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HTPC for my 80 yr old Grandpa, help wanted

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March 7, 2011 7:12:49 PM

Hey everyone, really needing some advice on this build:

HTPC

Approximate Purchase Date: 03-09-2011


Budget Range: $800-$1000


System Usage from Most to Least Important: TV/Movie Watching (blu-ray) (Netflix),DVR function, Playing Music, Playing Home movies, web browsing. (we will set it up to boot into media center)


Parts Not Required: Need everything but the monitor.


Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Newegg


Country of Origin: U.S.A.


Parts Preferences: by brand or type: AMD, small form factor case, also need a media card reader. Seriously considering a Samsung 1TB F3 spinpoint to base this system on.


Overclocking: No


SLI or Crossfire: No


Monitor Resolution: 1920*1080


Additional Comments: My grandpa needs a computer that is easy to use via remote control. This is a special challenge because most of us don't think about how easy the remote is to read. I was also thinking about possibly getting a large wireless keyboard with a trackball built in. That seems like a far superior solution to having a separate mouse that could get lost. I also don't want him to wait on the computer so a fairly beefy proc may be needed.

Please rack your brains for peripherals that will be extremely easy to use for an older person while they are in a chair or on the couch watching t.v. Thank you very much in advance.

More about : htpc grandpa wanted

March 7, 2011 7:51:53 PM

Hello wwusa83;

Is this is a build-it-together project?
If not a pre-built system might be a good way to go.
DELL Inspiron 580 Core i3 550(3.20GHz) 6GB RAM 750GB HDD $600
Or Core i5-650 3.2Ghz 6GB RAM, 1TB HDD on the Dell site for $600
Adding a SSD boot disk might be a good option for that 'lightning fast' response. Mushkin Enhanced Callisto 60GB Sand Force 1200 SSD $135

Logitech diNovo Mini -Bluetooth might work for your keyboard solution.
Backlight keyboard is a big help in a HTPC environment.

http://www.ergogeek.com is a good place to look for alternative keyboard options.
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March 7, 2011 8:08:03 PM

WR2 said:
Hello wwusa83;

Is this is a build-it-together project?
If not a pre-built system might be a good way to go.
DELL Inspiron 580 Core i3 550(3.20GHz) 6GB RAM 750GB HDD $600
Or Core i5-650 3.2Ghz 6GB RAM, 1TB HDD on the Dell site for $600
Adding a SSD boot disk might be a good option for that 'lightning fast' response. Mushkin Enhanced Callisto 60GB Sand Force 1200 SSD $135

Logitech diNovo Mini -Bluetooth might work for your keyboard solution.
Backlight keyboard is a big help in a HTPC environment.

http://www.ergogeek.com is a good place to look for alternative keyboard options.



Your instincts are correct, this is a build it together project, that mushkin looks pretty good. How long do SSD's last?
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March 7, 2011 8:34:29 PM

Meh i dun see why a sub $350ish build is even needed but for SFF/mITX perhaps
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March 7, 2011 9:13:28 PM

You can go old school nostalgia 'where is the computer?' or Home Theater component style. batuchka mentioned the mini-ITX size.
Always be sure to check the case size against the actual spot you'd like to have the HTPC sit.
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March 7, 2011 9:36:11 PM

I don't suppose you'd be lucky enough to live hear a MicroCenter?
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March 8, 2011 3:11:20 AM

WR2 said:
I don't suppose you'd be lucky enough to live hear a MicroCenter?


I do live near a microcenter.
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March 8, 2011 4:37:05 AM

We can be watching there to see whats available.
Some heavy or bulky items like a case or PSU can be picked up locally if they have high shipping charges online.
And MicroCenter has some crazy good prices on things now and again.
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!