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Can this work as an inexpensive HTPC ?

Started by MonEl, March 11, 2013, 12:08:28 pm

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MonEl

I just ordered my Cubieboard yesterday from AliExpress in China I don't expect it for many weeks.  I used a limited Visa card number generated for protection. I ordered the option with the extras like power cord, cables, USB wireless, case, ect. My plan is to use it connected to my HD TV as a cheap Home Theater PC.  Do you think I'll be able to watch Amazon Prime videos from it  too through my home network and wireless router ?  I do that with my desktop and other HTPC now.  I have a Amazon Prime membership so that would be nice. I also hope to connect through Wi-fi to my Desktop PC to watch movies stored there.  Can I also play my music from the desktop to my sound system by the Cubie ?  I have the MP3s and most movies stored on the main desktop PC hard drive.  I plan to install Ubuntu and some Home theater application on the cubie if possible.  I decided the cubie had more features than the Rasberry Phi. Hope I made the right choice.

Even though I don't expect it to arrive for weeks, I'm preparing in advance :^D.  Oh and I'm not a kid I'm a retired programer analyst.

Thanks !

lawrence

March 14, 2013, 02:01:46 pm #1 Last Edit: March 14, 2013, 02:30:49 pm by lawrence
Honestly - not really.

The Android side might be doable, but the linux side is not there yet due to drivers.
There is work in that area, but its not ready for mass use yet.

Android is stuck on 4.1 for now due to the binary only drivers for the video side (4.2 needs recompiled drivers, and All-winner needs to provide (or poke ARM a few times for them to update and re-provide to them).

Its a developer board.  Its good, but its not quite at the readiness that you may expect from others. That said, it probably will get there in the next 6 months, as things move fast, and the community *is* growing rapidly. 

If you know linux you'll have a better time of it, as lots of stuff is possible, but someone needs to port / compile etc to the platform.  Its not too hard, but most people are doing their own things for their own requirements, as hey, its their own time involved :)

So, go for it, and have fun, but don't expect everything to be ready to roll yet.  If you enjoy tinkering and learning, its going to be an enjoyable process.
If you want everything on a plate,.... wait a while.

[edited to fix typo inflicted by autocoWRONG]

MonEl

Thank you for that info, Lawrence.  I appreciate you taking the time to reply.

lawrence

Should re-answer -

Right now - music yes.
Video. some, but not 100% yet.

MonEl

Followup: Well I flashed the Cubie with the Android image that had XBMC pre-installed.  I found it here: http://cubieboard.org/download/.  I can pull in music and video from the HD on a windows PC on the same wireless network.  I can connect to the internet, but I can not view Youtube videos.  Also, I can not view Amazon Prime Videos.  I understand that Amazon Prime Video does not yet work with android.  Hopefully when Amazon does allow that, if ever, I can access my Amazon Prime Videos through the cubie.  I am impressed with the nice image the cubie gives me on my 50 inch 720dpi flat screen.  And the sound for my music is pretty decent too.   Lawrence was right on the mark when he said it will work with music and some video in his post above.