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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am looking at purchasing a Dell XPS420 w/ VMC SP1 and Dual Cable CARD support with the hopes of connecting as the sole sorcce on my Main TV and that using Extenders on My other TVs (all hard Wired).


I have some questions about VMC as it seems there are still many issues that have not been fully resolved.


1. Can DVD and Blu Ray rips (using AnyDVD) play back seamlessly on a VMC Server? On a VMC Extender? (Yes, I saw the thread refering to PowerDVD from 2007. I was wondering if any improvements have been made since that 2007 post). Also still wondering about this issue with extenders.


2. Are there any goo applications available for commercial skip on VMC files?


3. Are there any applications that can automatically convert VMC files to a format other media players can play, such as Popcorn Hour? If I were able to use Popcon Hour on VMC files, than I would have a single unit that can play BluRay Rips and TV Recordings.


4. Does VMC limit recordings to a single hard drive?


5. Any idea if the Motorola MTR700 or Cisco STA-1520 tuning resolvers will be compatable with the ATI Digital Cable Tuner for resolving the Switched Digital Video (SDV) implimentation by some cable companies?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by epete /forum/post/14181511


I am looking at purchasing a Dell XPS420 w/ VMC SP1 and Dual Cable CARD support with the hopes of connecting as the sole sorcce on my Main TV and that using Extenders on My other TVs (all hard Wired).


I have some questions about VMC as it seems there are still many issues that have not been fully resolved.


1. Can DVD and Blu Ray rips (using AnyDVD) play back seamlessly on a VMC Server? On a VMC Extender? (Yes, I saw the thread refering to PowerDVD from 2007. I was wondering if any improvements have been made since that 2007 post). Also still wondering about this issue with extenders.


2. Are there any goo applications available for commercial skip on VMC files?


3. Are there any applications that can automatically convert VMC files to a format other media players can play, such as Popcorn Hour? If I were able to use Popcon Hour on VMC files, than I would have a single unit that can play BluRay Rips and TV Recordings.


4. Does VMC limit recordings to a single hard drive?


5. Any idea if the Motorola MTR700 or Cisco STA-1520 tuning resolvers will be compatable with the ATI Digital Cable Tuner for resolving the Switched Digital Video (SDV) implimentation by some cable companies?

1. As long as you have a way of converting the HD-DVD/Blu-rays to DVR-MS or at least WMV files, it shouldn't be a problem on an extender.


2 and 3. There are good programs to do that, unfortunately Cablecard content is protected and none of those programs will work.


4. Your only limit is hard disk space. Figure 1GB an hour for SD, 10GB an hour for HD.


5. Unknown. Nothing announced. Most feel SDV support will come with the BOCR (Bi-directional Open Cable Receiver) tuners. A few years off.
 

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Quote:
1. Can DVD and Blu Ray rips (using AnyDVD) play back seamlessly on a VMC Server? On a VMC Extender? (Yes, I saw the thread refering to PowerDVD from 2007. I was wondering if any improvements have been made since that 2007 post). Also still wondering about this issue with extenders.

If your objective is to centralize DVD and BD rips and use VMC and Extenders to view them, VMC is a bad choice. The extenders can't even do DVDs properly, forget BDs.

Quote:
2. Are there any goo applications available for commercial skip on VMC files?

As previously said, ALL recordings with a cablecard PC are DRMed, and none of the tools will work on DRMed recordings (that's one of the reasons of having DRM in the first place, you can't mess with the files)

Quote:
3. Are there any applications that can automatically convert VMC files to a format other media players can play, such as Popcorn Hour? If I were able to use Popcon Hour on VMC files, than I would have a single unit that can play BluRay Rips and TV Recordings.

By "VMC files" if you mean the recordings, then the answer to 2 applies. They are DRMed and will play ONLY on the machine they were recorded on and/or extenders hooked to THAT machine.

Quote:
4. Does VMC limit recordings to a single hard drive?

VMC limits recording to "local" drives, although it can be hacked to record pretty much anywhere. My personal opinion is that it is better to have it record locally and then use tools/scripts to automatically move the recordings to a central location for sharing.

Quote:
5. Any idea if the Motorola MTR700 or Cisco STA-1520 tuning resolvers will be compatable with the ATI Digital Cable Tuner for resolving the Switched Digital Video (SDV) implimentation by some cable companies?

Sorry, no idea yet.
 

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One additional note. I use the VMC plugin TV Toolbox and supposedly (I don't have a cablecard machine yet) this plugin does work on cablecard protected content allowing you to edit the protected files. It does not have auto-commercial skip functionality at this time however.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks everyone. This was very helpful input.


One more question. If I am using a Dual CableCARD tuner and also have HDHomerun, will Vista Media Center Guide Data support both my CATV line-up and my Local OTA lineup? (I heard on one of my opther posts that this could not be done with a CATV and DirecTV lineup. Just wondering if I could have two lineups if one is OTA Locals)


Also, now that I am thinking about it, my OTA Locals will be both NYC and Philadelphia since I am between the two.
 

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You can do ATSC OTA locals along with the cablecard tuners, the ATSC will show up in the guide in the 1000 range, the cablecard channels will be in their normal slots.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Here is the system I was thinking about. There is a buy one get one half off sale at Dell. It seems like a good geal for about $1725 but I have to buy two. Any comments on this configuration - I wasn't sure what the best option was for the video card to be used in connecting to a Samsung LCD HDTV.



Module Description Description Product Code & SKU Product Code & SKU

XPS 420 Intel® Core™2 Q6600 Quad-Core (8MB L2 cache,2.4GHz,1066FSB) S3Q66H [223-2365]

Operating System Genuine Windows Vista® Ultimate w/ Digital Cable Support SP1 VU31OC [313-5656][420-5769][420-5924][420-6436][420-8871][420-7622][463-2282]

Memory 4GB Dual Channel DDR2 SDRAM at 800MHz - 4 DIMMs 4GB84 [311-7667]

KEYBOARD Dell USB Keyboard EK [310-7963]

Monitors No Monitor N [320-6200]

Video Cards ATI Radeon HD3870 512MB GDDR4 AT3870 [320-6459]

Hard Drive 750GB - 7200RPM, SATA 3.0Gb/s, 16MB Cache 750S [341-5390]

Floppy Drive and Media Reader No Floppy Drive or Media Reader Included NFD [341-5418]

MOUSE Dell Premium Optical USB Mouse POM [310-8647]

Modem No Modem Requested N [313-3607]

Adobe Software Adobe® Acrobat® Reader 8.1 AAREAD [420-7468]

Optical Drive Single Drive: Blu-ray Disc Drive (BD/DVD/CD burner w/double layer BD write BDDX [467-4837][420-6924][420-6925][420-8154]

Sound Cards Sound Blaster® X-Fi™ XtremeGamer (D) Sound Card XFI [313-5834]

Speakers No speakers (Speakers are required to hear audio from your system) N [313-4514]

Office Productivity Software (Pre-Installed) Microsoft Works 9.0 XWRK9 [420-8103]

Security Software McAfee SecurityCenter 15-months VMCAF1Y [410-1184]

Warranty & Service 1Yr In-Home Service, Parts + Labor,24x7 Phone Support S111OS [988-2217][983-9470][950-9797][960-8700][990-8029]

Optional Support Services Dimension XPS, Specialized Support XPSSUPP [960-2697]

Internet Access Service No ISP requested NISP [412-0148]

Miscellaneous Buy one Desktop 420, get one half off! WPPC300 [467-5457]

TV Tuner & Video Accelerator Dual ATITV Wonder™Digital Cable Tuner with Remote TVTOCR2 [A1210307][A1210307][412-1058]

Dell Digital Entertainment No Entertainment software pre-installed NODE [464-9572]

Labels Windows Vista™ Premium VPD [310-8626]

Datasafe Included 3 GB DataSafe Online Backup for 1Yr
 
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