MPC-HC External Player DXVA playback

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steelman1991 Offline
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Post: #1
Hi folks

Anyone who has been following the DSPlayer thread may have noticed that I extoled the virtues of external playback via mpc-hc. One or two there asked for details of how I accomplished it and here it is. This config will give full dxva playback, subtitles without breaking dxva, chapter support and FLAC with WASAPI support and bitstreaming of DD/DTS, though if you follow the link at the end of this post the author claims that this will also playback HD Audio codecs - can't comment as I don't have the relevant hardware to test.

I have been tinkering for sometime with both native and DSPlayer dxva implementations. However it got to the stage where I was tinkering/troubleshooting more than watching. Thinking about it and pondering the problem (under severe pressure from SWMBO) I decided to look at using an external player for playback. Some searching later I came across a thread by another member of the community (Background) who gave me the inspiration and xmlcoding to accomplish external player playback - thanks.

System: Vista x86, Phenom 9650 Quad Core, ATI HD4670, 2 GB-DDR, Catalyst 10.2 drivers,

I have no experience of XP or Win7 applications, therefore cannot comment on their suitability to work with the following.

Requirements
xbmc r28256 OR LATER (latest from nightly builds, though I haven't tested it, the instructions should work with earlier builds)
mpc-hc

Note - If using x64/xp/Win7 builds change references to file names accordingly.

Create the following file (use notepad and save to .xml formats) and place in the folder as indicated below.

filename is the location of your mpc-hc exe file.

C:\Users\Your Username\AppData\Roaming\XBMC\userdata\

<playercorefactory>
<players>
<player name="MPC-HC" type="ExternalPlayer" audio="false" video="true">
<filename>C:\Program Files\MPC HomeCinema\mpc-hc.exe</filename>
<args>"{1}" /fullscreen /close</args>
<hidexbmc>false</hidexbmc>
<hideconsole>false</hideconsole>
<warpcursor>none</warpcursor>
</player>
</players>
<rules action="prepend">
<rule filetypes="m2ts|ts|mkv" player="MPC-HC" />
</rules>
</playercorefactory>

Using an mce remote couldn't be simpler, mpc-hc is by and large set up to carry out the basic playback functions. The only thing I found that I had to add was a command to exit after stop and return to xbmc, just as if we were using the default DVDplayer.

Open up MPC and go to View -> Options. Under Player go to Keys. Here you will see a list of all the commands for MPC and what keys control. If you scroll to the right you will see the App Command column which shows if any Apps have been assigned to the respective command.

Right now we just want to focus on the basic commands which would be Play, Pause, Stop, Exit, Next (skip chapter forward) and Previous (skip chapter previous). By default you will see that MPC already has App Commands assigned to most of these commands, the only one that is missing is Exit. When I hit the stop button I want MPC to exit and go back into xbmc, so I assign the App Command MEDIA_STOP. (thanks to DBone at mediasmartserver.net for the info)

One other feature you might want enabled with MPC is the ability to resume where you left off. While still in the Options screen go to Miscellaneous and check “Remember DVD position” and “Remember File Position” (thanks for the tip thejulianath20).

However with this configuration you don't get asked whether you want to resume it just does automatically.

I am no expert I will try and help where I can, but these instructions have basically been put together from articles and postings found - not written - by me (I'm just lucky they work for me). Sorry for such a long post, just trying to cover most of the bases.

Here's a nice little guide that I found on how to set-up ffdshow and ReClock/WASAPI and madFLAC if so desired http://forum.doom9.org/showthread.php?t=152520 - ignore the instruction about Vista users installing and registering the MPC-Audio Renderer - it isn't required.

Enjoy. Wink

EDIT

Knowm limitations:-
    If using reclock and 2 or more audio tracks are available, warning message appears and xbmc loses focus and fullscreen command (fortunately I only have a few files like that, which I'm now about to remux to 1 audio track)
    Don't know how to switch subtitles from remote (only mouse action) - again not something I require as I remux all my discs to only the tracks I require and with subtitles it is only non-english speaking parts I require.
(This post was last modified: 2010-07-17 12:12 by steelman1991.)
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christoofar Offline
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Post: #2
Many thanks for this thread!
Does it matter to install XBMC as portable or not? I'm assuming yours is NOT set up as portable install.

Home built HTPC, Nvidia GF220 gpu, Win7 Pro 32bit, Gotham 13.2
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Avigrace Offline
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Post: #3
Thanks for the info
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TheClaus Offline
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Post: #4
I have tried using the external player before and it works great for a little bit but then XBMC goes from quick and responsive to sluggish and non responsive. I have no idea why and it takes a reboot to fix it.

Has you had this problem when using the external player as well?
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steelman1991 Offline
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Post: #5
christoofar Wrote:Many thanks for this thread!
Does it matter to install XBMC as portable or not? I'm assuming yours is NOT set up as portable install.

Correct christoofar - I don't run in portable mode. I don't know much about running in that way, but I think that the file\folder locations (certainly of the userdata\advancedsettings are slightly different. Make sure they are in the correct locations and see if it works - sorry couldn't be of more help.

TheClaus Wrote:I have tried using the external player before and it works great for a little bit but then XBMC goes from quick and responsive to sluggish and non responsive. I have no idea why and it takes a reboot to fix it.

Has you had this problem when using the external player as well?

No mate - no performance issues of any kind at the moment all is working perfectly (he say's giving it the kiss of death :rolleyesSmile
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christoofar Offline
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Post: #6
Cool..figured as such. But now my goal is to get a copy of Win 7 on my HTPC first so I can take advantage of wasapi audio, since kmixer sux in XP.
If I am gonna do this, I wanna do it right.Nod

Home built HTPC, Nvidia GF220 gpu, Win7 Pro 32bit, Gotham 13.2
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steelman1991 Offline
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Post: #7
I might try Win7 myself in the near future - everything is just so stable at the moment - I'm loathe to change anything.
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christoofar Offline
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Post: #8
I hear yah..if it isn't broken........Wink

Home built HTPC, Nvidia GF220 gpu, Win7 Pro 32bit, Gotham 13.2
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kawasabi Offline
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Post: #9
Great! Thnx for the tutorial will sure be testing this tonight.
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moviebuff Offline
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Post: #10
Thank you so much for the post I will give it a try tonite too ) The other dxva options were giving me alot of trouble so hopefully I can get it going with the mpc option )
(This post was last modified: 2010-03-25 20:37 by moviebuff.)
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kawasabi Offline
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Post: #11
This works pretty good and i'm happy so far.

Now if i could get my xbox 360 controller to work with mpc-hc without conflicting with xbmc would be perfect.
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steelman1991 Offline
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Post: #12
kawasabi Wrote:This works pretty good and i'm happy so far.

Now if i could get my xbox 360 controller to work with mpc-hc without conflicting with xbmc would be perfect.

Happy its working for you - sorry can't help with the remote problem.
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kawasabi Offline
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Post: #13
steelman1991 Wrote:Happy its working for you - sorry can't help with the remote problem.

Hey no problem m8 already happy that it works.
Will figure something out with the 360 controller.
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drascom Offline
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Post: #14
use intelli remote
create different profile both xbmc and mpc hc
while mpc active intelliremote will command it with remote
and after mpc deactive intelliremote will command xbmc

i dont test it maybe tonight but i'ts possible

http://melloware.com/products/intelliremote/
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mudstuff Offline
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Post: #15
@Steelman1991, thank you so much for this! I hope to give this a try as I've had problems with lossless 1080p files with the default player and with xbmc live, I have problems with getting lossless audio.

Win7 is where I want to be as I like to do a bit of surfing on my Revo 3610 and use utorrent etc. Everything is working great in XBMC apart from 1:1 rips to mkv so hopefully using MPC-HC will cure that as the files play fine in VLC/WMP/TMT3.

EDIT: Thanks for the link for audio too, that all looks like it'll work fine to output everything without conversion (PCM as PCM, TrueHD as TrueHD) however, it seems that a pop-up will come up everytime you play a video which really isn't very HTPC friendly when using a remote! I don't mind DTS MA and TrueHD being converted to PCM and having that bitstreamed if that solves it. This'll no doubt keep me busy for a while!
(This post was last modified: 2010-03-31 09:34 by mudstuff.)
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