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Where is the remote to control PC server?

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I have been reading posts at stereophile, audiogon and now at this site. Somehow, everybody is talking about everything related to computer based music server but nobody pays much attention to remote/control/touch screen…etc to control that computer based music server.


I am sorry in advance if I have overlooked such posts/solutions or may be it’s only me alone who is faced with such problem.


I bought and returned Sonos because of its sound quality and inability to do anything except 44.1k, nevertheless, 3.5” non-touch screen on the russian tank remote was inadequate. I think Squeezebox duet small screen is really a joke. Yes! itouch/iphone as remote with touch screen is great but there is no horizontal mode thus the effective screen is again small. Some of my songs with long names were difficult to find. Also you have to use itune with them.


I am really frustrated that I am unable to find a good size screen remote for computer based music server. Many times I was tempted to build a silent computer based music server but then I stopped because I have not still forgotten the frustration of using a laptop as music server with no adequate remote. I used to do the remote desktop with another laptop, but what the heck. It always gets disconnected after a period of non activity and then who wants to enjoy the music with a PC on lap.


Please all! Help me find a smart solution to remotely control computer based music server. Ideally, I am looking for a solution that has big (bigger than 3.5”) touch screen and no fan.




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I also would like to hear what other people are using also. I understand that Mediamonkey has imonkey which allows itouch to control mediamonkey remotely but I heard it is not so good. J River Music jukebox program also has iphone/itouch remote application from what I heard but have not seen it.


Personally I just have my big monitor next to my couch (25 inch) using 10m run of HDMI cable from my computer which is behind my stereo and wireless mouse and keyboard for control. I was tempted to get touch screen monitor but I don't think USB cable can run more than 4M or something like that. A wireless computer touchscreen monitor would be nice (like Sooloos) but does such things exist?



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One solution (not a cheep one!) is to buy the Slim Devices Transporter. The plus side of the Transporter is that you can use any networked computer as the server, and control it with the Transporter remote. The screen on the transporter is large and bright and can be configured many ways. I totally agree with you on the need for a remote. Controlling the music via a laptop is a pain, and it also ties up the laptop! With the Transporter the software runs in the background and uses very little in the way of resources. If you have the desktop on all day anyway why not put it to use as a server? I am using an old Pentium 4 - 2.7ghz, 512 meg of ram with 1TB external USB drive attached. The sound is great and there is plenty of bandwidth via a draft N router. We frequently have a wireless laptop, PS3 and the Transporter all using wireless bandwidth without a problem. I think if you add up all the stuff you are going to need to get a PC to work as a dedicated music server you are going to be looking at some coin. You have to look at the cost of the server as well as the DAC and the cables, and you have to take into account that the computer will be used for only for one purpose. Then you have to deal with getting the digital audio from the PC/laptop to the DAC and all the issues with jitter, cable length etc. The WIFI solves that problem. No need to worry about the clock and what side of the data stream it comes from (with WIFI the data is reclocked on the receiving end).


I hope that helps some!



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This is from a post I started last week re : Airport Express


"An old, small, inexpensive laptop using Remote Desktop Allows me to control my PC located elsewhere. "


I suspect a netbook (new cost about $300.00) would also work, although screen size becomes problematic in my opinion. Having to scroll its screen might also be an issue if you use a large screen for the "server".


The laptop thus becomes a large remote control with the added bonus of access to the internet, other apps, etc, as desired.


It is not app specific and will work for MACS and PC's.


Server noises are now out of the room. The remote control PC can be used for other stuff and is not even necessary to make the music system work (create your playlist on the Server and hit play) but is an add on for your convenience only.


I have gotten a MAC to control a PC, although there were some screen resolution issues (not unworkable though).


I have not looked at controlling a MAC with a PC but presume it is doable. I am virtually certain a MAC can control a MAC







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Thanks to all for your responses. However, as I wrote that using laptop as remote is not an acceptable solution at least in my case. Some UMPC could qualify with remote desktop but no direct control of server.


I waited for some time to post these comments but I believe either we really don’t have a fine solution or people who have the solution are enjoying their music heaven instead of spending their time on internet.



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and the wonderful iPeng app (identical to Apple's Remote app). Best remote solution out there! And as Eric said, it defies a lot of the jitter problems by being far away from the pc clock. I get tremendous sound via on-the-fly transcoding, either via Wavpack (24/96) to PCM, or FLAC 916/44) to PCM. These two formats are sued cuz currently Squeeze Center V7.4 (best sounding of the versions IMO, due to the newer PCM handling) has a hirez FLAC on-the-fly transcoding issue so for those files i use Wavpack. You could always just decode at the player (less network overhead) but I think it sounds better sending PCM.


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just saw your post.


have a look at jaadu vnc or jaadu remote for ipod / iphone. it works great! it has horizontal mode, 3 finger captions, etc. you can use any media player you like on your computer (i use MM and cplay with cmp) and if you set it up right, its better than a netbook for remote.




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Agree - nothing beats Remote for the iTouch/iPhone. Simply awesome.


iMonkey if you have MediaMonkey - not quite so easy to use and limited functionality, but it still works if you like to use playlists.


HTPC: AMD Athlon 4850e, 4GB, Vista, BD/HD-DVD into -> ADM9.1

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  • 3 weeks later...

I understand that laptops don't seem to be an option here, but what about tablet PCs? or EeeTops?

The new Asus T91 could be particularly interesting.

You can obviously control any other PC/Server, but, with the good software, you can use it as a universal remote control.

And you would have a large touchscreen remote !

I'm actually planning to do such a thing in the months to come.


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I have been using a remotedesktop laptop to my PC server (running MediaMonkey). A little sluggish but workable - lots of scrolling as my server has a high rez screen and the laptop does not.


As cool as this gadget would be, I don't see that it would work in that scenario (at least one would not get the cool screen touch functionality) with regard to the server.


Do you agree?


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I can only agree to that


But since you don't need to have your high rez screen on while you're running MediaMonkey, you can change in 2 clics the resolution to match your laptop's.


Another possibility: you can use Squeezecenter and put Softsqueeze on your server. this way you have the interface on your laptop on the music goes out from the server.


There might be quite a number of players which have a web interface, in which case there would be no resolution issues.


I haven't looked at it, but I'm also pretty sure that there would be a way to launch one these players at a predetermined screen resolution to match your laptop's.


Finally, and this is quite advanced, it is possible to run scripts which allow to run and control pretty much any software on a server (like MediaMonkey) remotely and send information to the laptop). This is what is used with Creston or AMX products.


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remote controls for their hdd systems, and it is too often overlooked. Also too often, someone will say get an ipod of some kind...getting a bit bored of hearing that one.


Its so overlooked, in fact, that friends with traditional systems have seen all the hassle ive gone to and look at me was if ive grown a second head when i say i want a remote solution. But i think, well, people with traditional CD, amp and speakers setups have them, so why shouldnt i? i dont even want it to do more than you'd expect - volume, stop, play, pause, skip...If it could make playlists etc then that'd be a bonus, but far from essential as theres always a keyboard way of doing that.


Going back to my original point tho, i dont want one with a big screen i have to be an octopus to operate. So, on the poor choices available, ill end up with the SB Duet as it has a little enough screen, or something like media centre or front row and the tv will be my interface.


anyway, all that was a bit of a rant, sorry about that. And i hope i didnt offend any apple-ites as it wasnt my intention, as you can probably see from my reference to front row.


Just wanted to show a bit of solidarity with the OP, even tho we both want slightly different things.


Panasonic PXP 42 V20; Panasonic DMP BD35; Sky+ HD Box. [br]Optical out from Asus P7H55-M into AVI ADM 9.1 speakers. [br]\"Music will provide the light you cannot resist\"[br]

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