Windows 7 on Mac Mini (Mid-2011)

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by bdsmith63, Jan 28, 2012.

  1. bdsmith63 macrumors member

    bdsmith63

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2009
    #1
    I have exhausted so many options to get a workable Home Media Center. I have a Mac Mini (Mid-2011 w/ 8GB Ram) connected to a Pioneer Receiver through HDMI and a 55" LG LED TV.

    I've tried several media players (Plex, Songbird, etc). Overall, I actually like Windows Media Center. I installed Windows 7 Hm Premium through Boot Camp on my Mac Mini. (I have all my media setup on my network through a Buffalo Linkstation NAS). Now I have this working fine in test mode and when connected as listed above, I can't get any sound through HDMI? Also the screen resolution shows it detects my receiver, but doesn't totally align to the screen. I've tried customizing the settings with no luck.

    Any suggestions for my dilemmas?

    Thanks! Brian
    :apple:
     
  2. parapup macrumors 65816

    parapup

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2006
    #2
    Couple guesses - for the sound via HDMI try going into Windows Sound settings (Playback devices) and then see if HDMI is listed there. You will need to set it as default.

    For the screen alignment - which GPU is in your Mini? If that is ATI - download and install latest ATI driver and run the Catalyst Control Center. In the CCC utility there are options that allow you to align your screen. I believe similar utilities exist for Intel and Nvidia GPUs too.
     
  3. shortcut3d macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2011
    #3
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 5_0_1 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9A406 Safari/7534.48.3)

    I use Windows Media Center and Media Browser and Media Center Master on my 2011 Mac mini 2.7GHz Dual-Core Intel i7 as the residential media gateway (hub). It feeds Xbox 360s for CableCARD DVR, music and movie libraries. I also struggled with direct output to the TV. Mainly the 29/59 frame rate issue. I suggest installing the lastest video drivers from the manufacturer, not bootcamp. Then you can align the screen there and will likely get HDMI audio without going to sound in the control panel. If necessary, go to sound and enable HDMI audio as a playback device. If you have speakers connected to the mini you will also have to enable the recorder. To enable these items you will have to show disabled devices in sound. Your TV may also have a scan adjustment. You can try setting it there as well. Often called pixel or just scan vs normal.
     
  4. bdsmith63 thread starter macrumors member

    bdsmith63

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2009
    #4
    Windows 7 on Mac Mini (Mid-2011)

    Thanks for the suggestions guys! The updated Intel Driver fixed the problem as far as the sound. The Mac Mini is connected to a different display while setting some things up. Will test the display issues next.

    13" MBP (2010) 2.4GHz 8GB | Mini 2.3Ghz (2011) "Core i5" 8GB | Buffalo LS-V1 NAS
     
  5. bdsmith63 thread starter macrumors member

    bdsmith63

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2009
    #5
    Media Center Master

    Hey I'd like to understand more how Media Center Master works? I went to the web site but couldn't seem to locate a download for the FREE version. If you'd be willing to help me out I'd appreciate it. Would be anxious to hear more how you have your media organized - i.e. in a folder with all types, separated, etc.
     
  6. shortcut3d macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2011
    #6
    I followed the advice provided in this thread on AVS forum > HTPC

    http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1250607

    After trying many variations, I ended up NOT installing the Shark007 codec pack and encoding all my movies in Handbrake Apple TV 2 preset. AVS forum tends to focus on highest possible quality. I was going for minimalist jukebox similar to an Apple TV 2, but combining CableCARD Live TV functionality. Therefore, I encode once and use on all my devices (i.e. - iTunes, Apple TV 2, iPhone 4S, iPad 2, Windows Media Center, Xbox 360). The Apple TV 2 preset has the proper bit rate, etc. for all my devices. Yes, I sacrifice some quality, but I save disk space and gain compatibility.

    Windows Media Center:
    My HTPC is the 2011 Mac mini 2.7GHz Dual-Core Intel i7. With 8GB of 1866MHz, SSD Windows 7 x64 OS drive recording 6 shows at once and playing back on two Xbox 360 extenders simultaneously is no problem.

    Media Browser:
    I use the current release 2.5.2 on my library stored on a SSD modded RAID 0 LaCie Thunderbolt Little Big Disk. It is super fast for the Media Browser library even through the Xbox 360 extenders. Media Browser is access many backdrops and posters for each movie. I also use the paid (donation supported) Neo - Metro Theme. My movies are split into HD, International, and Movies (for SD DVD backups).

    Media Center Master:
    I use the free version and its fine for renaming and downloading artwork. The HTPC is configured to auto resize the artwork using the default settings. This helps speed the Media Browser interface on the Xbox 360 extenders. After my initial load, I turned off auto scan and manually run the job for each movie I add. I point Media Center Master to the same directories listed above for Media Browser libraries. Before resize, I add the artwork to my iTunes Library because it can leverage high resolution than Windows Media Center. I also add the synopsis from the xml files created by Media Center Master to the description, artist (director) and year fields under get info.
     

Share This Page