AVS Forum banner
1 - 20 of 254 Posts

·
Banned
Joined
·
29,681 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This thread is dedicated to showing off everything that is awesome about HTPC.


Please share screen shots of your HTPC set up and share with the community what you love about your set up.


I have wanted to do a thread like this for some time, and in partnership with a few AVS veterans who are also willing to participate... let the fun begin !
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
29,681 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
reserved 1 MB3 Classic


Also

THUMBS UP SOME OF THESE GUYS FOR POSTING UP THEIR SET UPS !


Edit #2: I still waiting to get my media server back up and running. I am being kicked out of my office, and I must relocate both my workstation and Flexraid media server because my wife has claimed my office for the new baby room (Twins due May 30th
) Sorry for the delay in this process, I am unable to really showcase my set up (yet)


Here is some examples of some of the MBclassic options:

ROC

BREEZE:
CRYSTAL:
Live Video Backdrops on CRYSTAL
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
29,681 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
reserved 2 MB theater


Edit: I am in the process of getting kicked out of my office



Wifey is claiming it and making it a baby room. (We are pregnant with twins due May 30th
)


So my office since it's next to the bedroom is the most logical room for the babies. That means I need to move out
I am in the process of moving my server and my desktop workstation to a new location- I need to run COAX for the cable modem, and CAT6. It's going to be a few days before I can get my pictures up of my set up.


In the mean time here is the Youtube video I made as an example of LIVE VIDEO BACKDROPS in MBT to hold you over.


Note: This is an alpha build of MBtheater and not representative of the final product (it's already changed/improved since I made this) This was also a "fake" media library I made locally for a test. Anyways- you should get the idea.


From previously posted in the MB thread few weeks ago:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mfusick  /t/1455591/media-browser-3-is-coming/800_100#post_23983679


Yes. It works great for me.


Yup I reposted it sorry... See below


For those of you that are interested:


I am working on posting a few demo videos of mine if you guys want to see this bad boy in action. Live video backdrops really make a difference. Keep in mind this is far from a complete project and there is still lots coming in the way of refinements, themes and skins, plugins and such.


Here is a quick one I just launched:


Here is another: #2


Just a showcase of the live video backdrop options.




I can do a TV series demo too if you guys want to see it.


Here is a TV show demo: (note I created a fake demo library for these videos, and removed my real media folders from the config) I really just wanted to show off a little of the video backdrops.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,714 Posts
Plexbmc


Here are some screenshots of Plex Home Theater to show my current library according to Plex (just did a delete re-add to modify scraper, etc as I only really use Plex for remote playback and don't keep track of watched status within PMS)


Channels


TV Shows


Movies



Now, to view the XBMC library with a Plexbmc compatible skin. It should be noticed that the plexbmc integration tool won't pull on deck to the main menu widget of any skin but Amber. The recently added won't pull to the main menu widgets of any skin but Quartz and Amber. Those two skins are basically the only real choices for Plexbmc if you want the home screen widgets. However, I've added the "All Movies" section of Plex within Plexbmc as a "video node" to the main menu of Aeon MQ5 and Aeon Nox without issue (though I couldn't get it working on the Gotham alpha version I had running on my notebook). So there are other skin options as long as you are fine without the "recently added" or "on deck" widgets on your home screen. (Though I tried this on the Gotham alpha on this notebook and it didn't work, while it has been working on Frodo installations when I checked)


New installation without any XBMC library (notice the empty Videos section)




Now the settings menu with the "Go Plex" option



After clicking "Go Plex" then you'll see the following


Channels



TV Shows



Movies




Notice the source in the Video Info view has "plugin://plugin.video.plexbmc" instead of any normal UNC server path. Also, the fanart downloader can't scrape discart and extrafanart for these titles. Actor thumbs don't pull in nor actor info for me. I deleted and rescraped my PMS just to verify that actors and descriptions, etc were available in Plex (which they are). If there is something I'm missing, please let me know how to add these sort of additions to the plexbmc plugin and I'll update this. AFAIK there is no way to add those extras to your Plex libraries in XBMC.


Also, I can't prevent this menu from showing up when clicking Movies from the main menu of Amber, even though there is a skin setting that I have enabled along the lines of "Home Shelf Movies default selection - All Movies"





Anyway, this is still a cool way to keep all of your plex libraries synchronized and harness the power of XBMCs addon library as well. With a few more tweaks to the capabilities of the "plugin" library you could have all the discart, spinning, clearart, etc eye candy that XBMC has in my post above. I don't think the capability is there at this time however, but I would *love* to be proven wrong. I'd go manually edit the watched status for every title and get rid of MySQL libraries if these eye candy extras were possible. As it stands, I've spent too much effort getting all these in place to give up on them for the nicety of Plexbmc integration. It's still a WIP, but the creators of this integration have really done a lot of work getting things this far and have plenty of talent
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
722 Posts
I chose MediaBrowser with the Chocolate theme, Cover Art plugin, and the custom backdrop trick from Assassin's Guides.













The "eye candy appeal" is definitely worth the effort & money to me. I recently picked up a WD TV LIVE for the bedroom and it plays all files just fine but it lacks that WOW factor for the ultimate experience.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Mfusick

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,225 Posts
XBMC with the Metropolis Skin and the Steampunk Theme:


Main Screen:


Genre Screen:


movie list screen:


movie detail:


actor detail:


movie search from actor detail:
 
  • Like
Reactions: politby and Mfusick

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,118 Posts
Stock Windows 7 Media Center with library menus by Media Browser 2.6 (Diamond theme)


One of my goals is to try in some ways to keep my system looking stock, but adding some nice touches. That's why I won't upgrade to Media Browser 3 - they removed the ability to launch directly into a "media collection."


I use my system for live tv and disc playback just as much as I do archived media. So I'm normally launching from the main menu of Windows Media Center. I thought having to leave that and then go into another, different menu interface to use Media Browser was a bit jarring.


When Media Browser 2.x crates a new "media collection" it also creates a unique entry point for that collection that can be manipulated in the registry. When I want to watch movies, I click an icon that looks like the default WMC movie library, but it launches me into Media Browser's movie library.



Inside the movie library it doesn't look much different than any other minimal Media Browser theme. I like how it handles tv shows though. A solution for shows and mini series like From the Earth to the Moon were my main impetus for ditching the default movie library:







and I like looking for unique movie posters to put in the gallery:





also created a library for concert videos that sits on the music strip, where I felt it was more appropriate. Most of them were recorded off Palladia and detelecined back to 1080p24 mkv files:







And my favorite reason for Media Browser entry points? My emulator collection made possible through the MB plugin called Game Browser:





Each game system has two icons - the console and the controller. The console is shown by default, but the controller is shown when you highlight it. All of this can be manipulated in the registry. And here is what happens when you select a console:










I play all my classic console games with a Wiimote. I use the basic Wiimote to play NES, the Classic Controller for SNES and Genesis, the nunchuk for Atari games, and I have yet to find a suitable N64/Gamecube solution. I have a PS2 style USB controller that I use for PC games like Vice City, but I don't like trying to use it with N64. Ive seen N64 style USB controllers. Ive also seen an Instructable to use my Ardunio as an N64 to usb adapter. I think after I visit my parents next week that I'll try finding my old green N64 remote and going the Arduino route. I should even be able to make it bluetooth wireless if I screw around with it long enough.


When you select PLAY on a game Game Browser uses the same logic to launch an emulator for a given rom type that MB uses to launch an external player for a given video file type. To close the game and go back I've mapped several of the buttons inside the emulator setup to ALT+F4. Pressing those two together allows me to immediately close the emulator and go back into Game Browser


One of the emulator benefits over consoles is the ability to apply various upscaling filters. They work to smooth out the jagged/pixelated sprites. Heres a screen grab from Mega Man 2:




Even with archived discs and rom files I still use a lot of physical media - I'm a bit surprised WMC actually doesn't support CDs. One of the things I've been doing is using my HTPC to digitally capture old home movies for my parents. That same software (ATI's Catalyst Media Center- it came bundled with my first tuner) also lets me record my favorite talk radio show every day. It drops it into a folder that I can easily access on my phone.




After I launch the VHS capture frontend my remote controls the power, play, stop, fast forward, and rewind buttons on the VCR. On the PC it controls the directional navigation, record, stop record, and rewind/fast forward of the video capture stream. Screen captures of Catalyst Media Center (the software I'm using) didn't work out well with a tape playing, but you can imagine how it looks:






Speaking of radio, I run FM thru my HTPC too:




Ive used my Xbox 360 in extender mode to send the local fm broadcast audio from Steeler, Penguin, and Pitt Panther games to my stereo while my HTPC shows video on my tv.


For new discs I just can't wait to rip, things from the library, or "making of" special feature discs I use Arcsoft Total Media Theater 5. I've ripped out all the PNG files that have a default blue WMCesque background and replaced it with ones that mirror the Mobius theme I'm using





One of the reason I love HTPC is that you don't have to change tv/receiver inputs to use different kinds of media. I've created some MCL files to allow me to access streaming media sites inside WMC without leaving the frontend:









As for tv/dvr usage I organized my guide by channel name and added the wonderful program My Channel Logos. Since I organize by name I don't have to try memorizing channels. If I'm on Root Sports, and I want to watch Turner Classic Movies, I go down. I also got rid of sd channels and anything I won't watch to keep the guide clean.




For DVR control I definitely recommend Ceton's excellent My Media Center app, which is available on most (all?) mobile platforms for a few dollars. Makes finding things to record more fun and also is great for scheduling remotely when you're not at home:

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
200 Posts

@pittsoccer33  -- How many hours did you spend getting all of that setup!!! Very cool!

 

Everyone's front ends in this thread look great...next time someone says "my apple TV is soooo great"  point them to this thread and laugh at them...
 
  • Like
Reactions: pittsoccer33

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,225 Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bizzy G.L.X.  /t/1505076/htpc-front-end-shootout-show-us-your-eye-candy/0_50#post_24065127

@pittsoccer33

 -- How many hours did you spend getting all of that setup!!! Very cool!


Everyone's front ends in this thread look great...next time someone says "my apple TV is soooo great"  point them to this thread and laugh at them...

It's a cool thread that's making me want to look at some other front ends and software suites as well.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Mfusick
1 - 20 of 254 Posts
Top