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HP and Compaq Desktop PCs - Using HP MediaSmart to Work with DVDs, Music, Photos, TVs, and Videos (Windows Vista)

This document pertains to MediaSmart software on HP Desktop computers using Windows Vista.
To open HP MediaSmart, click Start , All Programs, HP, HP MediaSmart. Double-clicking the MediaSmart icon on the desktop also opens the SmartMenu, which gives access to all MediaSmart software programs. When you open MediaSmart, the SmartMenu contains icons representing available media categories.
Figure : SmartMenu
SmartMenu icons
The icons from left to right are:
  • MediaSmart DVD - View movies on DVD, video CD, or Blu-ray Disc (BD) in the MediaSmart DVD mode.
  • MediaSmart Music - Accesses the music collection on the hard drive. It also gives access to Pandora radio.
  • MediaSmart Photo - Edit, print, create slideshows, and upload your photos to Snapfish.
  • MediaSmart TV - Accesses TV channels, Internet TV, and allows you to record and play back TV shows.
  • MediaSmart Video - View video files on your computer, and upload your videos to YouTube.
Some of these options might not be available on your computer.

MediaSmart DVD

MediaSmart DVD mode provides the same features and controls as a standard home DVD player.
If you cannot view Blu-ray movies, make sure you update the MediaSmart DVD software: connect to the Internet, click the Gear icon in the lower left, click the Update tab, and install all updates that appear in the list.
To open MediaSmart DVD, click the DVD icon on the SmartMenu. It can also opens automatically when a DVD, VCD, SVCD, or Blu-ray disc is inserted in the optical disc drive.
For Blu-ray capability, the system must have a Blu-ray drive. Codecs supported are MPEG-2, MPEG-4, and VC-1.


In DVD mode, controls are similar to other DVD players.
Figure : DVD full screen
Watching a DVD
  • The upper right is where the view can be closed or minimized.
  • At the lower right is the volume control.
  • Immediately under the picture is a blue progress bar, showing time elapsed.
  • At the bottom of the screen is the control bar:
      Figure : Control bar
      Features of the control bar
    1. Settings button (see below)
    2. Eject
    3. Menu (for navigating to different chapters or special outtakes on the disc)
    4. Add/remove bookmark (for user-defined bookmarks)
    5. Previous/rewind
    6. Play/Pause
    7. Next/fast forward


Click the Settings button to set Region Code, to set whether the movie should automatically repeat, or to set whether it should automatically resume playing.
If a DVD has not been used in Windows yet, or if the region setting on a supported DVD does not match the region setting for your optical drive, a message about changing the DVD region setting is displayed. Click Settings (), Region Code, and then select the correct region from the list provided. For more information, see the user guide included with your computer.
Go to the Audio tab view to set Speaker Output (how many), Audio Mode (stereo or mono), Dynamic Range Compression, and Audio Boost.
The Advanced tab view is for setting advanced picture features such as enabling or disabling Smooth Motion, Smart Stretch, and True Lighting, and setting Video Upscaling.
To prevent the loss of playback or playback quality, observe the following guidelines:
  • Save your work and close all open software before playing a DVD, CD or BD.
  • Do not dock or undock the computer using an optional docking device while playing a disc.

MediaSmart Music

MediaSmart Music provides access to your music collections, and tools to play music, create playlists, and otherwise organize music on the hard drive.
With MediaSmart Music, play music from an external source (a CD) or from your hard drive archives. If the music is on the hard drive, you must select between music in the HP MediaSmart Media library and the iTunes Media library. Only one library can be used at a time.


Figure : HP MediaSmart Music window
HP MediaSmart music selection window
  1. SmartMenu control—click it to go back to the SmartMenu icons to select another media window.
  2. Navigation bar—choose the format to view music. View by album, artist, genre, individual songs, or user-created playlists.
    This is also where to select a drive to play a CD from; click that drive and view the CD contents. To play a song, click it.
    Pandora radio can also be selected in the navigation bar. Pandora is a free Internet radio site where you can select your own music. It requires an Internet connection and a free Pandora account.
  3. Window controls—maximize, minimize, or close the active window.
  4. Settings button—to select from which library on your hard drive to play and organize music, click this button. Select between using the HP MediaSmart Media library or the iTunes Media library, and then click Save.
  5. Playlist pane—where playlists are created. Add songs individually, or add whole albums or genres or a list of artists.
    Figure : Playlist
    HP MediaSmart Music playlist
    To create a playlist:
    • Drag music to add to the playlist from the music view to the Playlist pane.
      Click the add icon () next to each song to add that song to the playlist.
    • Click Save as Playlist, name the playlist, and then click Save.
      Click the Return arrow to get back to the main music window.
  6. Fan view—click here to view music in a fan view.
  7. Shuffle—while playing music, click here to randomly shuffle the music from its original order.
  8. Repeat—click to repeat whatever is playing.
  9. Search—find music by typing in the search field.
MediaSmart Music supports the following formats:
  • MP3
  • WMA (without DRM support)
  • WAV
  • AAC
  • MP4 and M4a (supported in iTunes mode only, which requires Internet access and a license download)

MediaSmart Photo

To display, browse, edit, and organize photos, use MediaSmart Photo. Slideshows can also be created, and photos can be uploaded to Snapfish for printing or sharing.
Photos do not need to be stored in one folder on the hard drive. MediaSmart Photo views all photos on the hard drive that are in .jpg format.


Figure : HP MediaSmart Photo window
HP MediaSmart Photo main page
  1. SmartMenu control—click it to go back to the SmartMenu icons to select another media window.
  2. Navigation bar—choose the format to view photos. View by Dates, Folders, Ratings, user-created Slideshows, or choose to view all photos.
    This is also where to select a drive to view external photos on a CD; click that drive and view the CD contents.
  3. Window controls—maximize, minimize, or close the active window.
  4. Settings—click this button to view settings for user-created slideshows. Choose transition style between photos (for example, whether pictures fade into each other, or move in from the side), and the time (in seconds) each photo stays on the screen.
  5. Search—find photos by typing in the search field. This feature is especially useful if photos have been tagged with search words.
  6. Play Slideshow—this button is enabled when a slideshow has been created. For a full-screen, expanded view of each slide, click the lower-right icon .
  7. Print Photos—this button is enabled when the computer is connected to a printer. Select a photo and click Print Photos.
  8. Upload Photos—this button is for uploading photos to Snapfish. It requires an Internet connection and an account with Snapfish. When you click Upload Photos, the right pane changes to Upload Photos to Snapfish.
    Figure : Upload Photos to Snapfish pane
    Uploading photo to Snapfish
    • Sign in and type your Snapfish account password.
    • Click the green plus sign next to each photo to add it to the list. If you change your mind, drag that photo to the recycle bin (it is erased from the list, but is not deleted from the photo library).
    • Follow the prompts to upload photos.
  9. Create slideshow—click to open the Create Slideshow pane to the right of the window.
    Figure : Create Slideshow pane
    Creating a slideshow
    To add photos to create a slideshow:
    • Click the add icon () next to each photo to add it to the slideshow.
    • When finished adding photos, name the slideshow, which enables the Save button, and click Save.
    • Use the Settings button to select transition formats and slide timing.
  10. Fan view—changes the view from rows of tiles to a fanned view. To go back to the normal view, click the Back to Normal View button on the lower right of the screen.
    Figure : Fan view
    Photos shown in fan view

Editing, tagging, and rating photos

Edit photos (rotate, fix red eye, fix lighting, etc.), tag photos (to make it easier to then search for a photo in the future, or rate photos (to further organize photos).
  1. Double-click a photo.
    A pane opens to the right to tag, rate, or edit a photo.
    Figure : Photo window
    Photo ready for editing or tagging
  2. Use that pane to give a rating, edit, or give tag names to the photo.
  3. View the results of the input.
    Figure : Photo details window
    Photo tagged and rated

MediaSmart TV

With MediaSmart TV, record, play, and view live TV. To view live TV mode, the computer needs a compatible TV tuner.
View TV in the MediaSmart TV mode, using either a TV tuner or live streaming over the Internet. You can also schedule recordings and view recorded TV shows on the computer.
Some features of MediaSmart TV mode, such as Internet streaming, might not be available in all regions and may also require additional hardware or services, such as a high-speed Internet connection.
The MediaSmart TV mode supports the following options:
  • Slingbox—Plays current TV broadcasts from your home TV (select models only).
  • HP TV Tuner—Plays current TV broadcasts
  • Recorded TV—Displays files recorded from the TV
  • Vongo—Provides movie downloads from the Internet (select models only).
  • Internet TV—Plays current TV broadcasts from the Internet.

Viewing live TV or a recorded show

To view live television:
  1. In the TV window, double-click the receiver name, such as Slingbox, HP Digital TV Tuner, or Internet TV, and then double-click the preview pane. The TV broadcast is displayed in full-screen format.
    Double-click Channel List, located below the receiver name in the content pane. A list of available channels is displayed. Double-click a channel.
  2. To view the TV broadcast in full-screen format, click the Full Screen icon in the playlist controls at the lower-right side of the screen. To return to preview mode, click the Full Screen icon at the upper right of the display.
To view a previously recorded TV program:
  1. In the content pane, double-click Recorded TV. The console is refreshed to display a list of any programs you have recorded.
  2. Double-click the programs you want to view to add them to the playlist.
  3. Click Play in the playback controls at the bottom of the screen to view the programs.

Viewing Internet TV

The computer must have a connection to the Internet for this procedure.
  1. From within the main TV window, select a Provider List (for example, Next TV, Classic TV, TVU, and HP Corporate TV.
  2. Select a channel; MediaSmart displays the selected content.
  3. Clickable links are presented in some advertisements and videos to learn more about a product or show. If a link is clicked, the selected Web site launches. Click the back button in the web browser to close the Web site and resume playing the video.
  4. When viewing video content in full screen, the elapsed time and total time are displayed in the left corner. The content name and the program title are displayed in the lower-right corner.

Recording TV broadcasts

To set a recording schedule:
  1. From the main MediaSmart TV window, click the Info/More settings () control in the upper-right corner of the screen, and select New Recording.
  2. Select the channel you want to record, the scheduling interval, and the recording date and time.
  3. To activate the recording schedule, click Apply.
To remove or change a scheduled recording:
  1. From within the TV window, double-click the receiver name, such as HP Digital TV Tuner, in the content pane.
  2. Double-click the Schedule folder. An overview of the scheduled recordings is displayed. If no schedules are listed, no recordings have been scheduled.
  3. To modify a recording schedule, double-click a listing, and then make changes.
  4. To remove a recording schedule, click a listing, and then click the Delete control in the playlist controls at the lower-left side of the screen.

Time shifting

To enable time shifting (instant replay):
  1. From the main MediaSmart TV window, click the Info/More settings () control in the upper-right corner of the screen, and then click Time shifting.
  2. Click Enable.
    Pause or rewind is limited to 30 minutes of live television. If viewing live TV directly over the Internet, the support for time shifting varies according to the region and the content site to which you are connected.

MediaSmart Video

With MediaSmart Video, access, display, edit, tag, and rate videos. Also, create playlists and upload videos to YouTube (which requires the Internet and a YouTube account).


    Figure : MediaSmart Video window
     Features of the MediaSmart Video menu
  1. Navigation bar—choose the format to view videos. View by Dates, Folders, Ratings, Playlists, or view All Videos. Can also be used to select a drive to view external videos on a DVD; click that drive and view the DVD contents.
  2. Window controls—maximize, minimize, or close the current window.
  3. Settings—When creating a webcam, click this button to either limit the video recording time to 10 minutes, or allow the recording to exceed 10 minutes.
  4. Search—find videos by typing in the search field. This feature is especially useful if videos have been tagged with search words.
  5. Webcam—this button is enabled if the computer has a webcam. Click it and follow the onscreen instructions. Use the Settings button to choose a maximum and minimum length of video.
  6. Create Playlists—Create a playlist of favorites, for example, vacation videos, family videos, videos to share, etc.

Create playlists

  • Click the Create Playlists button. The Create Playlists pane opens to the right.
  • Click the add icon () to add videos to the playlist.
  • Name the video playlist, and then click Save.
    To play the playlist, select Playlists from the top navigation bar. Select the playlist, and click the top video in the list.

Edit, tag, rate, and upload videos to YouTube

Edit videos (rotate, auto-fix lighting, or fix a shaky video), tag videos (to make it easier to then search for a video in the future), or rate videos (to further organize videos by quality). The Video Details pane is also where videos can be uploaded to YouTube, if you have Internet access and a YouTube account.
  1. Double-click a video.
    A pane opens to the right to tag, rate, or upload a video to YouTube.
    Figure : Video Details pane
    Playing a video
The following table lists supported video formats.
MediaSmart Video supports the following formats:
  • MPG and MPEG
  • DVR-MS (non-protected)
  • WMV
  • ASF
  • AVI (DivX and MJPEG codecs are supported only if DivX software is installed on the computer)






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