parski Sep 26, 2012 @ 1:15pm
Stream Steam Big Picture to HTPC?
Good evening!

As a console gamer (primarily) and as a person who plays a lot of PC games with an Xbox 360 controller opting into the Big Picture was a given. It makes the Steam experience a lot more natural to me. However, my HTPC which is connected to my TV is not capable of running most of my Steam games due to lacking hardware. My desktop PC is very much able to run all of my games. Is there a way to stream the picture (and audio) from my desktop to my HTPC? I've been looking at third party solutions but it seems that there is a tremendous loss of quality and a lot of latency going on since a 1080p image has a bitrate of around 10 Gbps whereas an ethernet cable of modernish CAT will only transfer at around 1 Gbps at best, so the technical stuff doesn't look too bright.

I'd be willing to play at 720p with good/great quality, it doesn't have to be perfect. Is this possible? I am not moving my desktop to my TV or my couch to my desktop. Nope.
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Showing 1-8 of 8 comments
AsciiSmoke Oct 22, 2012 @ 4:26am 
I'm really interested in streaming games from my gaming PC upstairs to my HTPC downstairs over the lan too. My HTPC is a first gen ATOM / ION. There's not mich from the last decade that'd run on it let alone recent stuff.
Satoru Oct 22, 2012 @ 7:41am 
This isn't practical

1) wifi doesn't have the bandwidth to pump UNCOMPRESSED 1080p to your TV

2) An atom processor is unlikely to have the horsepower to decomress 1080p since it can barely do 720p

3) the latency would be terrile and the video quality would be terrible due to compression
AsciiSmoke Oct 22, 2012 @ 8:20am 
I understand your point but I'm not sure I agree. I can watch 1080p MKVs just fine and stream HD from BBC iPlayer. If onlive can manage it with all the obstancles between us I don't understand why my hardware all on the same wired network cant.
Satoru Oct 22, 2012 @ 8:46am 
Again note I said 'uncompressed'

You can stream 1080p compressed but for gaming you wouldn't want the latency associated with that so you'd have to stream some kind of uncompressed stream. Any 'real time' compressions schemes are not very good and how things look woudl highly depend on your CPU speed.

Note Online/Gaiki were streaming smeary messes to people. It worked ok as a demo but try imagining playig Dead Space with the GUI all smeared into oblivion. They also never really sloved the latency issues. Gaikai had a better buisness model of streaming demos for companies. Onlive as a 'direct to consumer' company was a lost cause.
Last edited by Satoru; Oct 22, 2012 @ 8:49am
MyWay (Banned) Oct 22, 2012 @ 9:46am 
wireless lan doesnt have an allways-on connection. it does disable itself if it isnt even with that u get latency and we arent even talking about packet losts.
some it-tech at my school got the nice idea to use an beamer 50m away of an pc over ethernet. not even wlan....and damn. the videosignal was behind the audiosignal more then 2 50 meters and ethernet, so no wlan. its the same with dlan....
so dont even waste the money and time on it.
Last edited by MyWay; Oct 22, 2012 @ 9:47am
Spike Jan 20, 2013 @ 6:29am 
You can. Its pretty simple to do when you understand how media streaming works.

I might do a tutorial on it at one point but for now I'll give you a few hints.

The Xbox and PS3 both have the capability to recieve DLNA streams, all you have to do is create a stream of your desktop for them to connect to. The answer here is VLC.

There is a latency though as VLC compresses and Xbox, PS3 (or in my case a raspberry pi and one of the new Intel NUCs) but if you fiddle with the screen resolution on your PC and the VLC settings its more than playable.

Then you just need a control input. I use an XBox controller with the wireless USB dongle thing and if I hang it over the edge of the landing onto the stairs it works fine.

Ill look into possibly doing a real tutorial at some point as if you fiddle with your router settings etc you can reduce the latency even more (either that or drag a network cable between your PC and Xbox but in that case why not just use a long HDMI)
AsciiSmoke Jan 21, 2013 @ 9:17am 
Thanks for the suggestions Spikey. I'll see if I can work the VLC thing out.
parski Jan 22, 2013 @ 3:15am 
I was hoping for some way to utilize the Miracast protocol or something similar. Gabe Newell mentioned it in an interview about the Steam Box so I'm guessing it's in the works. Streaming through VLC with compression and resolution tweaking is bound to wind up either with huge latency issues, horrible quality or both.

If you're able to stream with acceptable quality and latency, please document your setup and share it here. I will be attempting this as well and I'll share the results either way.
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Date Posted: Sep 26, 2012 @ 1:15pm
Posts: 8