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First HTPC recording live TV is a must

Last response: in Systems
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February 7, 2013 7:42:25 PM

I found myself looking at options for OTA/unencripted DVR, but I didn't like the other dedicated devices. I currently have a googleTV but it won't play hulu so I use a Xbox 360 for that. I don't like changing inputs from tv to googleTV to xbox just to watch what I have available, and I am really not a big fan of hulu in the first place.
So, I want an HTPC that will handle recording live tv and I am on about a $600 budget.
I don't think I need an optical drive, because I have ripped all of my movies to a drive that is availible in my home network.
I don't think I need a large hdd, will save content to the same network drive.

Here is what I have so far:

Processor: AMD A8-3850 APU Quad-Core Processor (84.99)
Motherboard: ASRock MB-A75M Socket FM1/ AMD A75 FCH/ SATA3&USB3.0/ A&GbE/ Micro ATX (74.99)
RAM: Kingston Technology Hyper X 4GB 1600MHz DDR3 Non-ECC CL9 DIMM KHX1600C9D3/4G (28.50)
Hard Drive: OCZ Technology 128GB Agility 4 Series SATA 6Gb/s 2.5-Inch Solid State Drive( SSD) (99.81)
Case: Silverstone ML03B HTPC Case (59.99)
Power Supply: Antec Basiq 350W ATX12V Power Supply (29.99)

As for a tuner I figured on getting SiliconDust HDHomeRun DUAL High Definition (89.99)

Total w/ tuner: 468.26

Also worth noting that I have a win7 pro licence.

Any advice or recommendations would be greatly appreciated.

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a b B Homebuilt system
February 7, 2013 8:09:33 PM

I think an A8 processor is overkill for a system that just does live TV/DVR functions. Not to mention it's older tech. My AMD Athlon II x2 240 processor could handle a quad tuner card. In your situation, I'd probably drop down to a Trinity dual-core processor and an FM2 motherboard.

Probably something like this:
AMD A6-5400K Trinity 3.6GHz - $74.99
MSI FM2-A75MA-E35 FM2 AMD A75 - $59.99

All the rest should be fine. The only reason I can see for going with a quad-core AMD processor for a system like this is if you have more than one HDTV you're streaming video to or you're doing more than just DVR functions (converting video).

-Wolf sends
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February 7, 2013 8:26:12 PM

I am going to use it to stream some content from the other drive and from online content (hulu, netflix, amazon...), but it seams that would still be a good option.


Wolfshadw said:
I think an A8 processor is overkill for a system that just does live TV/DVR functions. Not to mention it's older tech. My AMD Athlon II x2 240 processor could handle a quad tuner card. In your situation, I'd probably drop down to a Trinity dual-core processor and an FM2 motherboard.

Probably something like this:
AMD A6-5400K Trinity 3.6GHz - $74.99
MSI FM2-A75MA-E35 FM2 AMD A75 - $59.99

All the rest should be fine. The only reason I can see for going with a quad-core AMD processor for a system like this is if you have more than one HDTV you're streaming video to or you're doing more than just DVR functions (converting video).

-Wolf sends

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a b B Homebuilt system
February 7, 2013 8:30:46 PM

I'm neither a Hulu nor Amazon subscriber, so I don't know how well the download/viewing process works in Windows 7. There are no native plug-ins for Windows like there is for Netflix. As a Netflix subscriber, I can say that I've never had any hardware issues. Microsoft Silverlight has given me a headache or two, however.

-Wolf sends
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February 7, 2013 9:20:44 PM

There was just a thread on this yesterday (although streaming playback was not required). Poster was choosing between Celeron G540 and A6 CPUs:

http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/forum2.php?config=tom...

I will say that I have a Celeron build and it plays Hulu just fine with the exception of a small hiccup at the beginning of some commercials.

I would get the PSU on the other thread--it's got certified efficiency and it's actually cheaper than the Antec in your build:

Power Supply: Corsair Builder 430W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V Power Supply ($24.99 @ Newegg)
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February 15, 2013 2:59:23 PM

Best answer selected by bgwalker.
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