WDTV replacement

MacBH928

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Original poster
May 17, 2008
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I have this very old WDTV that is supposed to run all types of codecs and it does. Recently a new format came up (H265-HEVC). Any way, it can't play that format.

I thought about upgrading to the new WDTV but I was told the newer devices are less capable than the older ones.

Any one knows a good replacement for my old WDTV? a cheap home theater mini pc? Rasberry Pi? I thought of getting a mac mini but thats very expensive for something that runs media files.
 

archer75

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Jan 26, 2005
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for H265 you need an Nvidia shield TV. Native support for it and 4k and DTS-MA HD/Dolby TrueHD. I have one and use it for h265 and HD audio.
 
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MacBH928

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for H265 you need an Nvidia shield TV. Native support for it and 4k and DTS-MA HD/Dolby TrueHD. I have one and use it for h265 and HD audio.
Very interesting, I never knew about this. Any negatives? Fan noise?

What app you use to view video+audio? Kodi?

Apple TV plays HEVC.
Apple TV will not allow you to play video files of your own AFAIK.
 

archer75

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Apple TV plays HEVC.
Not according to the Infuse developer.
[doublepost=1459953793][/doublepost]
Very interesting, I never knew about this. Any negatives? Fan noise?

What app you use to view video+audio? Kodi?
There is no fan so it's silent. Not a lot of apps for it. Plenty of games though. Can stream games from your PC as well if you have an nvidia card. You can subscribe to their game service and stream over the net which I hear works pretty well. You can install emulators and play classic arcade games. Nintendo games. Sega, atari, etc.

I primarily use Plex on it since i'm not a fan of kodi. Plex will bitstream DTS-MA HD assuming the MKVs are formatted properly. There is a fork of kodi called SPMC that focuses on android and that bitstreams everything. The built in native video player also bitstreams. Haven't tested VLC or MXplayer on it though.

I got the shield to replace my loud and power hungry HTPC and it does the job just fine.
 
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2010mini

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Jun 19, 2013
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It most certainly does. Just not H.265 encoded.
Just to add. Plex App will transcode H.265 to play on the Apple TV 4.

The entire HEVC issue with Apple really comes down to licensing. If Apple enters an agreement to stream in HEVC, it has to pay per device retroactively to the first device sold. I'm sure Apple said 'F that!'
I wouldn't be at all surprised that Apple is working on their own 4K steaming codec to avoid the flat 0.5% fee for H.265.
 

MacBH928

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Now if only let other devices use AirPlay...
Its becoming a difficult choice between AppleTV and the Shield

Not according to the Infuse developer.
[doublepost=1459953793][/doublepost]

I primarily use Plex on it since i'm not a fan of kodi. Plex will bitstream DTS-MA HD assuming the MKVs are formatted properly. There is a fork of kodi called SPMC that focuses on android and that bitstreams everything. The built in native video player also bitstreams. Haven't tested VLC or MXplayer on it though.

I got the shield to replace my loud and power hungry HTPC and it does the job just fine.
I don't know what bitstream is, but I don't like Plex because quality fluctuates with the wifi network. Local storage with Kodi IMHO will always be more reliable. You also have to have another computer always on.


It most certainly does. Just not H.265 encoded.
You are telling me I can put videos and music files on a USB drive, stick it in AppleTV and it will play it from there?
 

2010mini

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Jun 19, 2013
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Now if only let other devices use AirPlay...
Its becoming a difficult choice between AppleTV and the Shield



I don't know what bitstream is, but I don't like Plex because quality fluctuates with the wifi network. Local storage with Kodi IMHO will always be more reliable. You also have to have another computer always on.




You are telling me I can put videos and music files on a USB drive, stick it in AppleTV and it will play it from there?
No. You can put files on a NAS and with an app like Plex, you can play them on the Apple TV.
 

fhall1

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Dec 18, 2007
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You don't need Plex (which requires a server running somewhere) to play files off a NAS with the ATV4. Infuse or MrMC or NAStify (or other) apps can do it directly (no server required).
 

archer75

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Jan 26, 2005
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I don't know what bitstream is, but I don't like Plex because quality fluctuates with the wifi network. Local storage with Kodi IMHO will always be more reliable. You also have to have another computer always on.




You are telling me I can put videos and music files on a USB drive, stick it in AppleTV and it will play it from there?
Well that isn't a plex issue. It's an issue with your network. Though I would agree that wired is more reliable there are things you can do to stream somewhat reliably over a wireless network with a quality AC router. Your h.265 files are also lower bitrate than h.264 files and will stream better. My whole house is wired and I have no problem leaving a computer on 24/7. That way I can serve content to all the tv's in my home and to friends and family outside my home. My computer also auto downloads shows as they air(sonarr).

Bitstreaming is sending the audio directly to your receiver to decode versus having the device decode it and downsampling the audio.
The problem with plugging directly into the apple tv is both the hardware and software needs to support the audio/video/container of what you are trying to play. You're also limited to only that device. And you're constantly having to take your storage medium back to a computer to add/remove content to it and then back to your apple tv. A tedious process.

If your goal is to use a USB stick then the shield has greater file support and is still a better device for you.
 
Last edited:

John_Hagan

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Feb 11, 2016
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You don't need Plex (which requires a server running somewhere) to play files off a NAS with the ATV4. Infuse or MrMC or NAStify (or other) apps can do it directly (no server required).

Absolutely correct. Infuse is a great app for playing directly from a NAS. It is definitely worth a try.
 

MacBH928

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If your goal is to use a USB stick then the shield has greater file support and is still a better device for you.
I guess I will go with the shield, it just does so much more than an Apple TV. The only Apple TV advantage is the iTunes library
 

Led-zep

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Dec 1, 2015
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Infuse cannot play back H265 files. I know I'm trying to play GOT season 1 and the only Blu Ray rip available is a x265 version which it struggles to play.

Haven't tried plex as it has been a pain in the past, but as most new Blu Ray content is going toward h265 it's making it a lot harder having a player not being able to play these files smoothly.
 

MacBH928

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So Apple TV is out of the question for this one. H.265 is here already sounds like a bad investment for the future
 

brewmonkey

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Feb 17, 2016
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Thanks to all who offered input. I too will soon need to replace a WD TV (it is amazing that WD just abandoned this product line). I figured it would come down to the Shield vs. ATV 4, but I think Shield is the winner for me.

Thanks again!