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MacMini as a Music Server

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professorhat's picture
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RE: MacMini as a Music Server

Unless they wanted to use iTunes (some people like it Smile  ) and use the Apple Remote app to control it. Then the DS would be no good at all.

Don't get me wrong, I see your point, but I also see others' points that the Mini Mac is a good little unit and a "neat" / tidy solution (i.e. all-in-one music / media server and client with a small form factor and an easy setup / interface), especially if you have other Apple products already (e.g. iPod Touch / iPhone / iPad).

I have both a Synology and a Mini Mac in my setup now and they both have their uses.

 

Joined: 26 Jun 2009
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RE: MacMini as a Music Server

JD - do the decent thing and lock this thread to put it out of its misery excellent!

And apologies to all for flanning the flames a bit earlier, I knew it was a mistake as my fingers flew over the keyboard (the old adage of never sending an email when you're even the tiniest bit grumpy!)

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RE: MacMini as a Music Server

John Duncan wrote:

Overdose wrote:

pro audio might be a cheap sub £100 audio interface and a pair of £200 monitors

Which because it's "pro audio" must by definition be really good value and sound great, right?

 

AND YET AGAIN John you attach meaning to a statement based on your own BIAS and annoyance.  For god sake read what people say and don't twist the context and don't falsely or mistakenly interpret when there is no need.

I shall not follow this thread any more because we have gone a long way from what was asked and experienced some particularly unpleasant people on it.  Also it is clear that JD has got stuck in a groove and will, seemingly, misinterpret what some of us say.

hello or goodbye

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RE: Re: Mac Mini as a music server

Jason36, Hope you got some useful info from all the replies to date.  As you may have found by now Mac Mini will work fine as music server.  I wanted to find a cheap way to experiment with streaming and used Apple TV on wireless network with desktop mac running itunes.  HDMI from Apple TV to TV set and optical out to Quad CDP2.  Worked fine, can either control with logitech remote (after a bit of fiddling about) or with Apple remote app on ipad.  Other eqpt is Quad CDP2/Quad 909 power/Quad2805 speakers.  There is a difference in sound to CD, in the same way that there is a difference when swapping any source component.  Sound is still good, possibly slightly more forward.  For me the big advantage has been convenience and the fact that I now tend to play more music and not just the CD's that happen to be left out on the coffee table or are otherwise easiest to find.  The slight inconvenience has been needing to turn on the mac which is in another room.  Because of that I may go down the same path as you and use mac mini as music server, but contriol with ipad.  

 

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RE: MacMini as a Music Server

Perhaps my use case can shed some light on whether the Mac Mini woudl be  good choice as a media server.

 

I have an older (2010) mac mini (dual core, 4GB Ram), connected to a drobo (16tb).

 

This serves music to 5 airplay clients (airport express) - for a whole house audio system.

It also serves video (SD and HD) to 3 Apple TV's

The airports are all wireless (5ghz N from an airport extreme) and the Apple TV's are all conected via 200Mbps Homeplug networking.

Ialso have a lone gen 1 apple TV which is a nice little backup server for music.

 

The mac mini can serve content to all these devices simultanoeusly, so 3 HD video streams and a seperate audio stream to the 5 speakers, with no drop outs or glitches, and has done so for 3 years.

 

My video data is a combination of iTunes purchases, DVD rips (SD) and 1080P Blu Ray rips, all my music is 320kps MP3.

 

My system can also handle a variety of iDevices streaming content tdirectly to the nodes via airplay at the same time.

 

sTeVE

 

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RE: MacMini as a Music Server

Good post Steve and thank you for taking the time to make it. It's a shame this thread degenerated because there is lots of useful info in it; your post, for example.

A recent thing I've found out as well (which may well be common knowledge to everyone else but wasn't to me) is that the Mac will happily run Plex Media Server.

So if you have a load of films in your Mac Mini and a device like my cheap Samsung BD-C5500 blu-ray player which wil run Plex Media Centre (aka just 'Plex'), you don't even need an Apple TV: Plex will stream video from your Mac straight to your BD player, using the BD player's remote to control it. I think that's amazing, but some say I'm easily amazed.

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RE: MacMini as a Music Server

MajorFubar wrote:
Good post Steve and thank you for taking the time to make it. It's a shame this thread degenerated because there is lots of useful info in it; your post, for example. A recent thing I've found out as well (which may well be common knowledge to everyone else but wasn't to me) is that the Mac will happily run Plex Media Server. So if you have a load of films in your Mac Mini and a device like my cheap Samsung BD-C5500 blu-ray player which wil run Plex Media Centre (aka just 'Plex'), you don't even need an Apple TV: Plex will stream video from your Mac straight to your BD player, using the BD player's remote to control it. I think that's amazing, but some say I'm easily amazed.

 

I have a similar setup, I run Plex on my TV, Drobo hooked up directly to my Airport Extreme for storage then I run Plex Server on my laptop.  Plenty quick enough,  although one day I will go Joe's route I would rather not spend the money on it now!

 

ATV2 is still useful though, its so easy for streaming music,  my whole library is available to stream using iTunes Match, and not sure of anything out there right now that can do Desktop Mirroring as effortlessly as Mountain Lion/ATV can.

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RE: MacMini as a Music Server

 

Plex is a great media server - I have used it (I have LG TV's which support it directly) - and the iOS apps are solid, the only shame for me is it won't play iTunes DRM content  Crying

 

sTeVE

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RE: MacMini as a Music Server

I had considered buying an ATV for the 'master' bedroom upstairs, which currently has what would probably be now classed as an elderly 32" Panasonic LCD TV (6 y/o), served by an equally-elderly DVD player, but no antenna, so no access to live or catch-up TV. Then I discovered ATVs don't 'do' iPlayer without being jailbroken, and that was that, really.

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RE: MacMini as a Music Server

MajorFubar wrote:
A recent thing I've found out as well (which may well be common knowledge to everyone else but wasn't to me) is that the Mac will happily run Plex Media Server.

Plex is the result of a falling out between the XBMC team, and the devs that were porting it to OSX. They left, and forked the code, and was MAC only in the beginning.

MajorFubar wrote:
I had considered buying an ATV for the 'master' bedroom upstairs, which currently has what would probably be now classed as an elderly 32" Panasonic LCD TV (6 y/o), served by an equally-elderly DVD player, but no antenna, so no access to live or catch-up TV. Then I discovered ATVs don't 'do' iPlayer without being jailbroken, and that was that, really.

Get a Roku.

It has iPlayer. Add the Plex 'channel'.

Install the the other catch up channels on PMS, job done. Less than half the price of an ATV and no 'jailbreaking' required.

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RE: MacMini as a Music Server

Hi Dave, yes I had looked into that. It's probably the route I will take. Apple are surely missing a trick by not having iPlayer in the ATV. I didn’t even once consider it wouldn’t be on, until I checked. It must surely be high on the essentials-list when people are looking round for a device that will bring streaming and internet-connectivity to older TVs. Its omission is even more amazing when you consider that even devices like the Wii and XBox have it.

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RE: MacMini as a Music Server

They're presumably more interested in selling BBC content via iTunes, than allowing you to stream it free.

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RE: MacMini as a Music Server

Hah, their loss. Everyone running iTunes is running it on a device which will also run iPlayer, either via a web interface or via a dedicated app, so I don't know how many sales they make.

I suppose I make a pretty rubbish Apple evangelist for someone in a house with two Mac Minis, an i7 iMac and an iPhone, but I won't put brand-loyalty above functionality.

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RE: MacMini as a Music Server

Will Plex work with any Wii?

I have the older model with no HDMI out and would be great if it could be used.

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RE: MacMini as a Music Server

I'm not sure there is a Plex client for Wii.  Other than mobiles, their website just quotes Google TV, PS3, XBox 360, Roku, and LG/Samsung smart devices.

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