For XP/Vista users, unless you have a TV tuner for your PC, you’ll find very little use for Windows Media Center on your console, being restricted to WMV & DVR-MS. Windows 7 users however will find that 7MC offers you a lot more, with AVI, Divx, MP4 &
MKV playback as well as use of some plugins, with the BBC iPlayer plugin being the most notable. Using a Wi-Fi connected Host WMC PC is not officially supported, and success with a wi-fi connection will vary from setup to setup.
Zune works pretty identically to WMP, although there are a few perks, especially with Windows 7. For example, your media libraries will instantly auto-update without opening the program (a feature strangely absent from WMP12?), improved thumbnail support
as well as MP4 video being a native file type (unlike WMP11).
Tversity is a little more than just a media server, as it has the ability to transcode a wide range of different video formats to playback on your console, on-the-fly. You can also add video feeds via RSS to the server’s Library too. Capable of transcoding
MKV files, however careful attention to transcoding options are required for a decent result.
Personally, I like to mix ‘n’ match which I use. By default and wherever possible I use the Zune PC software to stream supported videos to the dashboard media player. I choose this over WMP12 mainly for the two reasons I’ve listed above (thumbnails & auto-update).
It’s also worth noting that when you’re signed in with your gamertag’s WLID on the Zune PC software you can purchase Microsoft Points in more convenient 400 point bundles (as opposed to 500 MSP bundles via the dashboard).
However I constantly flick to Windows 7 Media Center for the BBC iPlayer plugin as well as playing any MKV files – however I much prefer the actual player software of the dashboard over the WMC interface – much superior playback control, automatic chaptering and of course not having to wait for the Extender software to load in!