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HTPC to replace cable service

Last response: in Home Theatre
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August 17, 2011 10:27:55 PM

Hi,

My yearly promotional discount with the local company is coming up and I'm looking to replace my service with a HTPC box. I've build a hackint0sh before so I figured I would try to build a system my self. All the computers in the house are Mac but from what I'm hearing my best option is Windows Media Player. I would be interested to hear your opinion.

I searched and found the instruction post on how to request help so here it goes.


Approximate Purchase Date: By end of this month

Budget Range: ($600-$800) I already have the HD and the memory cards so that should make it easier

System Usage: Mainly used to watch TV and movies. Most of my movies are on a WD network drive. Also the system would need to have recording capabilities.

Parts Not Required: I recently updated the memory in my MacBook pro and would like to use the 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR3 1066 sticks in the system. Also have a WD 1TB internal drive that can go in the box. There is an apple airport express right behind the TV so no need for a wifi card.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: microcenter.com or newegg.com

My Location: Denver, CO USA

Parts Preferences: Gigabyte and Intel would be prefeered but not set in stone.

Overclocking: No

Monitor Resolution: HDMI to 1080p TV

Additional Comments: For the case I'd like to use the LIAN LI Black Aluminum PC-C37B
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Also a system with less noise as possible.

Let me know if you have any questions.

Thank You guys in advance for your help.
August 21, 2011 12:27:47 AM

Buy PARTS? Why? Go to any Best Buy store, buy a (currently there are only three that I know of) Toshiba, Sony, Asus (Dell may have one also).. Your price range Gets you an ASUS, i5 (processor) 6GB RAM, BlueRay DVD/CD R/RW and HDMI, if you wish to use it as a 'dedicated' media center (Windows Media Center is Built in to Every Copy of Windows 7) but all 'i' series processors which are capable of "Push2TV" (click 0r "push" an icon under All Programs called Intel, there are two; one called 'Intel' and another called 'Intel Corporation'. Expand the Intel Corperation folder; there you will find an icon you may wish to pin to your Start Menu, Desktop, and and/or your Taskbar (at bottom of screen). You will need to purchase an Netgear PTV-2000 (don't take a discounted PTV-1000, they are troublle ridden). Make sure to follow the PTV UPDATE notes (in the PTV 2000 box) to update all of everything named "INTEL" in your program files (if you don't or forget to, you'll know: there will be green pixels covering half your screen). No Biggie, you can always do the updates after configuring Your PTV-2000 to your choice of i3, i5, or i7, processor, laptops. Only these new brands of processors that offer this Push2TV technology, that I am aware of. You can velcro the PTV2000 to the back of your TV and assign it an Input, say, HDMI2? for instance?? And tthen you can take your laptop with you throughout the day and use it with either Netflix (7.99/mo) or Hulu Plus (7.99/mo) to watch almost everything on cable and/or network TV and then once you've got it down-pat and you get really good at filling your ques with your favorite shows/movies; you may just want to go ahead and "cut the (Cable/Satellite) Cord" and Go Media Center, All The Way :bounce:  :bounce: 

The whole machine is dual purpose and about the same price, you intend to spend, building from the ground up and it connects 2, fool proof, ways: Push2TV and or HDMI direct. It's WIN WIN

Andy
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August 22, 2011 7:47:33 PM

ifrisson said:
Hi,

My yearly promotional discount with the local company is coming up and I'm looking to replace my service with a HTPC box. I've build a hackint0sh before so I figured I would try to build a system my self. All the computers in the house are Mac but from what I'm hearing my best option is Windows Media Player. I would be interested to hear your opinion.

I searched and found the instruction post on how to request help so here it goes.


Approximate Purchase Date: By end of this month

Budget Range: ($600-$800) I already have the HD and the memory cards so that should make it easier

System Usage: Mainly used to watch TV and movies. Most of my movies are on a WD network drive. Also the system would need to have recording capabilities.

Parts Not Required: I recently updated the memory in my MacBook pro and would like to use the 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR3 1066 sticks in the system. Also have a WD 1TB internal drive that can go in the box. There is an apple airport express right behind the TV so no need for a wifi card.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: microcenter.com or newegg.com

My Location: Denver, CO USA

Parts Preferences: Gigabyte and Intel would be prefeered but not set in stone.

Overclocking: No

Monitor Resolution: HDMI to 1080p TV

Additional Comments: For the case I'd like to use the LIAN LI Black Aluminum PC-C37B
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Also a system with less noise as possible.

Let me know if you have any questions.

Thank You guys in advance for your help.





It sounds like you want to build a htpc with recording capabilities and live tv. The first piece of hardware you will need is a cable card ready tuner. I highly recommend the ceton infinitv.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

This will allow you to record up to 4 channels at once. You can also use an xbox 360 as an extender and watch live tv and all of your recorded shows. I just built a htpc with this tuner card from parts I had laying around. I was able to return my fios dvr (which records about 20 hours of hd) and 2 hd boxes which cost me a total of $32 a month in rental fees. An M-card cablecard will cost about $4 a month. I used a 3 tb hard drive which allows me to record around 350 hours of hd.

You should definitely build your own. You don't want something off the shelf loaded with crapware. A gigabyte board is a great start I use them in most of my builds, you should also consider using an AMD phenom II quad core you will save some money on your budget. I am using the onboard video on mine and it's doing just fine and uses less power and runs much cooler and quiet. Also keep in mind that if you are going to be using extenders like an xbox 360 you want to wire it into a gigabit switch. Don't try to stream hd wirelessly. You will also need an oem copy of windows 7 which has windows media center built in.

Good luck and I hope this helps

Chris
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