WDTV live from a network share, but so far I haven’t been able to stream without stuttering any video with sustained peaks over ~20 MBbit/s. I can play those fine with media servers without transcoding (like TVersity or Twonky), but I’d like to know if people with other routers or PC’s can stream videos any faster just using the SMB support of the WDTV live. Btw I’m not talking about network drops or anything, there’s a thread entirely devoted to that problem, I’m talking about not being able to cope with high transfers.

I’ve uploaded a 40s clip of the bluray version of Star Trek, about 194 MB, encoded with x.264 at 1920x800, perfectly compliant with HiP L4.1, even though it has peaks well over what you’d usually find in a normal encode (over 50 MBit/s), and has no sound. It plays perfectly on the WDTV live when I use TVersity, and I suppose it works perfectly when you play it from a USB HDD though I don’t have one to test, but it stutters badly from a network share after a few seconds. I’d like to know if anyone can play this clip from a network share without using any media server, and if you are curious you can open “task manager” on your PC to see what’s the maximum transfer rate you get:



tested your video on my setup (Vista PC, networked through HUAWEI Router to WD Live with small HD attached.

The video would not play smoothly through Network SHare (bit rate was around 20-22Mbits/s)

I then transferred file to HD. This transferred at 50MBits/s and played file. It played smoothly.

SO it is network related issue. I think there has been other discussions about transfer rates, but not sure if anyone has a solution. If you do, let me know as I am also interested in a working solution.


a little of topic:

Will encoded a Blueray at x.264 at 1920x800 retain the original video quality and sound?


Thx for testing it out, I guess whatever is holding down the transfer rates doesn’t depend on the PC you are connecting it to, we’ll have to cross our fingers and hope they get it right in a future firmware.


Well, by definition any time you reencode a movie with a lossy codec like x.264 you are losing some quality, however if the encode is done right, you can get very close to the original. 1920x800 btw is the original definition of a typical cinemascope movie on bluray (the rest up to 1080 is taken by the black bars), so yep, there was no downscaling involved there. After that it is a matter of choosing what bitrate you want to preserve as much quality as you need . If you reencode a movie to a 6-7 GB size for example, you probably won’t be able to distinguish it from the original on a 32-37" screen unless you have a keen eye, but for 50" or larger screens the differences will be more apparent. It’s basically a subjective choice.

Same with the sound, my receiver doesn’t support the newer codecs so I can’t say for sure, but I bet a lot of ppl would have a hard time telling apart the DD TrueHD or DTS-MA soundtracks found in most blurays from the lower bitrate core, which is what you usually see in the typical bluray rips.