I purchased an ATV3 for use as an HTPC a while back and can't wait any longer for a jailbreak. I've been stuck using my TV's DLNA client which is limited in functionality and file formats.
Although I have plenty of experience with computer building, I don't have the time these days and would like something retail that just works. I don't want to think about the hardware on this computer... I already have 3 other home builds that suffer from various stability/compatibility issues.
I'm interested in installing PLEX/XBMC on a retail machine if possible. I need one HDMI out, maybe optical out as well. Infrared remote, gigabit wired Ethernet and I'd like it to handle full 1080p across all file formats and codecs along with surround sound and 3D. My most important factors are speed and stability. Noise, size and fancy cases aren't important as it will be installed in a closet. This computer's sole responsibility is video browsing and playing video from network storage. No video storage, no DVR/Tuner, or anything else needed.
The video files are stored on my Synology DS1511+ NAS, the HTPC will be connected to the NAS via gigabit ethernet and a gigabit switch in-between. HDMI will connect to my Panasonic TC-P60GT30.
My budget for this is in the few hundred $ range. I'm flexible, but I don't think this should be too expensive. Any suggestions on what I should be looking at? Is anything retail worth it? Any custom builders that I could just buy something good from? Any other comments?
Thanks guys, much appreciated!