Do they have to be this ugly? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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Old 08-03-2014, 07:05 AM - Thread Starter
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Do they have to be this ugly?

I bought my HTPC 2-1/2 years ago. Very happy with it overall, but the case is ugly and I have not found anything decent to match my other components (glass fronts, 17" wide format"). Anyone found anything "classy and glassy"? Here is a photo of what I am talking about. i don't have to point out the homely HTPC do I?
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Old 08-03-2014, 07:08 AM
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the mac mini (all aluminum) and intel nuc look great. tiny, all aluminum with a piano black top finish.
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Old 08-03-2014, 07:44 AM
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The "golden age" of HTPC is OVER at least as far as high end cases go (funny, see a few "touch screen" monsters on ebay for a fraction of the original cost).

That said, based on what you have, I would recommend the nMedia 1080p. Its really cheap (about 50.00), looks awesome with the (optional) LCD display, and is has an aluminum front and glossy front to match up with your gear (would look similar to your LG blue ray/media player).

Of course, if you want a "statement", there is the (classic) Silverstone Crown CW02. Had mine for years (replaced the OEM LCD with a VFD-not pretty, but works much better). Biggest (pun intended) issue is hard to find room for it with the height (took the feet off to squeeze it into my sanus rack). That is a great design but would only complement the latest Marantz gear.
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Old 08-04-2014, 04:46 AM
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Old 08-04-2014, 06:41 AM
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There's also:

http://www.perfecthometheater.com/

Tends to be pricey, though.
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Old 08-04-2014, 06:48 AM
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Thermaltake DH 101 (that's what I have)

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Old 08-04-2014, 07:07 AM - Thread Starter
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Great help and suggestions, fellas. Much obliged!
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Old 08-04-2014, 07:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jfbar1 View Post
The "golden age" of HTPC is OVER at least as far as high end cases go (funny, see a few "touch screen" monsters on ebay for a fraction of the original cost).

That said, based on what you have, I would recommend the nMedia 1080p. Its really cheap (about 50.00), looks awesome with the (optional) LCD display, and is has an aluminum front and glossy front to match up with your gear (would look similar to your LG blue ray/media player).

Of course, if you want a "statement", there is the (classic) Silverstone Crown CW02. Had mine for years (replaced the OEM LCD with a VFD-not pretty, but works much better). Biggest (pun intended) issue is hard to find room for it with the height (took the feet off to squeeze it into my sanus rack). That is a great design but would only complement the latest Marantz gear.

I second nMediaPC 1080p, but I would stay away from the nMedia LCD unit. I just bought a $5 LED alarm clock at Target, took it out of its case, and stuck it behind the window. It fits perfectly, and you can tell time from 20 feet away.

6 TV's in the house on FiOS and we only pay $4.99/month to connect them all!!! Power to the CableCard and WMC7!!!
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Old 08-04-2014, 04:28 PM
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How many openings on that htpc case are actually used, or in use? If not many, why not mod the htpc?


You could have a glass front plate cut and mimic the McIntosh look.
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Old 08-05-2014, 07:35 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tedd View Post
How many openings on that htpc case are actually used, or in use? If not many, why not mod the htpc?


You could have a glass front plate cut and mimic the McIntosh look.
Clever idea, but where do I find a "glass blower" to make that front panel in glass?
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Old 08-05-2014, 08:21 AM
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here's mine..most complimented part of my setup
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Old 08-05-2014, 02:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sgbroimp View Post
Clever idea, but where do I find a "glass blower" to make that front panel in glass?

I'd imagine you'd want the glass water cut, if it's complex with all those openings. If you don't need to make use of all those features
of the case, then I'd simply take a piece of MDF cut to the size of the face, and give it many coats of gloss black spray paint, wet sanded
in between coats, until you have a mirror like piano finish. Then add the glass faceplate. You could also mimick the McIntosh look quite
closely with wrapping the glass edges, with suitable aluminum channel.


Way back in 2004-2005, early htpcs used the Antec 780B desktop case as a donor case. AVS'er Power did a run of black anodized face plates that
replaced the plastic 300B bezel. The new bezel attached to the front of the 780B from the inside of the case. Mine was a one off, with five
control buttons, 4 line vfd display and ir receiver, slot load dvd, and power button.


If you don't need or use all the case features, a glass shop could cut the glass and drill round openings to match new switches to pass through the glass
plate.
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Old 08-06-2014, 10:58 AM - Thread Starter
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Interesting approach! Many thanks. I like the OrigenAE's so far. Not all glass, but great looks, especially in silver.
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Old 08-07-2014, 06:21 PM
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Is not bad looking as is, but if you want a glass-like front, you maybe able to slap a piece of plexiglass on it to match. If you are on the West coast, Tap Plastic maybe able to drill the holes for you.
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Old 08-08-2014, 10:43 AM - Thread Starter
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Many thanks for that idea. At this juncture I am leaning toward an Origen Case, maybe with touch screen. They are really good looking, ok, not glass but the WAF (and MAF also) will be much higher, than for the current box.
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Old 08-08-2014, 11:07 AM
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Am still waiting for a Kinetic-controlled HTPC myself. There is one out there but looks like is stuck in experimental stage forever.
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Old 08-08-2014, 10:43 PM
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So are you saying you don't like the Silverstone? I think it's the best looking item on that shelf. Clean and matte finish.
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Old 08-09-2014, 03:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrBobb View Post
Am still waiting for a Kinetic-controlled HTPC myself. There is one out there but looks like is stuck in experimental stage forever.
Do you mean Kinect for windows? Or something else http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/kinectforwindows/
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Old 08-09-2014, 05:33 AM
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So are you saying you don't like the Silverstone? I think it's the best looking item on that shelf. Clean and matte finish.
I agree. I don't like that gaudy McIntosh equipment.
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Old 08-10-2014, 04:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sgbroimp View Post
I bought my HTPC 2-1/2 years ago. Very happy with it overall, but the case is ugly and I have not found anything decent to match my other components (glass fronts, 17" wide format"). Anyone found anything "classy and glassy"? Here is a photo of what I am talking about. i don't have to point out the homely HTPC do I?
Does that McIntosh have tubes?

Cheers, Tp

"No lawsuit ever fixed a moron."
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Old 08-11-2014, 07:28 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
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So are you saying you don't like the Silverstone? I think it's the best looking item on that shelf. Clean and matte finish.
No, I do not like it. Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder, right?
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Old 08-11-2014, 07:29 AM - Thread Starter
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Does that McIntosh have tubes?
Nope......no tubes in any of these units.
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Old 08-11-2014, 10:35 AM
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I think there's quite a few decent looking HTPC cases. Considering it's probably a low sales-volume investment for case makers, companies like Silverstone, OriginAE and others have done pretty well out of it. My personal HTPC case is a Silverstone LC16. It's a pretty big case, but fits nicely into the cabinet. I chose it because it has good airflow, lots of expansion options, a hidden DVD/BD flap and a true VFD. I really hate those cheap LCD ones. They look ok in the pictures, but in use, they're just horrible, with terrible lag.
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