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Set top box for streaming media (media center)

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by xarfox, Jun 11, 2010.

  1. xarfox

    xarfox New Member

    Jun 11, 2010
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    I'm not sure if STB is the right term, but basically I need a device that I can plug into my network and my tv, so that I can stream movie files to my TV. I was doing this for awhile with my XBOX, but it has broken, and I don't play games. I'd rather just get a hifi device that can do this for me. Does anyone have recommendations in the 50-150 $ price range?

    My brother recommended a Sony Blue Ray player so I could play DVDs and stream, but I read that it does not support AVI playback. I am kind of against physical media, so I don't really care for a physical dvd player. I plan on streaming everything, that is really the new way IMO. No need to store a bunch of discs, I don't watch movies more than once.

    Does anyone know what brand excels at this and is known for flexibility? I want to be able to play virtually any type of codec and file type. If there is a way to interface with the device and customize it as well, that is even better.

    Also I would want it to be able to handle HD.

  2. mattCR

    mattCR Well-Known Member
    HW Reviewer

    Oct 5, 2005
    Likes Received:
    Overland Park, KS
    Real Name:
    Patriot makes a box called "Showtime" which is decent. Other then that you can look at Popcorn Hour etc. if you can find one used in that range.
  3. Eric_L

    Eric_L Well-Known Member

    Nov 2, 2002
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    Matt; Do you have a link to this? All I get is the cable network

    Xar, you may want to look at Playon. www.playon.tv It works with your xbox or ps3
  4. Bill Cowmeadow

    Bill Cowmeadow Well-Known Member

    May 5, 1999
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    I am currently using the Seagate theater+

    It is brilliant. Will do what you are looking for. It has 2 USB ports, a Lan Port, HDMI and Audio/Video and Digital 5.1 out.

    SeagateTheater+ also has a port that will allow a direct connection to any size Seagate Go drive and still leave the USB ports available.

    There are several boxes that do similar things, so look around.

  5. arftech

    arftech Member

    Dec 6, 2006
    Likes Received:
    The problem I have with STB is I have not seen one that allows you to stream or download HD quality movies from the major studios. This is a must for me as I refuse to watch movies that are ST on my system! We have invested a lot of time and money in putting together decent systems and we deserve to have the software/titles available to get maximum enjoyment.


    I think Microsoft is headed in the right direction with their Xbox Live and Zune Marketplace offerings. They have a pretty good catolog of titles and they're mostly in HD with 5.1 audio. Sony is putting in place the same thing with their Playstation platform as well and the cool thing is you can use both platforms for other things as these are not just for gaming anymore.



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