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I've spent around £3000 on a good quality HD projector, and I intended on playing Blu-rays, DVDs and other ripped material through it. I've considered buying a PS3 to enable me to do this, but is that the right thing to do?


For example, should I be thinking about a Popcorn Hour, or playing through some kind of media centre on XBMC?


Just after some advice really, as I'm really keen to get this up and running in the next two months (currently waiting delivery on 12 home theatre seats), so anything you can help me with would be great.


Thanks in advance!
 

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I've done a bit of homework on this myself. I've tested the PS3, XBMC, and Plex, the last 2 running on a MacBook Pro connected via HDMI and optical for multi-channel audio.


It all comes down to interface preference, in my opinion. The PS3 does a fine job of streaming media, either from a disk, attached hard drive, or network device. Obviously, the PS3 has a bluray player built into it as well. the interface isn't very "sexy", though. Basically just lists and folders.


That's where XBMC and similar devices (like a Popcorn Hour) excel. Plex is very similar to XBMC (as is a Boxee), and gives you flexibility on how to build your library. It will index your material, search the 'net for plot summaries, movie posters, user ratings, etc. Then you can select your movies from a "wall" of movie posters, for example. The soon-to-be-released Boxee hardware will be a dedicated box (similar to Popcorn Hour) that you may also want to consider.


I am personally going to be doing the XBMC/Plex thing on my MacBook Pro, since it will be easier to use for my family.
 
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