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Hi,

 

If different media players don't sound different in your system, you best move to the next thread ;-) If you search back you'll see I've experimented with every PC player I can get my hands on. Recently I came across reference to MediaPortal here:

 

http://www.diyaudio.com/forums/digital-source/166153-do-audiophiles-want-stand-alone-high-end-hdd-source-10.html

 

In the thread Thorsten Loesch (well known and respected in DIY circles and a director and the designer behind AMR - Abbingdon Music Research) had this to say - with reference to MediaPortal vs CPlay +CMP "In my system and setup the differences between the two are below what I can easily perceive".

 

High praise indeed and so worth a try I thought.

 

I've found MediaPortal (using ASIO) the most natural and lifelike player to date. For me it is quite a step up from JRMC & Asio (but then I can't convince Wasapi Exclusive to reliably play on my set up).

 

Unlike most of the serious Audiophile players (but like JRMC) it has a really good user interface, and particularly a remote control and screen (I like the Fidelity Skin).

 

It is the only player that has repeatedly satisfied me that USB results can be as good as my transport direct.

 

Do note MediaPortal is very fussy about the Tags (especially having album/artist set up).

 

Oh, and it is free!

 

Perhaps not all systems react the same way and tastes are different but this is another player that I think deserves some profile here. I'm really surprised it hasn't been discussed here before. I'd be interested to learn of others experience with MediaPortal.

 

best

 

Murray

 

 

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I've used MediaPortal on and off for about 3 years. Its biggest advantage is its flexibility. You can configure just about everything in it. Its flexibility is also its biggest disadvantage. Because its so configurable, you can easily get lost in it. The documentation isn't the best which increases the difficulty in setting it up and using it. About the best place for information is the user forum; however, its huge so be prepared for many hours of searching and reading (and frustration).

 

So why do I use it? Its the app that best meets my need. I've tried just about every media center type app in existence for the past 3 years, trying to find the perfect fit. In January, I once again set out to find the perfect app. I created a list of requirements and searched the net for apps to meet my needs. I evaluated different apps and came (once again) to the same conclusion.... MediaPortal.

 

 

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Hi Alan,

 

yes it has VST capability loaded with the PureAudio plugin. I tried it early on - the set up was a bit clunky but seemed to work. I've been so enamored with the native sound though I haven't gone back to RC yet.

 

MediaPortal is a bit of a challenge to get going or even to find the bits - here's some links. First if you haven't already got it download and install ASIO4all:

 

http://www.asio4all.com/

 

For MediaPortal I recommend going straight to the latest (beta maybe)release:

 

latest version: at bottom of this page at this link

 

http://www.team-mediaportal.com/news/global/mediaportal_1.1.0_rc3_released!.html

 

Use the matching (latest) Pureaudio plugin here:

 

http://forum.team-mediaportal.com/asio-music-player-245/download-latest-version-pureaudio-plugin-54880/

 

Some hints - when installing you are asked if you want to use it to watch TV - be sure to say "No". Also there is an "advanced" option - accept this or half the settings you need are hidden.

 

Otherwise it is a pretty standard beast to battle through though to be useable your music library needs to be properly tagged. I use flacs, I guess it works with wav too but I'm not sure how it would like the lack of tags in wav files.

 

I like this skin:

 

http://www.team-mediaportal.com/files/Download/Skins/16:9/Fidelity/

 

Here's a couple of guides to get it in and setting up for music

 

http://forum.team-mediaportal.com/newcomers-forum-240/mediaportal-install-guide-49685/

 

http://forum.team-mediaportal.com/listen-music-99/guide-music-section-mediaportal-77404/

 

Honestly, as the retentive around here will know, I have been trying to get really good sound from my set up for a long time. I've suggested another lesser known player in the past too. But I have to admit MediaPortal has taken me past this. I just enjoy the music now and I'm no longer eternally searching for something better (- a sign I think that things are not working as well as they could). Who knows, JRMC may sound as good now, but it certainly didn't come close in my set up a few weeks ago when I compared them. Cplay and XXHighEnd did, but their interfaces are totally archaic and unusable for me practically.

 

MediaPortal has a very similar interface to JRMC Theater View, c/w remote control etc.

 

To top it off it is free. I must admit I'm surprised my post didn't trigger any other discussion. This site is all about audiophilia, people seem happy to discuss cables and dacs, but the choice of player has easily as big effect - at least in my set up. Hello out here ....??

 

Anyway - enough rave - good luck to any who try it,

 

best

 

Murray

 

 

 

 

 

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Thanks Darth.

 

As a matter of interest I installed MediaPortal (using the links in the post above)on a friend's very different (relatively low cost) system last night. Prior he was running Windows Media Player. We were both quite stunned how much better his system sounded on MediaPortal. It was like he stepped up to a hi-end DAC. Seriously. He is hugely happy.

 

BTW I have JRMC 15 loaded here (ASIO) and MediaPortal still comes out well on top for me, though nothing like the step up from Windows Media Player we saw on my friend's system.

 

No I'm not a shill (sp? .....US term?, I'm from down-under). I'm just trying to raise awareness of a great program. Give it a go!

 

best

 

Murray

 

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Hi,

 

I´m quite familiar with MP, using it for years on my HTPC. I´ve recently build a dedicated cMP² audio PC for my HQ recordings and of course i´ve tested them against each other.

 

The reason for me building a cMP² PC was that i´ve compared cplay vs. my MP HTPC with an old computer before and found it superior, even i didn´t apply all recommended tweaks back then. I also compared jrmc and foobar against mediaportal and preferred mediaportal over them.

 

Now i´ve build a cMP² system following cics guideline and using the recommended hardware, all bios tweaks applied, all os tweaks apllied and one thing is for sure and very obvious : cmP² beats the hell out of mediaportal. There´s just more auditioned quality, more perceived weight of the instruments, more analog like sound.

 

For radio, last fm, lower quality recordings, ( hd ) concerts, and all the other media stuff i use Mediaportal of course, it´s a no brainer. It just didn´t felt well playing my quality recordings in Mediaportal knowing that there are to much devices and services running wich do affect soundquality. At least in my setup.

 

Mediaportal is a stunning front end and hard to beat with it´s functionality. I can recommend it to everyone.

 

 

Regards

Ramón

 

 

 

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