MacMini Media Centre Uk

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by mkcoo, Nov 2, 2009.

  1. mkcoo macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2009
    Location:
    UK
    #1
    I'm just about to purchase my long awaited set-up for my lounge. First things first...

    1. MacMini Server or MacMini Standard?
    I'm favoring the server edition for HD size but what would be the main negatives for running my Media Centre? Should I be worried about running the Server edition- Easy or high maintenance?

    2. Mini DisplayPort to DVI Adapter Cable? (Applestore £20)
    Would this be the best quality option to link my Mini to a new Sony 46" Z series? (I will be using VirginMedia Cable getting a EyeTv Hybrid and also watching my ripped Handbrake dvds)

    I have iMac 24" 1TB, Time Capsule 1TB, iPhone 3GS
     
  2. Bye Bye Baby macrumors 65816

    Bye Bye Baby

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2004
    Location:
    i(am in the)cloud
    #2
    I like the idea of a mac mini with SL server. However, the hard drive is really a non-issue if you want to stream video. Unfortunately they are both only 5400 rpm.

    I do think that the mac mini without server is enough. If you want to run a web server etc then think about it.
     
  3. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2005
    #3
    Use a Mini Display Port to HDMI if you have HDMI on your TV.
    Get the Mini, non-server edition because you seem to only want the server for the HDD space, something that with a little skill, tools, and patience, you can upgrade on your own.
     
  4. mkcoo thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 2, 2009
    Location:
    UK
    #4
    Thanks for the replys.

    Okay I've got about 650GB of ripped dvds at the moment so would it be best to keep on my iMac and stream to my TV or better to have them locally on the Mini and stream music, photos etc.

    Also I thought I hadn't much choice of upgrading my hard drive to 7200 and a bigger size... What would be a good option? Plus I reckon there won't be any point to take out AppleCare once I changed anything.

    Thats cool about the cable found a Mini DisplayPort to HDMI Adapter guess thats the best option. Cheers Jessica
     
  5. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2005
    #5
    I put (well ok I didn't but I was there) 250GB WD Scorpio Black in mine (7200rpm). It was just one I bought from someone here for a song.

    You can put any 2.5" drive in there and if you put in a 7200 RPM you need not worry about vibration because it's not like a notebook, you don't touch it while using it.
     
  6. mkcoo thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 2, 2009
    Location:
    UK
    #6
    For digital audio any suggestions of cables?

    Its gonna be a new 5.1 system not sure yet which one. And will it plug into my Mini, Tv, Cable box? Just can't get my head round it..
     
  7. OllyW Moderator

    OllyW

    Staff Member

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    Oct 11, 2005
    Location:
    The Black Country, England
    #7
    You will need an optical cable with a mini jack adaptor.

    [​IMG]
     
  8. R.Youden macrumors 68020

    R.Youden

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2005
    #8
    I am in the UK and have a mini set up as a home server, I don't have time at the moment, but I will post on here later how my setup works.
     
  9. savoirfaire macrumors 6502

    savoirfaire

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2003
    Location:
    New England
    #9
    Jessica - Keep in mind that you can always pull the optical drive out of the non-server mini and install a second hard drive if it's really the space you're after. That will also save you a good chunk of money.

    http://www.ifixit.com/Guide/Repair/Mac-mini-A1283-Terabyte-Drive/660/1#top
     
  10. No1451 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2008
    Location:
    Ottawa, ON
    #10
    This would depend heavily on future additions and the quality of what you're streaming. Full on DVDs(not compressed into a wee little avi or mp4) can be streamed well enough, but there are some things you need to consider:

    1) Wired or wireless? Wireless streaming, while doable, is not particularly good usually, if you can run a gigabit wired network, do it.

    2) Have you decided what you're going to be using to play these files? iTunes or something like Plex/XBMC(I recommend the latter as it is kept more up-to-date)
     
  11. R.Youden macrumors 68020

    R.Youden

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2005
    #11
    Right, about time I post a proper reply.

    This is how I do things and my opinions on things:

    • Don't stream your media. Why not? Well for me it means that you have to have two computers on at once. Also it makes setting up harder, if your network goes down you loose you connection etc...
    • Buy a cheaper mini (second hand maybe) and get an external hard drive to give you more storage space. I think all Intel minis will play almost all HD video so you can save money on that and get the external storage. I went for a Drobo which was a bit over the top but it is worth it for the safe storage
    • I use Plex for my interface. I have spent far too long trying out lots of different interfaces and for me, that is the best. Lots of nice plug-ins, iPlayer, 4oD etc...

    If you have any questions then give me a shout, I will be happy to help.
     
  12. mkcoo thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2009
    Location:
    UK
    #12
    Okay the ripped dvds are Handbrake best quality ATV setting (Think its the top rip off a dvd). Its a wireless network from my TimeCapsule but i guess its better to have the movies locally on the mini and stream music (going lossless next year) and a few photos then just stream the odd movie to my iMac in my bedroom.

    Secondly my thoughts to run my MediaCentre were initally Boxee (dont know much about this area) but it seems the big raves are all for Plex. So I reckon am gonna start with that plus front row and once I'm running with EyeTv recording will see how that will fit in.
     
  13. mkcoo thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 2, 2009
    Location:
    UK
    #13
    Cheers R.Youden,
    See what you mean about two computers but I thought at this stage will get the mini or mini server then later add a drobo in maybe a year or so. Do you also backup all your data or just bank on your drobo?

    Yeah gonna give Plex the go.. but do you use any apps on your iPhone to control?
     
  14. mkcoo thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2009
    Location:
    UK
    #14
    MacMini Standard V MacMini Server

    Just costed out the Minis...

    Standard - 2.53Ghz Core 2 Duo, 4GB £729
    +500GB HD
    +Superdrive

    Server - 2.53Ghz Core 2 Duo, 4GB £799
    +Duel 500GB HD
    +Snow Leopard Server
    -Superdrive

    So is the £70 worth it for the extra HD space? And possibly to play/utilize with some of the extra features?

    I know the MediaCentre setup would be fine for both but i'm just not sure i know enough about the server edition. Once i learnt it would it be a benefit apart from just future proofing what i do next? Is it just overkill? does apple just want to sell more server editions?

    Comments and ideas please
     
  15. DoFoT9 macrumors P6

    DoFoT9

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2007
    Location:
    Singapore
    #15
    70 pounds for another 500gb hdd and server version of SL is a steal! Personally i would take it
     
  16. mkcoo thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2009
    Location:
    UK
    #16
    Mini Displayport to HDMI Cable?

    Does anyone know if you can get a Mini Displayport to HDMI Cable?

    Am going to get a Mini DisplayPort to HDMI Adapter and HDMI-HDMI and hope that works?

    And would a shorter cable = better results?
     

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