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# 250906 30-May-2019 21:47
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Any one in this forum using Mac Mini as a media player? What are the pros/cons over Nvidia Shield or Vero 4K+


Thx in advance.

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Uber Geek
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  # 2248837 31-May-2019 07:10
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Yep. 2014 Mac mini, recently upgraded with an SSD (amazing performance increase, faster than new).
It’s my primary computer, used for web browsing, Netflix, torrents etc. Works well.
One ongoing problem that I recently resolved was the mini not detecting the tv, or using the wrong resolution. Resolved by bypassing my receiver for video, Mac mini now connects directly to the tv via hdmi. Audio goes from Mac mini to receiver via optical spdif. Works very well.
Couple of big USB drives, one for media and the other backs up the internal ssd and the media drive.
Runs Mohave in dark mode. IINA is my media player of choice.


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  # 2248859 31-May-2019 08:49
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I used a 2011 Mac Mini for years as a media centre. Worked well but with ATV 4 and Shield’s there are much better alternatives now. I still have my Mac Mini under the TV but it’s just a Plex Server these days.


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  # 2248943 31-May-2019 09:44
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We used to run two Mac Minis as media servers, one per TV; as per the previous poster, they were fantastic in their day... but that day has well and truly past (for most people and for most purposes, he hastily adds!).


A key advantage at the time was the (relative) ease of fitting into a HT system - built-in IR, so it could be easily controlled by a Harmony remote; they also ran Kodi (sorry XBMC at that time) pretty well. That said, there were hassles with the Mini not going into stand-by (so wasting lots of power), there could be tricky issues with the sound output, plus using a computer (even when just sorting stuff) via a TV is a dog...


Over time we found fewer and fewer reasons to use them, ultimately replacing them both with Amazon Fire TVs


I think unless there is a strong rationale as to why you need a computer connected to the TV (and that you can't connect a laptop for the times that you need this) then you'll probably find a dedicated media box a better option - - one box that provides access to a wide variety of sources, (comparatively) cheap, low power usage, decent and consistent interface, and none of the hassles of managing and using a full computer...  



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Ultimate Geek
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  # 2249046 31-May-2019 11:51
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Agree with the above comments, my 2009 Mac Mini is very close to EOL. It's basically just a file server now, not used for displaying content on the TV much at all anymore. The last uses for it were doing web-based video playback - Sky-Go for eg, but that has been replaced with the very good Kodi add-in. In saying that I did try to use it on the weekend for doing a photo slide-show out of Photos, but the old girl (the mac, not me) couldn't cope rendering the images.


I can see it is going to be shortly replaced by a NAS, and just using in-built TV apps, RPi's for Kodi, and Chromecasts for other stuff. I'm not all in on 4K yet so that isn't too much of requirement just yet.

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  # 2249318 31-May-2019 19:33
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I have a MacMini that is connected to my TV as a media server (Plex).


The SSD and maxed out RAM make it nice and easy to drive, plus it can be controlled by my Harmony remote and the Apple keyboard/mouse combo in a third party holder arrangement makes things nice and compact.




HOWEVER, I will replace it with a NAS at some point to serve my Plex files.


Then the MacMini will be retired for its original purpose - a high end music playback device...


I have used Audiovarna on it in the past - it did sound good, but ultimately I know it will still be a mid-term solution as I will no doubt end up moving towards a full time Roon based fix via a NAS.

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  # 2251587 4-Jun-2019 21:27
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Thank for all the useful comments on using MacMini as a media player I think I will be looking at 


b) Nvidia Shield
c) Vero 4K+ ( Is there a NZ supplier for Vero 4K+ ? )

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