Hardware

Poll Results: Do you use the Microsoft Windows Media Center?

See how your TechRepublic peers answered this question: Do you use the Microsoft Windows Media Center?

On September 2, 2010, I asked the readers of the TechRepublic Microsoft Windows Blog this poll question:

Do you use the Microsoft Windows Media Center?

At the time, I was considering the purchase of a new media PC for my family room. I have had a media PC for years now, but very seldom used the Windows Media Center to display any of the various sources of multimedia I have to choose from. I wondered if I was alone in this shunning of the Media Center software.

Since the date of this poll, I have purchased a small PC from ZOTAC ZBox to fulfill the role of multimedia PC, and I have been pleasantly surprised. Advances in technology, especially when it comes to high-definition graphics chipsets, mean that a very small box can produce a very high-quality output. However, I still don't find myself resorting to the Windows Media Center -- the Windows Desktop seems to work just as well. Judging by the poll results I am not the only one.

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About

Mark W. Kaelin has been writing and editing stories about the IT industry, gadgets, finance, accounting, and tech-life for more than 25 years. Most recently, he has been a regular contributor to BreakingModern.com, aNewDomain.net, and TechRepublic.

26 comments
kssoftware
kssoftware

I've been using it for television recording and video watching for a couple of years. The product is brilliant with the right remote.

xangpow
xangpow

I bought it thinking it sounded cool, never used it. Just became another button for me to accidently push (which I did alot) lol

excelkmc
excelkmc

I have a HP TV tuner and have used MC since introduced for XP with no problems... love the DVR capabilities and all the features that come with it...

alexancun
alexancun

No way Jose!! I has been working with MS products since a long time ago and "IT" never works fully, all the time the $%&$%& window "You need a codec to [see or hear] properly... blah, blah, blah" now I use mostly JetAudio, works fine for me. Ciao

egmccann
egmccann

For general media viewing - no. For TV recording, viewing those (and the occasional Netflix movie, since it's able to be integrated into the interface) - yes. I do have an older system dedicated just to this. I'd use it more if it could work with iTunes.

john3347
john3347

I have never been able to get MCE completely functional on any computer I have ever owned since several years ago when MCE was an add-on to Windows XP Professional. This condition continues through a current installation of Windows 7 Ultimate. I currently find myself unable to get some TV functions working as advertised. (I realize that some TV functions require a TV tuner, which I do not have, but some functions that should not require such also will not function.) For this reason, I have never used Microsoft Windows Media Center.

Mark W. Kaelin
Mark W. Kaelin

The discussion following the poll showed that the people who use the Media Center were very happy with it and the people who didn't use it were dismissive of its benefits. My feelings fall in the middle ? I don't see anything wrong with it, but I don't see any great benefit over a typical Windows Desktop. Of course, I am using a mouse and keyboard. Your thoughts?

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