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MediaPortal VS XBMC

post #1 of 36
Thread Starter 
What you guys preffer and why?

I'm using XBMC currently and I'm having so many problems playing HD audio is not fun anymore.

I downloaded 2 days ago MP, been configuring it according to the sticky, I will try it this weekend.


At least it works the HD audio with not major issues.
post #2 of 36
XBMC I found was more widely used and had more plugins etc. but I found it painful to configure and use to the point where I gave up.

Mediaportal I found more inituitive and more customisable for my needs.

I think it is preference which you want to use. I would probably make a list of the features you need, and see which one supports the most.
post #3 of 36
MP all day, with xbmc if it misses a movie on scan it is hard to tell which if you have hundreds of movies until you try to watch one that is missing. The ONLY thing XBMC has over Media-Portal is the number of plugins.
This is all just my opinion
post #4 of 36
I recentrly tried XBMC and that is all I use right now. I hadn't tried it before because it didnt' support HD audio. I then heard about the DanielaE patched version that supported HD audio. Installed it, worked fine right from the get go and haven't touched it since. It isn't even the final release (I am using Eden RC2). Don't see any reason to upgrade to the final release since it works fine. I have two htpcs setup and they share the database so they are always in sync. I can even stop a movie and pick it up on the other htpc. I don't know why you are having such a hard time with HD audio but it works great for me. I will disclose that all of my movies are mkv files.
post #5 of 36
I use XBMC for my local media and a couple plugins such as Youtube and Giant Bomb and love it. I'm using the Eden final release with the HD audio patch and have had no issues playing back HD audio including the Akira bluray which has some crazy high frequency TrueHD soundtrack. I'm using the Aeon MQ3 skin and the endless amounts of options for view types, backgrounds, fonts, and just the overal beauty of the skin have made it where considering another skin much less another media frontend is just unthinkable.

I still mess around with Plex and the dead Boxee but for the most part, I'm in XBMC. If you need DVR functionality and don't use WMC then I guess MediaPortal would better suit you since XBMC's PVR support is still pretty funky. WMC just works for me right now so until MS stops supporting it, I'll stick to that. XBMC just offers me more of the customization for things I want and just plain looks better than Plex, Boxee, Media Browser, or MediaPortal in my opinion and shallow bastard that I am, that counts for a lot.

It doesn't hurt that it does a pretty damn good job playing back pretty much every thing I've thrown at it. Some of the plugins aren't up to par or just plain don't work like the Gametrailers or Gamespot plugins but I can find that content via other means like Youtube or SecondRun.TV. If they got the plugins to be as stable or varied as Boxee or or Plex I would probably uninstall them all and just stick to XBMC.
post #6 of 36
Thread Starter 
I'm using DSPlayer with Eden for HD audio

With some mkvs works with other it wont, with some it will jump chapters with others it won't it is very temperamental.

So far MP has been very consistent with the HD audio.

The media scraper in MP works like a charm (moving pictures) I had everything nice and dandy with XBMC, but it was very time consuming.
post #7 of 36
It always confuses me when I read that someone has difficulty setting XBMC up.
To me me it is second only to windows media center for ease of setup.
Everything can be done from the couch with a remote, even adding new shares.

I just don't get it. To me XBMC is much, much easier than Mediaportal to setup.
post #8 of 36
Same here, I read through the thread on MediaPortal with the intent of trying it out and just felt like it was too much of a bother to set up. There are a few things like smart playlists in XBMC that took me a while to get used to and setting up external players and configuring key presses by editing XML files can be a little tricky but that stuff is usually beyond the scope of normal use.

I'm using DSPlayer as my default player for MKVs and have had no issues with chapter skipping or HD audio. I did have some issues with ISO playback of some blurays like chapter skipping in my full disc ISO rip of Xmen First Class switching between special features and the movie and the Navi subs not working in Avatar which caused me to set up PowerDVD as an external player but it's been pretty smooth otherwise.

Initial setup, customization, and navigation have all been pretty easy with XBMC for me compared to the steps I've seen for MediaPortal or Media Browser and the options available to me in regards to how things look are much more robust than in Plex or Boxee. If they could get live TV and DVR functionality to be as straightforward to set up and as consistent to use as in WMC, I would probably stop using that too although I would need to configure advanced launcher or something to launch Hulu Plus and the Netflix XBMC integration isn't as good as in WMC so I would probably still have to keep WMC.
post #9 of 36
Thread Starter 
mmmmm to setup XBMC to its full potential is hard, same with mediaportal.

But having tried both (I've been using XBMC for 2 years) mediaportal scraper moving pictures wins, for easy of use to find info about your media collection.

If you install both and just want to play movies both are equally easy to be honest, if you want to squeeze the last drop of functionality of both, you will need to sit for a little bit longer in the couch to set it up correctly.

My only grip with XBMC is the media scrapper and the HD audio issue i've been having.

I like mediaportal let the video and audio duties to the codecs and filters. For those still experimenting with their HTPC, I believe MP has more gain in the volume than XBMC or I'm going crazy
post #10 of 36
You're probably right on the audio thing since I do notice that for my bluray rips I have to turn my receiver up higher than I did for my Dune D1 or when watching bluray discs on the PS3.
post #11 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by Boke01 View Post

It always confuses me when I read that someone has difficulty setting XBMC up.
To me me it is second only to windows media center for ease of setup.
Everything can be done from the couch with a remote, even adding new shares.

I just don't get it. To me XBMC is much, much easier than Mediaportal to setup.

I agree. Plus it has the options to customise and go deeper into the config if you choose. This is where media center really falls down for me. As soon as XBMC polishes its DVR capability to match media center I will use it exclusively.
post #12 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by leviathan18 View Post

mmmmm to setup XBMC to its full potential is hard, same with mediaportal.

But having tried both (I've been using XBMC for 2 years) mediaportal scraper moving pictures wins, for easy of use to find info about your media collection.

If you install both and just want to play movies both are equally easy to be honest, if you want to squeeze the last drop of functionality of both, you will need to sit for a little bit longer in the couch to set it up correctly.

My only grip with XBMC is the media scrapper and the HD audio issue i've been having.

I like mediaportal let the video and audio duties to the codecs and filters. For those still experimenting with their HTPC, I believe MP has more gain in the volume than XBMC or I'm going crazy

Are you aware that xbmc now has a new audio engine which provides HD Audio. Its available with the developmental nightly builds here http://mirrors.xbmc.org/nightlies/win32/. Appreciate you may be using DSPlayer for other reasons, but if only to achieve HD Audio, then might be worth a look.

And in any case the DSPlayer builds are unlikely to improve as the developer Tiben has already indicated that he will not be developing the branch any further.

Sorry took it off topic a little there - both are good and equally simple to set-up (for video playback anyway - don't have any need for TV functionality). Try both - they're free and can happily co-exist.
post #13 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by steelman1991 View Post

Are you aware that xbmc now has a new audio engine which provides HD Audio. Its available with the developmental nightly builds here http://mirrors.xbmc.org/nightlies/win32/. Appreciate you may be using DSPlayer for other reasons, but if only to achieve HD Audio, then might be worth a look.

And in any case the DSPlayer builds are unlikely to improve as the developer Tiben has already indicated that he will not be developing the branch any further.

Sorry took it off topic a little there - both are good and equally simple to set-up (for video playback anyway - don't have any need for TV functionality). Try both - they're free and can happily co-exist.

Or there's the patched version of Eden for HD Audio by Daniela which maybe more stable at the moment than AudioEngine, so that's two alternatives for HD Audio.

See http://forum.xbmc.org/showthread.php?tid=121877
post #14 of 36
Thread Starter 
I didn't try to put this as lets get rid of one or the other.

I wanted opinions on people using both or each one on which one they think is better and for what reasons.

I want to know if it was because XBMC had better video engine or audio engine, looks, faster, more complete, less buggy or because MP is easier to use, more options, better support.

I'm trying to determine what is the motivation of people to stick to one or the other.

I love XBMC, its ten times faster than MP, looks a lot better, the only thing I don't like is how it handles my media collection, and I don't like it didn't come standard with HD audio.

Now I will try the nightly builds and the other patch posted here, I was using DSPlayer only to get HDaudio and because it behaved quite nicely with some movies I have, that for some reason XBMC didn't like at all.

If you guys using XBMC have a plugin that scans all the movies I have and scrap the info for me in the easiest fashion please let me know, because so far MP is way better doing that than XBMC.

I just want to sit down and watch any of my 220 movies, with my subtitles, hd audio, no pressing buttons just sit and play
post #15 of 36
Your naming convention is going to play a big factor in how good the XBMC scraper treats your content. It also helps to break up your collection so that if you recently added a movie and for some reason XBMC wasn't able to scrape it you can just navigate to that folder, select that file and manually scrape it. Most of my stuff is named like Crappy Action Movie (2006) or something and all 609 of my movies are there ready for me to view with HD audio working for the ones that have it.

I honestly haven't had too many problems with the XBMC scraper except for a few of my anime movies like Paprika that XBMC thought was some 80's flick because the scraper site had it listed with the Japanese name Papurika. It's worked so well for me that I actually stopped using Media Companion, Ember, and MCM.
post #16 of 36
I first started learning with wmc and MB, now I'm trying xbmc. I have a real love hate relationship with xbmc.

I'm trying to add some single season anime series and I just want to kick the crap out of my newly built computer. There are great plugins but half the video plugins give me an error, I tried reading about how to get ESPN to work but gave up since it seemed to be a convoluted mess. Then there are issues with some plugins with some skins....or there aren't issues and the plugin or skin gets updated and gives you issues.

I made a mistake when adding movies and the list got populated with some files (I think they were windows files) and xbmc wouldn't let me delete them. I tried from the menu, and then I removed all the sources...they wouldn't go away which made me reinstall xbmc.

Gamebrowser works much better than Advanced Launcher. I add my Nes roms, they populate and then I go through one by one to grab metadata, fanart, thumbs through the dbgames scraper. I forgot to turn off the scraper when I added my snes roms.....so the launcher asks me to select which game it is to add the content while populating the menu. Well, I don't know which game the system is asking me about cause I just added 50 games and since they haven't actually populated the menu yet I can't tell which game the system is asking me about. And there is no option to just cancel the operation.

If it wasn't for the free cable plugin with xbmc and the fact that WMC looks like crap I would've given up and just used MB. MB is more wysiwyg, what you see in explorer is what you get in MB.
post #17 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by leviathan18 View Post

I'm trying to determine what is the motivation of people to stick to one or the other.

I wish I caught your thread before I started setting up XBMC.

I actually tried setting up XBMC as a Media Center sometime last year, but when it came time to set up live tv all of the wiki articles I found said to integrate MediaPortal's TV server. I had never heard of MediaPortal up until that point, and when I realized that it was a self-contained Media Center, I couldn't figure out why people didn't just use that. It took me a little while, but once I got MediaPortal all setup, I really liked it.

I recently upgraded my system and decided I'd try setting up XBMC because people seem crazy about it, and the majority of posts I see here and other places make it sound like its the most preferred front end. I figured there must be something to all of the acclaim, so started setting it up following the guide stickied in this forum. So far everything's going fairly smoothly, but I'm wondering if I maybe should've just stuck to MediaPortal. So far the thing I like the most about the XBMC setup is the Aeon MQ3 skin, but I haven't even started trying to set up live tv or seeing if I have any problems with HD audio.
post #18 of 36
I was reading up on the development of live TV and DVR functionality in XBMC and I would honestly say that if you already have a working solution and aren't one of those people who just needs to tinker with stuff still in the developmental phase then stick to MediaPortal. WMC just works on that end for me so I have no need to mess around with live TV in XBMC and deal with the frustration.

I chose XBMC because I preferred the look and functionality of the Aeon MQ3 skin compared to Media Browser and MediaPortal. Things like rotating fanart, customizable backgrounds for each screen, a wide variety of views for your media like TV show logos or clearart as well as add-ons like TV Tunes that play the theme when you navigate to a TV show or the Cinema Experience that allows you to play intros, trailers, and outros when you play your movies just give XBMC that extra wow factor that knocks people's socks off when they see it in action make it easy for me to keep using XBMC.
post #19 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe 6 Pack View Post

Things like rotating fanart, customizable backgrounds for each screen, a wide variety of views for your media like TV show logos or clearart as well as add-ons like TV Tunes that play the theme when you navigate to a TV show or the Cinema Experience that allows you to play intros, trailers, and outros when you play your movies just give XBMC that extra wow factor that knocks people's socks off when they see it in action make it easy for me to keep using XBMC.

FYI with the exception of TV Tunes WMC+MB can do all of the above.
post #20 of 36
I use mediaportal + mpchc player and prefer it over xbmc.
post #21 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe 6 Pack View Post

I was reading up on the development of live TV and DVR functionality in XBMC and I would honestly say that if you already have a working solution and aren't one of those people who just needs to tinker with stuff still in the developmental phase then stick to MediaPortal. WMC just works on that end for me so I have no need to mess around with live TV in XBMC and deal with the frustration.

I chose XBMC because I preferred the look and functionality of the Aeon MQ3 skin compared to Media Browser and MediaPortal. Things like rotating fanart, customizable backgrounds for each screen, a wide variety of views for your media like TV show logos or clearart as well as add-ons like TV Tunes that play the theme when you navigate to a TV show or the Cinema Experience that allows you to play intros, trailers, and outros when you play your movies just give XBMC that extra wow factor that knocks people's socks off when they see it in action make it easy for me to keep using XBMC.

In WMC you just put png or jpg files either labeled folder (for thumbnail) or backdrop (for well...backdrops) into the folders that you want associated with the images. if you want multiple backdrop just label each background image backdrop, backdrop1, backdrop2 etc.

You could have a movie folder with an icon and backdrop, you click on it and get categories like 2D movies, 3D movies etc (each with their own icon and set of backdrops), and then you can further nest folders as you need them. IMO, this is what makes MB more intuitive since this is pretty much how most people organize data with explorer.
post #22 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by wyen78 View Post

In WMC [...] IMO, this is what makes MB more intuitive since this is pretty much how most people organize data with explorer.

You need to be careful to say WMC-MB or just MediaBrowser - even as a user of the same setup, your post was confusing me!

I like both XBMC and MediaBrowser - but use MediaBrowser because I have a tuner card. If not for the tuner card (and DRM protected cable) I would probably go XBMC.

xnappo
post #23 of 36
I used to use MediaBrowser because it's easier to set up than XBMC but it was always laggy for me. Not all of my htpc's are powerhouses so the scrolling through movies would be unbearable at times. XBMC is harder to set up but once you do it is awesome.
post #24 of 36
Is there a remote app available for Mediaportal like there is for XBMC?
post #25 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by xnappo View Post

You need to be careful to say WMC-MB or just MediaBrowser - even as a user of the same setup, your post was confusing me!

I like both XBMC and MediaBrowser - but use MediaBrowser because I have a tuner card. If not for the tuner card (and DRM protected cable) I would probably go XBMC.

xnappo

You are correct. I meant Mediabrowser not WMC.
post #26 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by scl23enn4m3 View Post

Is there a remote app available for Mediaportal like there is for XBMC?

Yes - aMPdroid
post #27 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by assassin View Post

FYI with the exception of TV Tunes WMC+MB can do all of the above.

Oh ok, I never gave WMC+MB more than a cursory glance as I didn't like how certain things like the fonts used in some of the skins looked and some of the better looking skins were for a fee and I'm cheap.


Quote:
Originally Posted by wyen78 View Post

In WMC you just put png or jpg files either labeled folder (for thumbnail) or backdrop (for well...backdrops) into the folders that you want associated with the images. if you want multiple backdrop just label each background image backdrop, backdrop1, backdrop2 etc.

You could have a movie folder with an icon and backdrop, you click on it and get categories like 2D movies, 3D movies etc (each with their own icon and set of backdrops), and then you can further nest folders as you need them. IMO, this is what makes MB more intuitive since this is pretty much how most people organize data with explorer.


The thing I like with XMBC is that a lot of this stuff is automated with add-ons like artwork downloader and the Cinema Experience add-on. Once I add my movies by themselves to a folder, XBMC scrapes, the add-on runs and populates my folders with all the extrafanart, thumbnails, metadata without having to use something like Media Companion or MCM. It's cool that the functionality is there for people who use MediaPortal as more options are always appreciated but for me personally, I just prefer the XBMC way of doing things and the variety of options it offers for me to personalize and customize my interface.
post #28 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by steelman1991 View Post

Yes - aMPdroid

Should have specified, I need an iOS based one. iPiMP doesn't exactly make the cut though.
post #29 of 36
Thread Starter 
potato coach I think is called for iOS I downloaded it yesterday, can't remember the name xD
post #30 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by leviathan18 View Post

potato coach I think is called for iOS I downloaded it yesterday, can't remember the name xD

See section 12.15 of the new MediaPortal guide for the Couchpotato instructions: http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1410346

Being the author of the MediaPortal guide, I clearly am a MediaPortal user - using Live TV and streaming it around the house from a server is an essential requirement for me. However, I was challenged by someone on AVForums (UK equivalent forum to AVSForum) to try XBMC, because we always ranted at each other that our chosen HTPC software was the best. I have to say, if you take the PVR function out of the equation, then XBMC is pretty impressive.

These were my thoughts:

Pros so far:
  • It is slick! Damn it is really quick in some of the menu browsing, not massively different to MediaPortal 1.2.3, but it does have the edge on it and give it a really reactive feel.
  • The setup using the remote control rather than using a separate GUI is a lovely feature and really gives it a set-top-box feel - Very nice. I really hope that MediaPortal will work that well when MP 1.3.0 is released.
  • The built-in mediainfo grabbing is really nice. I suppose the fact that MediaPortal has a number of different ways of doing this means that they are reluctant to include it by default, but it is a great function out-of-the-box which must be a lovely experience for new users (I can see why MP seems far more involved)!
  • Other built-in features, like visualisations are a nice addition.

    Cons so far:
  • Well, to be honest, there aren't many apart from the big problem of Live TV and the fact that MediaPortal can do that brilliantly!

If I didn't use Live TV on my system, I would probably be very torn between MP and XMBC and it would be tough to choose between them.

I ended up setting up a comparison spreadsheet for all the different software to try and understand what makes one better than the other (and to help new users choose their software), but it got very complicated - have a look at this thread: http://www.avforums.com/forums/home-...omparison.html

Personally, I think people tend to search for the bit of software that meets their needs, and when they find it they stick with that one forever! People invest a lot of time learning how to setup the advance features of their software and getting their setup perfect that the idea of changing is quite daunting. This ends up with people being quite defensive of their chosen software because they don't want anyone to convince them they are wrong !

To get a pretty thorough setup of MP or XMBC working it probably only takes 2 hours maximum, I found it a really interesting experience trying XBMC and although I DEFINITELY wont move away from MediaPortal, I can see what the fuss is about with XBMC!

I really recommend that if you are an XMBC user you try following the new guide and setup MP (and visa versa if you are a MediaPortal user). You might just like the change!

Robbo100
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