Over the years we have, perhaps stupidly, paid to purchase many films in various formats from VHS to DVD and Bluray. It’s cost us a boatload of cash and we haven’t watched a lot of them more than once. Lately we’ve been looking at other options that will save us money, time and physical space.
Digital conversion, storage and streaming media is where it’s at.
We purchased an new 2TB hard drive, WinX DVD Ripper Platinum & began the process of converting our DVD’s to digital, typically Xvid encoded AVI’s. A full film takes just over 20 minutes and the files are around 1.5 GB’s each. The video quality is excellent when played via our Boxee Box connected to our HD TV. Sound quality is also fabulous with the encoded files holding 5.1 surround sound using the mp3 or aac codecs.
The Boxee Box is also great for enjoying streaming video or audio podcasts, downloaded TV shows we’ve happened to miss or even Netflix.
We’re converting music too. As well a second 500 GB hard drive that lives in my office attached to my computer is where our music collection is. This too is a large project as our media buying frenzy included CD’s. We use Twonky Media server to stream our music, but am looking at XBMC as a more Boxee compatible option as Twonky and Boxee seem to have stopped communicating.
We’ve already given away a few of our DVD’s and will probably sell some more either via eBay, craigslist or at a second hand store. We may even have some kind of yard sale. We’ll sell them cheap. 🙂
We even have adapters for our VCR and cassette decks and have been slowly converting old tapes as well.
This has been a big job, but, so far, worth it. Eventually we’ll have a lot less clutter and will continue to enjoy our media in a more streamlined way.
I’m a little antsy about the durability of our hard drives. We’ve already had one catastrophic failure. Hopefully the price of solid state drives will come down before we have another crash.
We’ve stopped buying DVD’s. If we really want something we’ll purchase digital copies… or do something else. *wink* *wink*