Originally Posted by assassin
It just depends what you are used to. If you are used to WMC+MB then XBMC can be a pain to setup and vice-versa. They are very different in that regard.
XBMC is not "much" nicer than WMC+MB (it may be nicer to some but I think that one is dramatically or "much" better than the other in appearance just isn't true) to look at it is definitely not faster anymore. Which one is easier to setup as I said depends largely on which one you use first.
I've used WMC/MB for a few months now, and it's sufficient. It looks fine and does the job. I was planning on using it with my HTPC when I finally get to finish building it, because I will utilize WMC's TV application.
However, the last few days I installed XBMC on my laptop (currently acting as my media hub until my HTPC is done..), and it is sooooo much nicer. Now, a lot of my decision to say it is SOOOOO much nicer has to do with the fact that there isn't a delay in navigating menu's, there is more controlabilty with video playback options.
My HTPC will be faster and stronger than my laptop, of course. But it is clear to me that WMC+MB requires much more CPU/RAM power than XBMC.
I also love the built in repositories, and skin custimizations you can do with XBMC to make it a more unique experience. It's integration with Music and Pictures is fantastic. I appreciate the built in repositories, as well as the third-party ones you can download. My wife is especially loving the HGTV channel videos, and the DIY Network through XBMC Repositories.
As for Live TV - the XBMC developers are actively coming up with a way to view/record live TV in XBMC. There is software available for testing to anyone on their forums.
Edit: One more thing - I do not like (maybe am not used to it yet...) the Movie Library view in XBMC. I have my movies in folders specific to how I would find them. I have Action, Children, Comedy, Drama, Horror, Thriller, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Romance, and maybe one or two others I can't remember.
In WMC/MB I could simply go to those folders and find the movie I want. In XBMC their movie Library automatically puts your movies into genre's based on the scraper's information. Lord of the Rings, for instance, shows up in the Sci-Fi, Fantasy and Action Genre.
Again, this is just a small pet peeve and something I can get used to. And in the end, I can always switch to File View instead of Library to navigate to something in my specific folder archetype.