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post #1 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 09:17 AM - Thread Starter
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You can get the full scoop over at Geektonic, but SageTV has just announced the follow up to SageTV HD200, aptly named the SageTV HD300. Some interesting items Brent mentioned:

Quote:


HD Audio & DTS Decode/downmix

HDMI 1.3 output w/ support for Dolby TrueHD, DTS-HD/MA passthrough. An important feature that many SageTV enthusiasts have been clamoring for.

DTS decode/downmix to 2 channel – Those Blu-ray discs will play on all TVs and receivers even if you don’t have HD-Audio.

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Cheaper Price

I’m not sure if anyone saw this one coming. The HD200 sold for $200 and more recently $180 after discount. The new HD300 beats both of those prices with a $149.95 retail price!

Preorders are already available for the taking, shipping is expected to begin on Sept 10th

Unboxing and Review by Andy Van Till (i.e babgvant) over at Missing Remote

SageTV HD Theater 300 Specifications

File formats supported: AVI, ASF, MKV, MOV, MP4, Quicktime, MPEG-1, MPEG-2 PS, MPEG-2 TS, M2TS, BDMV Folder (BluRay), BluRay ISO, DVD ISO, DVD VIDEO_TS, VOB, M4A, MP3, FLAC, OGG, FLV, WAV, WMA

Video formats supported: MPEG1, MPEG2, MPEG4, XVID, H.264 up to 1080p, WMV9/VC-1 up to 1080p, MJPEG, FlashVideo

Audio formats suppported: MP2, MP3, AAC, AAC-HE, ALAC, WMA, WMAPro, PCM, Vorbis (stereo only), FLAC, DolbyDigital/DolbyDigital+/DolbyTrueHD (stereo down-mix or pass-through), DTS/DTS-HD/DTS-MA (stereo down-mix or pass-through)

CC/Subtitle formats supported: EIA-608(NTSC/ATSC/QAM Closed Captioning), SRT, SSA/ASS, VobSub (sub/idx, mkv), Nero MP4 VOB Subtitles, MP4 Text, SAMI, .sub (Subviewer/MicroDVD), DVD, BDMV, M2TS, multiple languages supported in all formats

Playlist formats suppported: M3U, WPL, ASX, WAX, WVX

Media sources supported: Online Video, external USB Mass Storage Devices (FAT, NTFS, EXT2/3, HFS format), NAS or Mac/PC over SMB/CIFS, UPnP, SageTV Media Center

Keyboard support: Wired or Wireless USB keyboards (US keyboard layout)

Wireless Network support: 802.11 b/g/n networks; USB wireless network adapters listed below

* Encore Electronics ENUWI-N (2.4 GHz) - Officially Supported

Video Outputs: 1 HDMI, 1 Component, 1 Composite (Component & Composite via breakout cable)

Audio Outputs: Optical S/PDIF, HDMI, Left/Right analog audio output (analog audio output via breakout cable)

Remote Control: Includes infrared remote control with universal remote functionality (3 buttons can be programmed using infrared, compatible with most remote controls).

External IR Receiver: Optional external IR receiver can be purchased for mounting the HD Theater 300 behind a TV or in another room. Available here.

Maximum Number of SageTV HD Theaters when used as a media extender: Limited only by your home network bandwidth, each HD video stream may use 20 Mbps or more of home network bandwidth.
TV Set Requirements:

* HDMI, Component or Composite input (NTSC or PAL)
* Left and right audio input jacks, optical or HDMI audio input

Network Requirements:

* One 10/100 RJ-45 port on a Router, Hub or Switch network (supports DHCP and static IP addresses)

or
* Direct connect from SageTV HD Media Extender to PC running DHCP server via cross over LAN cable (not supplied)

Included with the SageTV HD THeater:

* SageTV HD Theater digital media receiver
* Remote control with batteries
* Breakout cable for composite video, component video and analog audio
* HDMI cable
* 1.5 meter Ethernet cable
* Power adapter



Cheers,
Damian

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post #2 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 09:21 AM
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This is what I've been waiting for.
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post #3 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 09:21 AM
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Wow, this is great news! Lots of choices this Fall/Winter... the C-200 now has hd audio; there are new/lower-priced Dunes coming out; the Boxee Box looks much better than originally expected; and now the Sage HD300.

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post #4 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 09:21 AM - Thread Starter
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It is also available for pre order:

http://www.sage.tv/hd_theater.html?sageSub=tv

Glad I sold my HD200 for a nice profit

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post #5 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 09:35 AM
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To watch/record live TV, I assume I'd need to install the SageTV Media Center software? I'm hoping to use my existing HDHomeRun dual-tuner receiver connected to my home network. Can SageTV Media Center software be installed on WHS, or is there a different version for it? I assume the recordings are stored in a shared folder on WHS?

Also, does SageTV have some kind of a jukebox software like Zappati or YAMJ?

The $150 price looks like, unless I'm missing something, a steal as the HD300 would seem to be the Dune + Boxee Box together in a single box!

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post #6 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 09:38 AM
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For those interested you can also preorder with the SageTV Media Center for Windows for $199.95.

http://store.sagetv.com/mm5/merchant...tegory_Code=SB

I think I'm going to go this route even as I believe you get more custom options when you have the HD300 in Media Extender mode versus HD Theater mode.
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post #7 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 09:39 AM
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Here's a review from Missing Remote.

http://www.missingremote.com/index.p...1&limitstart=1
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post #8 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 09:39 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by APorter View Post

For those interested you can also preorder with the SageTV Media Center for Windows for $199.95.

http://store.sagetv.com/mm5/merchant...tegory_Code=SB

I think I'm going to go this route even as I believe you get more custom options when you have the HD300 in Media Extender mode versus HD Theater mode.

I would highly recommend using it in Extender mode over Standalone mode as well

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post #9 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 09:41 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brajesh View Post

To watch/record live TV, I assume I'd need to install the SageTV Media Center software? I'm hoping to use my existing HDHomeRun dual-tuner receiver connected to my home network. Can SageTV Media Center software be installed on WHS, or is there a different version for it? I assume the recordings are stored in a shared folder on WHS?

Also, does SageTV have some kind of a jukebox software like Zappati or YAMJ?

The $150 price looks like, unless I'm missing something, a steal as the HD300 would seem to be the Dune + Boxee Box together in a single box!

Brajesh,

Yes, I have SageTV installed on my WHS. You could then watch your HDHomerun tv feed on the HD300.

You are going to want to get the software as this will give you a lot more flexibility over the ui. An example, you can use the MyMovies jukebox which I documented here - http://www.mediasmartserver.net/2010...7-walkthrough/

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post #10 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 09:55 AM
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Thanks... I've got some reading to do . Since you've used so many of these media players, can you tell me why I'd want to keep my Dune D1 pre-order in light of the Sage HD300 announcement? Both do HD audio and support nice UI/jukeboxes, but the HD300 does online content and supports live TV.

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post #11 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 10:12 AM
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Hot damn! She's finally here!

First purchase I've ever pre-ordered. Didn't even wait to read the second paragraph of the OP's post.

This just turned my day around.

-Suntan
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post #12 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 10:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brajesh View Post

Thanks... I've got some reading to do . Since you've used so many of these media players, can you tell me why I'd want to keep my Dune D1 pre-order in light of the Sage HD300 announcement? Both do HD audio and support nice UI/jukeboxes, but the HD300 does online content and supports live TV.

Please keep in mind that I haven't even read the full release about the HD300, and I don't have a dune so take my comments with a grain of salt, but if the HD300 works similar to the HD200 before it, to get the flashier interface, you have to have the PC on and run the HD 300 in extender mode. Running the HD300 in stand alone mode will likely utilize the more plain (though still graphical) interface.

I believe with the dune you can upload the pretty interface and then it will run that on its own even if you don't have it connected to a PC on a LAN.

Also, the Dune will run full BR menus for a rip, I don't know if they added that ability to the HD300, but the HD200 only has lite menu support for BRs (can pick video track, change audio tracks etc.) The HD200 does have full support for DVD menus, fwiw.

That said, yes the Sage extenders offer significant other options that are unique in this market of streamers. For me (having run Sage for a number of years) the choice has been made and the dunes are no longer of interest to me.

I was prepared to pay up to $300 (although I didn't reasonably expect them to be that high) for an HD300 with bitstream support (even with the current offerings of the new Dunes at their competitive price points.) The fact that the HD300s are selling for $150 is rather eye opening.

I wouldn't go so far as to say there is a new sheriff in town, as clearly for someone that doesn't have need for networked DVR capabilities this is less of a big deal, but a lot of those lesser players now have a mark on their forheads with the new Dunes at their price points and the HD300 coming in at $150.

-Suntan
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post #13 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 10:27 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brajesh View Post

Thanks... I've got some reading to do . Since you've used so many of these media players, can you tell me why I'd want to keep my Dune D1 pre-order in light of the Sage HD300 announcement? Both do HD audio and support nice UI/jukeboxes, but the HD300 does online content and supports live TV.

Some things I can see in benefit of the Dune (of course depending on if this is a feature you want)

- I am guessing HD300 will not do full BluRay menus
- HD300 will not support multi-channel PCM output
- You will need to run the SageTV server software to get the full benefit of the HD300 which for one reason or another some people will not want to do (i.e. those who just connect external drives directly to the player)

Overall though the HD300 is a solid addition, but I cannot comment too much on yet as I don't have one

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post #14 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 10:41 AM
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The lack of multichannel PCM is a big minus. Would hate to redo the several videos I have w/LPCM to DD or DTS. Other than this, the HD300 looks like a real winner. Of course, we'll need some in-depth videophile reviews, but what I've read was enough to pre-order a unit w/Sage Media Center software bundle, especially at that price.

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post #15 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 10:46 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brajesh View Post

The lack of multichannel PCM is a big minus. Would hate to redo the several videos I have w/LPCM to DD or DTS. Other than this, the HD300 looks like a real winner. Of course, we'll need some in-depth videophile reviews, but what I've read was enough to pre-order a unit w/Sage Media Center software bundle, especially at that price.

Yeah, I was surprised to read that, it may be a big turnoff to some. I am not a PCM guy, but do you think this then also applies to people who converted the HD Audio tracks to FLAC?

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post #16 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 10:54 AM
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I may have to check this out... Sage v7, with the MyMovies running and the SMM plugin, would work well with my existing covers, backdrops, and xml metadata files; so it would be fairly painless to get the server portion up and running.

$200 for the whole deal? Interesting...
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post #17 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 10:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbone1026 View Post

HD300 will not support multi-channel PCM output

Was this confirmed or just implied because they didn't specifically add that as a bullet point? It says it supports PCM as an audio format.

-Suntan
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post #18 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 11:05 AM
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OK, I have to admit...the whole SageTV thing has always eluded me a bit. I know its users LOVE it...and that it seems to be the best box if you want to record video.

I know we've already started to cover this a bit, but for a Sage noob like myself, how do we compare and contrast it against "traditional" streamers?

- Ok, it's networkable and streams all your files? Maybe not quite as robust as the best streamers? It'll do m2ts? It'll downmix lossless (now I guess)?

- It has it's own so-so UI, in standalone, but as long as you run its server software (like SqueezeServer for SBs?) somewhere, it's got a nice UI?

- Does it do any apps? Any plans for them? Will it run a service like PlayOn for them?

- And I guess lastly...for now...what makes it the best recorder? That's just a function of a hard-drive; the way the software works? The playback?

I've never done any recording, and I guess if I think about it, I'd kind of like to get away from storage of TV as much as possible (I'd rather stream, what I consider to be low-demand content). But if it's nearly as good as the streamers, and it has the recordability thing to boot...at 150 bones...that's gotta be worth a look.

I can't imagine it in the HT (so I think the D1 is safe there), because I would never take advantage of some of those "extra" features there, but maybe at some of the other locations. I was still banking on the PopBox there; how does this compare to say the Pop (as it hopefully will be, not as to how it is...lol)?

CD

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suntan View Post

Was this confirmed or just implied because they didn't specifically add that as a bullet point? It says it supports PCM as an audio format.

-Suntan

I am going based on Andy (babgvant) review:

http://www.missingremote.com/index.p...1&limitstart=4

Cheers,
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post #20 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 11:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suntan View Post

Was this confirmed or just implied because they didn't specifically add that as a bullet point? It says it supports PCM as an audio format.

-Suntan

this is from the Missing Remote review "Unfortunately multi-channel PCM output is not supported on the device either in native (i.e. LPCM in a file container) or when decoded on the device (WMAPro, FLAC, DTS, etc.)."

How I read this is if set to passthrough, FLAC would be okay as long as your receiver can decode.
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post #21 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 11:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbone1026 View Post

I am going based on Andy (babgvant) review:

http://www.missingremote.com/index.p...1&limitstart=4

Yeah, just reading that now. Ah well, not a big deal for me. The only issue I can think of right now is watching the BR of "Black Hawk Down."

-Suntan
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post #22 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 11:13 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CDLehner View Post

OK, I have to admit...the whole SageTV thing has always eluded me a bit. I know its users LOVE it...and that it seems to be the best box if you want to record video.

I know we've already started to cover this a bit, but for a Sage noob like myself, how do we compare and contrast it against "traditional" streamers?

- Ok, it's networkable and streams all your files? Maybe not quite as robust as the best streamers? It'll do m2ts? It'll downmix lossless (now I guess)?

- It has it's own so-so UI, in standalone, but as long as you run its server software (like SqueezeServer for SBs?) somewhere, it's got a nice UI?

- Does it do any apps? Any plans for them? Will it run a service like PlayOn for them?

- And I guess lastly...for now...what makes it the best recorder? That's just a function of a hard-drive; the way the software works? The playback?

I've never done any recording, and I guess if I think about it, I'd kind of like to get away from storage of TV as much as possible (I'd rather stream, what I consider to be low-demand content). But if it's nearly as good as the streamers, and it has the recordability thing to boot...at 150 bones...that's gotta be worth a look.

I can't imagine it in the HT, because I would never take advantage of some of those "extra" features there, but maybe at some of the other locations. I was still banking on the PopBox there; how does this compare to say the Pop (as it hopefully will be, not as to how it is...lol)?

CD

Up through the HD200 the SageTV extender has been rather far behind the curve. The HD300 definitely addresses a lot of those issues (HDMI 1.3, HD Audio Bitstream, HD Audio Downmix, etc...). So from that standpoint it should be able to compete with any other player in the market currently.

As a standalone streamer I think the HD300 would just blend in with the rest of the crowd. Using it as a client with the SageTV server (similar to squeezebox) is where the potential is. This includes enhanced UIs such as MyMovies, Ortus, and Phoenix.

They have a Plugin Repository which I guess you could consider similar to add ins (once again you need to run in client/extender mode), works with PlayOn, etc...

As far as a recorder, the big advantage SageTV has over WMC is that you can set up a tv tuner farm that every SageTV client can access, watch live tv from, etc... You can start a show on one client and pick up where you left off on another client

Cheers,
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post #23 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 11:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CDLehner View Post

OK, I have to admit...the whole SageTV thing has always eluded me a bit. I know its users LOVE it...and that it seems to be the best box if you want to record video.

I know we've already started to cover this a bit, but for a Sage noob like myself, how do we compare and contrast it against "traditional" streamers?

- Ok, it's networkable and streams all your files? Maybe not quite as robust as the best streamers? It'll do m2ts? It'll downmix lossless (now I guess)?

- It has it's own so-so UI, in standalone, but as long as you run its server software (like SqueezeServer for SBs?) somewhere, it's got a nice UI?

- Does it do any apps? Any plans for them? Will it run a service like PlayOn for them?

- And I guess lastly...for now...what makes it the best recorder? That's just a function of a hard-drive; the way the software works? The playback?

I've never done any recording, and I guess if I think about it, I'd kind of like to get away from storage of TV as much as possible (I'd rather stream, what I consider to be low-demand content). But if it's nearly as good as the streamers, and it has the recordability thing to boot...at 150 bones...that's gotta be worth a look.

I can't imagine it in the HT, because I would never take advantage of some of those "extra" features there, but maybe at some of the other locations. I was still banking on the PopBox there; how does this compare to say the Pop (as it hopefully will be, not as to how it is...lol)?

CD

Can you please tell me why you're differentiating this from other "streamers" simply because it can ALSO record and do other things? What common "streamer" functionality do you think the HD300 is missing?

I wasn't interested in the Sage solutions before today; but, with the great UI and full HD functionality -- both audio and video now! -- IMO, this thing has the potential to be all that, and then some!

I don't plan to use the TV recording features at all; but, for online content (PlayOn), stored TV Series rips, music, photos, and HD movies, this thing just might make it under every TV in my house.

They certainly have my attention!
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post #24 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 11:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbone1026 View Post

As far as a recorder, the big advantage SageTV has over WMC is that you can set up a tv tuner farm that every SageTV client can access, watch live tv from, etc... You can start a show on one client and pick up where you left off on another client

Sadly, I don't see Cablecard support happening anytime soon, so WMC still has that one great advantage for those who are willing to dish out the $$ for Ceton's new tuner.
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post #25 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 11:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by palehorse View Post

Can you please tell me why you're differentiating this from other "streamers" simply because it can ALSO record and do other things? What common "streamer" functionality do you think the HD300 is missing?

Uh, because that was essentially my question; does this do everything every other streamer does, and is the best recorder. I differentiated because I didn't know.

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post #26 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 11:22 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by palehorse View Post

Sadly, I don't see Cablecard support happening anytime soon, so WMC still has that one great advantage for those who are willing to dish out the $$ for Ceton's new tuner.

Yeah, the Sagies though will argue that you can get close using the HD PVR (this would only give you one tuner and not 4). Right now as long as my QAM channels don't get killed I am covered.

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post #27 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 11:27 AM
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Originally Posted by CDLehner View Post

Uh, because that was essentially my question; does this do everything every other streamer does, and is the best recorder. I differentiated because I didn't know.

CD

Fair enough.

But, again, what inspires that question? What common option or function is missing from the list?

(I didn't mean any offense CD!)
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post #28 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 11:29 AM
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how do we compare and contrast it against "traditional" streamers?


Careful now. If memory serves, SageTV had an HD capable streamer on the market long before the WDTV box got everyone all hot and bothered about streamers.... So from that light, Sage has the traditional streamer...

Anyway, the reality is that if you are only going to use the thing in stand alone mode there is less to get excited about. The HD300 really shines when it is hooked up to a network with a computer running SageTV. That said, one feather in the cap of the HD300 is that it is coming from a company that has had a strong history of producing extenders/streamers that under-promise and over-deliver as opposed to some streamer makers that tend to promise the farm but just ship you the manure (Sybas, I'm looking right at you.)

Ultimately though, if you don't have a desire to DVR TV, then other traditional streamers are more competitive.

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post #29 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 12:24 PM
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Ultimately though, if you don’t have a desire to DVR TV, then other “traditional” streamers are more competitive.

Such as? Even without the added DVR functionality, I don't see any options elsewhere that have more to offer in terms of online and local photo/video/music streaming. The same? perhaps... worse? definitely! But, what other under-$200 streamer offers "more"?
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post #30 of 674 Old 08-31-2010, 12:27 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by palehorse View Post

Such as? Even without the added DVR functionality, I don't see any options elsewhere that have more to offer in terms of online and local photo/video/music streaming. The same? perhaps... worse? definitely! But, what other under-$200 streamer offers "more"?

If you just use the HD300 as a standalone then you lose the ability to add 3rd party jukeboxes to replace the UI which you can do with sub $200 players such as the PCH

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