Decided to get the new Mini

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Mhotep, Jul 27, 2011.

  1. Mhotep macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2011
    #1
    I've decided to pull the trigger on the new mini base model. Will be used as a HTPC, may use XBMC just discovered it. I have 2 ATV 2's I've been experimenting with and love being able to play movies throughout the house. Past 2 weeks I've been converting my DVD's and Blu ray's over. I have a ton of movies that are in AVI so that is where XBMC may be better than converting everything over. I've found a program to play blu rays with ext Blu Ray player I already have. Thinking about getting the new Time Capsule with the TB hard drive to store everything. May buy a 3TB as a backup drive. Currently have an airport extreme that is 2 years old and doesn't get a good signal from basement to 2nd floor, new Time Capsule seems to have a stronger signal. My current laptop is a 2011 13" MBP 1TB with 8gb of ram. But I'm thinking of getting the 11" MBA. Also have a 3G iPad 2, and will get the new iPhone when it comes out, lost my old one and a trip to San Fran a month ago.
    Some questions:
    1. Is there a good free decryptor for Mac. I've been using MAkeMKV which works but is time consuming to extract everything then use hand brake, seems to take for ever. I've used DVDfab on windows and is fast 30mins for a DVD.
    2. Any ideas on replacing the MBP with the MBA and syncing everything with the Time Capsule that way. Overall love the MBP and weight is not that heavy, but that little MBA is sexy and powerful.:D
     
  2. reebzor macrumors 6502a

    reebzor

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    #2
    Might I suggest you take a look at Plex instead of XBMC.

    You could run the Media Server and Client on your Mac Mini, then you can still stream to you 2 AppleTV's, your iPad and your new iPhone all from the Plex Media Server. When you have multiple devices like that, I have found Plex to be a much more streamlined way of accessing your media.
     
  3. BeatCrazy macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2011
    #3
    Do you have to jailbreak the AppleTV to use Plex?
     
  4. onejed1 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2007
    #4
    To use Plex on ATV, yes the ATV must be jailbroken.

    I also recommend to insall Plex on the mini instead of XBMC.
     
  5. biscuit141 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2011
    #5
    Do you need to run Plex on the ATV if you have Plex Server running on the Mac Mini or can you just use the ATV like normal and have it pull the files out of iTunes?

    What is the advantage of running Plex on the ATV?
     
  6. reebzor macrumors 6502a

    reebzor

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    #6
    To explain how it works in a very basic manner:

    In normal circumstances, your ATV will see all of the media in your iTunes Library. This makes the computer your media is stored on your "media server" as it serves the media to the ATV, via iTunes.

    With Plex, it does essentially the same thing. You set up the media server application on the computer that has your media, and then it serves it up to all the Plex clients you have. You NEED to use a Plex client to access media via Plex Media Server

    The advantages are numerous. The main one being you don't have to conform to the standards Apple has put in place for the acceptable files/types that can be played back through a device (avi, mkv). The full blown Plex client is awesome, but that will only run on a Mac. I had already had Plex running on my Mac Mini for years before I bought the ATV. I jailbroke it immediately because Plex was already set up for me.
     
  7. biscuit141 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2011
    #7
    OK. Most of my media is already in an Apple friendly format. And now when I burn DVD's with handbrake I just use the Apple TV2 preset.

    It sounds like I could get by using my ATV like normal, I was just looking for other advantages other than file format.
     
  8. brownn macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2011
    #8

    Whats the benefit of using plex server and plex client over xbmc and accessing smb/afp shares from your server? I've got a windows server 2008 r2 box serving my files over smb and my mac mini, jailbroken apple tv 2s, Linux boxes all running xbmc 10.1 access the media over the network. Is plex just a nicer user interface?
     
  9. Mhotep thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2011
  10. blubyu macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2010
    #10
    I don't use Plex for the simple fact I don't want the extra overhead of transcribing everything on the fly. XBMC is much more to my liking. Just my opinion though.
     

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