Audio/Video Distribution Hardware/Software

By Liggssss ยท 7 replies
Apr 27, 2007
  1. Was wondering if anyone had some information.

    I back-up all my DVD's onto an external hard-drive in the case that the little ones mistake it for a frisbee. With all this data on a HDD, I came across the idea of streaming all this data around the house to be viewed anywhere.

    I've scoured the internet for a comprehensive package which can decode the .ISO files, wirelessly stream the a/v feed to a receiver and ultimately onto the TV's around the house. Of course I would need a nice GUI (possibly with access to Gracenote database) allowing me to access and manage these files through my TV. haha, kind of asking for a lot huh? :haha:

    Does anyone have any experience with this?
  2. Adhmuz

    Adhmuz TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,828   +633

    I've got a similar setup but far less complicated, just use a video out on your video card and send that as a second display, along with audio, into a AV spliter than send it where you want in your house, also if you can get an old P3 with a video out it works similarly but steams the video off your network, my comp is hooked up to 5 tvs using a combination of the two methods and it works flawlesslythe furthest being almost 60 feet away from my main comp, just a suggestion, a little less complicated in my opinion.
  3. Liggssss

    Liggssss TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Not a bad idea. But i think I would go crazy going back and forth from my computer to change video settings. I'm kinda lazy once I'm on a couch. :D

    Could you elaborate a bit more on what you mean by an old P3 with a video out? Thanks Adhmuz.

    I'm thinking the best way to do this is cough up the money for a system like Kaleidescape or an Escient Fireball. Although that would break the bank.

    I may end up building a HTPC with huge HDD for all the DVD's I collect.

    Any other suggestions?
  4. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +421

    You could build a tiny HTPC that would work with this fine, just share out a hard drive on another computer that holds all the files. Then connect it to the tv and HT reciever. There is an abundance of software out there that can be controlled with a remote with its interface displaying on a tv.

    Wirelessly streaming HD content might not work out too well though...
  5. Liggssss

    Liggssss TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thank you SNGX1275. I think I may just build an HTPC. Anybody have any experience with software they've used for such an application?

    My fingers are itching to build, run wires, and test this out. GUI is my only hitch right now.
  6. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +421

    If you've got some linux expierence MythTV will likely give you the most options, and its free. I've attempted it about 4 times and failed every time at getting any decent playback out of it for various reasons. It has a lot of documentation and how-tos on the web, but I've just had bad expierence with it.

    For not free I've found Windows Media Center to be really good, and there are some 3rd party plugins that can make it do some things like MythTV. SageTV used to be really good back around version 2, but when I tried version 4 I wasn't impressed. Don't have any real expierence with the others. GB PVR and BeyondTV are 2 other options for Windows.

    I think MythTV would be the most satisfying if you could get it up and running, it has near limitless possibilities on what can be done.

    Currently my setup looks like this.
    Its kinda messy there and its a recyled pic that I took for another purpose. But the computer laying down is running XP MCE and has a wireless card in it. It happens to be an HP (first branded PC I've owned in 10 years) that I got really cheap. I've got content shared on a few other computers on the network and I can play files on the HP (displayed on the tv of course) over the network, works out great. The computer is also connected to my reciever in the rack above the comp. I don't need the keyboard or mouse for controlling anything, I just leave them connected because sometimes I rip dvds on that computer.
  7. Adhmuz

    Adhmuz TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,828   +633

    To elaborate on my old P3 solution is basicaly what SNGX has but not an actual HTPC just an old pentium three with a very low end video card with an S-Video output that plugs into my tv along with an audio cable. Which of course is on my home network. Not a complex or high end solution but a solution anyway. The HTPC way is probably the way to go if you are willing to mess with all the software that goes along with it.
  8. Liggssss

    Liggssss TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thank you everyone for your input! I think I'll go ahead reconsider what my needs are and how I can go about this. If I find something interesting and get around to executing it I'll let you know.

    Thanks again!
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