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Storage And Optical

How To: Build An HTPC (With Windows 7)

Hard Drive: OCZ Apex-Series 250 GB SSD

AMD shipped our Maui box with a Seagate hard drive, which would probably be fine for most folks (and in fact, the most sensible choice given our economical hardware configuration). However, we just received OCZ’s latest Apex-series 250 GB SSD and wanted to put it to the test in a home theater environment, so that replaced the Seagate.

We went SSD for speed and silence.We went SSD for speed and silence.AMD opted for Seagate's PipelineHD drive.AMD opted for Seagate's PipelineHD drive.

In a build like this one, I wasn’t looking to store much data on the HTPC itself, so the pricey 250 GB model would be wholly unnecessary. Even a small 80 GB Intel X25-M would have done the trick. Rather, I have a 4 TB Thecus NAS/iSCSI networked enclosure that holds all of my documents (via SAN), music, movies, etc. The HTPC would be attached to that unit for all of its major storage needs. Centralizing is truly the way to go on a home network.

Optical: Pioneer BD202MR BD-ROM

AMD shipped the Maui machine with a Pioneer BD202MR Blu-ray drive, which we’d consider the only way to fly with an HTPC setup like this one. Getting the drive cooperating with PowerDVD was a bit of a challenge, but we’ll get into that later.

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