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Cutting WMC loose

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
All,

I've been using WMC for about 6 years, and for a great deal of that been using my Ceton InfiniTV 4 with it. Overall, WMC has served me well, but with support and software for WMC on life support, i'm interested in looking at alternatives. It seems to me that WMC requires a lot more babysitting than i'd like to deal with anymore (Bugs with addins, menu strips, resolutions, etc.) and needs a lot of tinkering to make it do what I want. Before I needed it since I extended to a Xbox 360, but I'm not anymore hence the interest in the best overall packaged alternative.

Having been out of the loop, might I ask you all for your recommendations?

Some reqs:
- I would like to continue to use my InfiniTV4 to watch Live TV (no premium / copy once content - mostly basic cable)
- Good TV guide and DVR capabilities
- Good UIs for pictures, music, movie library (I use media browser and have liked it over the years)

Let me know if I need to clarify any additional options.

Thanks in advance...
post #2 of 13
I have not had to baby sit WMC at all, really.

For US CableTV I think that it is probably the best PVR software still but I have not tried any other software either.
post #3 of 13
Oh, and hang tight because Media Browser Theater is coming soon and from what I've been told it will blow your socks off..
post #4 of 13
You should give Mediaportal a try. It has a great looking UI and you can use other pcs as extenders. Which means shared guide, stop playback in one room and resume in another, etc..There is also a Mediabrowser plugin in the works.
post #5 of 13
That'll work fine so long as your CableTV provider continues to give you copy freely content. Who is your provider, garyttu?
post #6 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by garyttu View Post

All,

I've been using WMC for about 6 years, and for a great deal of that been using my Ceton InfiniTV 4 with it. Overall, WMC has served me well, but with support and software for WMC on life support, i'm interested in looking at alternatives. It seems to me that WMC requires a lot more babysitting than i'd like to deal with anymore (Bugs with addins, menu strips, resolutions, etc.) and needs a lot of tinkering to make it do what I want. Before I needed it since I extended to a Xbox 360, but I'm not anymore hence the interest in the best overall packaged alternative.

Having been out of the loop, might I ask you all for your recommendations?

Some reqs:
- I would like to continue to use my InfiniTV4 to watch Live TV (no premium / copy once content - mostly basic cable)
- Good TV guide and DVR capabilities
- Good UIs for pictures, music, movie library (I use media browser and have liked it over the years)

Let me know if I need to clarify any additional options.

Thanks in advance...

If you have Comcast or Vz Fios then you have a lot of options. If you have those, but insist on being able to watch HBO, Cinemax, etc then you are back to having only one option. If you have any other cable provider (AFAIK) then you have only one option for cable tv viewing.

If you fall into the "lot of options" group, I'd suggest XBMC with the WMC Server integration.http://forum.xbmc.org/showthread.php?tid=171216


If you fall into the "only one option" group, then try out the ultimate WMC integration link in my signature
post #7 of 13
Thread Starter 
I've got Comcast- but do end up watching Live TV as well for sports, etc.

Thanks for the comments all- I'll give Media Portal and XBMC a look again and see how it can be set up to still get my live TV.

One annoying thing that WMC doesn't do is change hz for video playback, so I get the 23/24 studder for not switching refresh rate.
I usually run mpc-hc as an external MB player to handle this, but this has its own issues. Hopefully one of the above has that automatically taken care of?

I may also consider the suggestion to wait for Media Browser Theater (and its WMC TV launching capabilities and eventual Live TV integration).
post #8 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by garyttu View Post

I've got Comcast- but do end up watching Live TV as well for sports, etc.

Thanks for the comments all- I'll give Media Portal and XBMC a look again and see how it can be set up to still get my live TV.

One annoying thing that WMC doesn't do is change hz for video playback, so I get the 23/24 studder for not switching refresh rate.
I usually run mpc-hc as an external MB player to handle this, but this has its own issues. Hopefully one of the above has that automatically taken care of?

I may also consider the suggestion to wait for Media Browser Theater (and its WMC TV launching capabilities and eventual Live TV integration).

Which are?
post #9 of 13
Thread Starter 
In short:
1) Reinstalling it is a hassle with having to mess with all the remote mappings
2) Sometimes it doesnt gracefully tab properly between the two apps
3) I can't stop a film and pick it up where I left off (since MB doesn't handle that anymore and passes the vid to the external player)

All of the above is usually not a problem for me, but since this is a family setup and I have a WAF to deal with, these types of issues over time become annoying.

Really WMC served its purpose for me, but count me as one of the many who are ready to see it sunsetted if its not actively being developed to a significant degree.
Other than LiveTV and the Cablecard cert. I can't think of another single reason to keep using it when 95% of what WMC does has been better served by launching some other addin or external program.
So other than the Live TV, i'm using a glorified 'launcher' to better apps, with crappy launcher layout customization (yes, i've used MCE Toolbox, MC Themer, etc.).
I'm getting texts from my wife while i'm out that launching 'Guide' only opens 'Recorded TV'. I have to teach her to launch live tv first from the direct button, only then the guide will work (the up and down menu trick doesn't solve it). Either that or reboot the HTPC. Resetting the theme to default seems to have fixed it for now- but i'm not about to start all over with more customization xmls and the sort that seem to flake out over time due to Windows updates or some other random happenstance. There's no solutions for this type of stuff from searches...why? because either the answer is "Its a Microsoft bug that will not get fixed" or doesn't get a response as the WMC community dwindles.
Once LiveTV gets its real 'out' from WMC, I can't see any reason people would use it.
post #10 of 13
I don't have to re-install as my system is completely stable. Why would you want to do that on a regular basis?

What I really think is the problem is that you have borked it with MCE Toolbox andMC Themer. Do a last fresh install and just get it set up correctly then leave it alone.

I'm not seeing a need to tab between the two apps. I have MediaBrowser in position one on the taskbar and my Harmony 900 remote mapped to load it when I press on the MediaBrowser Icon on the touch screen.

MediaBrowser has had resume built in talking to MPC-HC for over a year now in version 2.6.

Everything is very stable and fluid all the time. You don't need to ditch WMC; you need to properly set it up and then let it be.

Have you taken a look at assassin's guides? For $25 they will save you tons of time and frustration. Some other things are not in there but are available right here on avs.

I really think that you need to reconsider what you are doing because once it is set up right it just works.
post #11 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sammy2 View Post

Have you taken a look at assassin's guides? For $25 they will save you tons of time and frustration. Some other things are not in there but are available right here on avs.

I really think that you need to reconsider what you are doing because once it is set up right it just works.

FYI, his guides are free now.
post #12 of 13
Thread Starter 
Well I appreciate the response- sorry for a bit of a rant there.
I'll take a look at your suggestions and see if that helps.

I certainly am quite interested though to see what Media Browser Theater holds for the future...
post #13 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by bryansj View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sammy2 View Post

Have you taken a look at assassin's guides? For $25 they will save you tons of time and frustration. Some other things are not in there but are available right here on avs.

I really think that you need to reconsider what you are doing because once it is set up right it just works.

FYI, his guides are free now.

I didn't know that. This is fantastic news!
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