Lovefilm voucher codes: 2 free months

Posted in Random on July 10th, 2013 by Andy

Lovefilm_logo_V401920778Since getting a smart TV we’ve been trying out streaming from Loveflim and Netflix. We’re pretty happy with both to be honest.

If you’re thinking of trying it out I’ve got Lovefilm voucher codes for two free months:

  1. Go to
  2. Enter code: YGCH6GMEN
  3. You’ll get two free months of streaming or disks (or both), if you cancel before they bill you for the third month it won’t cost you a penny.
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A simple video re-encoder for Linux

Posted in Computers, Linux, Ubuntu on July 30th, 2010 by Andy

Arista ripping an episode of Futurama from DVDRe-encoding video can be a bit baffling. I’ve tried a whole slew of different apps (Handbrake, Avidemux, PiTiVi) but they all seem to be far too complicated for the simple job of re-encoding a video file for a specific device. There are some older apps that are nice and simple (like Iriverter), but they’re old and getting left behind by the fast pace of change in gadgets.

That’s why I’ve really grown to ¬†like Arista Transcoder. Instead of fiddling about with codecs, aspect ratios, and a million other obscure settings, Arista simply asks what device you want to view the video on. Some of the presets also allow you to tweak the quality, but that’s it. And when you think about it, 99% of the time that’s all you actually need.

Some of the highlights:

  • It seems to be multithreaded (or use multithreaded codecs where possible) so it’s fast
  • Integrates nicely with Gnome, including notification bubbles on Ubuntu
  • Includes presets for most common devices, with more available on the website
  • Can rip straight from DVDs
  • Queues jobs

You can get it from the Ubuntu Universe repository, Arch AUR, or you can grab the pythony tarball off their site.

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How to build a Media Centre PC

Posted in Computers, Gadgets, Howto, Tech on November 11th, 2009 by Andy

Why watch those downloads on your PC, when you can watch them in comfort on your TV?

Why watch those downloads on your PC, when you can watch them from the comfort of the sofa?

The plan:

Watch video and photos and listen to mp3 music stored on our home network through the normal TV and stereo in the living room.


  1. Must have low power consumption
  2. Must be quiet
  3. Must boot fast
  4. Must be stable and low-maintenance
  5. Cheap is good!


Mini-ITX based PC with a decent processor and onboard graphics, squeezed into a tiny wee case.


For a while now most of us have had two cool things in our homes: a home entertainment system and a network. But how can we get all our great digital content onto that nice big TV and hifi in the living room? The answer is a media centre PC.



  • Jetway JNC-62K Motherboard with onboard Nvidia 8200 graphics card
  • AMD Athlon X2 e4850 high efficiency CPU
  • Silverstone NT07-AM2 low-profile heatsink/fan.
  • 1GB RAM
  • 80GB SATA hard drive
  • Terratec Aureon PCI sound card with S/PDIF
  • Jou Jye NU-528i-B case with internal 73W power supply.
  • Wireless keyboard with built-in trackpad
  • TOSlink optical cable to get shiny digital sound to the hifi


How much?

Grand total was £269 (+P&P), sourced from, Advance Technologies, and

>>> Enough talk, show me how it’s done! >>>

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