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Old 05-31-2015, 08:29 PM   #15
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Why take a laptop?

I use a Lenovo Q190....it is a full blown Windows PC with HDMI out and also a TOSLINK optical audio our which can be connected into most 'car' audio systems (ours goes into our Kenwood amp)

They cost way less than a laptop, have a matching wireless 'remote', are smaller than the Bluray at 8" by 6" by 0.75" and wireless LAN built in.

Q190 HTPC: The Smallest Home Theater PC

We have ours mounted inside the wardrobe on to which the TV is mounted and the simplest thing would be to replace the Bluray, although if you have a spare HDMI then there should be no issue running both
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Old 05-31-2015, 09:21 PM   #16
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Checking in out now...
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Old 06-01-2015, 10:19 AM   #17
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I was wondering if it is possible to DVR Netflix movies and then take them with me on the road. I was thinking of buying a TIVO for that purpose.
If you could do that I would not need all the satellite equipment ( dish, Directv) in my Airstream. Any ideas?
Thanks everyone for all of your suggestions. They make a lot sense. Rich
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Old 06-01-2015, 12:59 PM   #18
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Martin,
Great Idea. I have not been looking at PCS for a while..so unaware of the options. You've had no buffering issues with the combination of processor and ram? Or does the video card make up for the slower processor?
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Old 06-01-2015, 01:41 PM   #19
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Martin,
Great Idea. I have not been looking at PCS for a while..so unaware of the options. You've had no buffering issues with the combination of processor and ram? Or does the video card make up for the slower processor?
I really like the small HTPC format. I had two of the old Phillips Freevents systems on the two main TVs at home (living room and family room) and set up the home network to share files - I always run from a local drive to the PC, as network speed is an issue. But then changed to the Q190s over the last couple of years, and now have four Q190s (replacing the two Freevents, one in my workshop and one in the Argosy), and have no issues in playback.

In the main living room we have, Apple TV, Chromecast, SmartTV, the Q190, a Bluray and a region free DVD as well as FIOS, but in reality the only ones that get used are the Q190 and the FIOS, the rest could be removed and we wouldn't notice it (even though I have around 1000 DVDs they never get played other than the initial rip, and even though we use iTunes for all media management - I much prefer to sync the iTunes libraries and run from the local source rather than iTunes/Apple TV). We have an Airplay enabled sound system at home so it doesn't care what the source of the iTunes library.

The Q190 isn't 'all singing, all dancing' it is just great at playing back digital or streamed content, if you want to create digital content (ripping DVD etc) you need something else. I just use a laptop at home to dump content onto the home network, all the local drives sync and then play from the local source.
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Old 06-01-2015, 02:31 PM   #20
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right. my home theater is just bluray player, DVR/UVerse or streamed from vudu and Netflix on the bluray player or Xbox. While I've ripped before and have content on the server, I never even play it from there, don't know why that is...

I'm thinking that since I need to rip, save, sync, the lazy way for the AS is to just burn to a DVD, stick them in a wallet case and leave them in there for whenever. I have not really explored streaming to the AS since most parks have awful download speeds and reliability. Do you use the chromecast much? I have one but it's still in the box!
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Old 06-01-2015, 03:19 PM   #21
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Do you use the chromecast much? I have one but it's still in the box!
I only use the Chromecast for casting (not surprisingly) video from a remote source (for example my laptop) onto the TV, when I don't want to save it to the home network, sync the local drive on the Q190.....Chrome does have a nice (hidden feature?) whereby you can start Chrome hit <CTL><o> and open and play an media file, and cast onto the TV. But it is via WiFi so does suffer normal wireless network speed issues.

There really are so many ways to do the same thing now, that much of this is personal preference, and having made the time investment to do everything from the home network/using iTunes, then when we expend any node (for example add the media system in the Argosy) then getting another Q190 is a no-brainer.

The plus is I have my entire music collection, my entire photo album and a very large subset of video media (the home network drives are matched 8Tb drives, the local drives are 2Tb WD passports, so I don't carry everything) wherever I travel.
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Old 06-01-2015, 07:17 PM   #22
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I used the Audials program to screen capture Netflix. It does it at high resolution to a compact mp4 file. I will copy 8 or 10 movies onto a USB stick and insert that directly into the Samsung TV in the trailer to watch later. Periodically delete and replace the movies on the USB stick.
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Old 06-01-2015, 09:22 PM   #23
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So many great options. Rich, so the player will play TS format?
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Old 06-01-2015, 10:22 PM   #24
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So many great options. Rich, so the player will play TS format?
Rich... me??? or another Rich?

In case you mean me, the media player I use (Brite-View) plays a lot of different formats, but it's no longer available. (I'm not familiar with TS format.) I checked Amazon and Brite-view has a different model now. Q&A from readers is that it doesn't play .iso files but it does play many others. There are other media players available, you just need to research to find the one that fits your needs. Here's the current Brite-View model:
Amazon.com: brite-View Playtime (BV-3100) 1080p HD Multimedia Player - white: Electronics
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Old 06-02-2015, 08:49 AM   #25
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Yes,thank you.
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Old 06-02-2015, 09:06 AM   #26
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I'm thinking that since I need to rip, save, sync, the lazy way for the AS is to just burn to a DVD, stick them in a wallet case and leave them in there for whenever. I have not really explored streaming to the AS since most parks have awful download speeds and reliability. Do you use the chromecast much? I have one but it's still in the box!
This is what I do (have been doing for years!) I have about 100 DVDRs with about 4 movies on each. This makes it easy to stick into the Blurray player.

I also have a fun option that is a little more complex but worth reading about..

At home I run "Plex.tv" (FREE!) as a media center on a mac mini hooked up to my TV. On my iPad I have the Plex app running (this cost a few bucks). I can then sync from my 9TB Plex library any movies/TV shows to the iPad.

In the airstream, I have a HDMI switch and I connect the blu ray player and my apple TV to it. I have a wireless access point (some cheap TP link!)

I can play anything on the iPad that i synced with plex and stream that locally to the apple tv. No internet needed.

Now, in the rare occurrence that I do have good internet, I can also stream from anywhere in the world from my home plex server to my iPad and display that via apple tv on the TV.

But most of the time, I just use the DVDr binder stashed under the dinette I have every James Bond movie on there, always a solid back up play
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Old 06-02-2015, 01:15 PM   #27
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So many great options, so little time (and money). But, hopefully time for more research. There are new technologies that I didn't know existed. I thought I had a fairly advanced understanding of video, home theater and portable devices, now I find that I have so much more to learn.

Thanks to everyone. ...
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Old 06-02-2015, 03:45 PM   #28
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In the airstream, I have a HDMI switch and I connect the blu ray player and my apple TV to it. I have a wireless access point (some cheap TP link!)

I can play anything on the iPad that i synced with plex and stream that locally to the apple tv. No internet needed.
I'm curious about a few things:

1. I have a spare mac mini that I plan to load up with my ripped movies/tv shows and leave in the airstream. Is there a way to control it from my ipad/iphone via bluetooth or does it have to be wifi? I control my appletv with the phone/ipad

2. If it has to be a wifi connection, will a basic router (I have an extra lying around) work, regardless of internet? I presume it still establishes its own network

3. If the answer to #2 above is yes, can I also stream from my phone? I have unlimited data and sometimes streaming is easier than connecting my phone to the TV via the HDMI adapter.

Thanks!!!
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