Mac Mini vs. XBox360 Extender for streaming movie files and music? - Canadian TV, Computing and Home Theatre Forums
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes

post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 2007-02-21, 03:33 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 19
Mac Mini vs. XBox360 Extender for streaming movie files and music?

I have a Dell 8400 MCE 2005 PC. I have a home theatre set up that includes a Samsung 50" Plasma and a Denon Reciever and a Motorola DCT-6412. I would like to make a choice between the two devices. I am not much of a gamer, but I would game a bit with the nephew if I had the 360.

I would be mostly streaming "backed up" movie files and music. I like the fact that I would also be able to surf the web on the Mini when wanted.

How do the GUI's compare on the units, which will run the smoothest.

Price between the two is not so much a factor (not to say that I want to spend that much more on one or the other).

This is also assuming that I would be buying an Intel Core Duo Mini.

Thanks in advance for the advice.

LiveOnLocation
LiveOnLocation is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 2007-02-22, 04:09 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 19
Wow I kind of expected there would be more interest in this topic. Just my selfish indulgence.

Liveonlocation
LiveOnLocation is offline  
post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 2007-02-22, 04:28 PM
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Toronto
Posts: 391
I think the Apple TV might do what you want better than the Mac mini.
Cdn_Photo is offline  
 
post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 2007-02-22, 04:45 PM
Veteran
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Victoria, BC
Posts: 1,768
I bought a Mac Mini as my media PC. But I never considered a 360, it was between the Mac or a Windows PC. I run Bootcamp on the Mini so I have the best of both worlds (OSX and XP), though there are some limitations.. so far you can only use XP Home or Pro, not MCE and not Vista.

I don't have much experience with using OSX for media yet, I tend to favour the XP apps that I'm already familiar with.

Mike / technut
technut is offline  
post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 2007-02-25, 04:49 PM
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Milton, ON
Posts: 704
The comparison is somewhat apples and oranges, IMHO. You can think of the Mac Mini as a small computer versus the Xbox as a "console on steroids".

I personally use an XBox 360, so can speak from experience there. It works well for me, but probably will not for what you want. The 360 has limited codec support, most notably it won't play back Divx or remote DVDs (VOBs). Since this sounds like it's the primary use for your device, it's probably not the best choice. There are tools that will transcode the content for you to a format that the 360 does support, but I'd expect you would lose some quality doing realtime transcoding. See runtime360.com and tversity.com for more info.

The mac mini, being a computer, should have much more flexibility in playback formats. I can't speak to the UI though.

Some other things you might want to check out:
Linksys v2 extender: http://www.hardware.info/en-US/news/...iVXDVD_player/

For the same price (at bestbuy anyways) of a Mac Mini, I personally would get this slimline HP with Vista Media Center on it. It will definately do what you want. http://www.bestbuy.ca/catalog/prodde...98&catid=20217

Also check out http://www.mymovies.name for one of the best media center plugins around, it will manage all of those movie backups for you pretty much automagically.

Hope this helps!
Pete
pnear is offline  
post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 2007-02-25, 05:02 PM
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Winnipeg
Posts: 29
Is there a reason you haven't considered the Apple TV instead of the Mini?
Andrew Pratt is offline  
post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 2007-02-25, 05:12 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 19
Quote:
Is there a reason you haven't considered the Apple TV instead of the Mini?
from what I understand, the Apple TV will only play "DRM" content that will play in iTunes. Now I use itunes for all my music currently (15,000+ songs) but the divx files will not play on the Apple TV, and now from the input that I have recieved know that the Xbox is the same.

Sounds to me like the Mac Mini, or possibly some other extender will be what I use. I think I might wait until the dlink eva8000 comes out and look at that compared to the mini...

I dunno.

Thanks for the responses.
LiveOnLocation is offline  
post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 2007-03-01, 11:35 AM
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Toronto
Posts: 391
I'm not sure that it will only play DRM content. From all I've heard, it will play anything you can in QuickTime. That said, hopefully you can upload codecs to the unit.

I'd wait until the unit was out and reviewed before discounting it.

One thing to check is how well the Mini handles HD content. I have an older mini and the built in video doesn't do so well with 1080 content.
Cdn_Photo is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Canadian TV, Computing and Home Theatre Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools Search this Thread
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome