Here’s my question of the day: I have a popcorn hour in my home theatre, which works ok. Â But it doesn’t have a slick user interface. I also need to get some kind of media player for my daughter’s room. Â She can’t read yet – so that one has to have an interface where she can pick through pictures of shows. Before anyone gets set off by the idea of a 3 year old having video on demand in her room, let me add that I’m an involved parent and can set restrictions and all that.. blah-blah-blah. Â But on Saturday morning when I want to sleep in it’s golden. Â (Don’tÂ judge!)
The popcorn hour is great in that it plays many different formats, but I really want more out of the interface – and integrated hulu support would be killer. I also need either the same solution or a second solution for G’s room. Â There’s also the issue of everything streaming or things having to be copied locally. Â For G local is fine but streaming is better so we can share the media across both rooms. Â Heck.. if I find a good box I’ll put one in my room too.Â I’ve been researching different solutions but mostly the sweet UI’s are in the iterations ofÂ XBMC. Now that is on the software side. If I go software based, on the hardware side I would want to stay mac (cause I just do David!). I’m very curious about XBMC on the Apple TV – because that’s a much less expensive hardware solution.
So far I’ve been unimpressed with the native quality of the Apple TV. 5mps is not fast enough for my tastes. My popcorn hour can play HDDVD files with no problem – and that’s more like 25mps. At a bare min I need to be able to play raw VOB files and those get up in the 8 – 10 range.
All ranting aside.. here are my actual questions which I’ll toss out to all 5 of my readers…
1. Does Apple TV enhanced with boxee, plex, etc play files that are fatter than 5mps?
2. Does an enhanced Apple TV handle 1080i or 1080p files since it’s native output is 720p? Â How does it handle them?