S1Digital Allows HD CableCard Streaming from Media Server to Media Center

S1Digital solves the big problem with Windows Media Center -- the ability to stream protected CableCard content to a PC

S1Digital with Autonomic Control software
Julie Jacobson · August 26, 2009

UPDATE: The S1Digital server is not Windows Media Center; the client is. Still ... quite a feat.

The big bummer about Windows Media Center is that you can’t stream protected HD content from PC to PC.

You can stream it to a Media Center Extender, but no one makes Extenders any more. Plus, Extenders have their limitations.

S1Digital has found a way around this DRM quirk. The company’s new Digital Entertainment Platform (press release) lets you stream HD content – even from a CableCard—from

PC to PC

its server to a Media Center PC.

S1Digital principal Paul Heitlinger says:

In addition to being able to stream HD movies, music and any other type of content, you’ll notice that we’ve developed a cable TV over network solution – you can stream live TV from DCTs [CableCards] on our server over the network to Media Centers around the house. The Media Center will be able to watch/record TV, just as if the TV tuner was locally attached. This is huge – kind of like Softsled that keeps getting requested. So now we have the ultimate “extender.” You can watch HD movies AND HDTV from one box in each room.

More details in the S1Digital press release

Softsled, by the way, was a Microsoft code name for an Extender that would provide Media Center sharing, just like S1Digital now provides. We all waited for it; it never came.

The S1Digital Digital Entertainment Platform comprises three components: an Entertainment Server, Media Center clients and a control solution.

The Server supports 16 or 32 terabytes of protected storage in a 3U rack chassis, or 4 or 8 terabytes in a 1U chassis. In addition, the Server can stream live CableCard or ATSC HDTV to clients.

The Media Center clients play content stored on the server, streaming smooth 1080p video and 7.1 channel audio. Live and recorded HDTV can be streamed directly to the client, without needing TV tuners or a cable box directly attached. The custom designed chassis is small, quiet and can also playback Blu-rays, DVDs or CDs directly from the built-in optical drive.

An optional touch screen controller can manage the Media Centers from any room.

S1Digital is an integrator-friendly vendor and there aren’t many of them left these days. The company partners with Autonomic Controls for integrating Media Center with home control systems. The new Digital Entertainment Platform starts at $3,500.

Check out the new S1Digital platform at CEDIA Expo 2009, booth #5729.

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  About the Author

Julie Jacobson is founding editor of CE Pro, the leading media brand for the home-technology channel. She has covered the smart-home industry since 1994, long before there was much of an Internet, let alone an Internet of things. Currently she studies, speaks, writes and rabble-rouses in the areas of home automation, security, networked A/V, wellness-related technology, biophilic design, and the business of home technology. Julie majored in Economics at the University of Michigan, spent a year abroad at Cambridge University, and earned an MBA from the University of Texas at Austin. She is a recipient of the annual CTA TechHome Leadership Award, and a CEDIA Fellows honoree. A washed-up Ultimate Frisbee player, Julie currently resides in San Antonio, Texas and sometimes St. Paul, Minn. Follow on Twitter: @juliejacobson Email Julie at

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  Article Topics

News · Media Center · Media Server · All Topics
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