I have been researching what media player to use with my soon-to-be-delivered new Sony 46EX520 LED tv and have come up with a few ideas but only really 2 workable ones right now...
The basic setup:
TV- Sony 46EX520 LED (46" duh) (previously a 26" Samsung LCD without functional HDMI so a big step up)
Speakers- Very non-hifi Harman Kardon Soundsticks, but they are perfectly good for the moment.
Mediastorage- 2TB IcyBox NAS attatched to my WIFI router, but it will be directly wired to the mediaplayer.
-The router needs upgrading to hopefully a gigabit router/300-wifi thingy but that's a later step.
Existing Mediaplayer: Astone AP-110D - It does full HD and has so far been performing very well for a S$100 (50 quid) little box.
There is no receiver or anything complicated. I may get a separate bluray player in the future...
1- Apple TV 2 - This must be jailbroken to run XBMC and to access my NAS-based media files.
It's difficult to get here (Singapore) and I won't be able to use online rentals but I don't care- I'm only after a LAN-based mediaplayer. Everything else is a bonus that I may never use.
I know it doesn't output proper 1080 video (sniff) but most of my media files max out at 720p. Contrary to comments in a few reviews, it does play 1080 files, it just downscales them to 720 for output.
I am worried about the performance of this little box with HD content though... The reviews tend to comment on jerkiness though it isn't clear if this is a streaming issue or a processor grunt performance issue.
2 - WD Live TV hub or whatever blah model is around
I'm not too fussed about the built-in hard drive- it'll just add to the cost. I'd rather a non-hard drive version.
It plays a good range of media including ISO, MKV with h.264 etc. without fuss, though I understand the menus are 'clunky'. I like this option for the ease of use and lack of setup trouble compared with the apple TV.
Needless to say, I don't know how these two fare against each other as ETHERNET-based (not wifi) media players. I'm afraid to say that my sound setup will probably never be good enough to hear a difference between the two, I just need something that will produce good images with as little jerkiness as possible- network traffic allowing.
Does anyone have experience with XBMC on the apple?
Does anyone know a reason to stay away from either solution?
I'm leaning towards the WD 'cos it's easier but I do like the apple tv idea... Shame it's limited to 720 output only.
Any and all comments would be appreciated!
My discarded options-
PS3- The bluray would be good, but the mediaplayer options the PS3 provides are too restrictive.
XBOX- it has XBMC [equivalent] options, but no bluray. Gears of war is also another good reason.
wow- long first post!