Windows 7 Media Center : Setup Guide, Knowledge Base & Support - Page 3 - AVS Forum
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post #61 of 4662 Old 05-21-2010, 09:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by umdivx View Post

Looks good, only thing you might want to note, for those running 64bit version of windows, they need to have the x64 components as well and need to make the same adjustments in the x64 components as you do under the 32bit settings.

- Josh

Your guide is a little out of date because the latest version of Shark007 includes a couple other items that could be disabled during the custom install. There are also a few new checkboxes to consider in the Shark control panel.

Also, I was wondering with the x64 setup do you not switch to the 64 bit media player on the config tab? If not then why?

Somehow I screwed up my DXVA and my processor is averaging ~30% during a 1080p mkv. Rendering the file in Graphedit and playing it there is only about 8% usage. Nothing like tweaking a HTPC only to break something...

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post #62 of 4662 Old 05-21-2010, 10:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bryansj View Post

Your guide is a little out of date because the latest version of Shark007 includes a couple other items that could be disabled during the custom install. There are also a few new checkboxes to consider in the Shark control panel.

Also, I was wondering with the x64 setup do you not switch to the 64 bit media player on the config tab? If not then why?

Somehow I screwed up my DXVA and my processor is averaging ~30% during a 1080p mkv. Rendering the file in Graphedit and playing it there is only about 8% usage. Nothing like tweaking a HTPC only to break something...

I was wondering about the extra options too, seems as though most of the guide was taken from this http://www.mnmaven.com/2010/03/20/co...list-approach/

Which I'd used to set up my Shark007 pack, I left the extra options alone and haven't had any issues.
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post #63 of 4662 Old 05-21-2010, 10:43 AM
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@GreenEyez
The guide is the best I've seen, I will take my time to read it as it's very thorough and informative but I have a genuine question. Why use media browser instead of mediaportal?
Out of all the solutions I've tried I seem to have stuck on mediaportal/streamedmp (moving pictures/tv series).
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post #64 of 4662 Old 05-21-2010, 10:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bryansj View Post

Your guide is a little out of date because the latest version of Shark007 includes a couple other items that could be disabled during the custom install. There are also a few new checkboxes to consider in the Shark control panel.

Also, I was wondering with the x64 setup do you not switch to the 64 bit media player on the config tab? If not then why?

Somehow I screwed up my DXVA and my processor is averaging ~30% during a 1080p mkv. Rendering the file in Graphedit and playing it there is only about 8% usage. Nothing like tweaking a HTPC only to break something...

Well the guide I wrote here: http://www.mnmaven.com/2010/03/20/co...list-approach/ is out of date yes, because I wrote that back in March and shark's setup is ever changing and is always gradually evolving. Kind of hard with my work load and family responsibilities to always keep up with things like that.

My plan is to re-write it, or at least update it, make it more condense and keep it up to date, just haven't had time recently.

I do set my x64 component options to 64bit. I've tested both 32 and 64 and haven't seen a difference.

- Josh
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post #65 of 4662 Old 05-21-2010, 10:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 720p View Post

@GreenEyez
The guide is the best I've seen, I will take my time to read it as it's very thorough and informative but I have a genuine question. Why use media browser instead of mediaportal?
Out of all the solutions I've tried I seem to have stuck on mediaportal/streamedmp (moving pictures/tv series).

Well if you read the title of this post, "HTPC software guide for Windows 7 Media Center"

Says it all right there don't ya think?
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post #66 of 4662 Old 05-21-2010, 11:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by umdivx View Post

Well the guide I wrote here: http://www.mnmaven.com/2010/03/20/co...list-approach/ is out of date yes, because I wrote that back in March and shark's setup is ever changing and is always gradually evolving. Kind of hard with my work load and family responsibilities to always keep up with things like that.

My plan is to re-write it, or at least update it, make it more condense and keep it up to date, just haven't had time recently.

I do set my x64 component options to 64bit. I've tested both 32 and 64 and haven't seen a difference.

- Josh

In that case, thanks for that guide. I'm definitely not a fan of codec packs but I agree that shark007s is great, clean installation and simple. It would do well in this guide IMO.

This thread is a great idea, since the other 7MC add-on suggestions are welcomed! Thanks to both of you.
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post #67 of 4662 Old 05-21-2010, 01:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by umdivx View Post

Well if you read the title of this post, "HTPC software guide for Windows 7 Media Center"

Says it all right there don't ya think?

Yeah but 7MC comes with W7 you don't have to use it, you can use xbmc, boxee, etc. or mediaportal like I do. Does 7MC offer any advantages over mediaportal which is why it is used?

For example I understand the use of tmt3 (this is what I also use) over pdvd. tmt3 plays blu-ray and hd-dvd from folders while pdvd doesn't which makes it obsolete.

Having used 7MC I don't see any advantages over mediaportal infact the other way around. What am I missing?
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post #68 of 4662 Old 05-21-2010, 01:42 PM - Thread Starter
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The guide wrote by umdivx is indeed a little out of date, but i added the new codecs implemented by shark007 into his pack to the list of codecs that should be disabled during the installation, and also cleaned up the options that were already set-up by default so there was no need to modify them.
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post #69 of 4662 Old 05-21-2010, 01:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 720p View Post

Yeah but 7MC comes with W7 you don't have to use it, you can use xbmc, boxee, etc. or mediaportal like I do. Does 7MC offer any advantages over mediaportal which is why it is used?

For example I understand the use of tmt3 (this is what I also use) over pdvd. tmt3 plays blu-ray and hd-dvd from folders while pdvd doesn't which makes it obsolete.

Having used 7MC I don't see any advantages over mediaportal infact the other way around. What am I missing?

third party plug-ins, add-ons (media browser, my movies are two huge ones), dvring, cable card support (the biggest advantage of all), animated transitions, the gui, ease of use, a breeze to setup, ect...

but again the title of this thread is for media center, 7MC = Windows 7 Media Center

- Josh
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post #70 of 4662 Old 05-21-2010, 01:51 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 720p View Post

Yeah but 7MC comes with W7 you don't have to use it, you can use xbmc, boxee, etc. or mediaportal like I do. Does 7MC offer any advantages over mediaportal which is why it is used?

For example I understand the use of tmt3 (this is what I also use) over pdvd. tmt3 plays blu-ray and hd-dvd from folders while pdvd doesn't which makes it obsolete.

Having used 7MC I don't see any advantages over mediaportal infact the other way around. What am I missing?

Media Portal is harder to set up, especially for newbies. Also, from my personal experience, 7MC is the most stable and bug-free out of all of them, and has the cleanest/easy to use interface.
It takes 1 hour to setup everthing i wrote in the guide (including Win7 instalation), while i took me 4 hours to setup Media Portal and still had problems with it (random freezes, slow performance in some menus)

+ I like the look of the Diamond theme for MB and the tons of fanart available at the comunity tracker.
+ the plugins available for 7MC.

I will probably do a step-by-step XMBC and Media Portal guide/guides in the following week, so stay tuned if your interested in MP or XMBC. . I will take some time because i want to test everything before i start writing.
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post #71 of 4662 Old 05-21-2010, 01:54 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by umdivx View Post

Looks good, only thing you might want to note, for those running 64bit version of windows, they need to have the x64 components as well and need to make the same adjustments in the x64 components as you do under the 32bit settings.

- Josh

Ahh, forgot about the 64bit codecs, stupid me . I planned on writing about them but i forgot. Will add them tonight.
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post #72 of 4662 Old 05-21-2010, 01:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by umdivx View Post

The reason MPC-HC works is that it is using VOBsub to get sub titles working. My guide was first based on DXVA only, getting VC-1 and h.264 to playback studder free.

The other option you can do, outside of my guide, is to use FFDshow DXVA for all your codecs instead of MPC-HC codecs. This will get you DXVA and Subtitles as well.

If you want, you can install VOBsub as part of sharks and use that as well.

The OP seems to think that FFDshow DXVA is "too soft" in 7MC, I think it is more "natural" vs. an over saturated, over sharpened image, but to each is their own I guess.

- Josh

Thanks. I switched to FFDshow DXVA and, indeed, subtitles started working. However, they are always on, whether I want them or not. I checked that they are set to "off" in media center and also that they are not forced on in my MKVs, just to be sure. Any advice? Thanks again.
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post #73 of 4662 Old 05-21-2010, 04:09 PM - Thread Starter
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- Added 64bit settings for Shark007 (basically the same settings as the 32 configurator)
- Added more information about Media Browser and a initial configuration guide for media libraries.
- Added my personal theme at the Customization part, a Black & Titanium theme, formed of a mix match of different themes and icons i found over the internets (media browser community trackers/fan art, hack7mc), with icons for custom entry points (movies/tv shows/documentaries/rss feeds/outlook/mail/music bla bla.), made to be used with the Diamond theme for MB

Next up on the do-to list :
- A youtube video on how your HTPC should look/work after completing this guide.
- A mini Blu Ray ripping guide with Clown_BD
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post #74 of 4662 Old 05-21-2010, 10:50 PM - Thread Starter
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Houston, we have a problem. A big one.

umdivx - I`ve done some new testing regarding your config, and DXVA does not work when used with a subtitle filter, as i mentioned before in the first page.

See this image above. The video is DXVA complaint and plays fine with DXVA & subs in MPC-HC.

Also, for some strange reason, even if i deselected DirectVob sub in the instalation config, set ffdshow to be the default subtile handler, it still loads up vob-sub. From where? God knows, since it is cleary not installed, because when i click the vob sub settings it gives me a missing dll error (which is normal, since it is not installed).
LL
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post #75 of 4662 Old 05-21-2010, 11:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by umdivx View Post

That is because windows 7 has a built in AC3 decoder, mpeg2 decoder, and mpeg4 decoder that comes with windows.



Same goes for AVI's, Microsoft included their own divx decoder with windows. Are you playing .MKV's within 7MC?

- Josh

Yep, MKV's from within 7MC, just downloaded 720p content. My blu-rays are ripped to HD using Auto Rip n Compress with AnyDVD HD to a folder.
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post #76 of 4662 Old 05-21-2010, 11:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GreenEyez View Post

But can you bitstream HD audio for files stored in .mkv containers or m2ts/ts containers without ffdshow? No, you can`t.

Alot of people rip their movies into those formats. Solely for Blu ray disks/Blu ray disk folders, TMT 3 works flawlessy, ofc. But the guide is intended for playback of all HD content, stored in any container.

As for Catalyts 10.3, you have a Pioneer receiver. The EDID issue that got fixed in 10.4 was only affecting Denon/Onkyo/Sony receivers (not being able to bitstream True HD), there`s an entire thread about it.



EDIT // Section 1.2 involving the 7MC internal player and Sharks pack is done. Umdivx, i removed some of your steps since they were already selected by default in the configuration interface.

Next up is a more elaborated section about setting up Media Browser (libraries, installing plugins, options etc.)

I ripped my Blu-Rays to Folder using Auto Rip n Compress and AnyDVD HD. Both True-HD and DTS HD-Master play perfectly using TMT3.
I am in no way saying anything bad about Shark's pack, I have used it of a few years with Vista and 7. I just had the advantage of a fresh install, and saw so many people saying all you needed was Haali to play almost anything with W7, so I gave it a try, and so far it has worked well for me.
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post #77 of 4662 Old 05-22-2010, 06:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GreenEyez View Post

Houston, we have a problem. A big one.

umdivx - I`ve done some new testing regarding your config, and DXVA does not work when used with a subtitle filter, as i mentioned before in the first page.

See this image above. The video is DXVA complaint and plays fine with DXVA & subs in MPC-HC.

Also, for some strange reason, even if i deselected DirectVob sub in the instalation config, set ffdshow to be the default subtile handler, it still loads up vob-sub. From where? God knows, since it is cleary not installed, because when i click the vob sub settings it gives me a missing dll error (which is normal, since it is not installed).

As far as I've known, DXVA has always been broken with directvobsub, outside of mpc-hc. As umdivx stated above, you do get DXVA with subs using FFDshow DXVA. However, as I stated previously, I can't seem to get any control over the subs. They are in use no matter what, even when they are set to "off" in WMP/WMC and they are flagged as not forced in the MKV.
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post #78 of 4662 Old 05-22-2010, 07:11 AM
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GreenEyez,

I like the guide that you've put together. And the info sharing in this thread is helpful to me.

I've been using Shark this whole time, plus DVD10 and TMT. My question is about "Section 1.1 - Playback using MPC-HC as an external player." While I have not tried that configuration, are you stating MPC-HC codec are used behind the scenes when I select movies from within 7MC? Or is are you saying the MPC-HC app launches full screen when selecting movies from within 7MC.

Thanks...
-T
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post #79 of 4662 Old 05-22-2010, 08:30 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by heaphus View Post

As far as I've known, DXVA has always been broken with directvobsub, outside of mpc-hc. As umdivx stated above, you do get DXVA with subs using FFDshow DXVA. However, as I stated previously, I can't seem to get any control over the subs. They are in use no matter what, even when they are set to "off" in WMP/WMC and they are flagged as not forced in the MKV.

Yes, i know that DXVA is broken if you put an intermediate filter (VobSub in this case) between the decoder and renderer, but umdivx said something about getting both DXVA and subs with the MPC decoder following his guide. Or maybe i missunderstood and he was reffering to ffdshow DXVA. When he gets a chance to post, we`ll sort it out.

As for your problem, i think you need a separate plugin for controlling subs/audio via ffdshow or VobSub from your remote control called Media Control (download link) for the internal 7MC player. There was an even simpler one, called MCRemote (found on The Green Button website) for the same thing.

I just got home from a party and i`m a little drunk, so i can`t think straight. I`ll look into the problem tomorrow after i get some sleep. Meanwhile, see if you can configure Media Control, if not, i`ll do a mini walthrough tomorrow when i`m sober .

Ah, btw, do you use VobSub for subtitles? if so, there is a setting in the Direct VobSub aplication to always load subtitles, see if that is checked. That could be the reason subs always load.
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post #80 of 4662 Old 05-22-2010, 08:35 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by T-Bone View Post

GreenEyez,

I like the guide that you've put together. And the info sharing in this thread is helpful to me.

I've been using Shark this whole time, plus DVD10 and TMT. My question is about "Section 1.1 - Playback using MPC-HC as an external player." While I have not tried that configuration, are you stating MPC-HC codec are used behind the scenes when I select movies from within 7MC? Or is are you saying the MPC-HC app launches full screen when selecting movies from within 7MC.

Thanks...
-T

Yes, Media Browser has the ability to launch MPC-HC as an external player. It automatically minimizes 7MC and launches MPC-HC in fullscreen mode (if you set up MPC-HC just like i wrote in my guide). When you press the return button on the remote (if you mapped your keys just like in the example in Part 2.3) it closes MPC-HC and maximizes 7MC back. I takes 1 second to minimize and launch MPC-HC, and for the process to look more seameless i recommend putting a black wallpaper on your desktop and hiding the taskbar (the auto-hide option).
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post #81 of 4662 Old 05-22-2010, 11:07 AM
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Thanks for this great guide. I am in the process of re-installing windows 7 as we speak. Some issues with restarting and not loading into windows properly.

I'm going to use your software guide once windows is up and running. I like the idea of using the external MPC-HC player as it's my favorite desktop video player. I'll report back how things go!

It should be said that I pretty much had my copy of windows 7 up and running perfectly before with bitstreaming blu rays to a receiver and also playing DVD-A and multichannel audio files over hdmi. Hope to be back to normal within the day
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post #82 of 4662 Old 05-23-2010, 12:22 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smitty2k1 View Post

Thanks for this great guide. I am in the process of re-installing windows 7 as we speak. Some issues with restarting and not loading into windows properly.

I'm going to use your software guide once windows is up and running. I like the idea of using the external MPC-HC player as it's my favorite desktop video player. I'll report back how things go!

It should be said that I pretty much had my copy of windows 7 up and running perfectly before with bitstreaming blu rays to a receiver and also playing DVD-A and multichannel audio files over hdmi. Hope to be back to normal within the day

If you have issues with Win7 startup you can use the Startup Repair tool (from the boot menu that comes up after a reset), it solves alot of problems.
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post #83 of 4662 Old 05-23-2010, 12:31 AM - Thread Starter
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Now, i`ve done a couple of tests regarding ffdshow DXVA. Tested 10 movies, all DXVA compliant (5 encodes + 5 remuxes) and the results are still inconsistent. I noticed shuttering issuses and lower PQ (compared to ffdshow software decoding (ffmpeg-mt) and the mpc-hc decoder, , all 3 decoders used with WMP12). So until every issue is fixed regarding the ffdshow DXVA decoder, the Section 1.2 part of the guide will remain as it is, with the MPC-HC decoder used with the 7MC internal player and the limitation regarding subs&dxva.

The other issue is subtitle/audio control. When i was using the internal 7MC player, i had the Media Control plugin to get a drop-down menu with the options for choosing subs/audio tracks.
I`m going to include this in the guide, but i want to know if there are any other solutions for changing subs/audio tracks (from .mkv/m2ts/.ts containers played via the 7MC player) via the remote control. If anybody has a different metod, i`m welcome to sugestions.
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post #84 of 4662 Old 05-23-2010, 09:49 AM
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this is a great addition to the forums.

thanks for taking the time and effort to generate and consolidate a lot of this information man!
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post #85 of 4662 Old 05-23-2010, 11:17 AM - Thread Starter
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No problem, it`s my pleasure. AVSforum has offered me alot of solutions and very useful information since i started reading this forum 3 years ago, so it was about time i payed it back. I only hope that at some point a moderator can put this as a sticky under the hardware guide and media portal guide.

Next up on the to-do list, hope to finish them tonight :
-> controlling multiple subtitle/audio tracks for the 7MC player via Media Control plugin (with drop down menu)
-> Blu Ray Ripping guide using Another eac3to GUI to mkv containers.
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post #86 of 4662 Old 05-23-2010, 04:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GreenEyez View Post

Now, i`ve done a couple of tests regarding ffdshow DXVA. Tested 10 movies, all DXVA compliant (5 encodes + 5 remuxes) and the results are still inconsistent. I noticed shuttering issuses and lower PQ (compared to ffdshow software decoding (ffmpeg-mt) and the mpc-hc decoder, , all 3 decoders used with WMP12). So until every issue is fixed regarding the ffdshow DXVA decoder, the Section 1.2 part of the guide will remain as it is, with the MPC-HC decoder used with the 7MC internal player and the limitation regarding subs&dxva.

The other issue is subtitle/audio control. When i was using the internal 7MC player, i had the Media Control plugin to get a drop-down menu with the options for choosing subs/audio tracks.
I`m going to include this in the guide, but i want to know if there are any other solutions for changing subs/audio tracks (from .mkv/m2ts/.ts containers played via the 7MC player) via the remote control. If anybody has a different metod, i`m welcome to sugestions.

Upon further review, I've noticed similar glitches with ffdshow DXVA as well.

I was getting ready to play around with Media Control, but I'll wait for your upcoming write-up before I dive in.
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post #87 of 4662 Old 05-23-2010, 10:47 PM - Thread Starter
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Media Control configuration :
Download link

Install the software. During the instalation, on the Additional Tasks menu, uncheck "Media Control Entries", all of them. Next you will be prompted with a configuration menu

Remote control & keyboard tab
-> Assign Audio/Subtitles page to your prefferd button (Blue button for ex)
-> Remove the rest of the entries and click "Commit Changes"


Notifications / Tricks tab
-> enable Resume Movie
-> disable "Show the streams menu
-> Make sure "Use Media State Aggregation", "Enable Media Experience" and "Enable Advanced Features" are all enabled and the click Commit Changes

FFdshow configuration
-> click "Apply Minimal config" then commit changes again.

Result : now when you press the blue button (or whatever button you asigned) you will get a top-down menu with the list of subtitles/audio streams available and select the one/ones you like.

Will add this to the main guide later, when i get back from work.
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post #88 of 4662 Old 05-24-2010, 05:01 AM
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I've installed a few things and I used Fab to rip a couple of Blu Rays, movie only. I also did one of the same movies with MakeMKV for comparison. The MKV version was a bit smaller in size but I guess it was compressed.

I can play the MKV through VLC player. The Fab version would not play directly in SageTV nor 7MC initially. To get it to play in 7MC, I had to move the "stream" file out of the ripped movie folder that contained all of the other stuff that came from the rip. Then I could play it in Movie section of 7MC but NOT in Media Browser.

Under Media Browser only one icon would show up even though there are two movies in the folder. If I try to play it, it opens PowerDVD but still won't play. No problem for now as I'm just getting started with this stuff but I would like to resolve it at some point.

I was also trying to setup that AutoRip program. I'll be checking into that too but if it doesn't work out I can always do it with DVDFab I guess. Also, I'm not thrilled at the strain or use of resources that my HTPC seems to have going on when I'm ripping a BR. If I even try to open a web browser it takes a long time. I may do my ripping on a different system snd then just transfer the BR files via an external drive. I haven't had this problem when ripping DVDs.
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post #89 of 4662 Old 05-24-2010, 06:36 AM - Thread Starter
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MakeMKV is a remuxing application, it doesn`t do encoding. So the difference shoudn`t be more than a few hundred MB.

Playback for Blu ray folders works fine in Media Browser as long as you asociate TMT3 with Blu Ray in the Media Browser External Player config., as noted in my guide in Part 2.3 , MPC-HC/TMT3 integration in Media Browser.

You cannot put 2 movies in the same folder. You need ONE movie/per folder. I also explained that in Part 2.2 Important Notes

Read more carefully if you don`t want to have issues.

Remuxing depends on your HDD speed. Your remuxing a 20-30GB or more file, so ofc you hdd will be stressed, the more read/write operations the faster the process.

PS: VLC is a POS, low PQ compared to other players, crappy inneficient h.265/VC1 decoder, no DXVA
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post #90 of 4662 Old 05-24-2010, 08:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jackal55 View Post

I've installed a few things and I used Fab to rip a couple of Blu Rays, movie only. I also did one of the same movies with MakeMKV for comparison. The MKV version was a bit smaller in size but I guess it was compressed.

As said already MakeMVK just re-containers (ie remuxs) the streams. There is zero re-encoding done with MakeMKV.

Size difference, it could be that DVDFAB is ripping the entire disk not just the main movie, MakeMKV only does the main movie, nothing else.

Quote:
Under Media Browser only one icon would show up even though there are two movies in the folder. If I try to play it, it opens PowerDVD but still won't play. No problem for now as I'm just getting started with this stuff but I would like to resolve it at some point.

PowerDVD doesn't play blurays from folder format. You can only rip a blu ray to ISO and then mount said ISO so it looks like its playing from a physical disk. Only TMT3 will play back a ripped blu ray from folder format.

- Josh
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