Ive got a small budget, and small needs, but have no clue where to start. Basically I need a HTPC with component, or s video out, preferably with DVR capabilities. I saw a system on ebay, that would work, and fit nicely in my budget, but it seems under powered. http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=2503...
Right now all I have is a softmodded XBOX running XBMC, with the standard 8gig HD.
Your budget about covers the cost of a newer video card! You will have a hard time finding a nice pre-built system for that money. Even building one yourself will take a bit more cash than this. You can probably build a budget PC for ~$500, but it will have little room for future upgrading and almost no high-end capabilities. But, it will be able to do component outs via an adapter which may or may not come with your low-end video card. Start shopping on Newegg.
Almost anything that you buy will be able to output in component video via an adapter through either VGA or DVI output.
I think it would be a nice starter system IF you can later upgrade it (dual-core CPU and more memory). The problem I see (and the problem here I think) is that there is no way to upgrade the video should you ever want to display HD (not just digital) content.
As nice as that system could be, I'd probably pass and look into building new.
I would note you're missing a TV Tuner card (for DVR) as well as S-Video or Component output.
After my original post, I thought about it some more. You *may* be able to remove the signal splitter on the back side of the system and take out one of the PCI-E TV Tuners. Replace one tuner card with an HD compliant PCI-Ex1 graphics card (if such a beast exists). That, plus my aforementioned upgrades may make this a suitable system.
Thanks guys...I sent the seller a message, and he says those motherboards support 4 gig of ram, and amd x2 cpu, plus the splitter will come off the back of the hauppauge cards, so i could remove 1.
I am just looking for basic functionality right now(its going in a bedroom, and xbox is going to the game room). If I ever decide to go HD, I would definantly upgrade, probably to something with a MSI Media Live 5.1 or 7.1 motherboard in it for starters.