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AMD's All-in-One Media Machine 121

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the kitchen-sink-not-included dept.
Drakewolf writes to tell us that despite the many failed attempts to bridge the gap between the PC and home entertainment systems, AMD has released several new products at CES under their LIVE! brand. The centerpiece was the AMD LIVE! Home Cinema, an all-in-one device that combines a set-top cable box, stereo receiver, DVD player, digital video recorder, and a PC.
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AMD's All-in-One Media Machine

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  • by morgan_greywolf (835522) on Monday January 08, 2007 @02:10PM (#17511056) Homepage Journal
    All-in-One devices (of any sort) tend to do all of these related things, but none of them particularly well. On top of it, if one of it's functions quits on you, you generally have to replace the entire thing, since the all-in-one device will typically not integrate with anything external.

    I understand why they continue to gain popularity (takes less space, you get all the functions for one price, uses less power, etc.), but in general you can always seem to do better from a functionality and features standpoint from individual components than from any integrated 'all-in-one' device.

  • by Umbrel (1040414) on Monday January 08, 2007 @02:15PM (#17511138)
    Most likely we would be better with just USB stackable (wireless?) devices for physical media inputs (VHS, DVD, etc) and a really good software to handle it, or USB a hardware panel. Something like a all(you want)-in-one modular kit.
  • Re:failed attempts? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by flynt (248848) on Monday January 08, 2007 @02:19PM (#17511206)
    I have Media Center running on my laptop hooked up to a 24" monitor, which doubles as my TV. I can watch DVDs, slide shows, live TV, and recorded TV, it's simple. I can drop recorded shows into a directory which automatically converts them and puts them on my iPod. Even Media Center is not a failed attempt as far as I'm concerned.
  • by stu42j (304634) on Monday January 08, 2007 @02:47PM (#17511644) Homepage
    "They can't stream content if you want video. The connection isn't the problem, the problem is NAS isn't fast enough to get content on the wire," he said. With a faster processor in its Media Server, data can now be streamed off a server, either wireless or wired.


    WTF? I stream videos off my 400mhz K6 fileserver and have never had problems with CPU load. Are NAS devices seriously that slow?
  • Re:Speechless (Score:3, Interesting)

    by MojoStan (776183) on Monday January 08, 2007 @03:52PM (#17512652)
    Also, one of the requirements of AMD LIVE! [amd.com] is Windows Media Center Edition, so it's obvious AMD created this spec in cooperation/partnership with Microsoft.

    I'm pretty sure the GP was joking, though, about MS suing AMD for using the word "Live."

  • by garcia (6573) on Monday January 08, 2007 @04:20PM (#17513080) Homepage
    This device still resembles a computer too much to be adopted and placed in the living room of the common household. Some day though...

    I don't know what TiVo you're talking about but both my standalone TiVo and my DirecTiVo look pretty much like my DVD players.

    The reason that TiVo has a low adoption rate is the fact that it costs $14/month to use it (standalone) and most people can't see the point of paying $14 to disrupt their lives being disrupted by TV show programming times. It has nothing to do w/how it looks.
  • Re:failed attempts? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Ucklak (755284) on Monday January 08, 2007 @05:10PM (#17513986)
    Once HD can be recorded off another output device (component/HDMI) then I'm interested.
    Otherwise, it's a failure.

    Cablecard and HD-DVR's are failures at this point. Equipment for cablecards doesn't meet spec for cablecards and vice versa.
    Your TV takes a cablecard but PPV doesn't work or any other extra that the crappy STB does.

    HD-DVR's have nothing but bad news on all the forums I've read and people I've talked to - constantly rebooting, loss of recorded shows, noisy.

    High end TV's now have a warm up time longer than a 25" TV did in the 1970s but that should get better in time as with most things electronic.

    I want to be able to stream media to any TV in my home. I have F-connector and Cat5e jacks everywhere in my house as well as a centralized management center for the cabling.
    MythTV seems to be the only solution at this point to meet that need however the HD recorded is OTA only of which I only have access to 13 channels where 4 channels are 1080i.

    I'd like to be able to have a PVR record HD and stream to any TV but I don't want to be tied to an expensive and buggy proprietary solution (DirecTV HD-DVR/Cox HD) for one TV just to have the ability to record ANY HD channel.
  • by felonious (636719) on Monday January 08, 2007 @06:29PM (#17515446) Journal
    This is nothing new and it seems to be all hype. If you have digital cable, in my area, you get a free cable box w/PVR built in. I have multiple DVD players, HD-DVD at that, 7.1 SS Home theater setup, an a HTPC(not store bought).

    The biggest issue I have with these premade, pieces of shit, is they are way over-priced.
    You could build much better, with multiple form factors, depending on preference, much cheaper.
    Most of the hardware that goes into these things is generic crap.
    Cheap hardware+SFF=Profit!!
    The $1000 version is probably Celeron based with minimal RAM. It probably lacks what's needed period and is only listed so they can say they have a cheaper model. It's just like the cheaper versions of the 360/PS3 which nobody wants.

    For my next HTPC I've bought a mac mini, which I'm going to dual boot in XP. Parallel looks ok but I'm told it's not that great. Mojopac shows a lot of promise, but I have to learn more about it. Anyway, running XP on a mac mini gives me great SFF, but lacks some things. I can make it all work depending on how much I will use said function. They make external drives that match the mini so storage won't be an issue and the SFF can't be beat. This will be my first mac, but it's only for the SFF not the OS, as I'll be running XP to get the HTPC stuff going.

    For those wanting to build there own you can do so with top notch components for way under $1500.
    When I was looking at doing this I built multiple versions on Newegg. Below I've listed specs off of memory...
    Shuttle XPC case/mobo/ps(need to upgrade) $169 after 20 rebate
    AMD64 4200X2 - $169
    1GB Corsair XMS DDR2@800mhz - $130
    SATA 320GB HD - $95
    Win MCE 2k5 - $109
    Haupage dual TV tuner (PCI) $130ish
    GeForce 7950 gt or gs (can't remember) $189
    DVD Drive $30
    That's the bulk of it and it's $1021

    $3k can kiss my ass and so can $2k, it's a rip and generic hardware.
    $1021 plus an hour or so piecing it together=priceless!

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