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All posts tagged "xbmc"


Sunday, May 13, 2012

How To Make XBMC Easier To Use

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Software" @ 09:00 AM

http://lifehacker.com/5908682/how-t...y-for-non+geeks

"So you've created a kickass, play-anything media center with XBMC, but it's a too hard for your less tech-savvy friends and family members to use. Here are a few ways to make your home theater PC so easy that your four year old could use it."

XBMC is a powerful media platform, but it's not always the easiest thing to use - especially for the "regular" types of users who weren't the ones to set it up in the first place. This article walks you through some of the ways to optimize the whole experience. Worth a read!

Tags: software, xbmc

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

XBMC Finds Eden

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Digital Home News" @ 01:00 PM

http://lifehacker.com/5896506/xbmc-...-lots-lots-more

"XBMC, our favorite software for setting up a custom media center, upgraded to a new version this weekend with lots of new features. Here's a look at what you'll find."

From AirPlay to performance improvements, XBMC has gone through a major overhaul with its latest version. For myself, the most notable difference I've seen with Eden is the new interface. The old interface, while pleasant enough, started to feel somewhat dated. The new setup looks much slicker and feels easier to navigate. With all the effort and cost that goes into creating a decent sized collection of movies, tv shows, family videos and the like, it is nice to see all that hard work reflected with some wow factor. I am just waiting to see if XBMC will go the route of Boxee and start offering their own hardware solution!

Tags: software, htpc, xbmc

Sunday, January 23, 2011

XBMC on AppleTV

Posted by Chris Gohlke in "Digital Home Software" @ 01:30 PM

http://www.engadget.com/2011/01/20/...e-new-apple-tv/

So, it looks like the folks over Engadget got their hands on an AppleTV that has been upgraded with XBMC, giving it all sorts of tricks not supported by the standard configuration. Betting the folks over at Apple, not to mention their competitors aren't too happy if this $99 box has a chance of becoming a new toy that with a little secret sauce will do a lot more than these companies pricier offerings. But for now the good news for them (bad for us) is that the install is only feasible for the true alpha geek, but I'm sure that problem will be rectified in short order.


Thursday, December 23, 2010

XBMC Releases Dharma Version 10

Posted by Andy Dixon in "Digital Home Software" @ 05:00 PM

http://lifehacker.com/5714949/xbmc-...ic-acceleration

"Windows/Mac/Linux: XBMC, the awesome open-source and highly-customizable media center, updates to XBMC 10.0 Dharma today with some serious changes under the hood-including an absolutely awesome upgrade to the add-on framework. Last year around this time the XBMC team dropped the 9.11 Camelot release. Camelot blew us all away with a radically improved user interface and skins that made your media center look like a million bucks-quite literally, none of the visitors at my house ever believed I got it for free."

Version 10 of XBMC is now out. The ever evolving open source media center just seems to get better and better. Lifehacker has the lowdown on the new features as well as video demonstrating the new add-on feature. If you're an XBMC user, then this is probably one update you'll definitely want to install.

Tags: software, xbmc, dharma

Saturday, December 4, 2010

XBMC Release New Dharma Release Candidate 2 Version

Posted by Andy Dixon in "Digital Home Software" @ 01:00 PM

http://lifehacker.com/5704981/xbmc-...omatic-updating

"Windows/Mac/Linux: Back in August we took a peek at the beta version of the newest XBMC release. The new release candidate, Dharma RC2, is available for download now and packed with new features like enhanced add-on support with automatic updating and more."

XBMC, one of the main alternatives to Windows Media Center has been updated with a new release adding lots of new functionality, such as automatic updating and better addon support. For a program that was written originally to allow you to use the original xbox as a media center device, it really has developed in to a fantastic program. If you haven't looked at it yet then I really can recommend you check it out.

Tags: software, xbmc, dharma

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

I Pre-Ordered a Boxee Box: Have You?

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Talk" @ 09:00 AM

http://astore.amazon.com/digitalhom...tail/B0038JE07O

Last week, I placed a pre-order for a Boxee Box (you can too via this handy pre-order link!). Why? Well, I've been watching the network/local media player space evolve over the past few years, and I've yet to implement any of them. I've seen two basic types of devices:

  1. Devices that offer superior technical capabilities in terms of files (ISO rips, etc.) and formats supported (every video codec under the sun), but lack any semblance of true usability, often featuring awful user interface, painful performance, or both. I'd put most of the dedicated network media players in this camp; Popcorn Hour, efforts from Seagate, Western Digital, Asus, etc.
  2. Devices that offer superior user interface and usability, but lack broad technical abilities; they're often limited in terms of file types (no ISO support), codecs, and are very mainstream in their support of content. I'd put Windows Media Center, and anything based on that (Media Center Extenders), in this category along with the Xbox 360, Apple TV, etc.

I've wanted a device that does both, and it looks like the Boxee Box may be the closest I've come so far. I've messed around with several of these devices over the years; I even bought an Acer Aspire Revo and installed XBMC on it in the hopes that I'd finally be able to do what I wanted. It failed. Read more...


Thursday, August 26, 2010

Blu-ray on XBMC? Oh Yes!

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Digital Home News" @ 10:00 AM

http://lifehacker.com/5621471/

"No one has written any open-source software that can play back Blu-ray movies, nor is there any software library capable of decoding the DRM encryption on-the-fly yet. However, previously mentioned DVD-ripping application MakeMKV does have a few advanced features that, coupled with an XBMC plug-in, can give you a pretty close experience on Windows or Linux (it works on Mac OS X in theory, but we aren't going there)."

The solution provided by LifeHacker is not perfect, but it is a step forward and a hint of things to come. For those who like to tinker, this seems like the latest advance that you can show off to your friends. For those who like a polished solution with few quirks, it looks like you will have to plunk down that cash to get a proper Blu-ray player after all. Most home theater systems I have seen usually come with a mix of various components, each designed for a different task. Even new things like Netflix's streaming box are still single purpose devices. The closest one I know if is the PlayStation 3, so it is nice to see another option for an all-in-one device crop up for your TV viewing pleasure.


Tuesday, February 2, 2010

TiVo? What TiVo? Media Centers Presented for your Consideration

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Digital Home News" @ 03:00 PM

http://lifehacker.com/5462275/which...center-compared

"We focused on three widely available, and generally popular, media centers for our comparison and review. We're certainly aware there are many alternatives out there, as free software or stand-alone hardware boxes, but these are the three media centers that receive ongoing development, and can be installed on the widest number of TV-connected computers."

The whole media center market is becoming very crowded. My main complaint about them though, is that in Canada, our online options are still quite limited, unless you want to go the route of finding stuff that fell out of the back of a bit bucket. As such, I am stuck with media center choices that can record TV signals. The media centers that record are much smaller in selection, and the hardware options provided by my cable or satellite provider is less than stellar. I am actually partial to Windows Media Center, largely because it is easy to set up, use and manage. It was designed with the idiot in mind, and I like not having to pour over details anymore. However, I can see that once I can shrug off the cable/satellite tether, options like XBMC become considerably more attractive. What is everyone using these days and why did you pick it?


Sunday, December 27, 2009

XBMC Gets New Hotness With Version Update

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Digital Home News" @ 04:00 PM

http://lifehacker.com/5433795/xbmc-...proved-features

"XBMC is a killer open-source, cross-platform media center, and today they've released XBMC 9.11, introducing a whole new default look and feel, and it's very friendly on the eyes. Called Confluence, the new look blends some of the best features of XBMC's previous default skin (PM3.HD) with several other popular skins for pretty impressive results."

XBMC is one of the best HTPC software packages out there and it just keeps getting better. The most recent update sees some usability changes and fixes and the new skin, Confluence. I have always appreciated custom HTPC packages over that which is offered by my cable and satellite providers. Not only is there more control and flexibility, I find the interface far more engaging and user friendly. With PCs capable of 1080p output under $200 such as ION based nettops, there are fewer and fewer reasons to stick with whatever your TV provider offers.


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