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DVBViewer Media Server + Kodi = Dodgy subtitles for Australian free-to-air TV (Teletext 801)


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I've recently switched my free-to-air TV DVR setup, from Windows Media Center, to Kodi using DVBViewer Media Server.

It's been a largely smooth transition, except that subtitles do not work correctly.


To get subtitles I have to enable teletext in Kodi, then select 801. This results in subtitles that:

  1. are out-of-sync, and...
  2. are rendered in a difficult to read font, and...
  3. lock out all other Kodi functions until the subtitles are cancelled, and/or...
  4. show a black box covering most of the image, and/or...
  5. result in spontaneous crashes of Kodi


Unfortunately, this has become a significant problem as we now have a half-deaf Boomer in the house.


There is a thread about the problem on the Kodi forums, that has posts from the last 8 years, (so it seems they'll never fix it):



This is frustrating given that just about every other application seems to handle teletext subtitles in .ts streams/files just fine, (e.g. SichboPVR, PotPlayer, VLC, etc).


That thread does, however, reveal that if you use Tvheadend as the TV streaming server for Kodi, subtitles work perfectly. I messed about with Linux (Ubuntu) for the first time in my life to confirm that this is true, (i.e. you just tap 't' to toggle, colour-coded, smooth-fonted subtitles).


So I guess this gets to my question: Is there any chance DVBViewer Media Server could replicate whatever Tvheadend does to provide proper subtitles in Kodi?

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On 9/25/2020 at 9:24 AM, SisyphusV said:

Unfortunately, this has become a significant problem as we now have a half-deaf Boomer in the house.


Well, the easiest solution is to let the Boomer use DVBViewer for watching TV with teletext subtitles.


Besides that, the teletext subtitles issues should be fixed in Kodi. Doing it from the outside is a difficult thing. Of course we have code that is able to extract the teletext subtitle as text. DVBViewer does it quite well. But the question is, how can it be transformed to something that Kodi is able to process and display as subtitles, and how can it be handed over. It must be a format with time stamps, because subtitles must be synced with video like audio, and the whole thing must be suitable for live streams.


Someone should take part who knows the Kodi internals better than us. Maybe the developer of the DVBViewer add-on for Kodi. I'll try to draw his attention to this topic: @manül: What do you think about it?


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