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Old 2nd March 2012, 11:46   #346
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Default Re: Networked Media Players - Play External HDD Content on TV

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Originally Posted by Technocrat View Post

Thanks Rajeev, I did some study & it does look like a good device, the only downer for me in US was that I cant watch my serials/movies on hulu.com the site identifies the browser as Chrome on Google TV & prompts to use hulu plus which is a paid service. Again this is more of a Google TV issue than Logitech's.

Would be waiting for your detailed review

other than that its pretty neat I have heard & I might get one of these devices with Google TV.
Yup, I heard about that issue with Hulu. I think Netflix also has the same restriction. I guess for a person based in US, the other such devices like Roku, Boxee etc... make more sense to buy. I think thats why the Revue failed in the US and even the Google TV concept is yet to take off.

But from an India perspective I feel Google TV is great. They should market it here aggressively. There are a huge number of people with LCD TV's/Monitors and for Rs 5-7000 one gets a device that can make your TV into a computer for all regular uses.
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Old 2nd March 2012, 12:49   #347
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Default Re: Networked Media Players - Play External HDD Content on TV

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True, MKV is a blessing, most of my recent collection is now on MKV with me Including a BD version of Avataar

My WDTV plays it quite well, but for the audio i guess the optical port will get utilized once I get an amp which supports that.
Forgive my ignorance: Where can I get good MKV movies? Is there a good place to download/buy?
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Old 2nd March 2012, 19:06   #348
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Quote:
Originally Posted by naughty001
This is why i love my media player - you can only get proper HD audio over HDMI cable because of HDCP (high Definition Content Protection) so if AC3 and normal DTS are good enough for you then so be it and you can use the optical connections but you wont ever experience the full effect of HD audio which is considerably better than the best cinema you have been to
I think i wasnt clear before, wdtv live plus which i have does support HD audio over hdmi. I was however not aware that hd audio over hdmi is superior to optical

Btw i would take that best cinema Comment with a pinch Of salt, i have seen some good theaters in the world.

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Originally Posted by Rajeevraj

Forgive my ignorance: Where can I get good MKV movies? Is there a good place to download/buy?
Well i have converted all Of My dvd collection into mkv format by using a software called makemkv. its a freeware which you can download from www.makemkv.com

Last edited by Technocrat : 2nd March 2012 at 19:09.
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Old 3rd March 2012, 07:01   #349
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Default Re: Networked Media Players - Play External HDD Content on TV

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Btw i would take that best cinema Comment with a pinch Of salt, i have seen some good theaters in the world.
well you still need to see and listen to some well set up home setups - i still havent come across any cinema that plays the effects as well as my own home system leave alone the best home system that i have heard .... sure they are definitely louder and more powerful but loudness does not equate to quality

remember i am talking about commercial cinema's and i can promise you that some home setups will make even the best setup commercial public cinema seem like it cant keep up in terms of sound quality

and sure i will concede defeat in terms of picture because im only using a plasma TV for now - but some of my buddies use projectors and screens that can compare to good cinema's - but yep the highest end cinema's that use 2k and 4k resolution projectors have an advantage but there isnt much content available in that native resolution so they still cant hammer home the advantage

the reason why sound is easier to get right in a home environment is because of the size of the rooms. Large cinema's create acoustic problems of their own related to the size of the venue and the main problem is to combat echoes in large venues (most IMAX cinema's have a hollow sound to my ears and they play it so loud that its fatiguing and harmful to my ears as well) as well as the obvious problem that they have to repeat the rear channels so many times along the side of the cinema and this creates obvious time delay issues so a typical 7 channel or even one of the newer 11 channel (prologic 11z adds front height and front width channels to your regular 7.1 surround and whilst these are matrix effects they are capable of working spectacularly well) home setups will find it easier to get the correct acoustics in relation to the room size and will have better quality IMHO if not the same outright quantity

Quote:
I think i wasnt clear before, wdtv live plus which i have does support HD audio over hdmi
thats great .... then i would strongly suggest that you modify your audio transmission method to HDMI instead of optical because of reasons outlined below


Quote:
I was however not aware that hd audio over hdmi is superior to optical
it is a very similar end result with the normal surround modes but the problem arises in that HD audio is not transmitted via optical or even coax - there are only two methods of getting HD audio and the first one is over HDMI and the second is to get a source unit that does the Digital to analog conversion internally and transmits the resulting signals in analog form to conventional multichannel inputs on a receiver. this method generally requires lots of expensive RCA interconnect cabling (system dependent obviously) hence the HDMI method with a single cable and the conversion being done by the DAC in the receiver is generally preferable

for normal dolby digital (ac3) or even regular DTS-core you will not find much difference in the sound quality between optical connections and HDMI but for HD audio obviously you wont be able to make the comparison since you can try as much as you like but you wont get the HD audio via optical or coax ..... which is not to say you wont get sound at all ..... because the audio downconverts to the base formats but for example to me the difference between regular DTS-core and DTS-HD(ma) is easily noticeable (despite claims that you cannot hear many differences ..... honestly speaking the differences are like chalk and cheese to my ears in my system and in most good setups that i have heard)

but yes most of the above is only my opinion so you are most definitely welcome to take it with a pinch of salt but you should also make an effort to listen to a well setup home system (biggest problem with this though is that it really tempts you to spend a lot of money as an example the best system i have heard ever the guy has spent around 20 times more than i have and the more i listen to his system the more i want mine to get closer to sounding like his) ..... if you lived closer to me you would have been most welcome to come and listen to mine but alas im a couple of thousand kilometers away from you nevertheless if you ever find yourself visiting South Africa for any reason you are welcome to pop in for a visit

EDIT : I also use makemkv for converting all my blu-rays and DVD's into mkv format .... while it doesnt allow for file compression to save space so the actual space taken up is around as large as the actual disc size but its in a format that allows you to play the movies in your media player or PC software driven media playback solutions like XBMC etc ..... so makemkv gets my vote since its pretty simple to use and allows for excellent results ie video files that look as good as the original with all the good audio formats preserved if you wish to have them

Last edited by naughty001 : 3rd March 2012 at 07:17.
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Old 5th March 2012, 21:38   #350
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Smile Re: Networked Media Players - Play External HDD Content on TV

Quote:
Originally Posted by naughty001 View Post
well you still need to see and listen to some well set up home setups - i still havent come across any cinema that plays the effects as well as my own home system leave alone the best home system that i have heard .... sure they are definitely louder and more powerful but loudness does not equate to quality
I don't deny, I have indeed heard a few Home Setups which were very good.
Quote:
Originally Posted by naughty001 View Post
thats great .... then i would strongly suggest that you modify your audio transmission method to HDMI instead of optical because of reasons outlined below
I am in the process of buying a decent amp in the next month or so, hopefully it will have HDMI as standard.

Quote:
Originally Posted by naughty001 View Post
it is a very similar end result with the normal surround modes but the problem arises in that HD audio is not transmitted via optical or even coax - there are only two methods of getting HD audio and the first one is over HDMI and the second is to get a source unit that does the Digital to analog conversion internally and transmits the resulting signals in analog form to conventional multichannel inputs on a receiver. this method generally requires lots of expensive RCA interconnect cabling (system dependent obviously) hence the HDMI method with a single cable and the conversion being done by the DAC in the receiver is generally preferable

for normal dolby digital (ac3) or even regular DTS-core you will not find much difference in the sound quality between optical connections and HDMI but for HD audio obviously you wont be able to make the comparison since you can try as much as you like but you wont get the HD audio via optical or coax ..... which is not to say you wont get sound at all ..... because the audio downconverts to the base formats but for example to me the difference between regular DTS-core and DTS-HD(ma) is easily noticeable (despite claims that you cannot hear many differences ..... honestly speaking the differences are like chalk and cheese to my ears in my system and in most good setups that i have heard)

but yes most of the above is only my opinion so you are most definitely welcome to take it with a pinch of salt but you should also make an effort to listen to a well setup home system (biggest problem with this though is that it really tempts you to spend a lot of money as an example the best system i have heard ever the guy has spent around 20 times more than i have and the more i listen to his system the more i want mine to get closer to sounding like his) ..... if you lived closer to me you would have been most welcome to come and listen to mine but alas im a couple of thousand kilometers away from you nevertheless if you ever find yourself visiting South Africa for any reason you are welcome to pop in for a visit
That's some good information thanks for Sharing

And trust me, I know the difference between good audio & bad audio & had a decent setup in my car in India & so I know that good audio is always expensive
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Old 9th March 2012, 12:44   #351
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Default Re: Networked Media Players - Play External HDD Content on TV

Was in the process of buying a hard drive (500 GB) when i came across this thread today. Just bought a 40 inch Samsung LED tv about 2 months back. So wanted to know what the advantage of a media player is over a hard drive if my tv can play from the hard drive directly if i connect it?
The fact that a mkv file will not be transmitted through the USB connection of the hard drive in all it's glory?
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Old 9th March 2012, 20:18   #352
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Default Re: Networked Media Players - Play External HDD Content on TV

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So wanted to know what the advantage of a media player is over a hard drive if my tv can play from the hard drive directly if i connect it?
The problem is how many formats can the TV support? I think typically a Media
player can play many more formats than TV. (Its built to do that only)
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Old 10th March 2012, 08:57   #353
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Default Re: Networked Media Players - Play External HDD Content on TV

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So wanted to know what the advantage of a media player is over a hard drive if my tv can play from the hard drive directly if i connect it?
My LCD TV is old and does not support playback from the USB port, i have seen a friends series 7 samsung, which does support playback from harddrives. The only problem with this was, each time we paused the playback, on resuming, the audio and video would be out of sync, happens when we forwarded some parts of the movie too. The audio lagged behind by a few seconds or so. It killed the movie experience. This happened with different movies too, and we have stopped watching directly from the hard drive connected to the TV. This has never happened with my WD media player.
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Old 10th March 2012, 11:16   #354
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Default Re: Networked Media Players - Play External HDD Content on TV

Quote:
Originally Posted by ampere View Post
The problem is how many formats can the TV support? I think typically a Media
player can play many more formats than TV. (Its built to do that only)
Quote:
Originally Posted by slicvic View Post
My LCD TV is old and does not support playback from the USB port, i have seen a friends series 7 samsung, which does support playback from harddrives. The only problem with this was, each time we paused the playback, on resuming, the audio and video would be out of sync, happens when we forwarded some parts of the movie too. The audio lagged behind by a few seconds or so. It killed the movie experience. This happened with different movies too, and we have stopped watching directly from the hard drive connected to the TV. This has never happened with my WD media player.
So if my tv can play from pen drives (not tried a hard drive yet) without going out of sync & i connect my laptop via HDMI to the tv most of the times to play a movie do i still get any advantage by getting myself a media player guys or can spend less & go for a portable hard drive?
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Old 10th March 2012, 11:23   #355
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Default Re: Networked Media Players - Play External HDD Content on TV

If your laptop has a HDMI out, then you need not get a media player i guess. The only advantages a media player would have is the ability to control the playback over a remote, and the relatively lesser amount of space needed.
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Old 10th March 2012, 19:00   #356
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Default Re: Networked Media Players - Play External HDD Content on TV

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Originally Posted by AvinashV View Post
So if my tv can play from pen drives (not tried a hard drive yet) without going out of sync & i connect my laptop via HDMI to the tv most of the times to play a movie do i still get any advantage by getting myself a media player guys or can spend less & go for a portable hard drive?
if you have a laptop that has an HDMI output then you can install software like XBMC or its various clones and this makes it into a pretty decent media playback device. Actually depending on the Operating system you use in the laptop you can obviously add more plugins to the software as well as add in additional software as alternatives for each purpose for example VLC for network movie playback and then apps like Foobar/DB Poweramp used in conjunction with the laptop as well as a good DAC to play very high fidelity music via FLAC files on a proper high fidelity system

besides for my media player I also like to have an HTPC connected to my main system - right now though i have my HTPC solution based in my bedroom but i have experimented with it in my main system and it works terrifically well as an alternative to a media player

besides for a laptop the latest rage that i have noticed is the method of using something like an HP microserver as a media playback device ..... since these are available pretty cheaply all over the world and then adding a low profile entry level graphics card (for example an ATI 6850 which will also allow for 3D movie playback) makes it into a formidable media player and you can use it as a NAS (network addressable storage) box as well since it allows you to include 4 hot swoppable internal hard drives for storage purposes

for the remote what you need to do when using a PC based solution is to find something like this

All about USB | USB 3.0, USB Gaming, USB Lifestyle | Brando Workshop : USB Slim Wireless Multimedia Keyboard with Trackball (AK-601)

here in south africa we get these relatively cheaper than for $40 and they work as a keyboard for the PC as well as being a mouse and they contain most remote commands as alternative keys so they are perfect for multimedia usage

i especially enjoy using this when I have the HTPC linked to my 50" TV because i can be sitting 4 meters away and still use it as a remote as well as a keyboard and mouse for internet browsing etc ..... sadly though it isnt responsive or fast enough for high end gaming duty but it is absolutely perfect as a remote control for multimedia usage
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Old 10th March 2012, 19:09   #357
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Default Re: Networked Media Players - Play External HDD Content on TV

Quote:
Originally Posted by slicvic View Post
My LCD TV is old and does not support playback from the USB port, i have seen a friends series 7 samsung, which does support playback from harddrives. The only problem with this was, each time we paused the playback, on resuming, the audio and video would be out of sync, happens when we forwarded some parts of the movie too. The audio lagged behind by a few seconds or so. It killed the movie experience. This happened with different movies too, and we have stopped watching directly from the hard drive connected to the TV. This has never happened with my WD media player.
I am having Samsung Series 6 LED which support USB. For the below reasons, i went for WDLive. However, i never faced the audio/video sync issue when playing in my TV.

1. TV doesn't play many audio/video codec
2. Doesn't support large HDD drive and also not able to power USB HDD (so i am limited to using USB pen drives mostly)
3. My TV doesn't have wifi connectivity to connect to my router to pull other media sources (other HDDs, PC connected to network).

One another disadvantage of USB-TV option is, the sound output from TV to be routed back to AV system (onkyo), but the input is 3mm Sterio pin. You you will loose all surrounding / DTS effects.

There are many online content options available for WDLive (like YouTube, Netflix), but they are useless for India.
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Old 13th March 2012, 21:09   #358
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Default Re: Networked Media Players - Play External HDD Content on TV



Check out Rajeevraj's review of the Google TV + Logitech Revue here : https://www.team-bhp.com/forum/gadge...google-tv.html

cya
R
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Old 16th March 2012, 17:14   #359
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Default Re: Networked Media Players - Play External HDD Content on TV

Hi Folks,
In the coming few months, I will be seeking advice on two AV setups. I currently have a pair of standalone 32 and 40 720p LCDs in two rooms that I plan to upgrade to a 1080p 46 LED and 1080p 50 Plasma along with a 2.1 & 5.1 HTIB setup. In the meantime, I have the opportunity in the next few days to get atleast one if not two media players from the US. I would want to pick up both the players right now from there as the cost savings are considerable and it is easy to carry these devices as they have a small footprint.

These are my requirements for the players:

1. Ability to stream a wide variety of video files either on a network or locally from an inbuilt hard drive.

2. Decent codec support (Regular firmware updates will be much appreciated) - xvid, divx, mov, avi, mkv, H.264, etc.

3. User Interface This is my most important criteria Must be simple, lag-free and fast to use especially while browsing between files.

4. Ease of setup I do not want anything very complicated so HTPCs and the like are out Plug & Play functionality is what I am looking at.

5. Metadata and Subtitle support Extremely important that the player can connect to IMDB and extract metadata (Is this what is meant by Scraping?) as well ability to read attached sub files.

6. Price: Willing to spend up to $200 on a HDD based model and $100 on a non HDD model.

7. What I dont particularly care for 3D \ Blu-Ray ISO \ 7.1 I will not need support for any of these (Maybe 3D, but once in a blue moon and that too if I buy a 3D TV when upgrading the TVs)

I have read about a myriad of options but remain confused as ever. My consideration set started out with a pair of Roku 2 XDs but I believe that these are only good for Internet streaming and not very good for local content.

I then read about Boxees fantastic codec support but was a little disappointed with the negative reviews on the user interface and the fact that its pretty expensive for a non HDD player.

Also from what I have read, videos dont stutter as much if stored on a local HD in the player (Though I may be wrong) This lead me to the WD TV Live hub 1TB* and the WD TV Live combination everything seemed great and marked a lot of the tick marks for me but then I began to read several negative reviews including very slow UI and skipping and stuttering in files.

I know that Popcorn Hour, Lacie LaCinema, AC Ryan, Hi Media 600 & 900, Asus O! play are all available, but frankly I cant seem to decide on the one that is most suitable for my needs?

As of now I am leaning towards the WDTV Live Hub and WDTV Live combination but that is probably because I am overwhelmed with the options out there and these seem the simplest of the bunch. Should I pull the trigger on these or are there better options available?

Thanks!
V

P.S. When I do buy a media player from the US, do I need to be mindful of NTSC VS. PAL support for my future TVs (Probably a Panasonic Plasma and a Samsung LED) or are these redundant when it comes to HDMI inputs, etc. (Sorry if this is a dumb question, *but I am a complete rookie when it comes to AV!)
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Old 28th March 2012, 19:38   #360
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Default Re: Networked Media Players - Play External HDD Content on TV

In the last couple of years I had converted all my DVDs to mkv files using MakeMKV utility. However, the MakeMKV creates 5-6GB files even for a 480p movie. Recently I have seen some 720p movies in H.264 MP4 format, that occupies only 800MB to 1GB. That can really save me some valuable hard drive space.

What is the best utility to convert my MKV files to H.264 MP4 files without losing subtitles? Please don't suggest very hard to use software even if it is free. I should be able to select a bunch of mkv files, choose the output format as H.264 MP4 and click to convert in one shot. I should be able to try before buying.
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