Are you using Windows 8 as a HTPC? - AVS Forum
View Poll Results: Are you using Windows 8 as a HTPC?
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post #1 of 61 Old 09-26-2013, 09:17 AM - Thread Starter
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I am in the process of upgrading my HTPC system. Currently using an AMD A-8 and switching to the new Intel Haswell i3-4130T. Is anything going to break if i switch to Windows 8?

What I need
TMT5 to watch Bluray iso's
WMP to watch mkv's and other video formats
Netflix HD
Amazon On Demand
Hulu
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post #2 of 61 Old 09-26-2013, 10:47 AM
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Why are you switching, the A8 can do everything?
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post #3 of 61 Old 09-26-2013, 04:23 PM
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I want something newer. I also am planning to setup an HTPC in the bedroom so one of them will go there.
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post #4 of 61 Old 09-26-2013, 07:54 PM
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Why do you need an HTPC for any of that? There are several streaming boxes that can do everything you listed much cheaper and simpler than a PC.

Netflix will actually improve in Win 8 since you're going from 720p to 1080p. But PCs still do a crappy job with Netflix. The Win 8 Netflix app doesn't even support profiles yet, nor does it support a remote.
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post #5 of 61 Old 09-26-2013, 11:56 PM
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Nope, i'm sticking with Windows 7 on all my HTPC's and everything works smoothly. Have no interest nor desire to move to 8.
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post #6 of 61 Old 09-26-2013, 11:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdavej View Post

Why do you need an HTPC for any of that? There are several streaming boxes that can do everything you listed much cheaper and simpler than a PC.

Netflix will actually improve in Win 8 since you're going from 720p to 1080p. But PCs still do a crappy job with Netflix. The Win 8 Netflix app doesn't even support profiles yet, nor does it support a remote.

Try finding even one "streaming box" that can play a 40GB bluray iso without any issues. I'll save you some time, there aren't any.
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post #7 of 61 Old 09-27-2013, 05:12 AM
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No plans at all to install 8 ANYWHERE! 7MC is working just fine for me.
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post #8 of 61 Old 09-27-2013, 06:44 AM
 
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I use Win8 for my gaming machine - it is superior to Win7 for such a use. For my HTPC, I am using Win7 still and see no need to change it. Even though WMC in Win8 is a newer version, the changes are all under the hood and do nothing to aid the user experience.
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post #9 of 61 Old 09-27-2013, 08:11 AM
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I presently use Win8 with XBMC on my HTPC. I use it for movie, music and tv shows. I also use that pc to "empty" my dvr with the help of a colossus card and arcsoft showbiz. it is also my bluray ripping machine and media server for the rest of the house. 

It works well and it came with the Dell XPS8500SE that I use. I don't feel the need to go back to win7. The only reason why I would even consider going back is if I got tired of XBMC and I wanted to run wmc+mb 2.x on it, which I don't see why I would...

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post #10 of 61 Old 09-27-2013, 08:58 AM
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I use Win8 and I like it much more than I had expected. The Metro Netflix app is great and there are a few more apps which are good in the HT. Yes the lack of remote control compatibility is a minus but I get around that with Unified Remote on my phone.

I found a program that resizes the Metro screen and I increased the zoom to 150% which makes it perfect on my 55" and projector screens.
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post #11 of 61 Old 09-27-2013, 02:45 PM
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I’ve had a HTPC since 2007. The hardware, now in its third incarnation was running Vista. Last year I received Windows 8 Pro as a Christmas present, and got the WMC add-on for free. As far as WMC goes, there are a number of real improvements going from Vista to 8, but for the OS itself, we are not friends. After 9 months of use, I still get the feeling that it won’t do what I want until I get up and smear my hands all over the big screen, not that it would help. In the end, it’s been worth what I paid for it.
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post #12 of 61 Old 09-27-2013, 06:03 PM
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I run WIn 8 on an Intel NUC with very good results. Win 8 is a very good and very stable operating system.
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post #13 of 61 Old 09-27-2013, 10:18 PM
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I also run Windows 8 Professional on an i5 Intel NUC. The Intel drivers are better in Windows 8. Improved XBMC stability. Windows 8 also boots incredibly fast on the NUC. Other than that the boot screen tends to look better with XBMC Xperience1080 theme.
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post #14 of 61 Old 09-30-2013, 06:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lulimet View Post

I run WIn 8 on an Intel NUC with very good results. Win 8 is a very good and very stable operating system.

Ditto here.

I'm just running XBMC on top of Win8.
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post #15 of 61 Old 10-01-2013, 09:55 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by politby View Post

I use Win8 and I like it much more than I had expected. The Metro Netflix app is great and there are a few more apps which are good in the HT. Yes the lack of remote control compatibility is a minus but I get around that with Unified Remote on my phone.

I found a program that resizes the Metro screen and I increased the zoom to 150% which makes it perfect on my 55" and projector screens.

This is something i noticed as well, the Metro Nexflix app is a huge improvement over the WMC version, which is one of the reasons i wanted to consider upgrading to 8. I wish Netflix would integrate IR remote capabilities into the metro app then it would be perfect but the Metro app was designed for touchscreens, not HTPC users.
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post #16 of 61 Old 10-01-2013, 01:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krodami View Post

This is something i noticed as well, the Metro Nexflix app is a huge improvement over the WMC version, which is one of the reasons i wanted to consider upgrading to 8. I wish Netflix would integrate IR remote capabilities into the metro app then it would be perfect but the Metro app was designed for touchscreens, not HTPC users.

I complained loudly about the lack of IR capability in the Netflix App, but having lived with it since Windows 8 came out, I'd much rather use the Metro interface + bit streamed DD+. It also can get the Netflix HD 5800 kbs stream which I don't believe is available through WMC. Metro makes an awesome launcher interface and I have all my HTPC apps (WMC, Netflix, Steam, XBMC, Weather) clustered together and I can launch any of them with the remote (bind the green button to CTRL+ESC and the whole experience gets a lot nicer). I think it's silly to stick with 7 at this point.
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post #17 of 61 Old 10-01-2013, 02:09 PM
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Has anyone heard their plans to add profiles to the Netflix Win 8 app? What's the holdup?
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post #18 of 61 Old 10-01-2013, 02:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krodami View Post

This is something i noticed as well, the Metro Nexflix app is a huge improvement over the WMC version, which is one of the reasons i wanted to consider upgrading to 8. I wish Netflix would integrate IR remote capabilities into the metro app then it would be perfect but the Metro app was designed for touchscreens, not HTPC users.

Wow. Really?

Doesn't it work with keyboard/mouse input either?

There are plenty of Win 8 systems, including a good proportion of laptops currently on sale, that don't have touch screens.

I have a logitech K400 keyboard so could probably slum it if mouse support is there.
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post #19 of 61 Old 10-01-2013, 02:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evilengineer View Post

Wow. Really?

Doesn't it work with keyboard/mouse input either?

There are plenty of Win 8 systems, including a good proportion of laptops currently on sale, that don't have touch screens.

I have a logitech K400 keyboard so could probably slum it if mouse support is there.

It works with a mouse and keyboard
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post #20 of 61 Old 10-02-2013, 07:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crbaldwin View Post

Has anyone heard their plans to add profiles to the Netflix Win 8 app? What's the holdup?

Of course I just installed the Netflix update today that now brings profiles to the Win 8 app smile.gif. Now if they could just make it more remote friendly we would be all set...
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post #21 of 61 Old 10-02-2013, 07:45 AM
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I moved to Win8 on my desktop and received a free Media Center upgrade. However, I won't be running it on any of my HTPCs. It's a fine OS, but it didn't bring anything that I needed for an HTPC. I have as many Win7 licenses as I'll ever need and I suppose I'll just keep using it until it stops working. Media Center is on death row as it is and Win8 only moved the execution date up.
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post #22 of 61 Old 10-02-2013, 10:45 AM
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Some basic functions like play/pause, volume, etc. work on my MCE remote in the Netflix Windows 8 app. It's not a terrible experience. I use a combination of a K400 and an MCE remote or HippoRemote to do both at once.
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post #23 of 61 Old 10-02-2013, 11:05 AM
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I found the differences (on MC) to be negligible.

Some flexibility was lost on Win8 because you can no longer hack the DLLs and some apps relied on that (e.g., channel logos making the EPG 10 rows). No big loss really.

I am very happy on Win8 for one reason: if MC crashes to desktop it will auto-restart by itself, and not just leave me at desktop and force me to get up and re-load the MCE shell. Win7 never did that out of the box. I haven't had to pull out the kb/mouse for many many months now.
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post #24 of 61 Old 10-02-2013, 11:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sippelmc View Post

Some flexibility was lost on Win8 because you can no longer hack the DLLs and some apps relied on that (e.g., channel logos making the EPG 10 rows). No big loss really.

To be clear, MyChannelLogos markets their download (donate-only product these days) as W8 compatible. Are you saying the logos work fine, but the EPG can't be expanded to 10?
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post #25 of 61 Old 10-02-2013, 12:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sippelmc View Post

I found the differences (on MC) to be negligible.

Some flexibility was lost on Win8 because you can no longer hack the DLLs and some apps relied on that (e.g., channel logos making the EPG 10 rows). No big loss really.

I am very happy on Win8 for one reason: if MC crashes to desktop it will auto-restart by itself, and not just leave me at desktop and force me to get up and re-load the MCE shell. Win7 never did that out of the box. I haven't had to pull out the kb/mouse for many many months now.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dark_Slayer View Post

To be clear, MyChannelLogos markets their download (donate-only product these days) as W8 compatible. Are you saying the logos work fine, but the EPG can't be expanded to 10?
I think sipplemc is just working off old information. While it didn't work at first, MCL works fine in 8 now, 100%.
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post #26 of 61 Old 10-03-2013, 05:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cybrsage View Post

Even though WMC in Win8 is a newer version, the changes are all under the hood and do nothing to aid the user experience.

That is incorrect. The Version numbers in Windows 8 Media Center and Windows 7 are the SAME. There are only one change in WIndows 8 Media Center over Windows 7. In Windows 8 they removed the option to "Start Windows Media Center when windows starts".

I did a lot of homework on this to make sure on any details and there is NO changes that will effect Windows Media Center in any way with Windows 8. Infact, I suggest people to stay with Windows 7 for Media Center because there has been some issues with cablecards and HDCP in some cases that people have reported. If you have used MC with cablecards, HDCP issues can be a pain the a$$ to deal with.

If your thinking about building a HTPC for WIndows Media Center, stick with Windows 7.

-Dave

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Windows Media Center specialist

My Windows Media Center Blog...
http://mc.anywherecool.com/Blog/
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post #27 of 61 Old 10-03-2013, 05:54 AM
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Isn't the option to burn a recording to DVD in WMC - Settings also missing in Win 8?
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post #28 of 61 Old 10-03-2013, 09:51 AM
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Originally Posted by DavidinCT View Post

There are only one change in WIndows 8 Media Center over Windows 7. In Windows 8 they removed the option to "Start Windows Media Center when windows starts".


Microsoft Xbox 360 is the only extender that is supported in Windows 8 Media Center PC. Third-party extenders that work with earlier versions of Windows won’t work with Windows 8.

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post #29 of 61 Old 10-03-2013, 01:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdavej View Post


I think sipplemc is just working off old information. While it didn't work at first, MCL works fine in 8 now, 100%.

Oh, thanks, that is good to know. Its been a while since Ive checked them for updates.
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post #30 of 61 Old 10-03-2013, 02:14 PM
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Really been unimpressed by the Windows 8 platform. There may be some new aspects to it that make it a little easier to navigate, but the touch screen and app center is simply a giant Start menu that would be better placed where Windows usually places it. Doesn't anyone else find it's glitchy and unreliable? But then, I think I've got the first version of Windows 8.

Matt
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