I have been using PS3 Media Server for a long time, but never actually had it all clear how it works.
I played around a little bit this evening, and some questions have arised that I hope probably someone here could answer.
I can start mentioning i'm running the latest beta (r412) on Windows Vista, Phenom II X3 270 (2,8Ghz), 4GB memory and gigabit-connection directly from the PC to the PS3.
PS3 Media Server is configured with lossless MPEG2 Mencoder transcoding profile (1-1-1) and multi-core Mencoder experimental build enabled.
1. I really dont have the need for bandwitdh limiting, because im on gigabit, however im curious if gigabit is really needed so I changed to 100Mbit NIC and started experimenting with the AVI 1080P Bunny-sample (have heard it's a pretty good stress test, atleast at some parts in the beginning).
I started out with 0 limiting, which worked on gigabit (pendin between 50 and 200Mbps), but started to stutter on 100 mbit connection. Thats reasonable, and doesnt need explanation.
However, I do wonder why the CPU starts working harder (ie 70-90% pending instead of 40-60%) when for example limiting to 50, or 80Mbps, in Mencoder settings?
2. I was curious how much the three cores and/or multi-core Mencoder experimental build combination did to up the performance, so I swithced it off one by one. Guess what? Everything played as smootlhy as with it enabled, is this working as it should? With three cores enabled in PS3 Media Server my CPU shows in Vista task-manager 80-90% utilization but with one core selected it shows 40-50% only! But as I said, the Bunny sample do play exactly as smootly at a pretty constant limit of 40-50Mbps showing on PS3 OSD. Explanation please?
The only big difference in PS3 Media Server that I can notice is when on gigabit, without any limiting, the 600MB buffer fills upp pretty rapidly even before the movie starts streaming on the PS3, but, with limiting at 50Mbps and/or disabling extra CPU cores it struggles a bit, allthough it do hold the buffer partly filled (20-40% going up and down).
So my conclusion is, if the majority of movies is not more demanding then this Rabbit sample it should be enough on my setup (even without the extra cores) with only 100Mbps connection and maximum quality settings. What still amazes is my though is that the CPU seem to have to work harder with three cores enabled, then with one core!