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Ethernet woes with the NSZ-GS7... anyone else?

Discussion in 'Sony's NSZ-GS8 / NSZ-GS7' started by eelpout, Sep 11, 2012.

  1. eelpout

    eelpout New Member

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    Was having odd problems with GTVBox, where large bit rate transport streams were hiccuping upon over-the-LAN playback. If played locally from the GS7 storage, they were fine. When loooking at the GTVBox logs for causes of the pauses, there were buffer underflow errors, meaning the the app wasn't being fed packets fast enough and had to wait for more input which caused spasms of video.

    This was using the Ethernet connection. I finally got around to trying it over the WiFi interface. Guess what? Playback is fine, no rebuffering. So I did some local ping tests and this is what I see:

    $GS7 ping test.jpg

    On the left is the WiFi ping, right, the Ethernet. WiFi looks clean. However with the Ethernet interface, you'll see sprinkled among the gigabit-LAN sub millisecond speeds, up to full second replies. Something is really screwed up and would account for the GTVBox buffering issues.

    I've tried the obvious solutions: swapped out cables, switches etc. No change. So it's something to do with the NSZ-GS7's Ethernet port itself. :(

    Before I go whine to Sony, has anyone else seen anything like this?
     
  2. drhill

    drhill Member

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    You should talk to Sony. I'm curious what they tell you. I have a 1st gen blu ray player and I noticed I get hiccups from a cablecard tuner which is streaming mpeg2-ts via dlna. In both the regular media player and my app I'm working on, which uses a video view, I get hiccups in HD streams after a few minutes which stop playback. I haven't had time to debug my app yet, but this sounds like it could be the same problem. I do not see the hiccup on other dlna devices (TVs) in the house when viewing the same stream.

    I also never had a problem in Plex or the default media player viewing an episode of Lost that I ripped from my blu rays. It's 1080p @ 24fps (21.5mb/s) with DTS-MA (1510Kbps + 2428Kbps) although the gtv box only plays the core codec.
     
  3. eelpout

    eelpout New Member

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    Funny you mention Plex as it doesn't show the hiccup symptoms over Ethernet with the same material for me either. According to the GTVBox author, Plex doesn't use stream processing so it's faster and less susceptible to the problem.

    The recordings I am having problems with were either straight off a Silicon Dust Prime or transport streams encoded at the highest bit rate on a Hauppauge HD-PVR. The compressed MKV's of the same recordings stream over Ethernet fine.

    BTW. CatfishRivers here on the forums (on a different thread) suggested I try static IP's, I already had that thought and the results are the same.
     
  4. drhill

    drhill Member

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    I use static IPs on most of my devices at home. All the Ethernet linked ones especially.

    What are you streaming the TS files from? A DLNA server? Network share? I use Twonky for DLNA, and I have never had a problem with any media with those in the native "media player" dlna app. I have even tried a TS stream I recorded with MythTV from my cable card, but maybe it wasn't long enough of a file. The cable card's DLNA functionality is in beta so I'm wondering if that could be the problem. I'll have to try recording something again and giving it a longer look on my GTV box over DLNA using the media player app.
     
  5. eelpout

    eelpout New Member

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    Windows (XP) network shares. Tried it from multiple PC hosts, even one on the same switch, doesn't seem to matter.

    Since the pings are seriously messed up too (to any device on my LAN), I think there is something lower level going on; like the hardware is being pre-empted by another service. Guess the jack itself could be faulty too; I'll take a closer look at that possibility.

    I'd be curious if anyone else is seeing these kinds of pings.
     
  6. eelpout

    eelpout New Member

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    This is what I've received from Sony, they were quite quick in responding. At first I thought maybe they've heard of the issue, but now I think they were just relaying that they understood my problem and it's a boilerplate response. I'm already on the latest firmware of course.

    ---

    I understand that there is a buffering issue while using wired Internet connection to the Ethernet port on the Internet Player. To try troubleshoot this issue, please update the System Software of the Internet Player and check the operation. Please click on the below URL for information to update the System Software of the Internet Player:

    Sony eSupport - Electronics - Drivers & Software


    If the issue is unresolved, please contact our telephone support staff who will be happy to provide further diagnosis and assistance

    ---

    Looks like I'm going to have to call them.
     
  7. eelpout

    eelpout New Member

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    Wow. Sony called me today. :)

    It was someone from their escalation team who was gathering more info for engineering. One more thing they want me to try is take the switch out of the loop completely and directly ping another device and see if it still happens. They're likely going to send me a new box next week to try out and get mine back in return so they can see what's up with it.
     
  8. drhill

    drhill Member

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    I am doing ping tests on my box right now. One from my laptop (wifi => router => switch => gtv box). Most are 3ms with a few blips at 50-80ms. I'm also simultaneously pinging from my linux server (ethernet => switch => switch => gtv box) not a ping above .29 ms so my box passes your test with flying colors. Probably just bad hardware.
     
  9. eelpout

    eelpout New Member

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    I was using 2K packets sizes. Even connected with a crossover cable and no switch I get 175ms blips (most pings were under 1 ms). I tried testing across 4 different switches and the "lagged" pings ranged from 350ms to 1000ms. Shows that not all switches are created equal. The older Netgear ProSafe switches I have had the slowest response times, where occasional pings would take that 1 full second across them.

    Sony is very interested to see why the lag is not happening over WiFi and if it is hardware, why is it relatively consistent, happening every 4-5 seconds or so.
     
  10. jonw747

    jonw747 Well-Known Member

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    I just ran a continuous ping test (~ 500 pings a second) with 1000 byte packets to my wired Sony, and the worst case ping while it was streaming netflix was 77ms. With the unit in standby, the worst I saw was 14ms. Seems reasonable and little different than I see when pinging my XP file server. The average ping time in both cases are sub-millisecond.
     
  11. eelpout

    eelpout New Member

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    An update.

    Sony shipped me a 2nd box to test last week. I have the same issue with this one, i.e. when using Ethernet there are lags and buffer underflow errors when playing videos on the LAN. So it wasn't my original box after all, it's something in the GS7, Ethernet and my setup. Hmmm.

    Stepping back from the problem, I realized the other thing I had connected to it was a ViewHD converter for HDMI->VGA conversion for my elderly DLP projector. I never saw any glitching or other issue with the ViewHD so never thought twice about it. So I took an HDMI computer monitor I could connect directly and disconnected the ViewHD box. And just like that, no more Ethernet problems! :D

    So it looks like there is some odd interaction with HDMI and Ethernet that doesn't happen when using the WiFi connection. Sony is asking me to hang on to both GS7's I have while they think about this on their end.
     
  12. jonw747

    jonw747 Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like an HDCP problem.
     
  13. eelpout

    eelpout New Member

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    Hmm, not sure about that but who knows. The content I'm using is not protected and it doesn't happen when using WiFi as the network connection. I think it's a hardware bug where HDMI is holding up Ethernet and packets are not being processed in a timely manner. Could be an HDMI handshake issue I suppose.
     
  14. jedimatt42

    jedimatt42 New Member

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    I have been using my NSZ-GS7 over Ethernet since day one, and had never considered that WiFi would perform better.
    I've had plenty of glitches streaming through PLEX and GTVBox both. There is nothing weird about my HDMI devices, it is just my TIVO as input, and Sharp television as output.

    Switching my Sony box to WiFi fixed these extremely reproducible playback hick-ups.

    I just wanted to echo that switching the NSZ-GS7 to WiFi was a good remedy for the glitched streaming problem. Saved me money, as I was about to go purchase local USB storage.
     
  15. mrspock

    mrspock Active Member

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    Well its certainly true that a company can carry out months/years of testing, but the end user will do things that they would never have thought about :D
     
  16. eelpout

    eelpout New Member

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    You should really let Sony know this through their support page and what devices your GS7 is connected to, as it sounds like we suffer the same glitch. I imagine this means there is something going on with certain HDMI devices. I was told their engineering department is going as far as buying TV's that have problems to try and fix the NSZ-GS7.

    If you have another HDMI monitor/TV you can connect to, try that one and see if Ethernet is any better.

    I haven't checked the Vizio GoogleTV sites, but I'm wondering if it's something to do with the Marvell chipset they share with the GS7.
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2012

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