Need a 2nd player and more storage space, suggestions?

I currently have a WDTV Live SMP along with a 250 GB WD Passport USB drive.  I’m outgrowing the 250 GB drive and also need a second player for my bedroom.  I only have laptops, so streaming from a PC is not on the table.  Options, in order of cost, include:

  • WDTV Live Hub

  • WDTV Live SMP and a new USB hard drive (recommendations?)

  • WDTV Live SMP and a NAS/Internal hard drive combo

I know the hub doesn’t have wireless (non-issue).  My bedroom TV only has one HDMI input, so if I go with the SMP I will need to either get a HDMI switch or use the composite output.  If I go with the Hub I could use the component outputs, though I want to say I saw somewhere (Amazon review?) that the component output was poor quality, so maybe that’s not a benefit after all. 

I recognize the benefits of a raid array on a NAS but to be honest in the interest of keeping costs down, I would probably just get a single drive in it for now and maybe mirror it down the road, or maybe not.  In other words, it wouldn’t be that much better than a Hub, except that the storage would be external to the Hub and if either died, I wouldn’t be left with nothing.

What else am I missing?  Which scenario would you recommend?  Any reasons to stay away from the Hub?

Well, not really knowing what your price range is it’s not really easy to say what the best option would be.

As NAS or RAID would be your best option if you want a lot of storage space, but that amount of storgae comes at a price, especially by the time you add in the price of another media player.

Your best bet and the least expensive way to expand would be to get a HUB.  Then use it as your main player, and then use the SMP as your secondary (bedroom) player and use either a HDMI switch or better yet an AVR with HDMI input/outputs.

Then if you need to expand further down the road, you can either get a NAS or another drive to plug into the HUB.

In one respect the logical thing to do would be to keep all of the media on a NAS, and network the two players.

However, you don’t have to read these forums for too long to discover just how many problems are network-related.

As you’ve only just filled a 250gb HDD I’m guessing you don’t think you’re ever going to need more than 1tb.  Buying a couple of 1tb HDDs (or maybe 2tb) might be the best bet, as long as it’s in your price range.  Personally I’d stick to WD HDDs as they are less likely to offer compatibility problems.

Another advantage is that you should always back up your media (unless you fancy ripping them all again.  Having 2 HDDs is a good back up - though I’d keep a third copy unplugged as well if you can.

However, if you’re thinking of storing Blu-ray Discs uncompressed you’ll inevitably need more starage sooner rather than later, so bare that in mind.

Steve W