Originally Posted by billv1
I've set up a HomeGroup network (wired) with my computer and receiver and I'm able to stream my MP3s from my computer and play them thru the Onkyo receiver. The problem is the Onkyo interface. It's extremely klunky; it's painful to use to select music.
My dream option would be to be able to use my iphone (5) as the interface to select and play the MP3s stored on the Win 8 box.
I've explored some options such as using iPhone apps FileBrowser and FileExplorer but cannot get them to work; for some reason they don't let me log onto my computer.
Has anyone out there solved this problem or one similar?
First thing, your Onkyo does not support the playback of files DIRECTLY from shared network folders, so don't even bother with standard network file browser type software. The Onkyo supports UPnP/DLNA, which means it requires a UPnP/DLNA server to access the physical folders containing the files and provide it with the files indirectly, instead. The UPnP/DLNA server also automatically builds and maintains the music file category indexes, that the user sees as music category 'folders'. The server gets this category information from data embeded in the music file itself, usually known as tag data. MP3, AAC & FLAC are examples of music file types that have these tags.The better UPnP/DLNA servers allow you to configure these music categories and tag editor software exists to modify the tag data in your music files.
As you have not mentioned a UPnP/DLNA server, I'm assuming you are using the default Windows provided one, You can easily identify it, as it's (confusingly) given the exact same network name as the computer it's running on (which is why some people wrongly think they are directly accesing their files from networked shared folders when using it). It is not considered ideal for music files, since it does not support some file types & resolutions, is unreliable and is virtually unconfigurable. There are some good free UPnP/DLNA music servers that you could run on your computer instead, such as MinimServer, Foobar2000 with the foo_UPnP plugin and Serviio (which is an all media server, rather than just for music). Just install one and use the default configuration for now, making sure you've set it up with the folder(s) locatiing your music files (can be network shared folders for any device on the network, as well as the standard file system folders on the computer's own storage device(s)).
There are third party applications to use, if your Onkyo provided app and/or playback via remote control is not up to the task. Your Onkyo AVR is supposed to be able to support music playback using the UPnP/DLNA 'play to' feature (aka UPnP/DLNA rendering), which means you should be able to use ANY standard UPnP/DLNA controller (aka control point) application to select your music file from the UPnP/DLNA server and push them to your Onkyo for playback. These are available as apps for iOS (eg Kinsky, Plugplayer, etc) & Android (eg BubbleUPnP, Skifta, Kinsky, etc) devices as well as applications for computers (the foo_UPnP plugin for Foobar2000 comes with one, for example).