VMware or Parallels for Windows HTPC software? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 07-29-2014, 08:13 AM - Thread Starter
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VMware or Parallels for Windows HTPC software?

Specifically interested in using XBMC, which is suppose to send HTS MA bitstreams over HDMI to your AVR.

My understanding is that there isn't any OS X software which will support HD audio.

Alternative would be BootCamp but I would be looking to do this from a MacBook Pro so the disk space will be at the premium (though I may play media from an external disk).
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post #2 of 9 Old 08-06-2014, 03:40 PM
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i have a mac mini. the first thing i did was bootcamp windows onto it. its a fantastic little box that works perfectly with HD audio now that windows works on it.
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post #3 of 9 Old 08-09-2014, 03:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wco81 View Post
Specifically interested in using XBMC, which is suppose to send HTS MA bitstreams over HDMI to your AVR.

My understanding is that there isn't any OS X software which will support HD audio.

Alternative would be BootCamp but I would be looking to do this from a MacBook Pro so the disk space will be at the premium (though I may play media from an external disk).
Since OSX in general sucks for HTPC use due to Apples incentive to not support HTPC infrastructure (API's) you are much better off using Windows for your multimedia playback/HTPC needs. There are many more options for software, and a much richer multimedia experience thanks to the DirectX architecture, which Apples API pale in comparison to. I own both mac's and pc's and after spending 3 years on a mac pro, have finally thrown in the towl, given up on OSX and am building a new PC. There is too much missing on the OSX side.
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post #4 of 9 Old 08-09-2014, 03:56 PM
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You don't need the mac os at all; just install Windows on the MacBook.
Unless, of course, you still plan to use the MacBook as a Mac, which would be a bad idea, since you want it to be an HTPC, which should be a dedicated machine.

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Did you really need to quote that entire post in your reply?
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post #5 of 9 Old 08-09-2014, 04:42 PM - Thread Starter
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I would only watch videos occasionally from the computer.

Otherwise, I'd get a Mac mini instead of a MacBook Pro.

The question is whether it would pass a bitstream of HD audio from a VM through the HDMI.
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post #6 of 9 Old 08-10-2014, 12:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wco81 View Post
I would only watch videos occasionally from the computer.

Otherwise, I'd get a Mac mini instead of a MacBook Pro.

The question is whether it would pass a bitstream of HD audio from a VM through the HDMI.
With OSX as the native OS I highly doubt it.
I dont think OSX has the ability to bistream advanced audio codecs????
Install windows via bootcamp and use that as the basis for your HTPC experience and your life will be much less painfull and you will experience a much richer HTPC experience and have many, many more options avaliable to you.
Good luck.
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post #7 of 9 Old 08-10-2014, 02:34 PM
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You will not be able to bitstream HD codecs when running VMware or Parallels, even if XBMC will work at all in a VM. You're much better just installing Windows through Boot Camp
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post #8 of 9 Old 08-11-2014, 05:24 AM
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I run a Bootcamp partition with Windows 7 on it, and it can bitstream HD audio to my receiver. I have no experience in virtual machines for this.
From what I've seen, Windows 8 will not let you bitstream the HD formats either. And no, same goes for OS X.
You will also need to host your video files on external hd's, if you want to share the files between partitions.

When I read up on it, it was only possible to get Windows Bootcamp to stream the HD formats using Media Player Classic and _not_ XBMC, due to it needs to apply the codecs/plugins (forgot the names for these, sry - but they are mentioned in the install guides). XBMC will not bitstream HD audio from my Bootcamp partition, so I scrapped the idea of using it - dont know if this has changed.

The downsides for this are the weak look of standard Windows filesystem to manage your files, and the need to change frame rate on the receiver to 24fps when booting up in Windows 7 to watch movies, to avoid syncing and frame errors.
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post #9 of 9 Old 08-11-2014, 08:43 AM - Thread Starter
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Hmm, wonder if something like WDTV wouldn't be simpler, though I'm not sure it bitstreams HD audio.
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