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Mac Mini Home Theater

Making the Mac Mini the Centerpiece of your Home Theater

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Snow Leopard Plex compatibility
Snow Leopard Plex compatibility

Ready to upgrade your Mac Mini Home Theater to latest operating system offering from Apple? Might want to hold of 10.6 Snow Leopard upgrade for just a bit. It appears that there is an issue with Plex and the Apple Remote where any button presses while in Plex continue on to the operating systems’ default behavior. What exactly does this mean? Pressing the Menu button will take you out of Plex and launch Apple’s Front Row application. Additionally, the “up/down” buttons will change the system volume. I’ve been able to verify this on my own system, and I would advise holding off on upgrading until this has been fixed.

The Plex developers are aware of this issue and have even started a Snow Leopard forum so you can submit additional issues or monitor the status of the fixes.

http://forums.plexapp.com/index.php?showforum=44

You’ve gone through the effort of ripping all your CDs and DVDs, you’ve hooked up the Mac to your TV and Receiver, but how do you plan to control the computer now that you’re sitting on your couch?  Below are a few different suggestions for how to control your Mac Mini HTPC (home theater PC).  The “best” option really depends on your needs, but I’ll try to help guide you through the options.

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Screenshot of Adam Carolla Plex Plugin

Screenshot of Adam Carolla Plex Plugin

Plex just continues to get better as more and more developers write apps and plugins to integrate with Plex. A relatively recent addition is a plugin for the Adam Carolla Podcast. For those not familiar with Adam Carolla, he is a longtime radio personality who got his start working the Jimmy Kimmel on KROQ’s morning radio show. He spent some 10 years with Dr. Drew on Love Lines and has had success on Comedy Central with The Man Show and Crank Yankers. After a recent retooling of an FM talk station, Carolla is now sharing his wisdom with a self-funded podcast. The content definitely earns an “M” for mature, but Carolla really shines in his self proclaimed “long format” interviews with an impressive batch of guests.

I typically listen to the Podcast in my car during my commute, but this Plex plugin makes it even easier to pull up the latest episodes of the Adam Carolla Podcast so you can broadcast it through your entire house.  Fans of the show as well as anyone interested in some fresh comedic anecdotes should definitely check this out.

Media Center Face OffPerhaps the most important aspect of a Mac Mini Home Theater is the actual software you use to view your media.  The ease of use, stability, and flexibility of the software program is ultimately going to determine if the Mac is a viable solution for you to use on a regular basis.  In this article, I primarily weight the pros and cons of three apps which evolved from the Xbox Media Center Project as well as Apple’s own Front Row application.  Find out which is my favorite after the break…

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