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Ask Engadget HD: Combo media streamer and Blu-ray/DVD ripper?


It's been a while since we addressed this one, but the possibility of setting up an HTPC or media streamer, ripping ones DVD/Blu-ray collection and putting the discs out to pasture for good is an attractive idea to many. For our friend Stanford, that's the question, but also with an eye towards doing it simply in a way that can be explained to those who are less savvy:
"Over Thanksgiving much of my family saw my desktop setup as a HTPC with XBMC running on my HDTV. Naturally I get asked many questions about how they could accomplish such. Unfortunately, none of them are 'computer-savy.' Mostly what they enjoyed was having a whole library of movies available with a couple clicks. I wanted to suggest some of the mediacenter box such as Western Digital's, Boxee, Popcorn Hour,... but I realized the main holdup would be the ripping of movies and transferring/networking them to the box.

Are there any mediacenter boxes out that support inserting a DVD/Bluray, rip, encode, and add it to the library? I'm somewhat doubting it due to DMCA issues of breaking copy-protection."
We know more than a few of you have your own media library kicking around, when a novice asks "How can I get one like that?" is there a push button solution to share... or do you just give them the "if you have to ask.." look?

Got a burning question that you'd love to toss out for Engadget HD (or its readers) to take a look at? Tired of Google's blank stares when you ask for real-world experiences? Hit us up at ask at engadgethd dawt com and keep an eye on this space -- your inquiry could be next.

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