In typical Microsoft fashion, there are tons of different ways to pull of streaming your video to the Xbox 360—and the only one that’s truly comprehensive, in our opinion, comes from a third party. TVersity is a free UPnP media server that can manage your video and music files anywhere on your PC and stream them out to your 360 over the network. It will also kindly transcode just about any video you can throw at it into a codec your console can definitely read. You might have to install some additional codec packs here and there for Windows but for the most part, you can forget about worrying about codecs with TVersity. This also allows TVersity to handle files not officially supported by the 360, like MKV containers.
1. Grab TVersity here and install it.
2. Click the giant plus sign in the top left corner to “Add Your Media Source” – namely, the folder on your PC with all of your videos.
3. Under advanced options, set your transcoding preferences: “When Needed” will make sure most all of your files play.
4. In the main TVersity menu, select “Start Sharing”
5. On the Xbox 360, TVersity will now appear as a source in the Media blade or under My Xbox -> Video Library in NXE.
Xbox 360: Physical Media
If streaming isn’t for you, and you don’t mind hauling a storage device back and forth between your computer and Xbox, then this is super easy: Insert Flash disk/USB/CD/DVD and browse it with the Media blade or the Video Library section of NXE (under “My Xbox”). Enjoy.
Playstation 3: Streaming
TVersity: Again, Tversity is your friend. It works just as well for the PS3 as it does for Xbox 360 (see above for setup).
With Tversity set up and sharing turned on, just browse to COMPUTERNAME: TVersity in the XMB and you’ll see a listing of all your shared files.
Playstation 3: Physical Media
1. Easy as pie. If you’re using a USB flash or hard disc or an SD or CF card, just dump all of your videos into a folder named VIDEO on the root of the drive and they’ll show up automatically in the XMB.
2. You can also browse the entire drive or disc by pressing triangle and choosing “Display All” to find videos that aren’t in the VIDEO folder.
Editor’s Note: For streaming video files to PS3, Xbox 360, you can also use Microsoft’s own various software like Windows Media Player’s built-in DLNA/UPnP serving capabilities to stream to the PS3, too—but with the same codec funkiness:
In our tests we could not stream Quicktime video at all, and had inconsistent experiences with MP4 files. MPEG-4 and H.264 support are technically supported via third-party WMP codec add-ons, but even with those, we still had trouble—MP4 files tended to play fine on the WMP 11 end, but not show up as browsable on the 360. Somewhat unbelievably, the Xbox 360 team actually recommends you manually rename your unsupported MPEG-4 and H.264 files, adding the “.avi” container extension to fool WMP into playing them. This worked occasionally, but not for every file and was generally inconsistent.
If you need to re-encode a video in a different format because it won’t play, you can also app a video converter like Brorsoft Video Converter. It can help you convert any video files like WMV, MKV, FLV, VOB, MTS, MPG, TiVo, AVI and more to PS3, Xbox 360 friendly video fast while keeping the high video quality.