Friday 30 September 2016

The Scourge of the Freeloader

I'm a Kodi user. I'm starting to feel dirty.

Kodi is being tarnished. Eteknix today reported on an 'epidemic' that's becoming the 'scourge of the audiovisual industry'. In that article, a spokesperson for the UK governments intellectual property office is quoted as saying;
'We are aware that set-top boxes, while perfectly legal in their own right, are frequently adapted by criminals to illegally receive TV channels protected by intellectual property rights'
These boxes are everywhere. My facebook feed is filled with sponsored posts promoting their merits. Even Amazon has a slew of 'fully loaded' android boxes at ridiculous prices.

Saturday 24 September 2016

Bi-Amping with Marantz NR-1506

Over the past 18 months, a secondary system has been evolving in our family room. We don't always feel like firing up the Home Theatre, especially during the summer, or for sports where the projector is not as good as an actual TV.

I have an old 40" Sony Bravia HDTV in there, along with a pair of B&W CDM-1NT speakers and a REL Q200E subwoofer.

We only use stereo in this room, with the system used about equally 1/3 TV watching, 1/3 movies and 1/3 music listening. Sources are a Gigabyte Brix HTPC running Kodi and used occasionally for Netflix as well as an eir Vision IPTV box (this is part of our home phone/broadband package from eir and is essentially a belt & braces second TV source just in case anything goes wrong with whole house TV via TVHeadend and Kodi).

The first million is the hardest

So, after 4 years, 72 posts and 88,069 page views, this blog is about to pay dividends. I'm about to click over to €70 in Adsense earnings. This is the earning threshold at which they send on the cash so I'm about to get my first payment. Yay! Wonder what I'll blow it on?

I obviously don't maintain this blog for the riches and fame!

However, I'm keenly aware that I have hardly been maintaining it at all of late. This is largely due to the fact that MediaServer8 has been so stable and reliable recently. unRAID and all the plugins and dockers I use to run whole house storage and a/v have been ticking along quite nicely, thank you very much so I haven't had very much to write about on that front.

However, there are a few projects in progress and on the horizon that  are related and might be interesting. I've set up a secondary a/v system in our family room in anticipation of a pending Xbox One S acquisition and have installed a new A/V receiver there. I'm also updating the main home theatre with ceiling speakers to enable DTS-X and Atmos height channels. I'll also be replacing my X10 lighting control system with Z-Wave in the near future. Plus, unRaid 6.2 is out!

A lot of these projects are not directly related to home server, storage, NAS and virtualisation which have been the main topics of this blog for the past 4 years. However, they will all one way or the other tie into some back-end systems so I'm going to expand the subject matter beyond just MediaServer and start documenting wider a/v projects and the like.

Here's to the next €70!!!