CNET to the Rescue: Streaming media around your house

CNET's Donald Bell helps us get our audio and video files out of our computers and iPods and into our living rooms, where the good speakers are. Also, your questions answered, including how to stream audio from your phone over Bluetooth into your car.

There are several ways to get your music and video files out of the prison of your computer of portable media player and into the wide-open expanse of your living room or elsewhere in your house. Today on Rescue, special guest Donald Bell discusses several solutions, including Apple's own AirPlay and the popular Sonos line of media streamer products.

Also on this episode: How to manage an archive of music you've made and recorded yourself, how to stream your music into a car, the best way to stream video into your living room, and more.

If you have a tech question for CNET to the Rescue, e-mail or call us to get on the next show: 877-438-6688. No question is too basic.

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Episode 31: Streaming media around your house

Donald's advice

Donald explains different ways to get iTunes music out of your computer.

Your questions answered

Chuck Jackson: After more than a bit of research and review, I just purchased an iMac. How do I move my iTunes Library from my PC to the iMac? One would think that Apple would include such information in its "Switch 101," but nothing is there.

Donald: Use iTunes Home Sharing


Carl Testa: I am a musician and I have a growing collection of CDs/DVDs of recorded concerts of mine. I am looking for a way to manage this collection of files digitally and was wondering if you have any suggestions. I love free/open-source solutions. An ideal situation in my mind would be a dedicated Linux box that was able to store files locally as well as to a cloud service so that I would have a backup of the files. Also ideal would be some way to categorize the files and embed lots of metadata so that down the road I would be able to easily find what I am looking for. Any ideas?

Donald explains possible solutions: Cakewalk Pyro Audio Creator; Audacity

Also, these tag editors: TagScanner; MP3Tag; Mp3nity.

Rafe: Try Windows Media Player


David: Thanks for all the great tips in the cord cutting show, but the one thing I never see anywhere is a comparison of streaming players like Roku, Apple TV, or Boxee and a console like XBox 360 or PS3. Can you please compare a streamer like Roku and XBox as my wife and I just cut the cable and now want to have the best inexpensive setup and not buy equipment we really don't need. We have an XBox 360 in the living room and an Internet-connected Vizio TV in the bedroom.

Donald: XBox is a good solution.

Rafe: Internet features built into a TV are not.


SurfingTheWeb: Is it possible to get A2DP audio streaming by connecting a USB Bluetooth adapter into my car's USB port? I want to stream my music and phone calls from an iPhone 3GS into my 2009 Hyundai Sonata's stereo. The question really do I pair the iPhone and the Bluetooth adapter?

Car Tech's Wayne Cunningham: I don't believe what you are trying here will work. The USB port in the Hyundai is designed to read the file structure on a flash drive and will only recognize music files. For iPod support, Hyundai uses a special cable, with audio coming into the auxiliary jack and iPod control functions coming through the USB port.

This USB port probably will not understand the audio input from the Bluetooth adapter. And I don't think the 2009 Sonata's head unit supports A2DP streaming. You could get a Bluetooth adapter that plugs into the car's auxiliary audio jack and stream your music over the car's stereo. You will only get volume control with the car's stereo controls, but that's about all you would get anyway.


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