Steam Box Catch-All

SixteenBlue wrote:

OK so that's not the issue for me then, the host is Windows. Trying to stream from Windows->SteamOS.

Try launching big picture mode on the SteamOS system. go into the preferences under in-house streaming and see if it finds the Windows system automatically.
if it does, click on it to establish a connection, then you can go to the games library on the SteamOS system, select 'All Games' and choose a game. You should see the option 'Stream'.
just click and it'll launch the game on the windows system and show it on the SteamOS system.
I tried this earlier and it worked.
Hope that helps.

ButtonMasher wrote:
SixteenBlue wrote:

OK so that's not the issue for me then, the host is Windows. Trying to stream from Windows->SteamOS.

Try launching big picture mode on the SteamOS system. go into the preferences under in-house streaming and see if it finds the Windows system automatically.
if it does, click on it to establish a connection, then you can go to the games library on the SteamOS system, select 'All Games' and choose a game. You should see the option 'Stream'.
just click and it'll launch the game on the windows system and show it on the SteamOS system.
I tried this earlier and it worked.
Hope that helps.

That's exactly what I did. Unfortunately I get an auth error at that point.

Ok. Figured it was worth sharing, but that exhausts my ability to help.
Sorry.

No worries, I appreciate the effort!

I found that wireless-g was woefully insufficient to the task; wired 100mbps was quite a bit better. Use gigabit if you can; it really seems bandwidth-constrained.

Also, if you're streaming to a laptop hooked up to the TV, make absolutely sure that it is set to "external-monitor-only" mode. Mirrored mode will kill your frame rate.

It's interesting how game-dependent streaming performance is: GRID (car race game) worked quite well, for being relatively graphically intensive with lots of motion; yet Rogue Legacy (a 2d platformer) ran at half-speed or worse.

This feature is essentially Steam Big Picture video/audio mirroring. It seems the better a game performs under Big Picture, the better the experience.

Use gigabit if you can; it really seems bandwidth-constrained.

This is the old three-way tradeoff of quality versus latency versus bandwidth. Anytime you improve one, the other two suffer. Most likely, Steam streaming is going to be optimized for high quality and low latency, because that matches games the best. That means it's going to use a lot of bandwidth. (A real 1920x1080 screen will be generating about 350 megabytes per second in data, and a gigabit wire will carry, at most, about 125, so that'll give you an idea of how much compression they need to do. If 10G wires were common, they could stream with almost zero latency.)

Netflix, as a counter-example, is optimized for high quality, low bandwidth....and they have such terrible latency that they actually pre-generate the files, which probably takes many hours for each hour of video generated. (but then they can use it over and over again.)

Wireless-G is going to be somewhere in between.... it has more bandwidth available than Netflix, but it's still maybe 20 megabytes a second, which is an awful lot of compression. Doing that with low latency is going to look terrible.

Most machines these days come with gigabit ports, and gigabit switches are super cheap, so the expensive part of running a gigabit wire is the labor to install it. Having a pro do it will usually cost a couple hundred bucks. It's not actually that difficult, but the tools and wire to do it yourself will also cost you a couple hundred bucks, so I think it's only worth learning how if you plan to do at least two runs. At four or five runs, it becomes really smart to learn how to handle it yourself.

So I also played with it a bit this morning. Streamed a few games from my desktop (5GHz wireless N) to my wife's laptop (2.4GHz wireless G) over the ASUS Dark Knight RT-N66U.

  • Max Payne 3 crashed on start up (might have been because I alt-tabbed out to stop music I forgot to stop beforehand, haven't tried again since).
  • Fallout: New Vegas also crashed, though, even though the options splash screen showed up first and I changed the game's resolution to something more appropriate to the laptop before hitting "play."
  • Risk of Rain works smoothly at 3X scale, but it was slllllllloooooooooooooooooooooowwwwww. Playable, but everything was in slow motion except the audio. The sound effects and music were playing in time, and on cue, but the visuals were all running at almost half-speed. Was still smooth, though-- no choppy bits or lag, really. Seemed to run at a proper framerate if I turned down scaling to 1X, but I didn't play it much at that size, since it doesn't auto-fill the screen.
  • Dustforce played okay as well, though with a slightly slower framerate. Still smooth, like Risk of Rain, (ie no dropped frames, which was nice-- better than old days of Counter-Strike Beta 2 running on a 56K and NetZero), but the audio was still on cue. I did get a lag spike on the network for some reason (F6 shows stats, BTW), at which the game paused for a sec. Long enough for me to glance at my PC through the doorway and see it unpause from the lag spike as well. It was also playing just as slowly as the laptop appeared to be.
  • I played the Daily Challenge of Spelunky, and it ran without a hitch, which was very surprising. I only got a few levels in before dying because I've always sucked at Spelunky, but the controls felt responsive, there were no noticeable lag spikes or slow down.

Next is to try playing some Telltale games on the TV over the laptop/streaming, some time this weekend. I'm sure the bottleneck in my case is the laptop's wireless connection (Wireless N is 900Mbps max on my router). If/when I build myself a livingroom PC/SteamBox, it'd be Gigabit-wired to the router since it'll be in the same shelving unit.

Malor wrote:

Most machines these days come with gigabit ports, and gigabit switches are super cheap, so the expensive part of running a gigabit wire is the labor to install it. Having a pro do it will usually cost a couple hundred bucks. It's not actually that difficult, but the tools and wire to do it yourself will also cost you a couple hundred bucks, so I think it's only worth learning how if you plan to do at least two runs. At four or five runs, it becomes really smart to learn how to handle it yourself.

?? I just let them lay on the floor.

Got my streaming invite earlier today and my impression of it is grey. No really, that all I see when I try to stream, a grey screen with occasional flashes of what is actually suppose to show up. Will have to trouble shoot, or try streaming to something a little beefier. :p

I did a little home-stream testing from my Win 7 Desktop to Win 8.1 laptop with XCOM Enemy Within today. Down scaling from 1080p to 768p looked really nice, but frame rate was definitely a bit choppy, at a mean of 25 down from 59 on the main machine. Not too bad for a 802.11g connection. I'll give Wireless-N a try tomorrow. With some performance updates I could see myself using this feature pretty frequently.

My best test case was Borderlands 2 on my desktop (i7 2600k, Radeon 5850) to my macbook (early 2008) via ethernet my router (RT-N56U). I was able to stream at 1080p/~50-60fps. Over wifi, I could do 720p/60fps. Total latency was around 60ms.

I tested out Age of Empire 2 today with the Streaming.

I could play it directly in my laptop, and almost no lag. well, Steam was telling me I had 85ms ping, with 0% loss of packet over wifi, which I think is nice.

My host is :
Q6600 2.4ghz
6gig of ram
GTX560 with 1gig of ram
Display on it is 1650 x 1050
with Windows 7

The laptop
T3200 @ 2 ghz
2 gigs of ram
GM45 intel chipset
1280 x 800 display
with Ubuntu 13.10

I had a green screen at first, had to restart the laptop, but was able to continue the streaming after.

I did noticed it do allow me to be log in 2 Pc at the same time. Does that will allow me to play 2 games on 2 device ? as I can choose to stream, or run the already installed game on the Laptop.

Did I missed an option to turn off a game on the host Pc tho, from where I'll be streaming ? As I couldn't run something else after..

This is the Steambox* I want. I will buy one as soon as it comes out.

*Not actually a Steambox, just the hardware capabilities and cost I am interested in.

manta173 wrote:

This is the Steambox* I want. I will buy one as soon as it comes out.

*Not actually a Steambox, just the hardware capabilities and cost I am interested in.

Can that even be profitable? I haven't been pricing components recently, but an i3 processor, 2GB DDR3, wireless and a 16GB SSD seems to be real close to that number.

The $179 version is probably the Celeron flavor. The i3s will probably cost a fair bit more.

manta173 wrote:

This is the Steambox* I want. I will buy one as soon as it comes out.

*Not actually a Steambox, just the hardware capabilities and cost I am interested in.

If that can run SteamOS and stream from my beefy game rig that would be perfect!

So, I got into the music beta.

Anyone else testing it?

I kinda wish they would go straight to video, but I'll see.

Wonder if for video streaming, they will join force with others streaming services.

Have had it for a while as well. But I am not using the big picture mode that much yet. And in only works there.
It does work though and glad to have it

New pic render of the controller:

IMAGE(http://www.wired.com/images_blogs/gamelife/2014/03/steamcontroller-new-single.png)

ok, looking more like something i'd care to use

Am I the only one that's sorta bummed they got rid of the center OLED screen?

WipEout wrote:

Am I the only one that's sorta bummed they got rid of the center OLED screen? :(

They didn't use that outside of some prototyping. In practice it wasn't very effective for communicating anything.

Oh, I know it turned out not to be very effective, but it looked cool

WipEout wrote:

Am I the only one that's sorta bummed they got rid of the center OLED screen? :(

Yes.

I kinda feel like the end result of all this testing and iteration will be a 360 controller with a Steam logo in the middle. Polish out all the interesting bits and ideas for the comfortable and familiar because that's what "works".

[/clocking]

Well, I'm a little bummed about the loss of the screen, but really.... do you want to have to look away from the main screen? Because I don't look at the controller... that's like looking at the keyboard when you type, a mortal sin.

The interesting bit about the controller has always been the control surfaces; I don't think any prototypes with the screen have even been built.

Malor wrote:

Well, I'm a little bummed about the loss of the screen, but really.... do you want to have to look away from the main screen? Because I don't look at the controller... that's like looking at the keyboard when you type, a mortal sin.

The interesting bit about the controller has always been the control surfaces; I don't think any prototypes with the screen have even been built.

Exactly.

My experience with the controller so far has been that all of the buttons suck and the trackpads are really interesting. So I'm excited for this newer design. I wish I could get one.

ClockworkHouse wrote:
WipEout wrote:

Am I the only one that's sorta bummed they got rid of the center OLED screen? :(

Yes.

I kinda feel like the end result of all this testing and iteration will be a 360 controller with a Steam logo in the middle. Polish out all the interesting bits and ideas for the comfortable and familiar because that's what "works".

[/clocking]

What doesn't work is a normal thumbstick to control a mouse pointer. So, the circle pad touch weird thingies are likely to stay because they work for a PC controller interface.

garion333 wrote:

What doesn't work is a normal thumbstick to control a mouse pointer. So, the circle pad touch weird thingies are likely to stay because they work for a PC controller interface.

I get that, and they remain the only interesting things about this controller with the latest redesign, which is more than a little disappointing.

ClockworkHouse wrote:
WipEout wrote:

Am I the only one that's sorta bummed they got rid of the center OLED screen? :(

Yes.

I kinda feel like the end result of all this testing and iteration will be a 360 controller with a Steam logo in the middle. Polish out all the interesting bits and ideas for the comfortable and familiar because that's what "works".

[/clocking]

I'm with you. The controller has gone from "looks really interesting" to "pretty much a 360 controller clone". Maybe that is the best a controller can ever be, I don't know, but not a tonne of innovation there (trackpads aside of course). But a lot less interested in what they are showing now. It doesn't look like anything that will make me want to use it over M&K.

I dunno, those trackpads look awfully good. Remember, they've still got the custom-feedback motors in each one, and they can still do the virtual button things. The pads & feedback have always been the interesting bits about the Steam controller; they haven't even done anything with the display.

Replacing the display with buttons will mean you shouldn't need to give up much, if anything, to use one. When pads work, use those, and when they don't, use buttons.

The other way, it probably wouldn't have worked well with at least some existing games.