Free DLNA server which works good with my Sony BRAVIA TV

In sev­eral pre­vi­ous posts I wrote about my quest for the right source format to stream video to my Sony BRAVIA TV (build in 2009). The last week-​end I fi­nally found some­thing which sat­is­fies me.

What I found was ser­viio, a free UPnP-​AV (DLNA) server. It is writ­ten in java and runs on Win­dows, Linux and FreeBSD (it is not lis­ted on the web­site, but we have an not-​so-​up-​to-​date ver­sion in the ports tree). If ne­ces­sary it transcodes the in­put to an ap­pro­pri­ate format for the DLNA ren­derer (in my case the TV).

I tested it with my slow Net­book, so that I was able to see with which in­put format it will just re­mux the in­put con­tainer to a MPEG trans­port stream, and which in­put format would be really re-​encoded to a format the TV un­der­stands.

The bot­tom line of the tests is, that I just need to use a sup­por­ted con­tainer (like MKV or MP4 or AVI) with H.264-encoded video (e.g. en­coded by x264) and AC3 au­dio.

The TV is able to chose between sev­eral au­dio streams, but I have not tested if ser­viio is able to serve files with mul­tiple au­dio streams (my wife has a dif­fer­ent mother lan­guage than me, so it is in­ter­est­ing for us to have mul­tiple au­dio streams for a movie), and I do not know if DLNA sup­ports some­thing like this.

Now I just have to re­place min­idlna (which only works good with my TV for MP3s and Pic­tures) with ser­viio on my FreeBSD file server and we can for­get about the disk-​juggling.

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6 thoughts on “Free DLNA server which works good with my Sony BRAVIA TV”

    1. Last time I tried the PS3 Me­di­aserver it didn’t suit my needs. In the ser­viio forum I’ve seen some post­ings which told that they switched from PS3 Me­di­aserver. Well… as long as it suits your needs, everything should be fine. ser­viio suits mine now.

  1. Are you able to transcode AAC for some­thing that works with the Sony DVD play­ers? min­idlna worked well enough, ex­cept for that one de­tail…

    1. They list Sony Blu­eray play­ers on their com­pat­ib­il­ity list, but I do not see DVD play­ers lis­ted.
      It is not an ex­haust­ive list, my TV is not lis­ted but works, and you can modify the device-​profile to suit your needs. You can use the In­tel UPnP tools (Device Spy) to de­term­ine what kind of formats the device sup­ports (needs a Win­dows ma­chine). With this it should be easy to let it transcode AAC to LPCM or MP3. I think the DVD player should at least be able to un­der­stand LPCM.

  2. I haven’t tried PS3 Me­dia Server, to be hon­est, but Ser­viio is a huge step up in func­tion­al­ity and per­form­ance from min­idlna. That step up comes at the cost of flex­ib­il­ity (like how do set the metadata for files it has guessed wrong on?), but it works with all my me­dia play­ing devices in the house from my phones, to my iPad to my Sony DVD player and Dir­ecTV DVR.

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