Ethernet to HTPC (with Tablo web app) or Android app + Chromecast or Kodi add-on

Thanks for reading.

I’m setting up my home theater and have an opinion question.

I have a Projector attached to my A/V receiver with

  1. HTPC (home theater PC)
  2. Chromecast

attached to it.

The Chromecast would receive the signal from my Android device via Wi-Fi, and my Android device would receive the signal from the Tablo via Wi-Fi.

The HTPC would receive the signal straight from the Tablo via ethernet to router to Tablo.

My questions:
  • would it be preferable to go with the HTPC option (hardwired to router) to maximize responsiveness of the app because it minimizes losses due to using Wi-Fi?
  • would it be preferable to go with the Chromecast option (Wi-Fi) to maximize responsiveness of the app because I would be required to open up a web browse and will already be running resource-heavy Kodi?
  • or is it possible to run Tablo as a Kodi add-on?

Thanks for any feedback!

I’m not sure I follow the question completely.  Let see if this answers your question.

I’d consider running the Tablo from the Chromium browser from a wired, reliable machine to be a very stable setup.  Adding an HDMI cable to the tv ices the cake.  I have a fast, Win7 machine with a 5GHz wireless connection to my Tablo.  It’s reliable.  I don’t have a TV on that computer, so I rarely watch there, but have not had issues with it.  I do manage recordings from it.

Next to that, a wired Roku 3, using the Androip web app or chrome browser for managing recordings.  That’s my living room setup.

After that, Chromecast, with either Standard Definition or low 720 resolution is ok, but not desired.  I’ve moved the Chromecast to the guest room and done testing with it.  The Chromecast has issues with Tablo and more so at 720P and above.  I have less issues since I’ve gotten newer, faster phones.  And have fewer issues casting from my fast Win7 machine from another room. 

I haven’t setup my Linux HTPC with Tablo.  My HTPC is very old and I’m looking to replace or remove it.  Linux and Tablo can be done, but I haven’t.  I can manage my Tablo via my Linux machines.

Looking back at my post I realize I wasn’t very clear.

My setup looks like this:

  • TV/Projector connected to HDMI output on receiver
  • Chromecast connected to HDMI input on receiver
  • Chromecast connected to internet using Wi-Fi
  • HTPC connected to HDMI input on receiver
  • HTPC connected to internet using Cat6 cord to router
I am using the iRule app on an Android Tablet to control the entire home theater setup.
iRule works by sending IP commands to control devices.
iRule app can change the inputs on my receiver, ie.
  • switch input to the HDMI port that takes input from Chromecast to send to projector/TV
  • switch input to the HDMI port that takes input from my PC (running KODI) to send to projector/TV

From the iRule app, I would like to execute commands that will send OTA programming (live or recorded) from Tablo to the projector/TV.

There are three options I can think of to do this.
  1. Chromecast option
  • iRule changes input on my receiver to the HDMI port where Chromecast is plugged into
  • iRule launches Tablo app for my Android tablet
  • I cast to Chromecast and it is displayed on my projector/TV
  • HTPC option
    • iRule changes input on my receiver to the HDMI port where the HTPC is plugged into
    • iRule sends commands to open web browser
    • iRule sends commands to navigate to web app and login
    • iRule changes its interface (panel) to look and act like a remote control where I can navigate using up/down/left/right and enter buttons
    Option 1 Pros:
    • Apps on my android seem to use less resources and run snappier
    • Able to browse in android device without looking at TV/projector

    Option 1 Cons:
    • Android uses Wi-Fi to access Tablo and Chromecast uses Wi-FI to get signal from Android, this would be slower than a direct wired connection.
    • 1080 issues

    Option 2 Pros:

    • Wired connection from router means faster/ more reliable stream
    • 1080 capabilities?

    Option 2 Cons:

    • Chrome/Firefox on PC are resource hogs ie. 707,000K memory right now.
    • Android would have Remote control interface on screen for browsing, instead of actual info displayed on Android screen
    Any thoughts? Preferences?

    As I said there is not right or wrong answer, just wanted to see what people’s opinions are.

    Here’s hoping for a Kodi add-on soon****

    Option 2 HTPC looks preferable. Fortunately, option 1 is a cheap addition to option 2. So… Both.

    I use a raspberry pi with rasplex as well.  It adds another viewing option and some other benefits.  However, I haven’t had much luck with my Plex setup.  For example, transcoding isn’t setup correctly.  And it’s an old HTPC that Plex is on.  I look forward to trying out Kodi, if it happens.

    I hope that helps.