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 Post subject: TV Internet box
PostPosted: Sat Nov 24, 2012 12:35 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2008 9:47 pm
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Location: New York
I just bought a TV without internet capabilities and am looking for a cheap way to add it.
Basically i would like to be able to go to whatever site (ie youtube) and check emails.
Also would like a usb port so that i can plug in my external hdd with movies loaded and play them off that.

I originally was thinking of a Roku but that doesn't seem to have a full browser, its limited to its app which may or may not work for the emails and youtube.

So.. looking for advice and recommendations.

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 Post subject: Re: TV Internet box
PostPosted: Sat Nov 24, 2012 4:03 pm 
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Samsung Chromebook for $250, maybe. Downside is it doesn't support Silverlight - so no Netflix. Looks like you can also load a different Linux distro on there instead, if it's your style.

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 Post subject: Re: TV Internet box
PostPosted: Sat Nov 24, 2012 6:08 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2008 9:47 pm
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Location: New York
I dont use Netflix at all. Mainly mom wants to be able to stream her international tv from a few websites that she found, on the tv.
Would something like a Panasonic DMP-BDT220 bluray player work? It has wifi and ethernet. And some sort of processor that can handle 1080p stuff.
And it seems that the samsung 6000 tv that i got has a usb port so i should apparently be able to plug and play my downloaded movies via that.

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 Post subject: Re: TV Internet box
PostPosted: Sat Nov 24, 2012 6:16 pm 
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Location: Switzerland
If ARMs are in the running, Pi for $35? I don't know what it can play reliably at high-res but it's really small which is nice for a TV box.
Otherwise, an El Cheapo mITX x86 build will cost a good bit less than a nettop and could potentially play MS stuff if you're willing to buy a license (Win8 is a good bit cheaper for builders anyway).

There are pretty cheap devices which play videos from a USB drives but emails and Youtube... I don't know about that.
edit: last I tried, even Samsung's TVs which claimed to be able to do web stuff mostly failed badly in practice. They can play video from a drive... but not as well as a PC.


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 Post subject: Re: TV Internet box
PostPosted: Sat Nov 24, 2012 6:34 pm 
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If you want to check email, then you need a device with a web browser. The Panasonic BD player just has widgets for Netflix, youtube, etc...not a browser.

How about Vizio Co-star for $100?

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 Post subject: Re: TV Internet box
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 10:53 am 
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No unused PC's laying around? It's not the most elegant solution. But if you have a reasonably recent PC collecting dust, a full OS = way more freedom than any media streaming appliance will give you.

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 Post subject: Re: TV Internet box
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 12:15 pm 
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Location: New York
I do have some unused PCS but parents dont want to see a box in the space with the brand new tv. I've been feeling that that is the best way to go. No need to worry about supporting formats or lack of power to handle the video. And if i attach a wifi adapter, i could access stuff from a NAS (once i make it), right?

The pc in particular that im thinking of has Core2Duo E6420 cpu and i have a few gpus, Nvidia 8600gt, 8800gt, 6800gt. All can handle 1080P resolution so does it matter which one i use?

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 Post subject: Re: TV Internet box
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 2:13 pm 
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use the 8600GT - least wattage of the three.

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 Post subject: Re: TV Internet box
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 3:03 pm 
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xev wrote:
I do have some unused PCS but parents dont want to see a box in the space with the brand new tv. I've been feeling that that is the best way to go. No need to worry about supporting formats or lack of power to handle the video. And if i attach a wifi adapter, i could access stuff from a NAS (once i make it), right?

Yes, BUT depending on bitrate and distance between your router and wifi adapter, wireless may not (will not) have sufficient bandwidth. Take .11g wireless. Supposedly 54Mbps. You lose half to overhead (now down to 27Mbps), but that's still optimistic. I'm lucky to see 10-11 Mbps 10ft from my wireless AP through 1 wall. That's not sufficient for any of my HD material.

If you can, pull ethernet cable. Even 100Mb "fast" ethernet over regular cat5 will do. This may get unsightly, which your folks may not like.

xev wrote:
The pc in particular that im thinking of has Core2Duo E6420 cpu and i have a few gpus, Nvidia 8600gt, 8800gt, 6800gt. All can handle 1080P resolution so does it matter which one i use?

That CPU is plenty. Use the 8600GT. Yes, all can handle 1080p resolution, but not all have the same built-in decoding abilities. The 8600 and 8800 cores feature 2nd gen PureVideo HD decoding:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nvidia_Pur ... reVideo_HD

VC-1 decoding is not fully accelerated. In practice, this shouldn't matter with your Core 2 Duo.

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