Wouldn’t it be convenient to store all your favorite movies, music CDs, MP3 files, and digital photos in one location that you could access remotely? Enter the Media Server, the integrated solution for media storage.
A media server is really just a big hard drive. There are many shapes and sizes of media servers and new ones are coming out all the time. The two basic requirements of a media server are: the capability to record video or audio files and, the capability to output video or audio files to a television or sound system. Additional options are available including using the media server for computer file storage, having a built in TV tuner, and accessing and recording Internet video files like YouTube.
Making it Easier
Long before the introduction of the first media server, computer-savvy individuals were recording and saving video and audio files on their computers. The biggest problem was recording the video or audio easily and outputting to a suitable playing device. Media servers offer multiple input and output options. Another big problem was keeping the files organized as your library grew. Media servers offer convenient menu systems to store and catalog video and audio files.
An Integral Part Of A Home Automation System
As home automation grows to control and simplify more aspects of the home, the media server is the next logical stepping-stone. Several new systems have been released that include Z-Wave and home automation controls and more are planned for release in the future.
Higher end media servers support network communication through both CAT5 connections and wireless home automation connections. This allows the servers to communicate with your home PC, other media servers in the home, and to remote computers and iPhones through your home Internet.
Distributed home audio systems allow you to access and listen to your audio library in different locations. Newer media server systems are available that also provide distributed video, allowing you to watch movie files on connected TVs in the home.