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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
If you have an ethernet connection where your tv is, wouldn't it just be better to connect it to your tv via your laptop to your desktop computer and access all the files on it?


why the need for a media player?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by aldamon /forum/post/0


Yeah, you're overlooking usability, convenience, and looks. Also, I could be wrong, but not many laptops are going to output HD over component or HDMI.

I think the HDMI input is probably the best point.


But I'll take issue with the usability arguement. what would be easier than using a wireless mouse in your living room clicking the files you want?


i was *this* close to buying a dsm-520, but couldn't stand the fact that there is no stop feature, and choosing your music files in folders is not user friendly at all.


i think the laptop option is a much better one.
 

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The focus of the media streamer is that it doesn't have a large OS footprint and is more of an appliance than a PC. My concern is I don't want an OS I have to constantly update for spyware and viruses. The digital media streamer is a relatively new device and is going through growing pains. No one digital media streamer seems to fit everyones needs. Theoretically they should also be less expensive than a PC/Laptop.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by bbtfastback /forum/post/0


I think the HDMI input is probably the best point.


But I'll take issue with the usability arguement. what would be easier than using a wireless mouse in your living room clicking the files you want?


i was *this* close to buying a dsm-520, but couldn't stand the fact that there is no stop feature, and choosing your music files in folders is not user friendly at all.


i think the laptop option is a much better one.

I don't know what kind of component rack you have, but a laptop wouldn't exactly fit in with the rest of our components. The DSM-520 looks like a DVD player with an antenna.


As for control, we control it with a Logitech Harmony remote, which makes it WAF-approved. A laptop would be workable solution for music and SD material, but I'd consider it a clunky solution at best.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bbtfastback /forum/post/0


i was *this* close to buying a dsm-520, but couldn't stand the fact that there is no stop feature, and choosing your music files in folders is not user friendly at all.


i think the laptop option is a much better one.

TVersity solves a lot of the problems with music file navigation on the DSM-520. The machine has its problems, but MP3 navigation is not one of them IMO.
 

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My main reason is convenience. My laptop did a good job, but I had to boot it up, select the right program, max the screen etc etc. This was in XP Pro, so I'm assuming something like XP Media Center with a remote control, or perhaps a dedicated homebrew solution would be better. Oh, and my laptop gets pretty hot after a few hours.


The other thing is the hardware in some of the boxes (I have Tvix and Buffalo) is dedicated to playing video. From what I've seen of my computers (several laptops and desktops) it just doesn't quite hack it regardless of the codec it seems. This ranges from the odd freeze to lip sync. Now fair enough this can happen on the media devices too, but from what I've seen the computers do it more often. Especially when the mandatory Spyware and virus killers do something to freeze the film for a split second (not just for full sweeps but also for just updating the definitions). This is not to mention X other applications that can kick in at any time. If there is a program that could dedicate everything to the playing of video and completely stop all other tasks then great, but I don't know of it.


The other reason is price. I mean my laptop was pretty good when I got it, but cost 6 or 7 times as much as my Tvix and about 10 times more than the Buffalo.


Finally from my experimenting with these devices I found the media players generally better as long as they are playing their supported codecs (eg. DivX on a Tivx is pretty solid). Ok, so a new codec comes out (eg. H264) and your media player is toast for those files whereas your computer is fine as long as it has the processing power, but then again just convert these files to the supported format (Xillisoft has some pretty good software, as well as WinAVIVideoConvertor which is quite good). One example I had was a film that completely glitched for about a second then totally lost the lip sync until you stopped and started again manually. This happened on a few different computers running on different video software. All did the same thing pretty much. On the Tvix there was the slightest of lines on the screen for like a 100th of a second with no lip sync problems at all.


Cheers
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by aldamon /forum/post/0


TVersity solves a lot of the problems with music file navigation on the DSM-520. The machine has its problems, but MP3 navigation is not one of them IMO.

Is Tversity installed on the DSM-520? Looks like an awesome piece of software...
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by bbtfastback /forum/post/0


Is Tversity installed on the DSM-520? Looks like an awesome piece of software...

Nope....you would install Tversity on your PC instead of the Dlink server software or MS Media Connect.
 

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I think the idea is to get a low footprint reasonable cost streaming device that supports all common codecs and file types as well as has a fabulous 10' interface. Upgradability with good overhead for future stuff would be good. (full DRM handling would be nice but asking too much at this point even from the industry)


I don't believe such a product exists. The closest I have seen is the modded Xbox which fails only at providing HD native content. I'd also like it to look a tad different.


The weakness of the PC is cost, hassle, and interface although with the right PC it's ultimately capable and versitile when it comes to playing media.


Personally, I think most of the offerings in this class flat out suck compared to where they should be. We should have far better and more versitile products at this point. Unfortunately the market is still stuck on connecting their Ipods to their receivers or integrated speaker docs and the novelty of watching content on a 2" screen. Dumb. When will we get past this to get rapid quality and innovation scale here.
 

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I agree with all the previous posters that the existing products out there are all at best a partial solution to the problems. For me, I want to be assured that anything I can easily play in Windows Media Player will play back on a NMP, and that definitely includes DRM protected stuff.


I've tried a couple of the NWPs out there, but have run into (and don't want) the hassle of trying to figure out why something plays quite readily in WMP but won't play on them!


In the meantime, I have a laptop with a s-video output and that shows stuff playing in WMP at full screen (even if full screen is not being used on the laptop, which allows me to do other work with it while the family enjoys the video shown on the TV) and I've just bought a Snapstream Firefly remote that I'll use to control the video playback.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisFB /forum/post/0


Personally, I think most of the offerings in this class flat out suck compared to where they should be.

I agree. I'm still waiting for the 802.11n dream box that has GOOD XVID/DIVX/H.264/X.264/VOB/DVD ISO&IFO/TS/MP3/OGG/WAV/FLAC support, component with HDMI, AND has WPA security like the DSM-520. I thought my PS3 would help on the X.264 front, but it's not looking good
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
If I wanted to have TVersity installed on my desktop (base) and then access the content via a laptop (via an ethernet connection - connect via IP), could this be done? Would I be installing TVersity on both computers?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by bbtfastback /forum/post/0


If I wanted to have TVersity installed on my desktop (base) and then access the content via a laptop (via an ethernet connection - connect via IP), could this be done? Would I be installing TVersity on both computers?

Why would you need TVersity to access content with a laptop? Just share the folders and browse them over the network.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by mlm39 /forum/post/0


Connect your laptop to the TV with a VGA cable. Add a wireless keyboard and mouse.

Anyone know how to handle the audio?

For stereo, get a headphone to stereo RCA jack adapter. For upscale audio, get a USB sound "card" device.
 
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