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Permalink to this day Tuesday, January 11, 2005

So it looks like Apple did not announce a competitor to Tivo/Media Center today.

Though Ming thinks, this will be the future platform for Apple's own media center. Could it be? Putting aside the fact that it lacks the necessary inputs or outputs like component out, s-video out, coax in/out, IR in/out, digital audio in/out, CableCard,... Not to mention it doesn't have enough hard drive space or expansion capabilities or video card RAM. Would it be possible for Apple to redefine the size and shape of a living room audio/video device? I would be VERY surprised. Why? Because to do so they would need to cram an incredibly large amount of inputs/ouputs into a small box with not only a lot of horsepower, but a lot of memory and a lot of hard drive space (because this box is going to need to do HDTV remember). And not only will it have to cram all that in but it is going to have to keep it cool and silent. No small task for a box that's 6.5"x6.5"x2.

And I really don't understand why they don't have digital audio out, especially considering they have DVI out. And doesn't the Airport express have digital audio out?

Update: There is some blogosphere talk about using Mac Mini as a living room PC. While it can be hooked up to high end TVs via DVI, I don't think this will emerge as a living room PC because it lacks digital audio out which if you own a TV that connects via vga/DVI then you very likely have a surround sound speaker system, and there is no way you're going to downgrade from a surround system DVD experience to 2 channel.

Update 2: In my comments Dustin points to a $100 device for digital audio. Yeah that's my point. To turn this into a MCE like box you're going to have to attach a lot of different periphrals and it won't look so cool anymore.

Update 3: From on high weblog:

Dell, Compaq, and Gateway have been selling - online, direct from the manufacturer, computers with mouse and keyboard AND often free shipping for $399 or less for two years now.

Click through and he details some of the sub $500 systems that you can buy, some even come with LCDs!
2:07:26 PM  Permalink to this item []

© Copyright 2005 Matt Goyer.
I work at Microsoft in the eHome division on the Windows XP Media Center Edition team as a Program Manager.

Disclaimer: The posts on this weblog are provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confer no rights. The opinions expressed herein are my own personal opinions and do not represent my employer's view in any way.

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Updated: 4/11/2005; 10:31:30 PM.