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Thread: Playing PC games on a TV that is in another room

  1. #1
    Registered: Jul 2001
    Location: Netherlands

    Playing PC games on a TV that is in another room

    I bought a new TV this week. It's an LG (9th generation).
    I have a PC with an nvidia video-card (gtx1080).
    The computer and the TV are in 2 separate rooms.
    PC and TV are connected via 1 Gbps wired ethernet.

    I would like to play games on my PC, and watch them on my TV in the other room.
    Is that possible ?

    The simplest thing to do would be to buy a 12 meter long HDMI cable.
    However, that would be a bit messy. It might be an acceptable short-term solution.
    But I'd prefer to make use of my existing ethernet-cables (which are underground).
    Or is 1 Gbps ethernet always too slow ?
    HDMI is several Gbps, I'd assume there would be some compression when doing HDMI(-like) over Ethernet.

    Nvidia had something called Shield. Would that do the trick ?
    But I believe they discontinued the product.
    Is there something software-only ?
    Would the LG be able to deal with that too ? Or do I need to buy a device to connect (via HDMI) to my TV ?

    Any suggestions are welcome.
    Thanks in advance.

    I know I also need to do something special for my input devices.
    I prefer to use an usb-mouse (marble trackball) and an usb-joystick (CHP).
    And maybe a usb-keyboard, whenever I need to type.
    I dislike controllers, and would prefer to play without one.
    I haven't found one yet, but I assume there are "wireless usb-hubs" ?
    Where you plug a dongle in your PC's usb-port, which talks wireless to the
    usb-hub in the other room, where I plug in my mouse and joystick.
    Or am I too optimistic ? Doesn't this stuff exist ?

  2. #2
    Registered: May 2004
    Well the perfect, easy solution would be a Steam Link, but they don't sell them anymore. You might see if a third party is selling them somewhere (I noticed there are a bunch on ebay and Amazon). I know the local GameStop bought a bunch when they were on sale for $5 then sold them for $20 (the list price on Steam was something like $40).

    Note: Despite the association with Steam, the games don't need to be Steam games. All the Steam Link does is mirror everything on your computer to your television.

    You can plug all your USB devices directly into the Steam Link and it's just like sitting at your computer. In the den where we use it, we primarily use it for watching videos and browsing the internet, and we only occasionally play games in that room.

    I think problems people have had with it involved the wireless connectivity, but we've always just had it hardwired to the network, so we've never had a problem. It's been a magically simple, effective little device for bringing games and media to a room where I didn't want to bother building and installing another PC.

  3. #3
    Registered: Jul 2001
    Location: Netherlands
    Thanks. I discussed this with a friend (over the phone) a few days ago. I thought he pointed me towards nVidia's shield device. But maybe he didn't, and I remembered it wrong, and he was talking about the Steam Link device. I'll check it out.

    Edit: it seems there are a lot of those still for sale, 2nd hand and kinda new. I see them offered 2nd hand, but "new in the box".

  4. #4
    Moderator and Priest
    Registered: Mar 2002
    Location: Dinosaur Ladies of the Night
    I've heard you can use a Raspberry Pi as a Steam Link-alike. Dunno how good it is, or how easy it is to set up, but it's something worth considering if you're looking for a cheap, flexible approach to streaming.

  5. #5
    Registered: Jul 2001
    Location: Netherlands
    Ooooohhhhhh ! Thanks for this suggestion ! (And again, Twist, thanks for pointing us towards Steamlink).

    A quick google immediately pointed me to this how-to video:

    It explains everything in detail.
    The Steamlink software comes as a premade package you can easily install with apt.
    I happen to have 3 Raspberry Pi's right now. 2 Pi3's with Volumio to listen to music (in my livingroom and bedroom).
    One of them also runs pi-hole (= dns filtering to get rid of advertisements on all your in-home devices).
    And I have an old Pi2.
    I was planning to buy a few new Pi4s this winter, to do some software/performance-testing for software I've been writing.
    (The new Pi4s can be ordered with 4GB ram. My testing needs that).
    So this is a good excuse to buy a first Pi4 this week.

    If I understand correctly (from that video), you can use a PS4-controller directly with the Pi, through the Pi's bluetooth.
    As you know, I dislike controllers.
    But maybe this is a good excuse to finally buy a PS4-controller.
    Then I can play Demon Souls in RPCS3 (PS3 emulator) on my PC, connect my TV and my new controller to my Raspberry Pi, and let the Steamlink software on the Pi connect them.
    Sounds worth trying.

    And maybe connecting my trackball and my joystick directly to the Raspberry Pi might even work.
    But I can try that later. First let's play Demon Souls. With a controller.

  6. #6
    Registered: Sep 2001
    Location: Qantas
    I have the Nvidia Shield. I use it mainly for Android TV, but I do occasionally use it for PC game streaming. I've used both Gamestream and Steam Link over 1Gb Ethernet. Both apps provide a playable experience, and most of the time I wouldn't be able to notice a difference. However, I've had more little hiccups, delays, and stability problems with Steam Link. Another point in favor of Gamestream, the GeForce Experience app auto-configures settings for the "supported" games it recognizes. A downside is that some Windows 10 users have had connection problems, but I'm still on Windows 7 for a couple more months and haven't had any issues.

  7. #7
    Registered: Jul 2001
    Location: Netherlands
    Thanks for the input, Heywood. But I had already decided to go the Steamlink-on-a-raspberry-pi way.

    I'm pretty familiar with Unix, so I always love to have a solution that is based on a Unix/Linux box over anything else. My satellite-receiver runs linux. I love that. This week I finally got fiber, so I have the option of having tv over ip over fiber. But I chose to keep my satellite subscription. One of the reasons is that I have full control over my receiver, while you have to use a shitty closed settop-box from your provider if you want to watch tv over fiber. My music-players are linux (Volumio). One of my music-players does pi-hole, so I have an extra layer of adblocking. Now my steamlink-box will be linux too. I bought a Zyxel NAS once. But I'm not using it, because it doesn't do exactly what I want. I might use a Pi-4 and build my own NAS soon.

    I'm using a new Pi4 as steamlink box, because the Pi3 can't do 4k video, and can't use the full bandwidth of its gb-ethernet. It came in the mail today. I got a a new ps4 controller (which I can use wireless over bluetooth with the pi/steamlink). Gonna put it together tonight. The first game I'm gonna play will be Journey. Slow game, so low framerates or other problems won't matter too much. Simple graphics, so 1 Gbps should be enough for the video. And slow gameplay, so I can get used to a controller. I'll post here how it goes (might take a few days before I have a reasonable judgement).

  8. #8
    Registered: Jul 2001
    Location: Netherlands
    I bought a Raspberry Pi4 and a Dualshock4 v2 controller.
    Result is a bit disappointing.

    The controller doesn't work wirelessly (no bluetooth on my PC, and the Raspberry Pi somehow doesn't want to pair with my controller).
    Controller works fine with a usb-cable.
    Playing 4k games on PC, displaying over steamlink on my 4k TV is pointless. Because steamlink seems to compress the 4k images to 1080 quality.
    Steamlink only does 100 Mbps max, even if you have 1 Gbps wired ethernet.
    Controller doesn't seem to work 100% correctly with steamlink when your game is not in your steam-library.
    Controller doesn't work at all with RPCS3 to play Demon Souls with steamlink. It works fine when playing directly on the PC.
    Colors on TV look crap. I need some hardware calibration. It seems it exists, but is relatively expensive.
    After upgrading my RPCS3, I can't seem to save my games in Demon Souls anymore.
    After upgrading my RPCS3, Demon Souls is still a bit stuttery on my PC.
    I can't believe people play games with a controller. So much loss of control (especially mouselook). It also seems impossible to use mouselook and roll at the same time.

    Edit: progress.
    1) I've successfully paired my controller with the Raspberry Pi over bluetooth.
    You need to use tool from the shell, called "bluetoothctl".
    For more details, see:
    I played Ethan Carter with my dualshock4 without encountering any problems.

    2) I've succeeded making Journey use my controller on the steamlink/raspberry-pi.
    All that was needed was to add Journey to my steam-library. And then start the game from Steam.
    I had a little trouble finding the "menu" button. But I found it.
    I was also confused that the game didn't save, unless you finish the whole first level.
    But now, everything seems to work. Pretty cool.

    I tried importing RPCS3 into steam as if it was a game.
    So I can play Demon Souls via Steamlink, and the dualshock4.
    Doesn't work. The controller doesn't seem to be recognized. I can't even pass the first screen with "click some button".
    Last edited by Gryzemuis; 17th Oct 2019 at 17:50.

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