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Old January 30, 2008, 11:59 PM
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Default HD-HTPC Idea.

I was thinking about building a HD-HTPC build with the following system specs.

AMD Athlon 64 X2 4200+ 2.2GHz
Biostar Tforce TA690AM2
Corsair XMS2 TWIN2X2048-5400C4 2GB 2X1GB PC2-5400 DDR2-667 CL 4-4-4-12
Sapphire Radeon HD 3470 256MB DDR3
HT Omega Striker 7.1 7.1 Channel
Hauppauge Wintv HVR1600
D-LINK DWL-AG530 Wireless NIC
LG GGC-H20L BLU-RAY HD-DVD SATA
Seagate Barracuda 500GB 7200rpm IDE
42" LCD TV
Windows Vista Home Premium 32-bit

This is how I want to set it up.

1. Connect Rogers HD Cable box to 42" LCD TV via HDMI
2. Connect Rogers HD Cable box to Hauppauge Wintv HVR1600 via S-Video and Composite Audio
3. Connect Sapphire Radeon HD 3470 256MB DDR3 to the 42" LCD TV via HDMI
4. Connect HT Omega Striker 7.1 7.1 Channel to my Kenwood VR-407 Home Theatre Receiver via Optical cable.
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Old January 31, 2008, 06:05 AM
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PS3 save some money .. Banana pwned .
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Old January 31, 2008, 08:16 AM
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Sounds like a good plan

I wouldn't really use wireless though, wired is a lot better for sending videos and HD content over.

Be careful with those Rogers HD boxes, if you have the Pace model, then HDMI + Dolby Digital don't work. HDMI only does Stereo. And if you use optical (out from box) for the sound instead, you always need to change the audio setting to Dolby Digital whenever you turn the box on. Real PITA, thus I went back to component, even though I get this bluish transparent line down the center of my screen every now and then, which HDMI I did not.

A computer has many more possibilities than a PS3 as well, plus with a PC you can play back ANY format you want with just a simple codec download.
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Old January 31, 2008, 08:35 AM
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What do you plan to use for HTPC software? And do you plan on recording stuff? Just wondering how you'd change the channel.

Btw, I'd recomend some faster ram, you'll want some memory bandwidth for sure,.
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Old January 31, 2008, 08:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigpino View Post
PS3 save some money .. Banana pwned .
Um, and a PS3 can record TV? lol. Unless I missed a Serious firmware update with mine somewhere that makes it grow a few jacks on the back of it.

BALISTX, looks like a solid build you have there, should perform nicely for whatever you throw at it media-wise. Just dont forget to make it cool and quiet! A loud unslightly HTPC that runs hot isnt an HTPC at all. hehe.
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Old January 31, 2008, 09:59 AM
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If you really want to save $$ you softmod a second hand xbox (~$130) with XBMC and settle for 1080i with component output... But that's what I have now and I'm thinking about building an HTPC too... :)
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Old January 31, 2008, 10:03 AM
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Chassis wise I haven't decided yet but it's going to be quiet. Cooling solution for the CPU will passive Thermalright Ultra 90.
I will be recording TV with, playing movies via the BLU-RAY player, surfing the net. As for software I was going to use MCE in Vista.
I'll upgrade to some PC-6400 series memory.

Quote:
Be careful with those Rogers HD boxes, if you have the Pace model, then HDMI + Dolby Digital don't work.
So are you saying that I won't be use the HDMI going from the Rogers box to the TV and have the S-Video and Composite Audio to the TV Tuner for recording?

The optical audio will be for going from the sound card in the HTPC to my Kenwood Receiver.
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Old January 31, 2008, 10:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BALISTX View Post
Chassis wise I haven't decided yet but it's going to be quiet. Cooling solution for the CPU will passive Thermalright Ultra 90.
I would be careful going that route because alot of the smaller or sleeker HTPC cases don't exactly have the best airflow to allow a passive cooler to work effectively. If anything, I would stick a good fan on that Ultra 90, drop the speed down to an acceptable audio level (using a fan controller or Speedfan) and then get rid of a case fan or two to keep the noise down (since theyre normally garbage 60mm or 80mm). Any case ideas you had in mind? I've did a ton of research into them when building my MoDT HTPC.
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Old January 31, 2008, 10:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BALISTX View Post
So are you saying that I won't be use the HDMI going from the Rogers box to the TV and have the S-Video and Composite Audio to the TV Tuner for recording?

The optical audio will be for going from the sound card in the HTPC to my Kenwood Receiver.
Well I have no idea if you can have multiple outputs. But what I was talking about is that you can't get Dolby Digital over HDMI with the Rogers box. It only does stereo over HDMI and if you use the optical/coax for audio instead (while still using HDMI for video), you must manually set it to Dolby Digital in the settings every time you turn the box on, otherwise it will just put out stereo sound over optical/coax. It's a known flaw too, most people just say to always leave the box on cause then it won't "lose" the setting.
Unless of course, you don't care if your HD programs aren't in 5.1 sound, but I think you would.

A thought: Connected your Rogers box via component to your TV, connect the optical out from the Rogers box to the Optical in on the Striker, connect the Optical out on the Striker to the Kenwood. Then you should have Dolby Digital sound all around, assuming the program you use to record TV can use alternative audio inputs and can record 5.1 audio.

Just one recommendation though, ensure that TV tuner works with Vista Media Center. You might want to look into an ATI card since I believe they have 3D comb filters and what not.

Oh, another thing. If you don't already own the Striker, you may want to consider a newer model. My dad's Auzentech Xplosion (same chipset), is extremely quirky in Vista (64bit though), and now the drivers don't install at all without BSOD'ing. He ordered the Claro and it came today, so hopefully that works out in Vista, guess I'll find out soon enough.

Last edited by JD; January 31, 2008 at 10:49 AM.
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Old February 1, 2008, 11:08 AM
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I have been using an ati 650 pro, the image isn't exactly great, I'm not using HD yet, but the image is not as good as directly from the STB... is there an HD version from ATI yet?
I am using vista home premium and am quite happy with it for now, thought that my desk top would work as double duty gamer/htpc but it's not all it's cracked up to be. I am looking into a dedicated HTPC, it seems to be the way to go, hope it works out for you.

Thanks for all the info on HTPC jdrom17, I've learned alot from this forum.
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