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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm investigating replacing my media center 2005 setup in our house with sage 6 because I'm fed up with mce's restrictions regarding extenders (can't wait for sage's hd extender!).


The main thing I don't like about sage is the way it handles ripped dvds. My movies is the perfect app for this task, however I can't seem to find an equivalent for sage. I have tried using the sagemc16x9 skin, but it still only list movies by directory name (zero waf).


So does something like my movies for sage exist? I think I can put a jpg of the dvd cover in the directory and it will display that, but it still seems limited as compared to my movies.


Thanks!
 

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Have you tried the latest version of Sage? (version 6 I believe)


They made some significant changes to that area.


I can't say how it compairs to MCE as I don't have MCE and I don't use the DVD functions of Sage (just stick with plain old Zoomplayer myself).


-Suntan
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yep, I'm using the latest version of sage (version 6). I have'nt tried earlier versions, so I don't know if it is improved at all.


Either way, in the present state it is not very usable.


If you've never seen my movies, this is what it looks like:

http://www.mymovies.name/screenshots.aspx


I just found a deal on a mediamvp, so I really want sage to work!
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by pat_smith1969 /forum/post/0


I too am stuck with MCE because of the greatness of MyMovies. I will be watching this thread closely. If there is any other thing like MM I will have no issues switching.

Have you looked at the SageMC skin? It's much closer to what mymovies does, lookups of dvd's and all.


The default skin is ugly and the video library support unintuitive in my opinion, but since SageMC is there, it's not a showstopper.


I think my movies looks a little nicer, but sagemc is close enough for me to jump from mce back to sage.


Thanks,

Mike
 

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I've installed SageMC as well. WAF is pretty high. I started the house with MCE and then got the sage server and clients working, then transitioned all tv's to sage. Much better tv/prv. The movie section is pretty close with sagemc.


There is also one other alternative I've been experimenting with on one of the tv's and I'm pretty happy with it. MCE AND SageMC. I added Sageclient to the more programs section of MCE. All the TV watching/PVR is done with sage - various features of MCE are still available. I use a batch file to get mce to maximize/minimize on starting/stopping sage & I've disabled ehtray.exe. (so green button doesnt work from OS).


thnx,

gk
 

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Hi,


Disclaimer: Happy sagetv user here.


Are you using the latest version of sage mce16x9 (version 6.x by sage forum member flachbar: get it here )? If so you should be able to add DVD cover art and meta data (I used DVD profiler and exported my library in .xml format to sage) to sage and then browse by the cover art. You can even add the cool genre icons from sage forum member meinmaui (see them here ) so you can browse by genre.


It will not be exactly like my movies but it is awfully similar. Sounds like you may be closer than you think.


HTH


J
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Yep, I'm using the latest sagemc skin. I believe that I am close to getting it correct, but I was still missing something. I tried playing with dvdprofiler last night but I couldn't get sagemc to read in the data. I didn't realize that I needed to export the data into xml format.


I just found the sagemc my videos faq, so I'll try it again tonight (I didn't realize that I needed to manually configure some things). For those interested in playing along the faq is located here:

http://www.sage-community.org/index....i/SageMC169FAQ


I think I'm getting close!


Also one more question about extenders. I bought a mediamvp to play with but it hasn't arrived yet. Does the extender use the sagemc skin as well? Are there any visual differences between the gui on the pc and teh extender?
 

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just out of curiosity what are the limitations with extenders that your complaining about?


- Josh
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
umdivx,


are you asking about mce's extender limitations? if so, I'm displeased with having to use t360 to watch ripped dvd's and xvids on the extender. I haven't been able to get t360 to work with my original xbox and ripped dvds. The xvids sometimes work, but usually they studder.


It appears that t360 is pretty much dead anyways, and I don't want to replace the old xbox with a xbox 360. After I saw the pics of the sage hd extender and its price (
 

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Yes I do agree that the playback limitations with the extenders suck, however the problem with Transcode360 and first gen xbox's is that they emulate the extenders in software, and aren't powerful enough to emulate the extender software and run transcode360 at the same time.


Now if you have a V2 extender (which aren't out yet but soon will be) or an xbox 360 which runs the extender software natively you'd see a huge performance increase.


Where have you seen the SageHD extenders? Haven't heard about them at all.


anyways though I'm with you though, I CAN NOT give up on MCE with Mymovies, its just too valuable for me. and I'd hate to see you give up on it too



But you might want to wait and check out the V2 extenders they've added better support for media playback, Xvid and Divx, h.264, mpe4, ect... are all support to be natively supported. Not sure about .vob/.ifo or .ts playback though.


- Josh
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I realize that the v1 extenders aren't the best, but extenders in mce with xvids and ripped dvds will always be a hack (imo).


Info about the sage hd extender:

http://forums.sagetv.com/forums/showthread.php?t=22659


see page 6 for pics of the box.


My other reason for moving to a client/server htpc is because I keep having video card problems with the mce box. It keeps killing video cards (i'm on my 5th now), which brings down all of the tvs in the house. I'd like to replace the htpc with an inexpensive, quiet and reliable dell box in the office and an hd extender. That should end my need for a hot, silent video card and increase the reliability of the system.


The only remaining limitation I can see with sage is the lack of a non-linear stretch.
 

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I too have switched to Sage, as have most of my customers, why? DRM...


We don't like being told where and when we can watch what we want to.


Sage has been much easier and intuitive to setup as well.


Here is what I do.


Sage 6.019

Sage MC by flacbar interface.


Built into this interface is the ability to scan your import directories "locations of your ripped dvd's" once the scan has completed you can highlight the movie and then do an IMDB lookup on it.


I have found this much easier to do that to try and use it in conjuction with DVD profiler.


The options with Sage are just amazing, my wife LOVES IT! much better than her old DirecTivo.


I am using it with two DirecTV receivers, and it controls the channel change via serial, something else MCE will not do with more than one STB.


Try it out for a month and you wont be dissapointed.
 

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more info on the V2 extenders: http://msmvps.com/blogs/chrisl/archi...17/101784.aspx


Does say native Xvid/Divx/mpeg4 support. Still not native DVD support.



The HD box's for sage look interesting. If they were at or around $180 might be worth it but who knows I like MCE alot, but SageTV is my next fav. Anyways have they said what all formats can the Sage Extender support? .ts or .vob/.ifo for DVD playback over the network?


Also have you thought about modding the first gen xbox? XBMC is great. Currently I've got my MCE machine, two 360's, two modded first gen xbox's and 1 V1 MCE extender and they all work great.


- Josh
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by texas-avfreak /forum/post/0


Built into this interface is the ability to scan your import directories "locations of your ripped dvd's" once the scan has completed you can highlight the movie and then do an IMDB lookup on it.


I have found this much easier to do that to try and use it in conjuction with DVD profiler.

I have done this for a few movies, but it doesn't display the dvd cover. I even tried putting the cover jpg in the movie's video_ts directory, it still doesn't work. It also doesn't always replace the directory name with the looked up movie name on the main videos page. Kind of annoying.


The drm thing doesn't really bother me as long as it works invisibly because our system is pretty much a closed system. I don't usually have a need to watch or share recordings with other people. If I did, then I just burned it to a dvd.


I understand your concerns about drm, though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Josh,


If you read that closely, it actually says the sigma chip is capable of decoding those formats. Nowhere on that page does it say ms _will_ support it. In fact it looks like chris is pleading with hw mfgs to enable support for xvid, etc. Not a good sign, imo!


The sage hd extender uses the same chip (without the mcx portion). Their current extender can play all formats either natively or via automatic on-the-fly transcoding for unsupported formats (for example hd). I would be _very_ surprised if the new hd one didn't support all of these formats without a need for transcoding.


I actually have my xbox modded so that the extender runs off the hard drive. xbmc (which I've used) doesn't support live tv, so it is a non-starter. I don't want to flip between different apps to get full functionality.


Sounds like you have quite the setup in your house. Very nice.


Please don't take my points as bashing mce! I love it, and we can't live without it. I'm just wondering if there might be something a little better...



There is something very appealing about a silent $180 box that can play anything without hacks (ie t360's info/more/t360 button presses to watch a xvid). If t360 worked reliably and was seamlessly integrated, then I probably wouldn't be looking elsewhere. Even the my movies/t360 combo isn't seamless.


edit: grammar
 

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yes I know where your comming from, as well but I guess I don't really stream DVD's or other video content too much, specially HD content as my only HD tv is the projector in the basement (as you can see in my signature)


but as far as files supported i'd like to know if the sage box will support ripped dvd's the most. That would really be the only thing I stream the most and thats what I use XBMC for.


Honestly what I'd love to see the most is "softsled" for MCE get on its feet. Build a second HTPC with a integrated graphics mobo like the nvidia 6150 mobo's for the bedroom and then use my office PC as a softsled as well, that honestly would be more ideal than a extender, yes it'd be more expensive, but I love the aditional abilities you get with a PC over an extender.


Hell maybe I should just cut back on my TV watching all together???



Anyways thanks for the heads up on the sage extender, i'll definitely be watching for that and see what comes of it.


- Josh
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Amen! I think a lot of people really want softsled! Alas I don't think you or I will ever see it.



Of course the sage extender doesn't exist yet, and anything could happen to it. Hopefully in a few months we will get to see what it can/can't do.


One serious downside to the sage hd extender is the lack of a local dvd player. I have read conflicting reports about being able to play a dvd placed in the server on an extender. This is one of the first things I need to try when I get my mediamvp.


I found that script as well, but if I go the sage route I'd like to replace the noisy xbox with something silent. Plus, with what xbox media center extender kits are selling for on ebay, if I sell mine it should cover about half of the hd extender! $150? crazy!
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Progress report:


Success! By using dvd profiler and sagemc, I was able to achieve something that is close to mce and my movies. Sage displays the dvd covers on the main video library page, and when you select a movie it shows a synopsis of the movie, very close to what my movies does.


The problem I was having with dvd profile/sagemc was the naming of the dvd directories. Sagemc uses the movie's title as the key and expects the directory to be named the same in order for it to match up the two. My directory names were useful to me, but sagemc isn't smart enough.


The biggest complaint I have now is having name some of my dvd directories "Baby Einstein - Baby Wordsworth - First Words - Around the House". Seems a little ridiculous to me!


Now I just need to get my mediamvp and try out the extender!
 
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