Even though most media can be easily accessed over the Internet, a computer can be fully turned into a media station, completely replacing TV and radio. This becomes possible with specialized applications such as
. It is an application that promises to deliver any media in high-quality, with an abundance of controls.
Installing and configuring Media Portal is not for everyone. You can go through a basic setup process where settings are automatically configured, or you can opt for advanced options that let you select services and elements you wish to deploy on your system.
Before actually taking advantage of what the application has to offer, it is best to take your time and carefully configure directories for available categories, so you don’t end up lost when the interface is brought up.
In terms of visuals, MediaPortal shines, putting a highly detailed interface at your disposal, called Titan. The interface can also be customized, selecting the display type for categories, as well as handling background images and items to appear in the main menu.
By default, you gain access to TV, videos, music, pictures and radio. All of them can be carefully configured and provide flawless navigation and rendering. In order for this to be possible, you need a solid configuration, as it might tend to eat up a noticeable amount of your system’s resources.
You can also navigate through the application’s menus with the help of a remote control. You can adjust settings from the configuration window, with Microsoft MCE, general HID, Sceneo, FireDTV, X10, Hauppauge and IRTrans being the available options.
All in all, MediaPortal is a powerful suite of multimedia tools, specially designed to provide comfort and an enhanced visual experience. The design gives the impression of an easy to use application, which it is, but only if it is carefully configured so that all available features go hand in hand. It’s definitely worth a try if your computer is mostly used for entertainment purposes.