The basic version of the stand-alone for Mac has now past the internal alpha test and are available for beta test at the download page.
The TV receiver must be Sat IP (DLNA/UPnP) compatible – like the Fritz!Box Cable Router or the FRITZ!WLAN Repeater DVB‑C.
After the successful connection, the available channels are displayed in a list and the current live stream is displayed in the main window.
Selecting a channel will change the channel in the main window.
The channels can be resorted by drag and drop.
The up and down key selects the previous or next channel.
A double click in the main window toogles the fullscreen display.
In the main window, a control panel will be displayed at the bottom if the mouse cursor is moved over it.
The control panel allows it to pause / restart the playback, to toogle the fullscreen display and to switch the sound on / off.
And if available, the current channel and program title is displayed in the middle.
Furthermore the audio and subtitle track can be selected in the corresponding menues.
Please note that incoming connections must be allowed in the firewall settings for finessTV.
There are now two server solutions: the previous server streaming EyeTV live streams (which has been renamed to “finessTV Server ET”) – and the new “finessTV Server ST”.
“finessTV Server ST” connects to a Sat IP compatible TV receiver like Fritz!Box Cable Router or FRITZ!WLAN Repeater DVB‑C, extracts the live channels from the M3U playlist announced via DLNA/ UPnP and starts streaming of the first channel.
Alternatively / additionally, a M3U playlist URL can be specified in the preferences. This might be helpful if the Sat IP TV receiver does not announce a M3U playlist. Or if a Fritz!Box TV receiver is used and the HD channels should be available too.
The channels can be resorted by drag & drop and renamed in the “Channels List & EPG” window (available in the File menu).
“finessTV Server ST” also supports EPG of TV providers – and we improved EPG parsing: if the EPG channel info has the same name as the channel name of the Sat IP TV receiver, then the EPG is displayed automatically. In other words: the EPG must not be assigned to the channels in the “Channels List & EPG” window.
Another important highlight is recording: Fritz!Box, for example, offers only the iOS app – and can not make recordings of a live channel. In contrast, finessTV not only offers clients for AppleTV, Mac, iPhone and iPad, but also allows programming of recordings. These recordings are available in the clients if a finessTV archive has been selected in the server.
Unfortunately, VLC version 3 has removed the EyeTV access module. This module is necessary to access and convert the EyeTV live stream.
Therefore, we have now added a check at server startup, which displays a message if VLC 3.x is installed in the Applications folder.
In addition, the standard browser displays the web page where “VLC 2.2.8.dmg” can be downloaded.
This version must be installed in the Applications folder after the download – and if necessary, the computer must be restarted once.
If you still want to use VLC 3.x, you can either install this version in another folder or rename VLC (for example to VLC 3.0) before the installation in the Applications folder.
Addendum: version 1.6 even allows to rename VLC 2.2.8 to “VLC 2.2.8” – this way it is easier to update newer VLC 3.x versions (because the new VLC version must not be renamed).
Of course, we will work on a solution to get access to the EyeTV live stream with VLC 3 as well.
In addition, we are also planning to support EyeTV Netstream and FRITZ! WLAN Repeater DVB-C – which means access to the EyeTV live stream without having to run EyeTV on the Mac.
In the last server version, the interval was added after which EPG should be parsed again.
But so far EPG has only been parsed for the channel currently selected in the client – so to have EPG for all channels, each channel had to be selected once.
In this version, therefore, “automatic EPG parsing” has been added: after activating “Parse EPG of all channels after the interval” in the settings, EPG is now parsed according to the interval for each channel.
Once a client is started, the parsing stops – and continues when no client is connected.
Since the EPG parsing of all channels has taken too long, now only the EPG of the assigned EyeTV channels (in the EPG channel list) is parsed.
Frequently, EPG also contains information about other channels (such as radio stations) – these data are no longer parsed.
Further more, the EPG of the assigned EyeTV channels can now be exported as XMLTV in the EPG channel list.
So far, the EPG data has been analyzed and new entries have been added after each channel switch. In some countries, this makes sense because EPG can only be made available for a few hours – in other countries, however, the providers transfer EPG for many days and then a less frequent analysis would make sense.
As of version 1.5.1, the hour interval in which the EPG data will be analyzed again can be set in the server preferences. In Germany e.g., it is sufficient after 72 hours (3 × 24 hours).
In contrast to XMLTV, the EPG data of the channel providers are unfortunately not properly separated, so that no subtitle could be displayed so far.
At least for Germany, there seems nevertheless a consistent format with DBV-T2 and DVB-C: after the title comes the duration (in parentheses) and then the further text.
In this version it is therefore checked whether a duration exists in parentheses – in which case the title and additional text are separated. And the first 64 characters of the additional text are used as subtitle.
While this is still not optimal, the data is now displayed better in the EPG overview.
Finally, in the server window, there are now also short infos about the individual settings, which can be displayed by the button “?”.