Sunday, December 28, 2008

Get Great Looking TV User Interface with SageMC TV Screen Add-on

Those SageTV users wanting more pizzazz to their Home Theater PC user interface have been getting lots of Christmas presents these past few months.  The SageMC User Interface Add-on keeps getting better with the introduction of FanArt, lots of new looks with themes have been released, the awesome new Movie Info Screen released earlier this month and now Ben (Jaminben on the SageTV forums), the author of the Movie Info Screen add-on has created an alternative TV screen as well! 



Above is a screen-shot of the new TV Info Screen for the TV show "Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles."  Similar to the movie info screen, the alternative TV Info Screen is an alternative “look” and user interface for viewing individual TV titles screen.  It works largely the same as the normal TV info screen, with FanArt support but the layout is slightly better suited to the FanArt layouts with a horizontal menu and the details available on the lower part of the screen.


Redesigned TV Info screen layout with a focus on the FanArt background, a horizontal menu style and redesigned details information layout.  If you’re using fanart, this add-on looks great and is another nice addition from Ben.


  • SageTV
  • SageMC Replacement STV (UI) version 6.3.8a or higher
  • Enabled FanArt in SageMC settings (not required but obviously improves the look and usefulness of this add-on)
  • FanArt image files in the appropriate folders (not required but obviously improves the look and usefulness of this add-on)

Installation Process:

  1. Shut down the SageTV User Interface
  2. Back up your SageTV/MC installation (just in case)
  3. Extract all files into your SageTV folder (eg. C:\Program Files\SageTV\SageTV). Making certain to extract while preserving the directory structure.
  4. Re-start the SageTV User Interface
  5. In SageMC, goto My Menu > Settings, and select "Import STVi" and import "TV_Info_Screen_V.1.0a.xml”
  6. Browse to My Menu > Settings > SageMC > Main > Screen Specific Options > My TV> Custom Program Info Screen.  Browse to "TV Info Screen" in the list and select it. Be sure the setting for "Screen Specific Options" shows "TV Info Screen" on it now.


Now your any individual TV Show you navigate to, you'll see the new TV layout.  Here are a few more examples:





Using TV Info Screen

  • The SageTV “Info" button/key will  minimize/maximize the synopsis/details information.
  • Customize Options can be reached via the normal OSD menu (right click mouse or use the option key on the remote and my menu is located at the bottom of the list).

When you hit the options button from the TV Screen, you’ll see all of the typical TV options as well as a new option setting “TV Info Screen Options”:



Then, after selecting “TV Info Screen Options” you’ll see the many settings you can use to customize the TV Info Screen:



Download – More Information:

For more information about this version of Movie Info Screen and the download, head to the SageTV Forum Thread for TV Info Screen

Download TV Info Screen for SageMC


Stay tuned for more HTPC news including SageTV and other HTPC programs as well.
Want to learn more about the many add-ons and inner workings of SageTV?  Check out the GeekTonic Ultimate Guide to SageTV which is updated continually.