New HTPC build for dedicated theater - AVS Forum
Forum Jump: 
Reply
 
Thread Tools
post #1 of 41 Old 01-06-2014, 01:54 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
robfive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
I am building a new HTPC for my dedicated theater. This will be my first pc build and I am still trying to figure a few things out. Most of the hardware has been purchased based off of recommendations I have read here on the forum and Assassin's guide. I am awaiting delivery of the final pieces before I commence the build and begin the software setup. My theater has been completed for about a year now and it includes a JVC RS40 projector shooting on a 125" CenterStage XD screen so image quality is top priority.

I will use this pc to:
Store and watch my Blu-ray, HD-DVD, and DVD movies (rip using MakeMKV)
Watch and record OTA HDTV
Stream Netflix
Compress movies to be used on my portable devices (iphone, MS Surface RT)

I do not intend to use this pc to host files to be viewed in other rooms of the house.


Hardware/software purchased:
Intel i5 4670K ($199)
Asrock Z87 extreme3 ($85)
Corsair Ballistix Sport 4GB ($50)
Samsung 840 EVO 120GB ($99)
Western Digital Green 2TB (88)
Corsair CX600 ($38)
Silverstone GD08 ($140)
LG OEM bluray drive ($55)
Windows 8.1 Pro OEM ($129)
WMC ($10)
Hauppauge HVR-1600 (already had)

I am not sure which frontend to go with but I am leaning towards WMC/MB. I originally bought windows 7 but switched to 8.1 when I read that the Netflix app was the only way to get 5.1 audio. I plan to follow Assassin's guide to setup WMC/MB.

My questions right now are:
1. Are there any recommendations for hardware or software before I start building?
2. Will WMC/MB be a good frontend choice given my needs?
3. Any other words of wisdom?

Thanks for your help.
robfive is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 41 Old 01-06-2014, 02:39 PM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Mfusick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Western MA
Posts: 20,972
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 51 Post(s)
Liked: 592
Congrats on your purchase. You seem to have a good grasp on things. biggrin.gif

I would start by reading the last few thread of people who basically did the exact same thing as you. The two Nick's and Larry also have dedicated theaters and walked your path recently so you should start here and then just ask questions as they arise.

Nick Buol:
http://www.avsforum.com/t/1492107/help-me-build-a-htpc-for-less-than-800-just-movies-and-music/0_100

Larry M (firepower theater)
http://www.avsforum.com/t/1505441/critique-my-htpc-build-plan/0_100

Nickshitachi:
http://www.avsforum.com/t/1500287/hardware-bought-now-help-me-assemble-this-htpc-raid-dvr-server/0_100

This one was good on a silent PC take too:
http://www.avsforum.com/t/1505441/critique-my-htpc-build-plan/200_100#post_24161747

Short answer is MB is a good option. With MB server it should allow you to try out MB theater as well as MB classic so you can run both and decide if you want to be inside WMC. MBtheater has live TV coming really soon. PLEX is another good option, with some cool features.

-


"Too much is almost enough. Anything in life worth doing is worth overdoing. Moderation is for cowards."
Mfusick is offline  
post #3 of 41 Old 01-07-2014, 07:52 AM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
robfive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Thanks Mfusik, I have been reading those threads for the last couple weeks. I was impressed to see several other builds going on right now with such similar hardware.

Yesterday I was surprised to find that my power supply came in a day early so I was able to assemble the computer last night. I got the bios setup and windows 8.1 installed. Thankfully everything went smoothly except for inadvertently disabling the USB ports during the initial bios setup. I was able to reset the CMOS and try again. I'll get it online tonight to get all the updates for windows.

I had not looked into Plex because I thought it was more suited for networking and sharing content. I'll check it out to see how it would work in my application.
robfive is offline  
post #4 of 41 Old 01-07-2014, 01:10 PM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Mfusick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Western MA
Posts: 20,972
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 51 Post(s)
Liked: 592
As a front end in a theater I think MB theater, XBMC or MeediOS might make a better front end since they have nicer eye candy.

In the case of MB3 it can do lots more other places too (phones, tablets, roku, away from home, etc)

-


"Too much is almost enough. Anything in life worth doing is worth overdoing. Moderation is for cowards."
Mfusick is offline  
post #5 of 41 Old 01-09-2014, 09:23 AM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
robfive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
I cannot get my secondary hard drive to show up in explorer. I installed my 2TB HD from my previous computer (running XP) and it shows up in device manager but does not show up in explorer. I only used this drive for about a month in the previous computer so I am OK if I need to wipe it clean before adding to my new HTPC but I could not even figure out how to do that last night. I will read some more tutorials today and try it again tonight.

I also downloaded the windows updates and WMC. Once I get my secondary drive operational I will try out MB3.

I also got the Netflix app and it looks great. For me it was worth dealing with Windows 8.1 in order to get 1080p and 5.1. We have been streaming a lot from Netflix lately and the wife would have been less than impressed if video and audio took a hit compared to our current PS3 option.
robfive is offline  
post #6 of 41 Old 01-09-2014, 09:32 AM
Advanced Member
 
mrfattbill's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 783
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 58
Quote:
Originally Posted by robfive View Post

I cannot get my secondary hard drive to show up in explorer. I installed my 2TB HD from my previous computer (running XP) and it shows up in device manager but does not show up in explorer. I only used this drive for about a month in the previous computer so I am OK if I need to wipe it clean before adding to my new HTPC but I could not even figure out how to do that last night. I will read some more tutorials today and try it again tonight.

I also downloaded the windows updates and WMC. Once I get my secondary drive operational I will try out MB3.

I also got the Netflix app and it looks great. For me it was worth dealing with Windows 8.1 in order to get 1080p and 5.1. We have been streaming a lot from Netflix lately and the wife would have been less than impressed if video and audio took a hit compared to our current PS3 option.

Go into disk management and make sure it has a drive letter assigned to it.

Bill
mrfattbill is offline  
post #7 of 41 Old 01-09-2014, 09:33 AM
Advanced Member
 
Andy_Steb's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 988
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 13 Post(s)
Liked: 140
Sounds like you need to assign it a drive letter.

Control panel> Administrative tools> Computer Management
Storage> Disk Management.
Mfusick likes this.

Andy_Steb is offline  
post #8 of 41 Old 01-09-2014, 12:40 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
robfive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Thanks for the suggestion mrfattbill and Andy_Steb. I'll try that when I get home tonight.

Andy, it's nice to get support from a local.
robfive is offline  
post #9 of 41 Old 01-09-2014, 12:50 PM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Mfusick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Western MA
Posts: 20,972
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 51 Post(s)
Liked: 592
Two Saints fans ?

-


"Too much is almost enough. Anything in life worth doing is worth overdoing. Moderation is for cowards."
Mfusick is offline  
post #10 of 41 Old 01-09-2014, 01:08 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
robfive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mfusick View Post

Two Saints fans ?

WHO DAT?!
Mfusick and JackDiesel14 like this.
robfive is offline  
post #11 of 41 Old 01-09-2014, 02:53 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
robfive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
I got windows 8.1 to finally register the 2TD HDD. I had to go into Computer Management and "import foreign disks..."

Now I can start WMC and MB with some media already in hand.

Thanks for the help.
robfive is offline  
post #12 of 41 Old 01-09-2014, 02:55 PM
Senior Member
 
Spec4's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Lynnwood, WA
Posts: 213
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 18
GO HAWKS! tongue.gif
Mfusick likes this.
Spec4 is offline  
post #13 of 41 Old 01-10-2014, 06:43 AM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Mfusick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Western MA
Posts: 20,972
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 51 Post(s)
Liked: 592
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spec4 View Post

GO HAWKS! tongue.gif

Seahawks vs patriots would be a great Super Bowl

-


"Too much is almost enough. Anything in life worth doing is worth overdoing. Moderation is for cowards."
Mfusick is offline  
post #14 of 41 Old 01-10-2014, 08:03 AM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
robfive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Before my thread gets totally derailed by discussion of teams I don't care about I have another HTPC question.

I have a short custom theater intro that I would like to be played automatically before any movies that I show. Is there a good way to do this in MB or one of the other frontends? This feature would easily sway me to use one over the other.
robfive is offline  
post #15 of 41 Old 01-10-2014, 08:33 AM
AVS Special Member
 
pittsoccer33's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Pittsburgh (East Liberty)
Posts: 1,742
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 20 Post(s)
Liked: 176
Check out XBMC Cinema Experience http://wiki.xbmc.org/index.php?title=Add-on:Cinema_Experience
Quote:
The Cinema Experience script will add that WOW factor to your home theater, and give you a true Cinema Experience! Yes, you will still have to supply the popcorn and drinks. There's not much we can do about that. This script allows you to play trivia slides, movie trailers and other videos (intros and outros) that will help you get that Cinema Experience - just like at the local theater. Trivia slides can be any JPG or PNG image (many Movie Trivia, Stills, and Movie Fact packs already exist). The Feature Presentation Movie(s) must be in your Video Library. Cinema Experience can stream trailers, download them from Apple Movie Trailers, or play locally stored trailer(s) that are on your system or in your Movie Library.

My HTPC front end set up
Integration for whole home ATSC, CableCARD, FM radio, Blu-Ray, HD-DVD, DVD, VHS control & capture, video games, and archived & streaming media playback
Mironto's Panasonic plasma black level restoration guide
Restore the initial MLL on a 2009 Panasonic plasma
pittsoccer33 is online now  
post #16 of 41 Old 01-10-2014, 10:26 AM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
robfive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by pittsoccer33 View Post

Check out XBMC Cinema Experience http://wiki.xbmc.org/index.php?title=Add-on:Cinema_Experience

Wow, that is the coolest thing I have seen all day. I am digging around to see if it can be incorperrated with playing blu-ray discs or if the feature presentation has to be saved on the hard drive.
robfive is offline  
post #17 of 41 Old 01-10-2014, 08:32 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
robfive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
So I would be testing out MB and XBMC right now but I cannot get audio out of my MB's HDMI port. Instead the audio is being routed through the DVI port. This is not cool.
robfive is offline  
post #18 of 41 Old 01-10-2014, 08:35 PM
AVS Addicted Member
 
assassin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 12,894
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Liked: 205
assassin is offline  
post #19 of 41 Old 01-10-2014, 08:49 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
robfive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by assassin View Post

Is it a new build? If so make sure you have all the drivers installed.

It's a new build. I went to Asrock to download the new drivers as outlined in your guide but maybe I messed something up. I am downloading the latest REALTEK driver as I type.
robfive is offline  
post #20 of 41 Old 01-10-2014, 08:58 PM
AVS Addicted Member
 
assassin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 12,894
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Liked: 205
Quote:
Originally Posted by robfive View Post

It's a new build. I went to Asrock to download the new drivers as outlined in your guide but maybe I messed something up. I am downloading the latest REALTEK driver as I type.

Assuming its an Intel CPU you have to go to the Intel website and download the appropriate CPU (HDMI) drivers.
assassin is offline  
post #21 of 41 Old 01-10-2014, 09:14 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
robfive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by assassin View Post

Assuming its an Intel CPU you have to go to the Intel website and download the appropriate CPU (HDMI) drivers.

I searched for "HDMI" in the intel drivers and only came up with a compliance testing driver, NUC audio driver, and a software development kit driver. I ran the auto update check tool on intel's website and it stated:

Graphics Driver
Product Detected
Current Driver Installed
This device is unknown or unsupported. Please contact the manufacturer for possible updates.

How do I find the intel HDMI driver?
robfive is offline  
post #22 of 41 Old 01-10-2014, 09:15 PM
AVS Addicted Member
 
assassin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 12,894
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Liked: 205
No. Download all the drivers from Intel for your CPU. The integrated video (HDMI) is built into the CPU chip.
assassin is offline  
post #23 of 41 Old 01-10-2014, 09:45 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
robfive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by assassin View Post

No. Download all the drivers from Intel for your CPU. The integrated video (HDMI) is built into the CPU chip.

I tried that but the intel site just tells me to consult the manufacturer for possible updates for the Graphics Driver, Intel Chipset Software Installation Utility (Chipset INF), Audio Driver for Intel Desktop Board, Wireless Networking (WiFi), and Wired Networking. I went through the Manage Audio Devices application and check for driver updates for realtek and intel audio there but it states that the drivers are up to date. Since you told me to download all the CPU drivers from INTEL I also manually searched for i5 drivers for windows 8.1 and only came up with a generic Processor Identification Utility. How do I find the drivers you are referring to? I apologize for what seems to be a very basic question. I appreciate your help.
robfive is offline  
post #24 of 41 Old 01-11-2014, 05:23 AM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Mfusick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Western MA
Posts: 20,972
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 51 Post(s)
Liked: 592
Use the ones from the mfg website then

-


"Too much is almost enough. Anything in life worth doing is worth overdoing. Moderation is for cowards."
Mfusick is offline  
post #25 of 41 Old 01-11-2014, 06:11 AM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
robfive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Sounds good. I'll try that again.
robfive is offline  
post #26 of 41 Old 01-11-2014, 06:32 AM
AVS Addicted Member
 
assassin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 12,894
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Liked: 205
The ones from the website will be outdated. There was a bug where the HDMI wasn't working in some of the early Intel drivers for Haswell.

Try here instead (no idea why Intel makes it so hard to find their drivers): https://downloadcenter.intel.com/Detail_Desc.aspx?agr=Y&DwnldID=22533&lang=eng
assassin is offline  
post #27 of 41 Old 01-11-2014, 06:35 AM
AVS Addicted Member
 
assassin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 12,894
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Liked: 205
Incredibly annoying. Apparently you can't link to their drivers.

Here is what you need to navigate to...

assassin is offline  
post #28 of 41 Old 01-11-2014, 11:04 AM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
robfive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Well I updated the drivers tried using the disk that came with the MB (Asrock Extreme3) and the audio and VGA drivers reverted to an older driver but something happened in the process that now allows me to output audio over HDMI. However, it is only 2-channel.

I decided to go ahead and download XBMC and test it out. I downloaded it but every time I try to run the program I get a dialog box stating "XBMC has stopped working" and the program closes. Next I tried Media server and media browser but I get the same error message when I start the program.

If that weren't enough I am now getting there weird Xs on some of the images in internet explorer. Not the red Xs where the image should be but rather a black cris-cross over the images themselves (as shown in the attached image). I did not imagine I would have this many issues building and setting up a HTPC. I'm not even close to having this thing operational, yet alone working smoothly.

robfive is offline  
post #29 of 41 Old 01-11-2014, 11:09 AM
AVS Addicted Member
 
assassin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 12,894
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Liked: 205
Download the drivers from Intel and install them. Do not use the ones from your motherboard.
assassin is offline  
post #30 of 41 Old 01-11-2014, 02:03 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
robfive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Thanks Assassin for your link to the correct INTEL driver. Everything is running well now. For some reason INTEL HD audio only believes my pre/pro can handle 2-channel audio but I am sure I can fix that down the line. The mysterious Xs are gone from IE, and XBMC and MB are not shutting down immediately when I launch those applications.
robfive is offline  
Reply Home Theater Computers

User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off