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View Full Version : Squeezebox-like device for video?



JulianL
2006-10-21, 15:25
I love my squeezebox and feeding those funny silver things (I believe they're called "Compact Discs", or "CDs" for short) into those big metal box things (I believe they're called "CD players") has become somewhat alien to me. Unfortunately I currently seem to need to use very similar silver things inserted into a big boxy thing in order to play my DVDs.

It occurs to me that many other SB users must be sufficiently impressed with the whole concept of streaming media that someone must have researched the possibility of consigning their DVD collection to a box in the garage and putting everything on a PC. I've done some Googling but haven't got too far. Most of the commercial stuff I've seen seems to fall down because it won't work with commercial copy-protected DVDs which defeats the whole point, at least for me.

Are there any workable solutions for getting one's DVD collection onto a PC and streaming it wirelessly to one's TV in decent quality or does the copy protection on DVDs kill the whole idea dead?

I know this isn't directly SB-related but I'd be really suprised if many other SB users wouldn't be very interested in the answer.

- Julian

NewBuyer
2006-10-21, 17:20
Personally, I like using the excellent TVedia software (my favorite) to play ripped DVD iso's from harddrive on an HTPC. The HTPC is also running AnyDVD. The same company that makes the AnyDVD program (Slysoft.com) also makes an excellent DVD ripper called CloneDVD2.

tygar
2006-10-21, 18:10
I suggest looking into the Mediagate MG-35 and visiting the Digital Media Server Thread at AVS Forum: http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/forumdisplay.php?f=39

Harry G
2006-10-22, 13:37
For ripping DVDs there is also DVD Shrink <http://www.dvdshrink.org/what.html>. The company was litigated out of business. The program is available now for free. It allows you to compress a movie to fit it on disc or store it uncompressed on one of the hard disc players.

There are many of these players from 150 - 10,000+. Some allow for streaming over your network from your PC.

There aren't many films I would want to see more than once though our granddaughter will watch animated movies over and over, enthralled each time. We're thinking of gifting one of the less expensive boxes at Christmas to alleviate the sticky fingers on DVD problem.

radish
2006-10-22, 19:10
For ripping DVDs there is also DVD Shrink <http://www.dvdshrink.org/what.html>. The company was litigated out of business. The program is available now for free. It allows you to compress a movie to fit it on disc or store it uncompressed on one of the hard disc players.

DVD Shrink has always been free. To the best of my knowledge they've also never been sued, but their ISP has been served DMCA takedown notices.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dvdshrink

SadGamerGeek
2006-10-23, 00:42
I've never seen the point of putting movie DVDs on a hard drive as the amount of times I watch the average film (once) doesn't make the time & HD space worth the effort. My music DVDs get watched quite a lot though. I've therefore been quite keen to get them on a hard drive (and play back via my excellent Xbox Media Centre & less excellent Snazio HD player), but the fact I use wireless (at least to connect my Xbox) is a problem.

I don't want to lose any quality/extras (or most importantly the menus), so I'd been just using DVDdecrypter to dump an enter ISO image to a hard drive & play that. Unfortunately some disks (my Chemical Brothers Singles one in particular) just seem to be at too high a bit-rate to be able to stream flawlessly over my (less than 100% signal) 54g connection.

For me, I think this exercise may have to wait until I can either:

1. Improve my wireless reception
2. Get CAT5 wired to a few more rooms
3. Use an alternative such as the IP over mains power


It's a real shame, as I'd love to have instant access to my music DVDs in the same way as I do to my CD music....

JulianL
2006-10-23, 02:44
Thanks for all the answers. This has given me a huge start on looking at suitable technology. SadGamerGeek's solution is temping because it would force me to buy an X-box (such hardship!) although I would prefer to use a PS3 because I prefer to support Blu-Ray rather than HD DVD. The trouble is that right now the Xbox seems to be way ahead of PlayStation as far as media centre capability is concerned but I can't believe Sony can afford to allow this to continue for too long. Then again, maybe Sony can't afford much nowadays after all their battery-recall and PS3 shipment delay disasters!

I won't clog up this thread much more, since I'm aware it isn't really SB-related, but I will say one thing re SadGamerGeek's poor streaming speeds over Wireless since that is something that in poor reception could affect SB2 users.

I just did a bit of Googling and the new 200Mb powerline devices (conforming to the newer Homeplug AV spec) seem to be available now and not too expensive. Here's a link to the Netgear stuff (from the UK site, but I would expect that the same stuff must be on the other country sites): http://www.netgear.co.uk/wallplugged_adapterkit_hdxb101.php

Although my wireless SB2 works perfectly, my experience of using 802.11g for connecting remotely to another PC to use some remote desktop software to control it is that even on an empty network with 100% signal, 54Mb connectivity, and the devices about 2 metres away from each other, the effective bandwidth is still way short of the theoretical 54Mb. I eventually switched to 100Mb wired to connect to my other PC and got at least a 5 times performance increase if not greater so I suspect that my effective bandwidth over my "perfect" wireless connection was 20Mb or even less. If the Powerline devices only deliver even 15% of their claimed performance then you (SadGamerGeek) should see a massive improvement. I personally hadn't realised how far the technology had come on in the last 18 months so I thank SadGamerGeek a second time for inadvertently encouraging me to go off and explore the latest PowerLine technology and discover such a pleasant surprise.

Thanks again to everyone who steered me in some good directions. It seems I actually have a number of attractive options and I thought I had none. A perfect result!

- Julian

blackbear
2006-10-23, 02:57
...
Are there any workable solutions for getting one's DVD collection onto a PC and streaming it wirelessly to one's TV in decent quality or does the copy protection on DVDs kill the whole idea dead?
...

- Julian

Not sure about copy protection, but otherwise it looks fairly complete:
http://www.neodigits.com/new/body/products/Xline/x5000.asp

slimjim
2006-10-23, 04:16
I found a link to a AVS Forum post from a user who reported his/her experience with various media streaming devices: http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?p=8533342&highlight=Audiotron#post8533342

Hope that helps. I currently use ReadyNAS NV to serve FLAC/mp3 files to two SB3s and JPG/AVI/ISO files to a TViX M5000.

I have been satisfied with TViX M5000 so far. DVICO (TViX manufacturer) regularly update the firmware with bug fixes and/or new features. They recently added DVD cover art capability and I successfuly put DVD cover art similar to this user's: http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?p=8708269&highlight=cover+art+example#post8708269

Ken