Computers, Entertainment, Technology

Streaming video to the Nokia 770

I recently managed to get video streaming (and transcoding in real time) to my Nokia 770 😀 Here’s a guide for anyone wanting to do the same thing. This assumes you have a wireless network with a computer on it.

The first thing you need to do is install MPlayer on your 770. The media player that comes with it is too limited with regards to what it can play. The interface to Maemo MPlayer is a bit limited but I tend to start it from the command line anyway.

Then install VLC (VideoLAN client) on your PC. VLC is a cross platform media player with wonderful codec support and more important built in streaming and transcoding support. To stream (and transcode) using VLC, go to the Open File dialog box and select “Stream/Save” (and click the associated “Settings” button). From there select HTTP streaming (remember the port) and set up your transcoding options. The following are ideal for the 770:

  • M4V video
  • MP3 audio
  • 256 kbps video
  • 64bps audio
  • Width: 400
  • Height: 244

You need to fiddle a bit to specify the width and height. As you select the options you’ll notice the “target” field at the top change. Highlight the bit that says “scale=1” and replace it with “width=400,height=244”. You can also select play locally if you want to see what it’s playing on the screen at the same time.

After you’ve done all that click OK as many times as necessary to get back out of the windows and click Play. The video will now be streaming to anyone trying to listen. The first thing to do is to test it using VLC itself. Open another instance of VLC and go to File -> Open Network Stream. Select HTTP and enter your IP address or (localhost) and the port you selected earlier. When you hit play you should see the video clip playing (quite small). If not, then try again…

Assuming it’s all working, it’s time to see it on the 770. Run XTerm (you really need XTerm if you want to do cool stuff with a 770) and type in the following:

mplayer -cache 8192 -aspect 16:9 http://your.ip.address:port

Hopefully you’ll have your video clip playing wonderfully on your 770 😀

256kbps is good enough for most clips at that resolution. Actions scenes get a bit blocky but don’t complain too much. 256kbps is also low enough to fit through most if not all ADSL upstream connections and, even better, small enough to fit through newer cellphone connections (the 770 can use a phone as a bluetooth modem). In fact UK readers on T-Mobile can get Web ‘n’ Walk Max for £22.50 a month get 10GB of bandwidth and are allowed to use the connection for video streaming and Voice Over IP.

My final goal would be getting it to work with MythTV (it can already use VLC for streaming) and have live TV anywhere I can get a signal on my phone…

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11 thoughts on “Streaming video to the Nokia 770

  1. hi. thanks for writing the article. i didnt realise this was possible with my 770.

    i get this error when i try to open the stream:
    ~ $ mplayer -cache 8192 -aspect 16:9 http://192.168.103:1234
    MPlayer 1.0rc1-maemo.9 (C) 2000-2006 MPlayer Team
    CPU: ARM
    [MENU] Can’t open menu config file: /home/user/.mplayer/menu.conf
    Menu inited: /etc/mplayer/menu.conf

    Playing http://192.168.103:1234.
    Resolving 192.168.103 for AF_INET…
    Connecting to server 192.168.103[192.168.0.103]: 1234…
    Failed to connect to server with AF_INET
    STREAM_ASF, URL: http://192.168.103:1234
    Resolving 192.168.103 for AF_INET…
    Connecting to server 192.168.103[192.168.0.103]: 1234…
    Failed to connect to server with AF_INET
    Failed, exiting.
    Resolving 192.168.103 for AF_INET…
    Connecting to server 192.168.103[192.168.0.103]: 1234…
    Failed to connect to server with AF_INET
    File not found: ‘192.168.103:1234’
    Failed to open http://192.168.103:1234.

    the video streams & plays perfectly thru another instance of vlc.

    any ideas? ur help would be appreciated very much.

    cheers.

    abs.

    Like

  2. Are you sure your IP addres is right (and that you’re using the same one when testing with another instance of VLC)? It should have four numbers for the host (although I now see my example might be misleading).

    I’d guess 192.168.1.103:1234 is what you really want…

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  3. Same problem for me… and I have checked the IP address/port (have tested with 192.168.1.35:1234 on both PC with second VLC instance, and on 770).

    Error msg is
    —————————–
    ~ $ mplayer -cache 8192 -aspect 16:9 http://192.168.1.35:1234
    MPlayer 1.0rc1-maemo.9 (C) 2000-2006 MPlayer Team
    CPU: ARM
    [MENU] Can’t open menu config file: /home/user/.mplayer/menu.conf
    Menu inited: /etc/mplayer/menu.conf

    Playing http://192.168.1.35:1234.
    Connecting to server 192.168.1.35[192.168.1.35]: 1234…
    Failed to connect to server with AF_INET
    STREAM_ASF, URL: http://192.168.1.35:1234
    Connecting to server 192.168.1.35[192.168.1.35]: 1234…
    Failed to connect to server with AF_INET
    Failed, exiting.
    Connecting to server 192.168.1.35[192.168.1.35]: 1234…
    Failed to connect to server with AF_INET
    File not found: ‘192.168.1.35:1234’
    Failed to open http://192.168.1.35:1234.

    Exiting… (End of file)
    ~ $
    —————————–

    Any ideas?
    I have tried fully disabling firewall on PC where VLC is running, no difference.

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  4. By the way, the video codec in the Transcoding Options section (when opening the file in VLC on the PC) should be mp4v, I presume…
    “M4V” video, as mentioned in the description above, is not available as an option in VLC, as far as I can see….?

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  5. Realized what the problem was…. You need to have an ACTIVE connection to your WLAN for mplayer to connect. I would have thought that mplayer should have connected through the WLAN when needed, but doesn’t seem like it.

    Not that it matter much, as the 770 hung and then rebooted after showing one frame of the video… It showed just one frame, no moving images, no sound, then pitch black screen for 20 secs or so, then reboot. Oh well, it was a nice try.
    And cool that you got it working – nicely done!

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  6. It seems a better solution may appear shortly in the form of GMyth. It’s an attempt to create a MythTV library for frontends based on GObject and ultimately a Maemo frontend that runs on the Nokia 770/N800 (including live transcoding).

    Like

  7. This howto is wonderful and it simply works.
    I also managed to stream tv by choosing the v4l option in the open capture device menu but the problem is that there is no sound because it comes on hw.1,0 not the default alsa device. If someone knows some kind of fix it would be very helpful.

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  8. hi, i have recently fitted an IP cctv camera in my house. I set it up as per the instructions and it works fine.

    However, I am unable to get remote access??? any ideas???

    Camera is at 192.168.1.103

    login as xxxxxx Pasword xxxxxx

    six x’s

    Please help!!!

    Like

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