Originally Posted by Zon2020
And how are any of those items any different than what CE players have to do?
Security is different on PCs vs hardware because hardware doesn't have the obvious challenge of introducing other software into the device to circumvent security.
Hardware players don't have to have overhead for other elements running at the same time.
Hardware players have a single clock that controls both audio and video while PCs have seperate clocks that are almost never absolutely in sync with each other.
Hardware players don't have to deal with other vendors changing or breaking a critical element the playback software uses.
And the PC software generally do not have to deal with "mutiple operating systems." They work with Windows. And they specify the CPUs and GPUs with which they claim to work.
XP is fundamentally different from Vista and W7. And the feature-sets of Vista and W7 vary regarding media playback. And there are 32-bit and 64-bit variations that are more than just window-dressing. Driver support for hardware also varies between the 3 major graphics driver vendors. As you start multiplying out all the potential combinations, you quickly hit the point where you can't get enough QA coverage vs what is required for a hardware player which is, for all intents, a static environment that PC QA teams can only dream about.
Yes, I understand that software conflicts and non-compatible hardware introduces complications. It can to any software. But why shouldn't it work painlessly on a clean, new, simple, PC running W7 HP?
It can be. I set up machine all the time that have no trouble. But eventually "it's always something" creeps in some night when you just want to sit down and watch a movie. And in my experience, it's more frequently problematic than hardware players which are for the most part bulletproof except for the occasional firmware update to support newer discs due to a fundamental security change (which is ever evolving on Blu.) And the solution is generally bulletproof: you are told you need to update the player--you follow instructions to update the player--the problem goes away. When the HTPC goes awry, often you have no clue what's gone wrong, and often a minimal support net for assistance because the problems are so