Originally Posted by sipester
Cineramax - This is a great thread as I think the new Vista MCE platform is the best shot yet at having one source for all media content. Maybe someday there will be ISP providers with Petabyte arrays that will wirelessly stream all the HD Audio/Video/Game content we want but until then, or as long as people want to own their media, it looks like the Vista MCE has the best chance at convergence.
Already the MCE platform has replaced the photo album, CD player, DVD player, VCR, radio, and TV Settop box. So since this is in the $20,000+ forum, I'd like to dream about what should be next in the Vista MCE.
First, archival & distribution of premium HDTV content.
A. Need to get D* and E* integration and would really be nice to get Cablecard 2.0. As a bonus, would be nice to mix & match D*, E*, and cable.
B. Need to allow for more than 2 tuners
C. Would be nice to have a NAS option for recording. Content providers wouldn't like it, but what will they do with a MCE box that has 8 or 12 1TB drives?
D. Need to get media extenders that do 1080P
Second, archival & distribution of HD Movies (HD-DVD & Blu-ray)
A. Need to get managed copy figured out and then allow for distribution, not just playback on the main computer.
B. Need to allow for storage on a NAS, otherwise there isn't much point.
C. Although not as robust, I wonder if a changer would be a lower cost alternative and it would certainly avoid DRM issues.
D. Okay, so DVD's aren't HD, but until HD-DVD and Blu-ray are more prevalent, why isn't there a legal option for saving DVD's on MCE like there is with Kaleidescape? I did see a press release once that Niveas was working on a solution to allow streaming from their changers, but that is still not as robust as saving to the Hardrive.
Third, playback and potentially archival of HD Music
A. If computers will have HDMI cards and HDMI allows for DVD-A and SACD, why can't we getting playback for DVD-A and SACD on the computer. If there is enough DRM hardware in Vista to allow for cablecard, satellite, HD-DVD, and Blu-ray, it seems silly that DVD-A and SACD won't play.
B. In the same way that a single-disc Blu-ray/HD-DVD drive isn't the ultimate solution, why not allow for managed copy for DVD-A and SACD.
C. So if we can't get managed copy for DVD-A and SACD, we should at least have changers that will play them throught the computer. (there have been DVD-A and SACD changers from Kenwood & Sony for consumer electronics).
D. I know we'll never get recording of this, but at least allow for receiving XM, Sirius, and HD-Radio capabilities in MCE
Fourth, now I am really dreaming, playback and potential archival of video games.
I know PC's already play PC games, but since Sony makes MCE HTPC's and Microsoft has designed the MCE software, why can't MCE have an emulator for XBox 360 and PS3? Sure there are concerns about pirated copies of the emulator, but aren't they really losing money on the consoles anyway.
So why not have an emulator and then managed copy (or use of changers) so you never have to change out an Xbox/Xbox 360/PS1,2,3 video game? And since I am still dreaming, this should be streamed throughout the house to allow for play on extenders.
Remember, the goal is to access and fully use all media throughout the house without having 10 components in each room and physcially running the media all over the house.
Fifth, let's get full remote control support. By that I mean that each MCE and extender should have IR, Serial, and 12V outputs to automatically control the TV, projector, screen, receiver/pre-amp etc. That way, one simple MCE remote controls everything and allows for simultaneous multi-room control like Sonus. If done right, this may even negate the need for Creston/AMX systems in a lot of cases.
Sixth, if you can really accomplish all the above, then you wouldn't need 10 components for all different kinds of media. If that's the case, then you could probably eliminate the need for the receiver/pre-amp. I think they are working on Vista to allow for room correction/equalization, so what would the receiver/pre-amp add to the equation? Just get an amp to power things (and some MCE's have digital amps built-in).
Cineramax - Have I missed anything?