I’d be very grateful if anyone could please advise me on the following points.
My wife and I are getting-on in years. We used to have our media on the PC and just connect it to the TV by hdmi to watch anything, but now we have films/vids/photos/home-movies etc on one 2TB WD Passport external drive, and music/audio on another.
Our Sony Bravia recognises these fine via USB, and fills the screen with a video wall that we just scroll through to select for playing.
It takes 15 mins to scan/index the content before we can scroll/select, which was ok at first but gets annoying after a while. I think a WDTV can do something useful here, though youngsters in the family say I *should* make a streaming network instead so we could play content all over the house on other devices, access our photos via internet when visiting friends, and more.
All of this is brilliant of course, but in truth would probably be rarely used if at all. Plus I don’t relish needing to connect things to the internet, register them with each other, set up accounts and permissions, set up “saves” and groups, passwords etc, then have to deal with all of that when something goes wrong!
So I THINK I can do what I want simply and without streaming, just using a WDTV as a pass-through device for the two WD drives … couple of cables, job done.
My understanding is not much above zero however and I’d like to find answers to a few questions that I expect are actually embarrassingly basic. If anyone more expert can assist with these it would be such a help!
- Can WDTV actually be used on just this pass-through basis?
- Does WDTV take a time to index HD content (like our TV) or is it quick/instant (like the PC)?
- Does WDTV have to build an index every time it is switched on, or does it remember?
- Does media have to be named a certain way to be *seen*? Our films are just named the film’s title inside a Genre folder (eg “Comedy”), and music is the track-name inside an album-name folder inside an artist-name folder.
- Does WDTV work better if media content is organised a certain way? I have read that some other media players need everything in its own folder … it would be a mammoth task for me to have to put everything in to individual folders!
- How does WDTV display content, is it searchable, and is it in folders/groups or just an alpha-num list? I ask this because our TV simply reads all the folders and displays total content without indicating these layers. This produces a single looooong list in groups but with no separation, which isn’t too bad for films but needs quite a search if wanting a single track off one album from one artist. PC’s folder-tree is MUCH easier to navigate for this.
- I’ve read comments about a library with cover-art etc, but think this requires something external installed. Is this correct? Either way, we’re happy with just a simple folder structure you can drill-down through to quickly select what we want. A library with cover art etc would be nice however if not a problem to set up. If that is something external, which one is most people’s favourite? And is any renaming of files involved?
- I read WDTV automatically searches for the internet as part of being switched on. As the PC could probably then be made to pick it up on a home network, would I be able to add and delete content/downloads wirelessly that way instead of re-connecting the external drive to the PC and adding/deleting/drag-and-drop?
These seem to be things a user would know but are too fundamental to appear on forums where people are wanting tech info for problems etc. It would be useful to know these basic things however, and thanks if you can help with any or offer other tips or thoughts I wouldn’t even think of anyway.