What is an E2 box and why should I get one?

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elsmandino

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My Satellite Setup
Linux Server (Running Openmediavault for OS and TVHeadend for PVR).
Internal TV Tuner Cards - Hauppauge HVR-2200 (Dual DVB-T) & Hauppauge Nova HDS2 (DVB-S2)
Server connected to multiple Raspberry Pis (running Librelec) via Gigabit Network.
My Location
Essex, England
#1
I record and stream all my TV via a headless server running Linux (Openmediavault), which schedules/streams via TVHeadend. The server contains 11.5TB of HDDs.

I stream to a number of RPi clients running Kodi (Librelec).

I currently have a dual DVB-T card and a single DVB-S2 card, but was hoping to replace these with at least four DVB-S2 tuners - one of which to be we used with a USALS motor and the other three on a separate fixed minidish at 28.2e.

I have had lots of problems trying to find suitable tuners and have stumbled across loads of threads from people that have moved on from what I am up to and just use an Enigma 2 box (or equivalent) instead. They seem to be saying that the setup leads to a much better experience.

Despite lots of research, I am not entirely sure what they are and what they offer.

Could any of you guys possibly given me an idea of whether I should perhaps go with one of these instead and what the advantages might be?

Many thanks.
 
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Mickha

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#2
The term Enigma 2 receiver covers a lot of territory.
I have a VU+ Duo 2, which as an Enigma 2 receiver, with two tuner slots, allowing upto 4 internal satellite tuners, or a mixture of sat and terrestrial/cable tuners.
You can load various images, and skins, onto these receivers, Blackhole, Open Blackhole, Open Vix, Open Spa, etc.., allowing you to also run the latest Kodi, and numerous plugins.
You can set the satellite tuners up as required, so you can run a motorized dish, fixed dishes, Diseqc switches, and various permatations, far too many to go into, you can also run the old Dreambox tools, network your receiver to your other PC's and run Open Webif, to view/control your receiver from anywhere.
There are just far too many options, to discuss, you really need to do a lot of reading, and decide if an Enigma 2 receiver suits your needs, and is worth the expense, especially if thinking of buying a 4K version.
 
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Archive7

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#3
In addition, they have card readers and CI slots so you are not stuck with FTA channels only. The card readers can work with OScam plugin.
I have a Mutant HD 51 with two tuners, which has support for CI+ smartcards.
 
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elsmandino

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Messages
36
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My Satellite Setup
Linux Server (Running Openmediavault for OS and TVHeadend for PVR).
Internal TV Tuner Cards - Hauppauge HVR-2200 (Dual DVB-T) & Hauppauge Nova HDS2 (DVB-S2)
Server connected to multiple Raspberry Pis (running Librelec) via Gigabit Network.
My Location
Essex, England
#4
Thank you.

Having done some more research, I cannot believe that I had not considered one of these boxes before - they offer so much more over what I was trying to put together (I have spent months trying to cobble something together with a combination of SAT>IP servers and USB/PCI tuner cards but now realise that the answer is an E2 box).

Can you recommend anything in particular?

My only real criteria is that the box has Gigabit ethernet and at least four tuners, one of which can control a USALS motor.
 
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Mickha

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#5
Quite a number, of receivers, can do what you want, it all depends on if you want 4K, DVB-S2x capable tuners, etc.., and how much you want to spend.
 
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davemurgtroyd

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#6
Do these receivers have a maximum HDD size that they can use? 2TB seems common to a lot of receivers.
 
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Mickha

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#7
I'm using an internal 1.5TB, in my VU+ Duo 2, but I have heard of people discussing 3TB, and even 4TB, hard drives.
And as you are networked you can quickly copy recordings, off your receivers hard drive, and onto your PC's, for editing and burning to disk, or just to keep them.
 
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Archive7

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#8
My only real criteria is that the box has Gigabit ethernet and at least four tuners, one of which can control a USALS motor.
What is your budget and do you need CI+ support?
I can recommend ordering 2x Mutant HD 51 which comes with dual tuners and has 1x CI+ CAM slot and 1x smartcard reader.
Gigabit has 4x tuners but they don't support CI+ I already checked with hm-sat
Edit: Mutant 51 HD has 4K support.
 
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Archive7

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#9
A word of warning regarding HDD, especially if you already have precious recordings.
DO NOT INITIALIZE such a HDD. It will wipe out all your recordings. Happened to me twice (First time because nobody told me!!! and second time because I didn't tell myself)
 
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elsmandino

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Messages
36
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My Satellite Setup
Linux Server (Running Openmediavault for OS and TVHeadend for PVR).
Internal TV Tuner Cards - Hauppauge HVR-2200 (Dual DVB-T) & Hauppauge Nova HDS2 (DVB-S2)
Server connected to multiple Raspberry Pis (running Librelec) via Gigabit Network.
My Location
Essex, England
#10
Budgetwise - I guess, about £400, though I would increase on that if you are getting features that are genuinely worth it.

At the moment, I am thinking of going with one of these:

VU+ Solo4k - VU Plus

The seem to get some fantastic reviews, 4k adds a bit of future-proofing and the FBC means I will never have any clashes again.

I would also add a single DVB-S2 tuner to control a USALS satellite.

Do you think they are worth the money?

One thing I am not sure of is the type of LNB that is needed for FBC - is it any octo-unicable?
 
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Archive7

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#11
VU+ are good but unfortunately they didn't help me with a CI+ CAM subscription that I have, so I bought Mutant 51 HD (also 4K)
 
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elsmandino

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Messages
36
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My Satellite Setup
Linux Server (Running Openmediavault for OS and TVHeadend for PVR).
Internal TV Tuner Cards - Hauppauge HVR-2200 (Dual DVB-T) & Hauppauge Nova HDS2 (DVB-S2)
Server connected to multiple Raspberry Pis (running Librelec) via Gigabit Network.
My Location
Essex, England
#13
VU+ are good but unfortunately they didn't help me with a CI+ CAM subscription that I have, so I bought Mutant 51 HD (also 4K)
To be honest, I am not entirely sure that I will ever really go down the CAM route - the FTA channels on 28.2e offer so much decent content, at the moment, that I am recording more quality stuff than I can watch.

4TB USB3 is the most cost effective size these days in my opinion.
I have no problem with it, but I am always running out of storage
I'm using an internal 1.5TB, in my VU+ Duo 2, but I have heard of people discussing 3TB, and even 4TB, hard drives.
And as you are networked you can quickly copy recordings, off your receivers hard drive, and onto your PC's, for editing and burning to disk, or just to keep them.
It is great that you two mentioned this as I was going to ask about hardrives.

The VU+Solo4k seems to come with an internal space for a 2.5" HDD only - I originally thought that this was an odd choice but have read that it helps to keep noise and heat to a minimum. Furthermore, modern 2.5" HDDs seem to easily handle multiple HD recordings and streams.

I am going to have my E2 box connected to my network with a NAS, which contains 10.5TB. I was tempted to record directly to it but I think I am asking for trouble with the setup.

I think it is going to be easier with a directly attached hard drive - giving me the option of either directly streaming from the E2 box or transferring them to the NAS.

What 2.5 (or USB 3.0) hard drives do you think I should consider?

I swear by WD Reds but have heard that you can buy HDDs that are especially for DVR use - is that just a marketing ploy or worth considering?
 
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Archive7

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#14
2.5" internal hard disk is too expensive compared to a 3.5" HDD with external AC mains adapter. 1TB is recommended cost wise.
I wouldn't use the 2.5" tray at first, but it is a nice option to have. It will take power from the VU+ power supply and it could contribute to raise the temperature inside the box.
I use WD MyBook USB 3.o 4TB with external AC adapter.
At first I didn't think I would need a CI+ CAM, but now I have two different subscriptions.
 
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Mickha

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#15
My VU+ Duo 2 can take either a 2.5", or a 3.5", hard drive, I'm using an old 1.5TB 3.5", taken out of my PC, when I bought the receiver, a few years back.
 
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elsmandino

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Messages
36
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My Satellite Setup
Linux Server (Running Openmediavault for OS and TVHeadend for PVR).
Internal TV Tuner Cards - Hauppauge HVR-2200 (Dual DVB-T) & Hauppauge Nova HDS2 (DVB-S2)
Server connected to multiple Raspberry Pis (running Librelec) via Gigabit Network.
My Location
Essex, England
#16
At first I didn't think I would need a CI+ CAM, but now I have two different subscriptions.
Out of interest, what did you end up subscribing to?

You have been really helpful on lots of my prior threads and I note that you are a bit of a polyglot - I was sort of under the impression that subscriptions were only really worth it you were totally fluent in another language. My German, for example, is definitely just enough to get by but not enough to actually enjoy any paid-for TV.

I have to admit that, despite a lot of research, I really am struggling to understand what FCB is and how it works - I am wondering whether this feature is a bit overkill for what I need (though it is always nice to have).
 
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Archive7

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#17
Out of interest, what did you end up subscribing to?

You have been really helpful on lots of my prior threads and I note that you are a bit of a polyglot - I was sort of under the impression that subscriptions were only really worth it you were totally fluent in another language. My German, for example, is definitely just enough to get by but not enough to actually enjoy any paid-for TV.

I have to admit that, despite a lot of research, I really am struggling to understand what FCB is and how it works - I am wondering whether this feature is a bit overkill for what I need (though it is always nice to have).
My pleasure.
I have nc+ (Polish) and DigiTurk (Turkish) subscriptions.
I enjoy learning different languages and subscriptions can help, even if you are not fluent as it gives you the chance to hear the language for as long as you like.
I don't enjoy dubbed or voice over audio, only native speakers.
There is a thread about VU+ FCB. I will try to give you a link later on.
 
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elsmandino

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Messages
36
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My Satellite Setup
Linux Server (Running Openmediavault for OS and TVHeadend for PVR).
Internal TV Tuner Cards - Hauppauge HVR-2200 (Dual DVB-T) & Hauppauge Nova HDS2 (DVB-S2)
Server connected to multiple Raspberry Pis (running Librelec) via Gigabit Network.
My Location
Essex, England
#19
Very impressive - I have both Turkish and Polish friends and love talking to them about their language. Turkish seems pretty hard, but Polish seems so complex that I am pretty sure I couldn't learn anything without actually living there.

That is a very interesting/informative thread you referred me to.

I think it is my fundamental misunderstanding of how satellite broadcasts work that is holding me back.

So am I correct in thinking the following is true (taking 28.2e as an example):

1. Each satellite broadcasts over a wide range of frequencies and those frequencies are split into four bands - HL, HH, VL, VH
2. Each band is made up of a set number of frequencies, called transponders.
3. Each transponder contains about 10 channels.
4. A single tuner, connected to a single LNB, can only tune into a single transponder, meaning only those 10 are so channels can be viewed/recorded at that time.
5. An FCB tuner, connected to the same LNB, is able to simultaneously record four transponders, as long as they are all on the same band.
6. An FCB tuner, connected to a quad unicable LNB, is able to pick up sixteen transponders, as long as they are all on the same band.
7. Using the second tuner, as a virtual tuner for the first input, and connecting an octo LNB, two different bands can be received at any one time, meaning a possibility of 32 transponders.

Is that correct?
 
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elsmandino

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Messages
36
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My Satellite Setup
Linux Server (Running Openmediavault for OS and TVHeadend for PVR).
Internal TV Tuner Cards - Hauppauge HVR-2200 (Dual DVB-T) & Hauppauge Nova HDS2 (DVB-S2)
Server connected to multiple Raspberry Pis (running Librelec) via Gigabit Network.
My Location
Essex, England
#20
Sorry - scrap that.

Have had to re-read your earlier thread again:

5. An FCB tuner, connected to the same LNB, is able to simultaneously record four transponders, regardless of which band they are on.
6. An FCB tuner, connected to a quad unicable LNB, is able to pick up sixteen transponders, regardless of which band they are on.
7. Using the second tuner, as a virtual tuner for the first input, and connecting an octo LNB, 32 transponders can be reached, at any one time, meaning access to around 3,200 channels

Is that better?
 
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