Playable files and Network Shares

I recently installed a WD TV Media player. I chose this model over others because it supposedly had a much wider range of file compatibility. So far I have been very disappointed in the narrowness of the compatibility. It plays almost nothing I have on my computer at present.

  1. It will not play most .m2ts files taken on either a Sony Camcorder or Sony still camera. Very difficult to check the codecs because nothing displays them on the computer. However, I can get it to play one m2ts file from the still camera, so I gather it is very strict about some aspect of the file. I just cannot tell what the difference is. How can I tell this to get the settings right when I film. I prefer to film in the highest quality available on the camera, but can adjust this in my editing software if need be. (The codec for one that will not play is H264, bitrate 22000, 29.97 fps, Audio Dolby Digital 256 kBits, 48 kHZ, format PCM). As I understand it, H264 is MPEG-4 encoding, which should work. The sound also seems to fit in the specs.

  2. It will not play .mp4 files I created in video editing software. They have MPEG-4, 44.1 kHz audio, 29.97 fps, which seems to be compliant (MPEG Audio with MPEG-4. I cannot figure out what is wrong?

  3. The WD Media player does not find files in DVD image files (VOB files inside VIDO_TS folders, which it is supposed to be able to play.

I always get messages that the file type is not supported after it seem that the videos will play.

I am tryng to play these through the Windows Media Player Media Server.

I have tried to set up shared folders to use Network Shares and avoid the media server, but the WD TV player does nor recognize them when on Windows 7. Reading through the manual and looking at the website, I have come up with somewhat contradictory and not particularly useful information.

1.  Is it possible to use the Home network setting in Windows 7 (my network has Win 7 and Win 8 computers and the Home network with HomeGroups seems to be the only way to get everything talking to each other. WD TV player is connected and sees a printer on the network this way, but it does not see shared folders on any computer or any computer in the Network Shares.)

How does one get the WD TV player to see shared folders on the network (on a Win7 computer) without a Media Server?

Or, is there good Media server software out there that will solve these problems?

See if this first post helps you resolve your sharing issues.

 Also, you could have problems with Windows master browser.  Search forum for this term.

cgaiii wrote:  Very difficult to check the codecs because nothing displays them on the computer.

Try installing mediainfo

cgaiii wrote:(The codec for one that will not play is H264, bitrate 22000, 29.97 fps, Audio Dolby Digital 256 kBits, 48 kHZ, format PCM)

Huh ?  Dolby Digital uses AC-3 codec   (not PCM which is uncompressed Pulse Code Modulation)

Also the video bitrate is pretty high ? … maybe try lowering it (use mediainfo compare the bitrate of the m2ts file you have managed to play)

Thanks for the pointer.

It got me thinking and I finally found that my shares problem was with the workgroup.

I can find most of the files through the shares not that I have got it and find that the files that previously would not play under the Windows Media Player media server will play or attempt to play under the network share.

The WD TV player tends to crash a great deal or lose connection with the TV at times, resulting in a message about an unrecognized signal or no signal, but I was able to get to the files.

Unfortunately, I find that my wireless network is not robust enough for the 1080p files, so I will have to do something about that.

The question about a good media server remains. Do you think it is better to use network shares or media server software? If the software, what works best to get all file types served. Obviously Windows Media Player has some faults.

I had just taken the audio codec information from Pinnacle Studio. Using your recommended MediaInfo, I found the codec to be as you said.

Thanks for the tip on bitrate. After getting the network shares to work, all of the files I try to play at least start to play, when I take that route, even those that did not when I used the media server route.

Could it be that the Windows Media Player media server was interfering somehow? 

RIght now, you have a lot of things going against you:  you have a new device you don’t quite understand yet, you have video files that don’t want to play and you don’t know whether to use media server or network shares, and you want to do this wirelessly (instead of wired)  with hi-def videos.  You have a lot to learn and understand and it isn’t going to happen overnight.  Download the complete user manual for your WDTV and spend time reading in these forums as much as possible.

I figured someone would jump in and clue you in about MediaInfo and how it can help, so that’s a good start you got right away from Joey.

But, save yourself levels of high frustration for now,  Assuming your videos will play on your PC, copy them to a hard drive you can attach directly to your WDTV.  Hi-def video involves having a fast wired network, as streaming wirelessly is fraught with additional issues you are not familiar with. 

So, for now enjoy your videos as directly connected to you WDTV, and take your time learning about and experimenting with networking and streaming. 

BTW, network shares is a better way to stream to the WDTV than media servers for various reasons, but I am not going to go into that now or I will be here longer than I want to be writing this message!  Good luck with your new WDTV.  It all will work fine when you have it all sorted out.

This box is quite new so forum posts are limited. But for general pointers there some relevant threads in the WDTV Live Streaming Player forums. Heres one I asked when I wasnt sure whether to use media server or network shares.

It’s a bit confusing at the begining but you’ll get it working!

BTW regarding streaming content over wireless, its not so much the video pixel size (whether 1080i, 1080p or 720p) its the bitrate of the file that matters. I have no problem streaming HD videos over my wireless network as long as the overall bitrate doesnt exceed 9000 Kbps. Its impossible for me to stream unre-encoded Bluray streams for instance. They do play however over an attached USB drive.

1 Like

Good points barry, and the reason media server mode does not play ISO files to the WDTV and therefor network shares must be used is because of reasons explained in this WD FAQ:

WD TV Live Media Player does not play ISO files from a WD network drive                                                

I just wanted to update this because I found a wireless solution that fixed the speed problems now that I have the network connections running properly (it was just my not seeing the workgroup setting).

My wireless network was a n300 network on 2.4 GHz. It has worked well for everything else for some time, but even after I got the network connections right, high definition video (1080p 30 fps) did not play properly as per my previous posts.

I picked up a n 600 media streaming kit (D-link DAP-1562) for about $40 on Amazon (It must have been some kind of sell off, because now I can no longer find that deal.). Though there are some bad reviews of this product, it fit my needs for adding faster 5 GHz to my existing 2.4 GHz system without really changing much so I took a chance. I dedicated it to the WD TV media player. So far it is working well. Worked right out of the box, since the defaults are 5 GHz and n only.

Now all the videos I was having trouble with play on the WD TV player, even the high frame rate ones play just fine. They are smooth and load quite quickly. They work fine both through the Windows Media player and through the network share. Everything else, photos, etc. also works well now, so aside from my mistake when I originally set up the network in the WD TV player, the problems were all wireless throughput. Big photos take a little time to load.

N600 is now outdated technology with the ac and ax wireless out, but for 1080p video like I described above, this works fine and can be gotten inexpensively if you look around. This system is sending the signal from my office loft two floors down to the room where I have my TV.  Once you give it enough throughput, the WD TV player seems to work very well, solving the problems of burning blu-ray discs and other media for everything.

Thanks to everyone for the help and pointers which got me moving in the right direction.