Arcsoft TotalMedia Theater vs. Power DVD Ultra for HD DVD/BD on Vista Media Center - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 21 Old 03-21-2008, 12:43 PM - Thread Starter
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There are ton of threads on using Power DVD Ultra and TotalMedia Theater for playback of HD DVD/BD on HTPCs. The problem is that it is difficult to find answers on which software package works better with Vista Media Center (I know they are not seamlessly integrated).

So can AVS users chime in and provide feedback on the pros and cons of each and/or provide recommendations on one or the other for HD DVD/BD playback with Vista Media Center.

I also read the My Movies now supports TotalMedia Theater which seems like big plus.

Sincerely,
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post #2 of 21 Old 03-21-2008, 01:25 PM
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It really depends on your needs.

1. HDD playback
2. No downsampling
3. BD+ support
4. Playback from original disk
5.....

None of the players will do everything.

The best compromise I have found so far is putting up with downsampling (that I can't hear) and using version 3319a of PowerDVD; but it is still a flawed program.

TMT seems better in some ways but although it plays back most stuff from HDD it won't do BD+ (the latest version of AnyDVD may have solved this though).

Also TMT does't seem to work on my hardware (Intel G35) so I can't really recommend it.

Best to wait for PowerDVD 8 and see if that offers more of what you want.

Adam
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post #3 of 21 Old 03-21-2008, 01:37 PM
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I own PowerDVD 7.3, WinDVD 9 Plus, Nero Showtime 4 and ArcSoft TMT. Further I have different MPC configurations for each codec in case all the programs fail to play. And you can believe when I'm saying: If you want to play all titles without flaws you have to buy all programs cause none of the players can play everything.
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post #4 of 21 Old 03-22-2008, 09:12 AM
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The only drawback currently with TMT (imo) is that it doesn't play MKV files. Everything else is fine.

Currently testing 3D with Sammy DLP, shutter glasses, and HTPC
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post #5 of 21 Old 03-22-2008, 10:50 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by taz291819 View Post

The only drawback currently with TMT (imo) is that it doesn't play MKV files. Everything else is fine.

Does it integrate with VMC or MCE2005? If not, is there a workaround?
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post #6 of 21 Old 03-22-2008, 12:39 PM
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TMT integrates with VMC.

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post #7 of 21 Old 09-19-2008, 01:58 PM
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PowerDVD and TMT both SUCK.

We just cant win. I just installed both of them yesterday, and neither will really work for me:

My setup:
Asus P5Q-EM on G45 chipset using the integrated X4500HD graphics (built for HD)
Vista 32 bit
My Movies and AnyDVD
Blue ray/HD DVD optical drive as well as ISO's ripped to disk

TMT 2.1.6.121:
I am experiencing artifacting and tearing effects playing BD from ISO (or from the DVD drive).

Totally unacceptable - no need to elaborate further.

PowerDVD 8.0.1830.50:
No artifacting, PQ looks great. However, clicking Pause/Play or scrubbing to a point in the movie... you are SCREWED. It will either lock up /crash the app, or now play the audio so far out of sync its insane. If you hit play and leave it that way through the WHOLE movie NEVER touching the controls... everything seems ok. But who the heck wants to have a player with controls YOU CANT USE?

Totally unacceptable - no need to elaborate further.


Conclusion:
We just cant win. Not only does each app have strengths the other doesn't, but both have weaknesses that are completely unacceptable, making usage of either one completely pointless.

So... will the real and true, flawless Blu Ray software player PLEASE come forward and make yourself known!

-roachslayer


Note about VMC integration:
TMT does not integrate with MyMovies/VMC any different than PowerDVD 8. Both need Virtual CloneDrive to mount the ISO (the latest Daemon Tools as of today doesnt work, so stick with CloneDrive), and both run outside of VMC. TMT does a nicer job with perception though, because the transition from VMC to TMT is seamless (you dont even realize it happened, plus the player controls mimic VMC so the look and feel is as if you are still in VMC, even though you aren't. Nice touch TMT. But dang... fix this crappy artifacting in playback!
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post #8 of 21 Old 09-19-2008, 02:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roachslayer View Post

PowerDVD and TMT both SUCK.

We just cant win. I just installed both of them yesterday, and neither will really work for me:

My setup:
Asus P5Q-EM on G45 chipset using the integrated X4500HD graphics (built for HD)
Vista 32 bit
My Movies and AnyDVD
Blue ray/HD DVD optical drive as well as ISO's ripped to disk

TMT 2.1.6.121:
I am experiencing artifacting and tearing effects playing BD from ISO (or from the DVD drive).

Totally unacceptable - no need to elaborate further.


Take the above comment with a large grain of salt. I have the same setup with (x32 and x64) and I have had no issues with TMT playing from BD disks or BD ISOs. Some is wrong with the build.
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post #9 of 21 Old 09-19-2008, 02:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roachslayer View Post

PowerDVD and TMT both SUCK.

We just cant win. I just installed both of them yesterday, and neither will really work for me:

My setup:
Asus P5Q-EM on G45 chipset using the integrated X4500HD graphics (built for HD)
Vista 32 bit
My Movies and AnyDVD
Blue ray/HD DVD optical drive as well as ISO's ripped to disk

TMT 2.1.6.121:
I am experiencing artifacting and tearing effects playing BD from ISO (or from the DVD drive).

Totally unacceptable - no need to elaborate further.

PowerDVD 8.0.1830.50:
No artifacting, PQ looks great. However, clicking Pause/Play or scrubbing to a point in the movie... you are SCREWED. It will either lock up /crash the app, or now play the audio so far out of sync its insane. If you hit play and leave it that way through the WHOLE movie NEVER touching the controls... everything seems ok. But who the heck wants to have a player with controls YOU CANT USE?

Totally unacceptable - no need to elaborate further.


Conclusion:
We just cant win. Not only does each app have strengths the other doesn't, but both have weaknesses that are completely unacceptable, making usage of either one completely pointless.

So... will the real and true, flawless Blu Ray software player PLEASE come forward and make yourself known!

-roachslayer


Note about VMC integration:
TMT does not integrate with MyMovies/VMC any different than PowerDVD 8. Both need Virtual CloneDrive to mount the ISO (the latest Daemon Tools as of today doesnt work, so stick with CloneDrive), and both run outside of VMC. TMT does a nicer job with perception though, because the transition from VMC to TMT is seamless (you dont even realize it happened, plus the player controls mimic VMC so the look and feel is as if you are still in VMC, even though you aren't. Nice touch TMT. But dang... fix this crappy artifacting in playback!

Are you sure it is not your G45 that SUCKS?

I use an ATI 4850 and I do not get any tearing in TMT and I have never had any problems fast forwarding or skipping in PowerDVD. I use Windows XP though. Maybe it is Windows Vista that SUCKS as well?

My overall impression of the two solutions is that TMT still has problems with shortcut keys and it still refuses to play some discs. However, PowerDVD 8 works flawlessly in my setup. I even have it playing HD-DVD .iso files!
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post #10 of 21 Old 09-19-2008, 02:27 PM
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I must be lucky, I have 5 systems running with TMT, TheaterTek and MyMovies and they all work great together in VMC. This is with a clean install of OS, TMT, TT and MyMovies, no other 3rd party video applications or codec's. I had problems with two systems until I did a clean OS install.

1- GA-G33M-S2H 2- GA-73PVM-S2H 2- GA-EP35-DS3L All use MSI N9500GT noise free edition graphics cards.
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post #11 of 21 Old 09-19-2008, 03:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carrera1 View Post

Take the above comment with a large grain of salt. I have the same setup with (x32 and x64) and I have had no issues with TMT playing from BD disks or BD ISOs. Some is wrong with the build.

TMT seems to be very temperamental. I tried it and half the keyboard shortcuts don't work when playing a disc that uses BD-J. Other people don't have this problem. So you've definitely got to try it out for yourself first.
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post #12 of 21 Old 09-19-2008, 04:06 PM
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"No other codecs" I agree.

"The purpose of diplomacy is to prolong a crisis." Spock, Mark of Gideon, TOS
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post #13 of 21 Old 09-19-2008, 10:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carrera1 View Post

Take the above comment with a large grain of salt. I have the same setup with (x32 and x64) and I have had no issues with TMT playing from BD disks or BD ISOs. Some is wrong with the build.

There is no grain of salt, this is quite real. However, the fact that something is not configured right is entirely possible. So I agree, its possible not everyone is going to have a bad experience as described. But what I described happening cannot be dismissed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mpgxsvcd View Post

Are you sure it is not your G45 that SUCKS?

I use an ATI 4850 and I do not get any tearing in TMT and I have never had any problems fast forwarding or skipping in PowerDVD. I use Windows XP though. Maybe it is Windows Vista that SUCKS as well?

My overall impression of the two solutions is that TMT still has problems with shortcut keys and it still refuses to play some discs. However, PowerDVD 8 works flawlessly in my setup. I even have it playing HD-DVD .iso files!

Pixelation issues is nothing to do with Vista. Vista is not what is sucking. As for the G45, I have not seen any other complaints like this. I wont discount the 4850 is superior, but the X4500HD with the G45 chipset setup is well into the robust side of the line for this. Furthermore, the fact that PowerDVD plays the video with perfect quality would imply without question both Vista and the G45 video are working excellent, and that TMT is what is struggling.

Please consider the facts before discounting a guys desscription of a problem. Talking smack about things (like Vista) for the sake of talking smack does not take a lot of IQ, but analyzing the actual problem may.

I have HD-DVD too, but I have not tried that. I will do that next. So far, its Blu Ray that is surfacing these issues.


Quote:
Originally Posted by DJWikiera View Post

I must be lucky, I have 5 systems running with TMT, TheaterTek and MyMovies and they all work great together in VMC. This is with a clean install of OS, TMT, TT and MyMovies, no other 3rd party video applications or codec's. I had problems with two systems until I did a clean OS install.

Same here. Clean install, no 3rd party anything. I just installed Vista and the necessary components brand new before discovering the issues as described.

Glad to hear about your success though. It gives me hope that its just a config issue somewhere.

On that note... could it be that TMT is freaking out because PowereDVD was installed? And vice versa?
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post #14 of 21 Old 09-20-2008, 12:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mpgxsvcd View Post

Are you sure it is not your G45 that SUCKS?

I use an ATI 4850 and I do not get any tearing in TMT and I have never had any problems fast forwarding or skipping in PowerDVD. I use Windows XP though. Maybe it is Windows Vista that SUCKS as well?

mpgxsvcd

For PowerDVD 8 Ultra
Could you post the keyboard shortcuts for skip forward, skip backward, fast forward, fast rewind?

For HD and Bluray if they are different.

Thanks
Scat
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post #15 of 21 Old 09-20-2008, 04:30 AM
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I have used TMT PDVD8 and win dvd9
They all worked ok and TMT plays all files , I would say for PQ pdvd is best
For sound windvd is best but it has problems with some disc's and locks up if I use any dvd.
Tmt ok but PQ slightly pale.
As others have said though some bd's are better on different software.
Terminator 2 was very quiet on pdvd but on windvd it was great.
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post #16 of 21 Old 09-20-2008, 08:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roachslayer View Post


Same here. Clean install, no 3rd party anything. I just installed Vista and the necessary components brand new before discovering the issues as described.

Glad to hear about your success though. It gives me hope that its just a config issue somewhere.

On that note... could it be that TMT is freaking out because PowereDVD was installed? And vice versa?

It's possible the order in which they were installed could cause a problem. TMT then PDVD ver. 7.3.3319a worked ok. Haven't used any other ver. of PDVD since TMT does everything I want.
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post #17 of 21 Old 09-20-2008, 10:37 AM
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I had pdvd on my system first for a good while then windvd9 and last was tmt
I have had no issues other than windvd does not like all discs.
Previouslt though on another machine I had a lot of sound problems whaen using tmt and found i was the codec pack I was using that was the problem.
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post #18 of 21 Old 09-20-2008, 12:19 PM
 
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If TMT and PDVD are both on the system at the same time, I have read that this causes many issues with both players. Try just one at a time.

For me, TMT is the best solution. I own HD-DVDs and the other players think they all vanished off the face of the Earth when BR won the format war. Since TMT understands they did not suddenly disintegrate and cease to exist, they support HD-DVD still.

One nice thing about TMT is you can download the trial. It is a fully functional trial. See if it works for you.

As a note, the repeater issue with the Intel boards is solved, but not in an official patch yet. That will be released shortly.
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post #19 of 21 Old 09-20-2008, 12:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cybrsage View Post

As a note, the repeater issue with the Intel boards is solved, but not in an official patch yet. That will be released shortly.

I believe .125 has "officially" been released now.

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post #20 of 21 Old 10-09-2008, 10:27 AM
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Can anyone tell me what codecs they have on an XP system with TMT that works?
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post #21 of 21 Old 10-09-2008, 11:50 AM
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Quote:
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Can anyone tell me what codecs they have on an XP system with TMT that works?

um the codecs that come with TMT?

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