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  1. Member
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    Apr 2008
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    United States
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    I watch dvd's rather than live tv almost exclusivly through a stand alone player hooked to a receiver hooked to a tv. Very heavy use.

    I've been through 1/2 a dozen dvd players, their usability ranging from 1 month to 2 years after which the dvd's will
    start freezing & skipping ahead with increasing frequency (yes, I've tried cleaning).

    I'm think of skipping the stand alone players & getting an inexpensive laptop with dvd player & hook it up.

    Any ideas/suggestions or is there a better way?
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  2. Member
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    Jun 2012
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    I hate to say it, but I think you'll kill the drives in the laptops just as fast.

    Do you have some DVDs you watch more than others? Maybe you can rip those and play them through a media player. That could extend the life of the DVD players (less use).
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  3. Member netmask56's Avatar
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    Sep 2005
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    Sydney, Australia
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    Get a media player and hdd storage and rip your discs to MKV using MakeMKV or similar. Doesn't re-encode or compress. I use the Popcorn A-500 which also plays H265 encoded files. Haven't used my BD player for years.
    BeyonWiz T3 PVR ~ Popcorn A-500 ~ Samsung ES8000 65" LED TV ~ Windows 7 64bit ~ Yamaha RX-A1070 ~ QnapTS851-4G
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  4. Mr. Computer Geek dannyboy48888's Avatar
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    May 2007
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    Texas, USA
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    If you are only watching optical media a standalone in the long run would be cheaper as even with a HTPC the drive do fail and can cost as much (or more) than just replacing a stand alone player.
    if all else fails read the manual
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  5. Member
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    thanks for the responses.

    the media player idea seeems like an interesting solution.

    I checked out reviews of the popcorn 500. so will that play ripped dvds on a hard drive ( .VOB files)? I didn't see them mentioned in the review.
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  6. Member hech54's Avatar
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    Yank in Europe
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    Originally Posted by dblake2 View Post
    thanks for the responses.

    the media player idea seeems like an interesting solution.

    I checked out reviews of the popcorn 500. so will that play ripped dvds on a hard drive ( .VOB files)? I didn't see them mentioned in the review.
    It (wisely) says it plays the "VOB TS".....not individual VOB files. The VOB TS is the brain of the DVD.
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  7. Member netmask56's Avatar
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    Sep 2005
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    I ripped all my DVD's and Blu ray to mkv using Makemkv - no compression or processing. A few I did compress using VidCoder, mainly older stuff that we don't watch often but it's there on our NAS. It does play DVD rips and ISO's So far I haven't found anything it doesn't play. It doesn't do VP9 encoded discs, I believe the decision was the processor could do either H265 or VP9 but not both, but I'm not sure of the veracity of that..
    BeyonWiz T3 PVR ~ Popcorn A-500 ~ Samsung ES8000 65" LED TV ~ Windows 7 64bit ~ Yamaha RX-A1070 ~ QnapTS851-4G
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  8. Member
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    I'm strongly leaning towards the popcorn..

    Do you know the largest hard drive size it will handle?
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  9. Member netmask56's Avatar
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    Internal I think 8TB but it works really well on network so you are not limited - I have about 25 TB connected via my NAS.
    I don't have an internal disk in it for storage just a 32GB memory card to hold the operating system and the data details of the films. Check out the web site for all the details. I need subtitles because of age related hearing loss and it will download subs for any films you have if you don't already have them. The forum is useful as well.

    http://www.networkedmediatank.com/showthread.php?tid=73720&pid=676692#pid676692
    Last edited by netmask56; 29th Nov 2016 at 18:21.
    BeyonWiz T3 PVR ~ Popcorn A-500 ~ Samsung ES8000 65" LED TV ~ Windows 7 64bit ~ Yamaha RX-A1070 ~ QnapTS851-4G
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  10. Member
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    Not specific to the A-500, but I've found that any device that can handle >2TB drives will also recognize 8TB drives. I believe it's the GPT file system that tripped up earlier devices.
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