On to 2023, what are you missing in Channels?

I think I'll probably be more on the crazy thing side :rofl:

  • HDR -> SDR transcoding. There's a lot of HDR content now (i.e. UHD Blu-Rays), and streaming around to different devices I'd like to be able to transcode from HDR to SDR for older devices that can't play HDR content.
  • Dolby Vision support. This is also a hard area with various different profiles and devices that will play basically all the profiles (NDIVIA Shield) and some that is limited but can play a few profiles (Apple TV/Fire Stick). Fallback to an HDR or SDR layer if the player doesn't support that profile would also be nice, and see the previous comment on what to do if it's transcoding :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:.
  • Multiple User Support. Being able to track a few different watched/unwatched lists is all I'd really want to see here. The same recordings, same favorites, etc would be fine just having a different list of what was watched or where a video was stopped for playback would be all I'd really need for the multiple user support.
  • Trakt Support. But only if there's multiple user support to link to different trakt accounts for watched/unwatched syncing and scrobbling for the current position. I really like just using trakt to keep track of what I'm watching and mark stuff there and sync to everything else since there's a lot of different ways to watch episodes.

The guide already indicates which shows are scheduled to be recorded by changing the color as long as the show isn't selected. However, as soon as that show is selected in the guide, the color changes so you don't know that it's already scheduled to be recorded. When selected, the color should turn red or another color to indicate that it's scheduled. Another feature that would be great to have would be if the guide color is changed to indicate that the show is already in the library and doesn't need to be re-recorded. That would cut down on duplicates.

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First this is a terrific product and service!

  1. Multiple user support
  2. Rotten tomatoes/IMDB or other ratings on all possible content including imported
  3. Black or a least dark purple theme.

Another thought - Channels needs to start distancing from EOL products...

HDHR CableCards
Harmony Remotes

I pretty much have the perfect setup at present (ATV, HDHRs for cablecard and OTA, and a harmony hub), and I'm scared that a wind shift that impacts either cablecards or TVE pretty much eliminates Channels in my house.

Maybe a remote app for iOS would be a good start?

  • I’d like to have commercial detection turned on by default but be able to override it in the “Record with Options” for things I want to record but do not plan to keep. This would be especially useful for really long things like sporting events or special news coverage that require significant time and CPU cycles to scan.
  • The ability to include part of the current buffer when starting a new recording on the current channel. Maybe something like “include X minutes before” in the “Record with Options”?
  • Scripting. If the server could execute user scripts for defined events (at least for recording scheduled, recording started, and recording ended, all supplying program name & channel) a lot of user wishlist items could be accomplished pretty easily. For example, I could use macOS automation to create an entry in the Reminders app when a program starts or a python script to move recordings from my SSD to my external HDD.

My wishes:

Im very happy with channels DVR. Thanks to the developers to continue to listen to the community and be responsive.

My wishlist going forward:

1: Please dont bog down the app and do what PLEX did. Please keep the core principle that channels has had and KEEP IT SIMPLE and efficient and not try to be everything to everyone.

2: enhance PIP and add multiview, allowing viewing up to 12 streams based on a custom list(s) of channels

i.e. news, sports, sunday football,

Similar to channels collections but for multiview.

There are ways on TVOS and ios to do this using IPTV. Which requires some hacking to get more than 4 channels. Its doable outside of the channels app, but its clunky and not ideal.

3: frame by frame advance (after pause) for those of us that like to read those little notes, roadsigns, easter eggs, that are part of the plot. And super slow motion for us sports nuts.

4: tailscale CLIENT integration, to go along with excellent tailscale server integration which you have implemented

5: under the hood optimizations to continue the reliable awesome service that we have become accustomed to and to KEEP IT SIMPLE

Whats keeping me from consuming all my media consumption from within channels

1: Record the streaming services that im am legally subscribed to without having to use playon integration (which does work very well)

2: make streamlinks as easy as giving a name of the service and login info, and list of series, etc, , and channels does the rest.

My crazy idea

Make channels THE go to place so that i can keep track of all my series that im subscribed to on all the streaming services, and allow for automated subscription and cancellation of the services after i have signed up and recorded my series, including free trial offers, promotional rates, etc.

It is a lot of work keeping track of all this stuff.

It is a lot of value that i would pay to channels as a service ADD ON for keeping track of this stuff for me, and being able to record stuff im subscribed to without pirating and without ever having to leaving the app.

AND …..

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To track the TV series I'm watching, I use this site: https://episodecalendar.com/. I think their free plan allows you to track something like 20 series.

I'll be honest, I spent this last week trying to find a good alternative for Channels. I tried Plex, Emby and Jellyfin. My thoughts are:

  • No other software has showed my shows better, with no transcoding, perfect audio and subtitles. All 3 other options had 1 or more issues on that.
  • I came back to Channels but I do miss more customization. For me the biggest issues with Channels DVR are:
    1 - Inability to re-order the channels on the guide any way I want;
    2 - Lack of customization on paths. I don't like having my TV and Movies libraries on the same directory of all the logs, databases and stuff.
    3 - The interface is too Apple-centric. Don't get me wrong, I work on a Macbook Pro but I hate Apple's visual design choices. I'd like to be able to customize the Android app to different colors and/or styles.
    4 - Lack of dark mode on the channels admin page

I'll add another one to the list: the ability for Channels to recognize MKV files in place of the original MPG recordings (same file name, except the file extension).

Use case:

  • original recording: TV\Daniel Boone\Daniel Boone S04E04 1967-10-05 Tanner 2022-12-23-0657.mpg

  • process it with a video editor to remove commercials from the file (precise editing at one frame level, which comskip is not capable of with 100% reliability all the time)

  • save the processed file as: TV\Daniel Boone\Daniel Boone S04E04 1967-10-05 Tanner 2022-12-23-0657.mkv

I like MKV for the added benefit of being able to add chapter markers, edit attributes in the header, etc.)

I know that the processed file has a different (smaller) size and time length but I think this is the only difficulty to handle.

Because of this, I (my family) only use Channels as a recorder. Viewing is done through PLEX with clean videos (no commercials and accurate transitions.)

--- Edit ---
After reading a thread a minute ago where somebody requested some type of device profiles, that reminded of another reason why we don't use Channels in my family as our main TV hub: the lack of user profiles.

  1. You can do this with channel collections

  2. There are some mods out there for the Android app

  3. Browser extension

Merge 4K and Bluray movies in the same folder under one poster and be able to choose which version to play.

TVDB or TMDB scanner for TV Shows like we can do now with movies.

Trakt integration.

Poster images for TV Shows and for Collections images.

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I think we do better and go further with Channel Collections. You can order your channels any way you want, while being able to make as many groups as your creativity lets you.


I would like the ability to:

  1. Automatically sync channels that were hidden on the server to all devices or add it in the client settings in case some people don't like that. I have 9 sources and when I go through and hide a lot of channels from Pluto, Samsung TV, Stirr, etc I have to manually sync those sources on all TVs/devices. A "sync all sources" button in the source settings on the device would be nice as well.

  2. Filter guide to a specific source on the app (similiar to the web version).

  3. Option to sort web guide in alphabetical order like on the app.

There are a ton of apps for this. My wish list is to not have to leave channels and go to another app.

  • Use crowdsourced data (maybe just from other Channels users) to show what's popular per time period (now/day/week/etc)

Skip Intro

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I'd love a client-side setting to disable the display of channel numbers in the guide. In my use cases it would clean up the interface in a significant way.

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