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iMac 24", how is it as an htpc

Home Theatre Systems

anm

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Sep 6, 2008
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Hi
How good is apple iMac when it comes to music listening/ htpc etc? To me it seems to be a work of art, and something really cool and great looking. Though it is on highly expensive side. I am getting a deal for 54k. Is it worth it?

regards
 

aneelr

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Sep 9, 2009
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Location
bangalore
Hi
How good is apple iMac when it comes to music listening/ htpc etc? To me it seems to be a work of art, and something really cool and great looking. Though it is on highly expensive side. I am getting a deal for 54k. Is it worth it?

regards

Hi,

iMac is surely good in sound, the new Intel iMacs use Intel's 'Azalia' High Definition Audio architecture, but usually the use a chip called "Wolfson". But all in all good sound. .............. and BTW which model are you getting at 54K, can you give the spec. I suggest you go for the 27"(not sure of availability in India). And as usual fantastic and compact design and if you do not want any wires lying around the you can opt for the Apple Wireless keyboard and mouse.

But at the end of the day it is way far costly. I'm also planing to get myself the 27".

cheers
 
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evanoruvan

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Joined
Oct 4, 2009
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Location
Bangalore
I have been using my iMac 20inch as a HTPC for over two years now.

My current setup is:
Audio Paths:
Media Room:
iMac (iTunes/sBooth Play) - CA DACMagic (via USB) - CA 650A - Mordaunt Short Aviano 8

Living Room:
iMac(iTunes) - Airport Express - Sony HiFi All in One. This one is for my family (mostly dual played along with my main setup).

Video Path
I am yet to find a video streamer which fits my needs (still holding out for the next Apple TV!). Hence the iMac is directly connected to my TV via a long cable. The TV is my secondary display - iMac is able to recognize my Panasonic LCD and is able to drive two independent resolutions.

iMac (Plex) - TV (via a mini dvi/dvi/HDMI path) while the audio is multirouted - front channels to the CA above while the back, center and sub is serviced by an older Sony HT (output taken from the rec out of the CA).

Remote
I use the apple remote and an iPod Touch (Remote, Hippo Remote apps). This is easily the best part of the setup - lets me control everything remotely.

Comments:
This setup works well for me. Plex gives me flexibility which otherwise will be difficult to achieve in a dedicated device like WDTV. Play gives me bit perfect audio output for serious listening. My iTunes is the audio center (use a lot of smart playlists e.g. 4+ star songs by Raveendran not heard (listening is tracked and synced from my iPod as well) in the last one month). One has to spend a little time fiddling with the sound/audio settings esp the audio midi setup and the sampling rate.

The perian codecs add support for the missing video formats. I occasionally use XLD to convert from FLAC to wav for the iTunes import. I use Play for direct FLAC play.

It also helps that the iMac is noiseless.

Overall, this has been a satisfactory setup for me. I may switch to a mac mini or Apple TV when it starts making sense to me (mac mini - less price; Apple TV - 1080p playback + codec extensibility). I admit to being tempted by the new 27 inch quad core LED IPS mac!

Final recommendation - Go for it!
 
Last edited:
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aneelr

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Sep 9, 2009
Messages
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Location
bangalore
I have been using my iMAc 20inch as a HTPC for over two years now.

My current setup is:
Audio Paths:
Media Room:
iMac (iTunes/sBooth Play) - CA DACMagic (via USB) - CA 650A - Mordaunt Short Aviano 8

Living Room:
iMac(iTunes) - Airport Express - Sony HiFi All in One. This one is for my family (mostly dual played along with my main setup).

Video Path
I am yet to find a video streamer which fits my needs (still holding out for the next Apple TV!). Hence the iMac is directly connected to my TV via a long cable. The TV is my secondary display - iMac is able to recognize my Panasonic LCD and is able drive two independent resolutions.

iMac (Plex) - TV (via a mini dvi/dvi/HDMI path) while the audio is multirouted - front channels to the CA above while the back, center and sub is serviced by an older Sony HT (output taken from the rec out of the CA).

Remote
I use the apple remote and an iPod Touch (Remote, Hippo Remote apps). This is easily the best part of the setup - lets me control everything remotely.

Comments:
This setup works well for me. Plex gives me flexibility which otherwise will be difficult to achieve in a dedicated device like WDTV. Play gives me bit perfect audio output for serious listening. My iTunes is the audio center (use a lot of smart playlists e.g. 4+ star songs by Raveendran not heard (listening is tracked and synced from my iPod as well) in the last one month). One has to spend a little time fiddling with the sound/audio settings esp the audio midi setup and the sampling rate.

The perian codecs add support for the missing video formats. I occasionally use XLD to convert from FLAC to wav for the iTunes import. I use Play for direct FLAC play.

It also helps that the iMac is noiseless.

Overall, this has been a satisfactory setup for me. I may switch to a mac mini or Apple TV when it starts making sense to me (mac mini - less price; Apple TV - 1080p playback + codec extensibility). I admit to being tempted by the new 27 inch quad core LED IPS mac!

Final recommendation - Go for it!

Hi,

An impressive setup bro :licklips:.................... may be I will need your help when I setup mine ;)(maybe in Jan'10).


cheers,
thanks.
 

Asit

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Hi anm,

While I do not know how good is an iMac for htpc (should be decent), 54K price for a 24" iMac seems like a great deal. But this 24" iMac is one of the old ones, just discontinued (they used to be 20" and 24"). The newer ones are 21.5" and 27" I think and overall perhaps are quite a bit better than the previous ones. The 21.5" iMac comes at around 65K and with a student ID or even otherwise it's possible to get a discount of at least 10%. Then the 54K price of the old 24" (although a great great deal) comes very close to the new 21.5" iMac. If you are serious, please compare the specifications of both of these and then decide.

Regards.
 
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anm

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24" in consideration is the old 24" discontinued model.
However, I just thought it over and I wonder what quality of HTPC can I build with that kind of money? And it seems I can build much better.
Anyone having experience with Hackintosh? Maybe a good hardware and I buy an apple OS for it?
 

mahiruha

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Mar 5, 2009
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Location
kolkata
Hello anm,
since you have already bought a xtreamer why you are looking for a HTPC. In my opinion Laptops are not stable enough source to serve as HTPC. I think to build a full proof HTPC we need to include the bd rom as well which will considerably increase the price. Hence I think it is better to go for oppo BDP 83 which can act as all rounder source.
Thanks.
 
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aakashr

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Joined
Aug 8, 2011
Messages
1,430
Points
83
Location
Pune
I have been using my iMac 20inch as a HTPC for over two years now.

My current setup is:
Audio Paths:
Media Room:
iMac (iTunes/sBooth Play) - CA DACMagic (via USB) - CA 650A - Mordaunt Short Aviano 8

Living Room:
iMac(iTunes) - Airport Express - Sony HiFi All in One. This one is for my family (mostly dual played along with my main setup).

Video Path
I am yet to find a video streamer which fits my needs (still holding out for the next Apple TV!). Hence the iMac is directly connected to my TV via a long cable. The TV is my secondary display - iMac is able to recognize my Panasonic LCD and is able to drive two independent resolutions.

iMac (Plex) - TV (via a mini dvi/dvi/HDMI path) while the audio is multirouted - front channels to the CA above while the back, center and sub is serviced by an older Sony HT (output taken from the rec out of the CA).

Remote
I use the apple remote and an iPod Touch (Remote, Hippo Remote apps). This is easily the best part of the setup - lets me control everything remotely.

Comments:
This setup works well for me. Plex gives me flexibility which otherwise will be difficult to achieve in a dedicated device like WDTV. Play gives me bit perfect audio output for serious listening. My iTunes is the audio center (use a lot of smart playlists e.g. 4+ star songs by Raveendran not heard (listening is tracked and synced from my iPod as well) in the last one month). One has to spend a little time fiddling with the sound/audio settings esp the audio midi setup and the sampling rate.

The perian codecs add support for the missing video formats. I occasionally use XLD to convert from FLAC to wav for the iTunes import. I use Play for direct FLAC play.

It also helps that the iMac is noiseless.

Overall, this has been a satisfactory setup for me. I may switch to a mac mini or Apple TV when it starts making sense to me (mac mini - less price; Apple TV - 1080p playback + codec extensibility). I admit to being tempted by the new 27 inch quad core LED IPS mac!

Final recommendation - Go for it!


Hi, I have a similiar setup on my imac 24 connected to my 50" panasonic plasma. I wanted to check what resolution do you get? By default you get 1920x1080, but have you tried 1080p/24Hz?

Regards
 

hydra

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Jun 23, 2010
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I'm not really familiar with Apple kit, but wouldn't you be better off getting a Mac Mini for HTPC/Music duties?

I think the the current gen Mini is about $570 on Amazon.
 

aakashr

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 8, 2011
Messages
1,430
Points
83
Location
Pune
I have been using my iMac 20inch as a HTPC for over two years now.

My current setup is:
Audio Paths:
Media Room:
iMac (iTunes/sBooth Play) - CA DACMagic (via USB) - CA 650A - Mordaunt Short Aviano 8

Living Room:
iMac(iTunes) - Airport Express - Sony HiFi All in One. This one is for my family (mostly dual played along with my main setup).

Video Path
I am yet to find a video streamer which fits my needs (still holding out for the next Apple TV!). Hence the iMac is directly connected to my TV via a long cable. The TV is my secondary display - iMac is able to recognize my Panasonic LCD and is able to drive two independent resolutions.

iMac (Plex) - TV (via a mini dvi/dvi/HDMI path) while the audio is multirouted - front channels to the CA above while the back, center and sub is serviced by an older Sony HT (output taken from the rec out of the CA).

Remote
I use the apple remote and an iPod Touch (Remote, Hippo Remote apps). This is easily the best part of the setup - lets me control everything remotely.

Comments:
This setup works well for me. Plex gives me flexibility which otherwise will be difficult to achieve in a dedicated device like WDTV. Play gives me bit perfect audio output for serious listening. My iTunes is the audio center (use a lot of smart playlists e.g. 4+ star songs by Raveendran not heard (listening is tracked and synced from my iPod as well) in the last one month). One has to spend a little time fiddling with the sound/audio settings esp the audio midi setup and the sampling rate.

The perian codecs add support for the missing video formats. I occasionally use XLD to convert from FLAC to wav for the iTunes import. I use Play for direct FLAC play.

It also helps that the iMac is noiseless.

Overall, this has been a satisfactory setup for me. I may switch to a mac mini or Apple TV when it starts making sense to me (mac mini - less price; Apple TV - 1080p playback + codec extensibility). I admit to being tempted by the new 27 inch quad core LED IPS mac!

Final recommendation - Go for it!


hi, i also have just recently set up my imac as a HTPC with plex. still trying to figure out the optimal audio settings. I have it hooked up to my denon 1610 receiver via HDMI. what settings do you change in audio midi setup? would also like to know how you have configured plex in audio/video.

Thanks
 

madhavk8

Active Member
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Aug 7, 2011
Messages
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Location
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Samsung 27 LED Full HD Monitor=19k + Assemble a High End PC =25-35k

You can get better functionality, productivity and customization which Mac can never give!! Think for yourself!!
 

freshseasons

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Getting an Mac mini makes more sense.Better get Media player like WD TV /Xtreamer etc
 

aakashr

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Aug 8, 2011
Messages
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Location
Pune
Hi
How good is apple iMac when it comes to music listening/ htpc etc? To me it seems to be a work of art, and something really cool and great looking. Though it is on highly expensive side. I am getting a deal for 54k. Is it worth it?

regards

Hi, just configured my imac 24" as a HTPC with plex.....................its awesome, totally replaces WD TV I was earlier using. Its a pelasure to watch 1080p/24 video on my pan 50" plasma with all audio formats via my denon 1610. Only plex does not support HD audio as yet, but then i dont really care about that right now. Took me a while to set it up but well worth the effort!!!
 

dotMac

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Oct 27, 2009
Messages
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Location
India
If your usage is purely HTPC, Mac may not be the best(or I must say cost effective). You could build HTPC from components or go for prebuilt once like Zotac Zbox or Dell Inspiron Zino HD. If custom hardwares are chosen, you could get better performance/features for the buck. (Though when it comes to aesthetics, I did not yet see any PC case that beat Macs).

If you use any Mac as HTPC you must be aware that you will be sacrificing :
a. HD audio(DTS MA/Dolby TrueHD) bit-streaming.
b. Blu-ray support.
Here is review of Mac mini as HTPC from Anandtech.

However, if you are looking for a computer + HTPC, Macs are great. I do have a Mac Mini as my computer which also happens to be my HTPC. It is hooked to 50" plasma tv as its sole display. I do use Plex as my media organizer which can be completely controlled by Apple remote. It is fine for me as I currently do not have a Bluray collection and I do not have a receiver that decodes DTS MA/Dolby TrueHD. Once I have them, I might be migrating to a custom built windows based PC for HTPC ;)
 
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aakashr

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 8, 2011
Messages
1,430
Points
83
Location
Pune
I have been using my iMac 20inch as a HTPC for over two years now.

My current setup is:
Audio Paths:
Media Room:
iMac (iTunes/sBooth Play) - CA DACMagic (via USB) - CA 650A - Mordaunt Short Aviano 8

Living Room:
iMac(iTunes) - Airport Express - Sony HiFi All in One. This one is for my family (mostly dual played along with my main setup).

Video Path
I am yet to find a video streamer which fits my needs (still holding out for the next Apple TV!). Hence the iMac is directly connected to my TV via a long cable. The TV is my secondary display - iMac is able to recognize my Panasonic LCD and is able to drive two independent resolutions.

iMac (Plex) - TV (via a mini dvi/dvi/HDMI path) while the audio is multirouted - front channels to the CA above while the back, center and sub is serviced by an older Sony HT (output taken from the rec out of the CA).

Remote
I use the apple remote and an iPod Touch (Remote, Hippo Remote apps). This is easily the best part of the setup - lets me control everything remotely.

Comments:
This setup works well for me. Plex gives me flexibility which otherwise will be difficult to achieve in a dedicated device like WDTV. Play gives me bit perfect audio output for serious listening. My iTunes is the audio center (use a lot of smart playlists e.g. 4+ star songs by Raveendran not heard (listening is tracked and synced from my iPod as well) in the last one month). One has to spend a little time fiddling with the sound/audio settings esp the audio midi setup and the sampling rate.

The perian codecs add support for the missing video formats. I occasionally use XLD to convert from FLAC to wav for the iTunes import. I use Play for direct FLAC play.

It also helps that the iMac is noiseless.

Overall, this has been a satisfactory setup for me. I may switch to a mac mini or Apple TV when it starts making sense to me (mac mini - less price; Apple TV - 1080p playback + codec extensibility). I admit to being tempted by the new 27 inch quad core LED IPS mac!

Final recommendation - Go for it!


Great setup...............How about HD audio? Does Plex have any workaround for HD audio? XBMC now has an HD audio patch for windows platform. Strange, plex has not come up with anything.

Also, do mkv video files also carry HD audio? From what I understand mkv does not support HD audio, has that now changed?
 

manniraj

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MKV does support HD audio formats. I have many downloaded as well as blu-ray ripped ones it is just a container so holds the HD audio as well along with the video.

Thanks
 

aakashr

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MKV does support HD audio formats. I have many downloaded as well as blu-ray ripped ones it is just a container so holds the HD audio as well along with the video.

Thanks

Thanks..............is there any way to play HD audio on apple?
 

aakashr

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Aug 8, 2011
Messages
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Location
Pune
I have no idea other FM can chip in with the clarifications..

thanks


did a bit of research.............it seems the hardware is HD audio ready but the OS is not!!! so even though the graphics card on the imac can support HD audio apple needs to update its drivers in the OS. I guess this might be the only area where a windows HTPC might score over an apple HTPC.
 
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