xbmc "output to all speakers" alternative

slowpoke115

Active Member
Looking at buying either a VERY good HTPC with some kind of jukebox function or a popcorn hour/tvix. The only trouble I'm having is the audio support seems crap for everyone one of these systems. With my xbox, regardless of the audio quality of the original I get 5.1 surround sound, is it likely that any of the above devices will do the same or will I just get stereo unless its got a 5.1 recording?

Thanks.

Also any advice on whats best, for me music is just as important as movies with regards to a htpc device, choices are popcorn hour, tvix 5600 or a quality htpc (still unsure which software is best).
 

lmaolmao

Well-known Member
judging that you have a 5.1 system, can't you put it into prologic?

and if you like the xbmc way of things, theres xbmc for windows,linux, and mac.
 

slowpoke115

Active Member
prologic is a poor mans 5.1.

I take it theres no alternative to xbmc... Can you believe it, 6 year old software running on 9 year old hardware is currently the best media player available. This really is crap. By the way xbmc on mac, linux and windows is awful in comparison to the xbox version (have tried it on all three), it looks sloppy and frequently crashes.
 

Theydon Bois

Distinguished Member
I take it theres no alternative to xbmc... Can you believe it, 6 year old software running on 9 year old hardware is currently the best media player available. This really is crap.

There are plenty of alternatives - MC on either Vista or Windows 7 or Media Portal being the two main ones. Check the sticky at the top of the forum or in my signature.
 

aphillippe

Active Member
do either of these options have an alternative to the "send audio to all speakers" option of xbmc (as in original post)? This is an awesome feature that I really miss since retiring the xbox. It sends full stereo signals to the rear left and right speakers as well as the fronts. Makes for an amazing all round sound. Also, I have a loung diner. If I want music for dinner parties, the dining table either gets mostly the surround 'effects' from the rears in pro logic, or music coming from 20 feet away in plain stereo.

Anyone know of software solution that will 'map' front left and right to rear speakers when a stereo source (e.g. Media center) is playing?
 

slowpoke115

Active Member
Looks like the only solution is xbmc, this is a real disappointment for me as the 5.1 sound with mp3's and video encoded with mp3 sound was greatly 'improved'. Whenever I've tried any alternative media players I've always had prologic or something along those lines, I even configured my amp to output stereo to all speakers but it doesn't sound nearly as good (music lacks dynamics/everything has one volume level).

I even bought a mac mini in an attempt to run xbmc on it and have it all tidy and sleek (it crashed lots for me with 1080p vid). P.S anyone looking to buy a mac mini :D

I'm looking at buying a tvix 6500a, they're the exact same price as popcorn hours in the UK and figured I could use it for HD content (even though the gui is crap and audio will almost certainly be poor).

Once again majory ****** off the best anyone has to offer is xbmc - linux mce is awful and has too many features which aren't removable, windows media centre is gross looking and boring and I've yet to stumble across anything else which looks ok and doesn't crash. Meh, ranting - ignore the last paragraph and focus on my McMini.
 

slowpoke115

Active Member
Theres some other issues with running macs through my amp, I made a post some time ago and spent £200 on cables but can't get a picture at all unless it's standard definiton. I did try boxee though, and plex and xbmc; I remember them all being fairly unstable when playing 720p .mkv files and the font on xbmc looked really odd. Very pretty interfaces though, generally prettier than xbmc run on Windows/linux.

I was tempted to get the usb version of xbmc and get my mcmini to boot off it permenantly but I'm still faced with the problem of no HD picture.
 

Presuming Ed

Well-known Member
Don't most motherboards and drivers do this? I remember when I set up an old Asus motherboard I couldn't get it to stop outputting to all speakers, it became quite annoying.

I think the Gigabyte 780G motherboards do it. I'm not at home so I can't test but I will when I get chance.

I tried to attach a grab from the motherboard manual PDF but the attachment system isn't responding.

Isn't 'Output full range to rear speakers' what you're after? Am I misinterpreting it or does that mean 'send the full stereo output to the rear speakers too'?


PS attachment thing woke up. Patience is a virtue.
 

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slowpoke115

Active Member
Windows Vista + XBMC = runtime error
Mac + XBMC = unusual fonts, scale looks odd crashes when playing any 720p content.
Linux + XBMC = dmesg showing LaTex errors (was almost impossible to compile).

Someones replied to my mac mini thread regarding connecting their mac to the same amp I have so may have some success here. I also played around with "output stereo to all speakers" on my amp, it sounded poor compared to xbmc but I could probably get used to it. If my mac mini doesn't work I'll invest in a decent motherboard which outputs stereo to spdif as suggested.
 
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Mr_Belowski

Active Member
Windows Vista + XBMC = runtime error
Mac + XBMC = unusual fonts, scale looks odd crashes when playing any 720p content.
Linux + XBMC = dmesg showing LaTex errors (was almost impossible to compile).

Someones replied to my mac mini thread regarding connecting their mac to the same amp I have so may have some success here. I also played around with "output stereo to all speakers" on my amp, it sounded poor compared to xbmc but I could probably get used to it. If my mac mini doesn't work I'll invest in a decent motherboard which outputs stereo to spdif as suggested.

I got XBMC for Mandriva Linux from the MiB repositories, all ready built and installed using the Mandriva's software manager, hastle free. Seems to work well enough and has (so far) been stable (although I've not used it much yet). Might be worth checking out before dismissing Linux XBMC entirely
 

Jez1

Active Member
I've been playing with XBMC on gentoo with no problems at all (on my desktop PC). Looks quite nice, but jury's still out on whether or not it's feasible for basing a HTPC on - when I get my spec sorted out I may give it a go and see how I get on.
 

slowpoke115

Active Member
Cool, well it would be nice to know about stability, try some high def stuff, run top and see how stable it is. I'm not massively keen on a complete os reinstall although the feedback is interesting.
 

conan

Active Member
I'm running XBMC on my main PC atm, getting everything configured ready for migrating to the HTPC. I've had no reliability issues or runtime errors. I'm using version 9.04. Can't help with the sound though, as I only have 2.1 on my PC. I did have some errors in the earlier Babylon version, but all is good with 9.04.

/edit...Forgot to say, the PC is running Vista 64 Ultimate.
 

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