Mac Media Madness

Some updates on this weekend’s insanity.

The Mac seems to be buzzing along with its new memory and HD.  Leopard is up and running.  The new Front Row is really bleh compared to the version from Tiger, and it had a bitch of a time finding my SMB-based servers, but those are my only complaints as far as system software goes.

In the past, I’ve kept our music on an NAS, photos on my local PC, and our video files on an external USB drive hooked up to the Mini, which wasn’t the best way to do things.  Now they’re all on the server, which makes them a little more accessible but brings its own set of problems – specifically, streaming video across the wireless network to the Mini wasn’t working very well.

I’ve been used, in the past, to using Perian with Front Row, and I planned to continue with that, but it just wasn’t behaving very well.  Specifically, MKV playback was really jumpy, and even plain old divx-encoded avi files were dropping lots of frames.  VLC and MPlayerOSX weren’t much better.

I finally remembered that I’d seen a lifehacker article about XBMC for Mac, so I figured I’d give that a try.  It took a little tweaking – “out of the box”, the apple remote doesn’t work with it quite the way I expected, and it was rather a pain getting Japanese characters to display correctly, but now that it’s all up and running I’m quite a fan.  It’s not ideal – our iTMS purchased content is still in Front Row, while everything else is in XBMC, but it will do for now.

Next I’m considering moving my desktop to Vista Professional.

Pray for me. 🙂

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One Response to Mac Media Madness

  1. Brian Huberd says:

    I know someone using XBMC, they’re loving it, however, there is also the joy of Boxee as well. Gives you the XBMC goodness with streaming Hulu and CBS.com content as well if you’re so inclined. Boxee.tv…

    Like

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