Official Ceton Echo Extender Info Thread - Page 25 - AVS Forum
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post #721 of 7721 Old 06-17-2012, 06:23 AM
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Could it be possible that Ceton make this extender an all-in-one player like Sage HD300 used or could have been? Where you can watch livetv, recorderd tv, blu-rays, dvd, every single video format but with the MCE interface and all the online services in every single TV in your house without paying a monthly premium fee for it? Probably not.
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post #722 of 7721 Old 06-17-2012, 06:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gabrielcab View Post

Could it be possible that Ceton make this extender an all-in-one player like Sage HD300 used or could have been? Where you can watch livetv, recorderd tv, blu-rays, dvd, every single video format but with the MCE interface and all the online services in every single TV in your house without paying a monthly premium fee for it? Probably not.

That's what some of are expecting, or at least hoping. I suspect they'll at least find a way to get MKV rips working- that would be good enough for me (but hopefully they'll also get PGS subtitles working then too).

Online video is different. Does the Xbox even get Netflix while in the WMC interface? I didn't think it did. But, its not like Sage had any decent support for streaming either. PlayOn works, but the video quality isn't very good and it's pretty quirky.
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post #723 of 7721 Old 06-18-2012, 10:52 AM
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Agreed - if it can play high bit rate MKVs w/out issue (aka better than the xbox can), I'm already sold. Regarding the online video - IMHO, it should support this but the tricky part is whether or not it will be in the native extender interface - big question marks here.

If it can't, hopefully Ceton can make transitions in and out of the extender interface w/out it feeling like two different worlds. HP x280ns have/had something like this but it is completely disconnected from WMC.
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post #724 of 7721 Old 06-18-2012, 07:59 PM
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Originally Posted by tgrinch View Post

Regarding the online video - IMHO, it should support this but the tricky part is whether or not it will be in the native extender interface - big question marks here.

I wouldn't be surprised to see Netflix support, but I suspect Ceton is too small to attract the attention of other streaming services, like Hulu. But, I'd certainly love to see support for Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon.

Regarding the native extender interface- I can't imagine that will ever happen. Netflix, who is generally pretty flexible about things, wouldn't let Boxee get away with that.
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post #725 of 7721 Old 06-20-2012, 10:02 AM
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Just a few small questions , I see people asking for AVI, MKV support and ISO mounting and Netflix. I can already do this with an xbox 360 extender and a few plugins on 7MC all from a 7MC Hyper-V VM, and all through the MCE interface on the 360. Granted some of the layout could be nicer but it still works (Wasn't that easy getting it there though).

I am frustrated with the lack of Video_TS support and all of the hoops you need to jump through to watch a typical MPG file on the 360. That is a real PITA!

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post #726 of 7721 Old 06-20-2012, 10:39 AM
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Originally Posted by skybolt View Post

Just a few small questions , I see people asking for AVI, MKV support and ISO mounting and Netflix. I can already do this with an xbox 360 extender and a few plugins on 7MC all from a 7MC Hyper-V VM, and all through the MCE interface on the 360.

But you can't watch full-bitrate BD rips, nor can you get HBR audio via the 360.

See what an anamorphoscopic lens can do, see movies the way they were meant to be seen
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post #727 of 7721 Old 06-20-2012, 12:22 PM
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Originally Posted by skybolt View Post

Just a few small questions , I see people asking for AVI, MKV support and ISO mounting and Netflix. I can already do this with an xbox 360 extender and a few plugins on 7MC all from a 7MC Hyper-V VM, and all through the MCE interface on the 360. Granted some of the layout could be nicer but it still works (Wasn't that easy getting it there though).
I am frustrated with the lack of Video_TS support and all of the hoops you need to jump through to watch a typical MPG file on the 360. That is a real PITA!

That is the issue, any TV experience should be realize from a seated position with a drink in on hand and a remote in the other hand. If anyone want to play a movie from netflix,mkv, rip it shouldn't be how it is now with the xbox and MCE. Right now anyone having an xbox to act like a full extender is like having a '89 mitsubishi custom fit race car where even for starting it you have to open the dash and tweak some parts to start the engine, only a mechanic can have such a car. The same is with the MCE, only a computer geek could maintain it. Hope someday MS and Ceton could sort it out and make our lives simpler using only the thumb.
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post #728 of 7721 Old 06-20-2012, 12:59 PM
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Computer geek? I guess so, huh? Not for everybody but I sure like it. I get almost as much enjoyment out of tweeking it as I do watching it.

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post #729 of 7721 Old 06-21-2012, 10:06 AM
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Originally Posted by stanger89 View Post

But you can't watch full-bitrate BD rips, nor can you get HBR audio via the 360.

No you can't, I totally agree that the 360 is not a great extender.
Perhaps I misunderstood but, it seemed that some have posted (I know not you) that AVI and MKV can't be played at all.
H.264 video with DTS encoded audio works real well though (At least in my testing). But as you pointed out full support is not supported...
Typical M$ amost there but not quite yet ... Then they stop ...

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post #730 of 7721 Old 06-21-2012, 10:12 AM
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The 360 is just fine as a TV extender, but little else with WMC. Hopefully the Echo will be more like the Sage HDs in this respect.
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post #731 of 7721 Old 06-21-2012, 10:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gabrielcab View Post

That is the issue, any TV experience should be realize from a seated position with a drink in on hand and a remote in the other hand. If anyone want to play a movie from netflix,mkv, rip it shouldn't be how it is now with the xbox and MCE. Right now anyone having an xbox to act like a full extender is like having a '89 mitsubishi custom fit race car where even for starting it you have to open the dash and tweak some parts to start the engine, only a mechanic can have such a car. The same is with the MCE, only a computer geek could maintain it. Hope someday MS and Ceton could sort it out and make our lives simpler using only the thumb.

I totally agree with you, getting these things working is not much fun and it definetly does not work out of the box. It does take a lot tweaking to make things "Almost Right". MCE in general is awefull out of the box (IMHO) not sure why anyone not capable of tweaking it would want to use it. But then again, that's why we visit these forums isn't it?

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post #732 of 7721 Old 06-21-2012, 10:20 AM
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Originally Posted by slowbiscuit View Post

The 360 is just fine as a TV extender, but little else with WMC. Hopefully the Echo will be more like the Sage HDs in this respect.

Agreed, it works real well with the HDHR Prime. Could not ask for anything more from that perspective. And yes hopefully the Echo will be like the Sage HD300, that would be - SWEEEEET!

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post #733 of 7721 Old 06-23-2012, 06:01 PM
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Instead of investing in development of the Echo, how about programming extender apps for TVs or Blu-ray players from Samsung, LG or Panasonic? Because playback with extenders is generally more reliable than from an HTPC, the first Windows Media Center experience should be with an extender. Very often when playback fails on Windows Media Center playback on an extender works from the same HTPC.

With Windows Media Center becoming a separate install with Windows 8, perhaps Ceton could convince Microsoft to allow them to offer home servers with Windows Server 2012 and the Media Center add-on installed? This would reduce network traffic by half in the case of watching recorded or live TV on an extender. But, because the backend, server portions of media center already exist incorporating just the back end in a possible Windows Home Server 2012 would be ideal; allowing just extenders (TVs, Blue-ray players or even Xbox 720) connecting to Media Center running on a server.
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post #734 of 7721 Old 06-23-2012, 08:00 PM
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Have you guys seen this?

http://m.engadget.com/2012/06/23/two-more-nails-in-the-coffin-for-media-center-start-up-options/?icid=eng_latest_art

Doesn't really bode well, I wish there were an alternative to WMC.
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post #735 of 7721 Old 06-24-2012, 08:48 AM
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Originally Posted by nycjoe77 View Post

Have you guys seen this?
http://m.engadget.com/2012/06/23/two-more-nails-in-the-coffin-for-media-center-start-up-options/?icid=eng_latest_art
Doesn't really bode well, I wish there were an alternative to WMC.


For the last few years now I have been saying that Microsoft's ultimate goal is to get rid of Media Center.

Originally Microsoft sold Media Center on the fact that the internet would give you vast amounts of Free TV & entertainment as well as put all your video , music and pictures into a system that you could use anywhere you had a PC or extender in your home.
I think Media Center was way ahead of it's time and is only now something that people even want and look at seriously as an option.

Microsoft could make Media Center an incredible tool that would be used by many more, and that is the problem. Microsoft has figured out that offering software that allows you to get Free TV and other entertainment is wrong when they can charge you and form alliances with the Cable / Satellite providers and other companies that own the channels we find on Cable / Satellite. Those said Companies do not want to be in bed with someone that allows people to circumvent paying.

Microsoft wants to do away with Media Center and make you use their Game Consoles instead.
Right now Media Center allows us to do many things for free through third party software that you have to pay for on XBOX 360. If you want to watch Netflix or Amazon Prime, you first have to pay for XBOX Live.

With Media Center we can pretty much watch whatever we want, whenever we want through the use of third party software.
When using Playon, you can watch just about anything on an XBOX 360 extender and you do not need to pay for XBOX Live.
Microsoft does not like that. It is just a guess, but I would say that the next console may not be a Media Center Extender. Microsoft does not want you to be able to stream your Blu-Ray collection or even your DVD collection to extenders. They want you to use Pay Per View on the XBOX 360. They want you to subscribe to Comcast and others and have to use the XBOX 360.

The days of Microsoft touting FREE INTERNET TV are over. Things like Tuner Salad allow us to put multiple tuners on Media Center and record many channels at one time using Over the Air Signals with the highest HD quality. Again Microsoft does not like that, We are getting something for free again that they can charge us for.

Think about it. When using an XBOX 360 by itself... there is no third party software. it is Microsoft's way or the highway. By getting rid of Media Center it stops all the third party software that allows us to do what we need to make a Free TV system.

I am really looking forward to the Ceton Echo, but even more so for a company to come out with Media Center like software that you put on the main computer in your home and then use a product like the Ceton Echo in each room of your home. Even though we have not gotten many details so far... I believe that the Echo could be crippled when using it with current Media Center PC's. It's full potential will be with the main Ceton Q. Again the Ceton Q product will probably be locked down against third party software.

The great thing about an extender is that I do not have many programs running that I continually need to manage updates on. I have 5 XBOX 360's in my home as well as a 42TB server and 4 PC's, one of which is a home theater PC. We also have one Popcorn Hour C-200. The one company that comes out with software like Media Center and also offers an extender that can be updated and is powerful enough to playback all audio and video formats will make a killing in this market.

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post #736 of 7721 Old 06-24-2012, 08:55 AM
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Don't mean to criticize by paragraphs make reading much easier.

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post #737 of 7721 Old 06-24-2012, 09:06 AM
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I think you guys are way over thinking this. If/when MS kills Media Center I highly doubt it's because of some vast conspiracy to stop people getting stuff off the internet for free, it's because there's probably just not enough users to justify MS continuing to invest in the platform. Especially one that doesn't bring in any revenue directly. In fact, in that regard , having WMC separate in Win 8 could be a good thing, WMC will bring in revenue directly and could show MS it's worth continuing.

As for the Ceton, yeah, it will probably be relatively locked down, but again, not because of any big conspiracy to deprive you of your free internet TV, but because you're not it's target market. The target market of the Q is people who want a solution that records TV, and just works. People like me who want something more than a Tivo, but don't care for a solution that can get every last obscure web streaming, new fad that comes along.

As far as being able to watch everything on a 360 via Playon, well the quality sucks and the functionality just doesn't work that great due to Playon's SD transcoding. Those two things alone are worth me flipping over to my Xbox or Roku for Netflix or Amazon.

And finally, getting rid of Media Center doesn't stop anything. You can still stream all that free internet TV. And there are lots of options for recording OTA TV if that's what you want. In fact the only thing it does stop is recording Cable, which you have to pay for and I thought this whole conspiracy was to force you to pay for cable, so why is MS making it so you want to drop cable more?

See what an anamorphoscopic lens can do, see movies the way they were meant to be seen
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post #738 of 7721 Old 06-24-2012, 09:50 AM
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Some of us don't want to drop cable or use OTA, we just want to drop renting STB's or paying rediculous amounts for a TiVo and then additional rediculous amonts for guide service. I wouldn't mind paying for a guide service via silicondust or Ceton or even a third party as long as the associated DVR works with copy protected content and is a lot cheaper than other solutions currently available.

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post #739 of 7721 Old 06-24-2012, 12:42 PM
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I'll happily pay MS, Ceton or anyone a fair monthly amount IF the MCE becomes a one stop pit for every single video/music format I can play using a tv like remote with no weekly tweaks to make it work.

If MS kill MCE is not for not having enough users, is for not promoting MCE efficiently, not letting other PC act as an extender and limiting so much the Xbox on what is capable to do and for having the self inflicted "Almost Works" seal on everything related with MCE. Something that could be as easy as press the play button on a MCE remote could become a nightmare for a non-tech user. We are not talking about a small backyard workshop, we are talking about MS and its virtual unlimited resources that could make MCE a standard on any TV of the world if wanted to.
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post #740 of 7721 Old 06-25-2012, 03:36 PM
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Because Media Center exists in many PCs running Windows in homes and will not be included with Windows 8, instead of making the Echo a priority for 2012, Ceton should make extender software available for devices people already own--TVs and Blu-ray players. Adding an "app" to a TV or a Blu-ray player would likely be easier and less error prone than installing Media Center to Windows 8.

It is reasonable to assume that time to market for the software would be faster than the Echo and the Q, sufficiently in advance of Windows 8's arrival. Such software could also potentially generate interest in devices such as the Q. I think this software would also have been a better place to apply resources before creating Windows Phone, Android and iOS apps. Apps such as these already exist while third party Media Center Extenders have been universally discontinued.

Samsung, LG and Panasonic all have developer programs. Ceton could survey existing customers to determine which platform to support first.

Would people here prefer a new box, like the Echo, or have their TV act as an extender? Would you consider buying (or replacing) a Blu-ray player or TV, if it would act as an extender?
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post #741 of 7721 Old 06-25-2012, 05:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DonTHB View Post

Because Media Center exists in many PCs running Windows in homes and will not be included with Windows 8, instead of making the Echo a priority for 2012, Ceton should make extender software available for devices people already own--TVs and Blu-ray players. Adding an "app" to a TV or a Blu-ray player would likely be easier and less error prone than installing Media Center to Windows 8.
It is reasonable to assume that time to market for the software would be faster than the Echo and the Q, sufficiently in advance of Windows 8's arrival. Such software could also potentially generate interest in devices such as the Q. I think this software would also have been a better place to apply resources before creating Windows Phone, Android and iOS apps. Apps such as these already exist while third party Media Center Extenders have been universally discontinued.
Samsung, LG and Panasonic all have developer programs. Ceton could survey existing customers to determine which platform to support first.
Would people here prefer a new box, like the Echo, or have their TV act as an extender? Would you consider buying (or replacing) a Blu-ray player or TV, if it would act as an extender?

Just because a company has a developer program doesn't mean they'll take every app that is offered to them. Writing extender apps would be different for every device, debugging would be a nightmare, and there would be potential licensing issues in developing an extender app on such platforms. I think it's actually more reasonable to assume that bringing the Echo and Q to market would be faster than writing extender apps for various platforms - Ceton has much tighter control over everything when the device is more of a closed system. Additionally, all interested users would be able to make use of their product.

If I've got a large screen Mitsubishi or Sony TV that I'm perfectly happy with, I'm not going to replace it with one from Samsung, LG, or Panasonic just to get a WMC extender app as I'd take a HUGE loss on the sale of the used TV. Similarly, I'm not going to throw out an excellent Bluray player I have just to buy a lesser one because it includes a WMC extender app.

Similarly, if I had a TV with such an app and wanted a new TV, I wouldn't want to constrain myself to only the TV's that still have that feature.

So in short, I would most definitely prefer a new box like the Echo to having the feature integrated in my TV or Bluray player.
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post #742 of 7721 Old 06-25-2012, 05:38 PM
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Like you, I hate all-in-one solutions. Not only are they mediocre at each thing they do , if one component fails you have to replace the whole thing even if the rest of it works.

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post #743 of 7721 Old 06-26-2012, 06:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DonTHB View Post

Because Media Center exists in many PCs running Windows in homes and will not be included with Windows 8, instead of making the Echo a priority for 2012, Ceton should make extender software available for devices people already own--TVs and Blu-ray players. Adding an "app" to a TV or a Blu-ray player would likely be easier and less error prone than installing Media Center to Windows 8.
It is reasonable to assume that time to market for the software would be faster than the Echo and the Q, sufficiently in advance of Windows 8's arrival. Such software could also potentially generate interest in devices such as the Q. I think this software would also have been a better place to apply resources before creating Windows Phone, Android and iOS apps. Apps such as these already exist while third party Media Center Extenders have been universally discontinued.
Samsung, LG and Panasonic all have developer programs. Ceton could survey existing customers to determine which platform to support first.
Would people here prefer a new box, like the Echo, or have their TV act as an extender? Would you consider buying (or replacing) a Blu-ray player or TV, if it would act as an extender?

The way I understood is that Media Center WILL be included in Home versions of Windows 8, and will be available as add-on for the business (Professional) versions. Did MSFT change that since the original announcement?

The original announcement made sence, since most businesses don't have the need for Media Center, which is clearly meant for the home user.

6 TV's in the house on FiOS and we only pay $4.99/month to connect them all!!! Power to the CableCard and WMC7!!!
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post #744 of 7721 Old 06-26-2012, 06:27 AM
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Like you, I hate all-in-one solutions. Not only are they mediocre at each thing they do , if one component fails you have to replace the whole thing even if the rest of it works.
I agree. A TV should be nothing more than a display device. The option for audio or video decoding is nice as long as it can be fully bypassed. Once upon the a time, the AV industry was promising a way to inter-connect various devices and have them operate as one using a standardized platform and FireWire. Now that FireWire is dying off, it appears that nobody is taking the lead in these efforts. Maybe Ceton could take up the cause after they get the Q and Echo into the marketplace.
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post #745 of 7721 Old 06-26-2012, 07:20 AM
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Originally Posted by blueiedgod View Post

The way I understood is that Media Center WILL be included in Home versions of Windows 8, and will be available as add-on for the business (Professional) versions. Did MSFT change that since the original announcement?
The original announcement made sence, since most businesses don't have the need for Media Center, which is clearly meant for the home user.

I think you misinterpreted their announcement. Media Center, and the previously built-in mpeg2 decoder, will not be included in any version of Windows 8. It will ONLY be an add-on for the Professional version. Meaning, if you have a system with the Home version of Windows 8, you'll need to first upgrade that to Professional, then you'll have to buy the "Pro Pack" to get Media Center.
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post #746 of 7721 Old 06-26-2012, 07:36 AM
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The way I understood is that Media Center WILL be included in Home versions of Windows 8, and will be available as add-on for the business (Professional) versions. Did MSFT change that since the original announcement?
The original announcement made sence, since most businesses don't have the need for Media Center, which is clearly meant for the home user.

I think the point is that MS seems to be treating media center as a legacy product. Enhancements and bug fixes are not being made to it, and they have seemingly gone out of their way to disable the ability to load it on boot and to keep it "always on top." Odd, to say the least. I personally don't fully understand the implications of removing tuner and remotecontrol tests from the HCK, but at the very least this indicates MS wants to reduce its support of these devices. Will it make it more difficult for vendors to produce devices and drivers? Does it mean certain codecs will no longer be compatible? I wish someone from Ceton would chime in on what this means for them - they may have hitched their wagon to the wrong horse.

MS generally has a history of neglecting platforms and making these sort of decisions... They had a great tablet OS out years ago but gave up on it rather than fix its blatant flaws, and were blindsided by apple. Just last week they announced that early adopters (read: current owners) of windows phone will not be able to upgrade their devices to the upcoming new version of WP8. Now they declare that they are focusing on using the xbox to 'deliver media to the living room' but at the same swoop, halt media center.
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post #747 of 7721 Old 06-26-2012, 08:07 AM
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Pretty sure it wouldn't be a big deal for Ceton or silicondust to unhitch that wagon and get their own horse.. Maybe even a consortium or working with XBMC or JRiverMC or MediaPortal for CableCARD DRM DVR functionality.

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post #748 of 7721 Old 06-26-2012, 08:16 AM
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Originally Posted by Sammy2 View Post

Pretty sure it wouldn't be a big deal for Ceton or silicondust to unhitch that wagon and get their own horse.. Maybe even a consortium or working with XBMC or JRiverMC or MediaPortal for CableCARD DRM DVR functionality.

IMO, this is exactly what will happen within a few years (once they get approval from CL and the likes). Though I seriously doubt they'd latch on to anything existing like XBMC/JRMC/etc - it would make the most sense they have something they've designed bottom up.

In any case, I'm anxiously awaiting an email stating that I'm part of the Ceton Echo beta that's only weeks away smile.gif Motz... hear me...

The biggest gripe I have is how the xbox will "appear" to lockup sometimes after playing some movie files through My Movies - it doesn't acutally lock up, just the UI will freeze - you can blindly select things and tell that it's "working." The only resolution is a restart of the extender; MM pleads that it's a WMC/extender issue. If the echo can handle this correctly, I'll be ecstatic...
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post #749 of 7721 Old 06-26-2012, 10:53 AM
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My understanding of Windows 8 Media Center is based on this:
http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2012/05/03/making-windows-media-center-available-in-windows-8.aspx
which states there are two ways to get Media Center (both on the Pro base):

From Win 8 Home, add Windows 8 Pro Pack
From Win 8 Pro, add Windows 8 Media Center Pack

I haven't seen any definitive pricing info. Note that no optical disk playback support is included. Instead MS intends for you to "rely on the many quality solutions on the market, which provide great experiences for both DVD and Blu-ray".
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post #750 of 7721 Old 06-26-2012, 02:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Sammy2 View Post

Pretty sure it wouldn't be a big deal for Ceton or silicondust to unhitch that wagon and get their own horse.. Maybe even a consortium or working with XBMC or JRiverMC or MediaPortal for CableCARD DRM DVR functionality.
Quote:
Originally Posted by tgrinch View Post

IMO, this is exactly what will happen within a few years (once they get approval from CL and the likes). Though I seriously doubt they'd latch on to anything existing like XBMC/JRMC/etc - it would make the most sense they have something they've designed bottom up.
In any case, I'm anxiously awaiting an email stating that I'm part of the Ceton Echo beta that's only weeks away smile.gif Motz... hear me...
The biggest gripe I have is how the xbox will "appear" to lockup sometimes after playing some movie files through My Movies - it doesn't acutally lock up, just the UI will freeze - you can blindly select things and tell that it's "working." The only resolution is a restart of the extender; MM pleads that it's a WMC/extender issue. If the echo can handle this correctly, I'll be ecstatic...

can't argue with "Pretty sure it wouldn't be a big deal"...
Of course, XBMC doesn't even do recording (it has been discussed for roughly 2 years, but is currently not even planned for version 12). Have you seen the state of their current interfaces to dvr backends? Yikes. Jriver seems to be some obscure music jukebox software, and media portal has always been a lost child that doesn't even support any cablecard devices (dont say QAM).

Regarding developing their own product - if only... But I don't think Ceton is a big software development shop - they design hardware tuners (and drivers) and are adapting existing software to an embedded system (echo/q). They've also developed the WMC companion apps, but you have to agree that those are on a much smaller scale then a full blown DVR system. Plus the space is very sketchy - it would mean competing with the (mediocre but cheap/free) likes of xbmc, mythtv, npvr, mediaportal, roku, boxee, wdlive... And let's not forget atv, googletv, xbox360. Any one of Google, Apple, or MS would crush the entire space if they did it right.
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