XBMC

XBMC 13.2

Free
XBMC is a great Home Theater PC application for the Mac.
4.5  (6 votes)
13.2 (See all)

XBMC, formerly known as Xbox Media Center, is a great multimedia playback application that is ideal for HTPC setups. Home Theater PC's are often connected to large TVs and the user does not sit close to the TV. Also, a keyboard and mouse are rarely connected to them. This makes XBMC, and its 10-foot interface an ideal match for this type of setups.

The application will scan your folders in search of videos, music, TV shows and other content. It will play pretty much any file that you throw at it. The artwork for movies and TV shows, and even music will be automatically downloaded once your files are indexed. There are many different views for you to browse your content, and they all look great. There is also extensive support for user-created addons, which let you access services that are not available by default, like YouTube, ESPN, and a number of other content providers.

XBMC is available in many different platforms, including Windows, Mac OS X, Android, and even iOS. Remote apps can also be used to control XBMC on your Mac from a mobile device like a phone or tablet.

XBMC is updated somewhat regularly. The current version is 12.2 Frodo, but the version 13 is around the corner. Many new features, interface changes and performance fixes have come since the last review of XBMC on Mac Informer. The most evident change is the use of a horizontal home layout skin. It looks so much better and it is easy to read from a distance. An important addition is the combined mode for video files and library entries, which makes finding files a lot easier. Support for ISO playback (great for BD movie rips), Slingbox and Airplay capabilities and the upgrade of FFMPEG decoding are only a few of the many important changes that this app has seen in the past two versions. For a complete list of changes make sure you check the Releases Page of the XBMC Wiki.

In short, XBMC is still my favorite HTPC app. It looks great, works awesome and it has never caused a problem for me.

José Fernández
Editor rating:

Review summary

Pros

  • Great format support
  • Awesome 10-foot interface
  • Easy to use
  • Quick and smooth
  • Add-ons

Cons

  • None
Info updated on: