Ok I know it's a little generic of a title but I'm looking to build a HTPC. I've had a couple in the past (2004-2005ish) and use the Playstation 3 when it became available streaming from my laptop to it however the PS3 is starting to show it's limitations. I thought I'd lay out a mission statement and you guys could help.
The most important things to me are functionality and it being relatively quiet. When I speak of functionality I don't mean the most powerful and robust supercomputer humanly possible I want something versatile enough to play whatever is thrown at it. More of a future proofing measure. I might use it for some internet surfing but honestly I find it hard to put down my laptop when it comes to that.
I do have a home server, 5TB, that will stream media to the HTPC.
I was wondering if there are any smaller desktop PCs on the market (Lenovo, Dell, Gateway, HP) that are basically good enough out of the box. The size is not all that important since I'd just put it behind the setup. Am I still better off building something myself or are the prebuilt systems good enough?