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[Tutorial] How to install Tvheadend and scan ATSC (North America) channels

NedScottNedScott Posts: 1,123WeTek Community Member
edited April 2016 in Tutorials
In this tutorial you will learn how to set up Tvheadend on OpenELEC 6, from scratch, and do a basic channel scan using the ATSC TV tuner.

Installing Tvheadend

Tvheadend is a program that runs in the background on the WeTek box. It's the actual program that handles the TV signal, recordings, and so on. Kodi then acts as an interface and player for Tvheadend. So the first thing we need to do is install Tvheadend.



Normally Tvheadened is installed as a separate program, outside of Kodi. However, on OpenELEC programs are installed as "add-ons" from within Kodi, even if they're not normal Kodi add-ons.



In Kodi, go to

Settings -> Add-ons -> Install from repository -> OpenELEC (official) repository -> Add-on repository ->

Select and install the OpenELEC Unofficial add-on repository, as this version of Tvheadened is maintained by the community. Don't let that scare you, as it still works just as good.



Now go back into

Settings -> Add-ons

except this time go into

Install from repository -> OpenELEC (Unofficial) repository -> Services -> tvheadend

Select and install



Tvheadend should now be installed. To configure it, we need to use a computer with a web browser that is on the same network as your WeTek box. We also need to know the IP address of your box, so in Kodi:

Select the System tab on the Kodi home screen, and then select the sub-tab just below that which says "System info".

In that System info screen it should show an IP address for your local network. Local network addresses typically start with a number such as 10.xx.xx.xx or 192.xx.xx.xx. Take note of that number for the next section.

Setting up Tvheadend

On another computer (or tablet/phone) that is connected to the same home network, open a web browser and enter the IP address we got from the previous section, followed by :9981. For example, if your IP was 10.0.0.3 then enter http://10.0.0.3:9981 into your browser's address bar.




Then click on the Configuration tab, then the DVB Inputs tab, and finally click on the Networks tab.





Click on the + Add button and select ATSC network from the window that pops up, then click Save




Now we're going to name our new TV input. This can be any name you want, so to make it easy I've just used "OTA TV", which means "over-the-air TV".

Under Pre-defined Muxes select what sounds closest to your situation. For the USA, users can just use United States: us-ATSC-center-frequencies-8VSB, as pictured. Then click on the Create button to save.





Now click on the TV adapters tab, then click on the first entry that says Panasonic




On the window that pops up on the right hand side, make sure Enabled is checked.

Open the menu that says Networks and select the network we created from the previous steps. For example, I used "OTA TV", so I will need to check that mark next to "OTA TV".

Now click on Save at the bottom of the right-hand window.




TVheadend is now scanning for channels. If you click on the Network tab you can see how many frequencies are left to scan by looking in the column that says Scan Q length. When that number reaches 0, then all channels have been scanned.

If you are missing channels then you might need to adjust your antenna and click Force Scan to restart the scan.




Now click on the Services tab. These are all of the channels that Tvheadend was able to find. Select the ones you want to watch, or all of them, and then press the button that says Map Selected





You can later edit or remove channels by using the Channels tab, should you need to.


Adding EPG data

As of 2016, Tvheadend is unable to automatically grab the embedded programming data from the TV signal for ATSC channels. Even if it could, in the USA broadcasters are only required to supply a few hours of data. For these reasons US users will need to provide their own EPG data. Thankfully, there are services that will do this for a small fee, such as Schedules Direct ($20 per year).

While it is frustrating to have to pay for these listings, this is simply a fact of life for US users who set up their own user-made DVR.

Note: This section is currently in progress. Downloading the EPG xml file automatically either requires a perl script or an XML converter, and both of those are not available by default for OpenELEC on the ARM platform. These files can be generated on another computer, but I'm looking for a way to make it 100% contained on the WeTek Play.

Enabling Tvheadened in Kodi

Now in Kodi we need to enable the Tvheadend PVR add-on. This is different than installing Tvheadend itself, even though both use the Kodi add-on manager.

Coming soon. I'll place a link here, but this will be its own guide.


former WeTek Support team member, now just a friendly volunteer.

Comments

  • NedScottNedScott Posts: 1,123WeTek Community Member
    Good news, someone made an EPG download add-on for Schedules Direct for LibreELEC/OpenELEC: https://github.com/astrilchuk/sd2xmltv

    I'll try testing this soon and working it into the guide.


    former WeTek Support team member, now just a friendly volunteer.
  • JoeBradyJoeBrady Posts: 0WeTek Community Member
    NedScott said:

    Good news, someone made an EPG download add-on for Schedules Direct for LibreELEC/OpenELEC: https://github.com/astrilchuk/sd2xmltv

    I'll try testing this soon and working it into the guide.

    Thanks Ned. Got ahold of a Play2 with no tuner. Looking forward to trying it out as soon as I get an ATSC to put in there.
  • NedScottNedScott Posts: 1,123WeTek Community Member
    If you're the same JoeBrady I think you are, you're beard is huge!


    former WeTek Support team member, now just a friendly volunteer.
  • NedScottNedScott Posts: 1,123WeTek Community Member
    And now there's a python add-on that does this as well: http://forum.kodi.tv/showthread.php?tid=292112


    former WeTek Support team member, now just a friendly volunteer.
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