Retooling... Home Entertainment - Linux Centric ?

From: Mike Harrison 
I'd like to build a single Linux box to:

   1. Play Blu-ray and DVD movies  (might even use an external drive)
   2. Power internally a 5.1 (7.1... ) speaker system, or feed one..
   3. Store music library and image library...
   4. Output video/audio via HDMI

Is the current state of the art still:  XBMC   (

Any favorite hardware to look at for running XBMC? I'm looking for good 
value, not the cheapest. Reasonable quiet.. I'd prefer buying a box that 
it all "just worked on".

=============================================================== From: Chad Smith ------------------------------------------------------ Buy a ps3

=============================================================== From: Eric Wolf ------------------------------------------------------ 1. Samsung "home theater" (Bluray player with an amp built in). I have the lowest model with the tube-based amplifier. 2. Roku player plugged into the Samsung. The Samsung has it's own app store and can stream Netflix but the apps all suck. The Roku is much, much better. 3. Plex on my NAS (not in the living room). Plex provides a "channel" on the Roku that streams videos, MP3s, photo albums. You can also view content from Plex on almost any device. And yes, Plex is a descendent of XBMC but doesn't require an X-Box. -Eric -=--=---=----=----=---=--=-=--=---=----=---=--=-=- Eric B. Wolf 720-334-7734

=============================================================== From: "Kite, Mike" ------------------------------------------------------ I have a similar setup to Mr. Wolf's Plex/Roku setup. Wish I could get the= Plex when I'm away from home, but I think EPB must be blocking it, as I ca= n't attach to it. I'm not pleased with the Plex client for OSX, but it works oddly well with = iOS and Roku.

=============================================================== From: Chad Smith ------------------------------------------------------ XBMC hasn't required an Xbox in close to a decade. *- Chad W. Smith*

=============================================================== From: Nick Smith ------------------------------------------------------ I have no problem accessing my plex server from anywhere. I took a roku on vacation with me on vacation and had no problems once i got it connected to wifi. ( plex server is at home on epb) You have to open port 32400 on your firewall for your plex server and register it with the site on your account. Ive been using it for years and am a life time plexpass member. You can also login to and stream your video from chrome without the client, the client is kinda clunky and i didnt like it. It looks alot better through the web interface, more like netflix. Plex is the best media server software by FAR ive ever found, it beats anything else, hands down IMHO. If you have any questions or problems id be glad to help.

=============================================================== From: Lynn Dixon ------------------------------------------------------ Another Plex Lifetime PlexPass member here! I love me some Plex on my Roku! I also take my Roku with me when I travel since its tiny enough to fit almost in your pocket. Android app is pretty good as well.

=============================================================== From: Mike Harrison ------------------------------------------------------ Hmm.. learned something. Never heard of Plex I gotta admit, I don't care about remote access to TV/Movies when travelling, got too much else to do. But the Plex Media Server looks pretty good, will have to give it a try. They even have a Linux version :) Been looking at hardware for drives and sound, looks like my best long term solution is to separate out the sound system amp/speakers. I'm trying to simplify... with high quality stuff that will last a few generations of other technology.

=============================================================== From: Wil Wade ------------------------------------------------------ They even have an ARM Linux version if you have an ARM powered something around, but it takes a fair bit of power.

=============================================================== From: Tim Youngblood ------------------------------------------------------ Plex rocks. Just works.