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post #61 of 108 Old 01-24-2007, 12:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by syphon00 View Post

how do you like [the Zalman HD135]

Love it, aesthetically as well as performance-wise to the extent that makes sense.
Quote:
Originally Posted by syphon00 View Post

have you replaced the stock fans, read that they're loud
also read that the case does not have very good airflow so it gets pretty hot especially if you load up all 5 harddrives. any thoughts?

I'm using the stock fans and have them set at 25% using the case's fan controller. In my setup, the fans get audible at 35% and at 100% are distinctly distracting. I'm using 3 HDDs located in the rack on the powersupply/fan side and 1 DVD + 1 HDD in the centre rack. I've completely removed the rack on the other side (away from powersupply/fans) to allow the fan on my LeadTek 7900GS to create enough airflow to prevent heat build up. Even with a P4, the case temp stays in the 40ies Celsius.
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post #62 of 108 Old 02-10-2007, 03:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tarzan_nojane View Post

Just getting started, but just stumbled onto an awesome (and beautiful) PC alternative to the Mac mini:

Acer Aspire ASL310-EC352M Minitower (CompUSA $319.99 after $210 rebate thru 1/13)
- upgraded Socket 775 Celeron D to E6400 Core 2 Duo 2.13GHz for $160 on eBay
- Additional PC-4200 DDR2 512MB chip for a total of 1GB RAM.
- MCE 2005 includes available $15 upgrade to Vista Home Premium
- System Chipset: Intel 946GZ Express
- 160GB SATA-150 Western Digital 3.5" 1/3 height hard drive
- DL DVD+RW Drive
- Card Slot: Memory Stick/Memory Stick PRO/Secure Digital(SD)/MMC/xD
- USB 2.0: 2 in front, 4 in back
- FireWire: 1 x 4-pin in front, 1 x 6-pin in back
- Video Chipset: Intel GMA 3000 (128MB Shared Memory)
- Video Out: DVI + VGA
- Gigabit Ethernet LAN
- Built-in Atheros 802.11b/g with external S-connector for antenna
- H x W x D: 2.4 in x 9.8 in x 7.9 in

All of this in a sleek brushed aluminum case that incorporates quiet (27dB) dual fans. Two screws and about 15 seconds to completely open up this box. Try that with a Mini!!!

The internal mini-PCI slot accomodates the AOpen LR-351 ATSC tuner card ($75), and the shielding on the back of the case indicates where the cutouts for the FM, TV, AV, S-Video, and digital audio output jacks go when this tuner card is intalled at the factory (not available in the US).

As soon as I get the Microsoft MCE remote and hook this all up to the Panasonic 32LX50, I will update as to the particulars on video settings/performance and so forth.


tarzan,

Any updates on this unit. I have it, but with the C2D, and was considering whether to get the ATSC tuner card in lieu of the Pinnacle USB ATSC tuner I'm currently using.

The Future ain't what it used to be...
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post #63 of 108 Old 02-10-2007, 07:48 AM
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vferrari: I tried this out a while back. The problem is that

1) There is only 1 mini pci slot so if youre using the wifi card you have to go usb. The antenna whole it uses is also the antenna whole for the wifi. But if youre hardwired nevermind.

2) NTSC is software encoding. Hardware encoding lets the capture card do the work and not your CPU thus allowing your PC to run at lower temps/fan speed.

3) At that price youre better off getting a usb tuner that supports hardware encoding and has dual ntsc tuners. This is only 1 tuner so your live/recorded tv options are limited.

The only really exciting thing, for me, about the card was the fact that it was internal so it makes things all in one. And this unit is available in the us. You can order it direct from AOpen or from other online venders. I purchased my unit from office depot only because they were one of the few with a decent return policy.

I would suggest the same and purchase it from a place with a good return policy. I wrote a quick review of it as well on the aopen forums if you visit that as well.
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post #64 of 108 Old 02-13-2007, 02:58 AM
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jjj,

Thanks for the reply. The Pinnacle USB ATSC thingy seems to be working really well, including encoding to DIVX on the fly (wish it had a QAM tuner though) so I think I'll go with that on the Acer (need the dual core CPU vs. the Celeron for this thing to work as it is a processing resource hog).

The Future ain't what it used to be...
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post #65 of 108 Old 02-13-2007, 03:14 AM
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Foxconn 945P7AA-8EKRS2 motherboard (Intel 945 chipset)
Intel Pentium D 3.4Ghz
2Gb DDR2 RAM
WinFast GeForce 7950GT 256Mb PCI-E graphics card
4 internal IDE HDD's
2 external USB2 HDD's
Sony BWU-100A Blu-ray writer
Microsoft XBox HD-DVD drive (USB)
onboard realtek audio (using SPDIF output)

the gfx card has 2x DVI outputs, one is connected to an analogue VGA monitor (with DVI -> VGA adapter), the other is connected to my Toshiba LCD HDTV via DVI->HDMI with HDCP

I watch everything through media center/centre, I have no problems with anything, including x264 and the BBC's MBAFF h.264
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post #66 of 108 Old 02-13-2007, 05:54 AM
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vferrari: Im now using the HDHomerun for qam HD viewing. It displays/records fine on my system. You may want to try that as well if you are looking for qam via mce.
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post #67 of 108 Old 02-13-2007, 09:50 AM
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Hardware:
Silverstone LC10 black
Asus A7N8X Deluxe
AMD XP1700+ with stock cooler
1GB DDR 333
Nvidia 6200GT fanless AGP
Western Digital 320GB + Seagate 400GB SATA drives
Hauppauge PVR 150
Airstar HD5000 HD-Tuner
IR blaster + transmitter diode hooked to IR diode of dish receiver for channel selection
SPDIF out through Coax from onboard sound card
DVI to HDMI cable for front projector video feed

Software:
Fedora Core 6 with custom 2.6.20 kernel
Mythtv with mythvideo, mythdvd, mythmusic, mythgame using xmame (Galaga rocks)

Runs very nice and smooth on satellite SD transmissions, but has slight problems when viewing OTA HD content. Processor is not fast enough to always keep up with HD content. Some stuttering occurs every once in a while.

Thomas

Go Bears!
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post #68 of 108 Old 02-13-2007, 10:12 AM
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Hardware
Origen AE X11 case
Seasonic 500w ps
Core 2 Duo 6400 processor
2gb ddr2ram
2x500 barracudas drive
1x225 wd drive
8800gts video card
pvr-500 tuner
HDHomeRun - coming today woot !
GIGABYTE GA-965G-DS3 motherboard using onboard sound
Vista home premium

Software
PowerDVD ultra
Liteon 20x dvdrw
xbox hd-dvd drive
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post #69 of 108 Old 02-13-2007, 07:54 PM
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@Scummer

A beefier video card might compensate for the choppy HD playback. The 6000
series AGP cards lack some of the more advanced video accel functions that the
7000 series offers. If you ever get a chance to try a 7600GT or X1600/X1650, it
will be interesting to see your results. Just a thought.

C Snyder
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post #70 of 108 Old 02-13-2007, 11:34 PM
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Hardware:
Lian Li PC-V300B
Enermax 460W PS
DFI RS482
Athlon64 x2 3800 @ 2500MHz
Zalman CNPS 8000
2 GB OCZ Gold PC3200 (2,3,2,5,2T)
ATi X1300
Chaintech AV-710
Plextor PX-712A
Seagate 7200.9 80 GB Boot drive
AMC Internal Media Card Reader (supports SDHC 2.0)
Gyration keyboard/remote

For data storage I have a 1.2 TB RAID 5 NAS running Linux (FC6) on a gigabit network.

Software:
WinXP Pro
BeyondTV 4.5
DivX Pro 6
Cyberlink Deluxe 7 w/ audio pack
Alcohol 120%
USB-UIRT
HIP
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post #71 of 108 Old 02-14-2007, 12:03 AM
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Update on the Acer L310 microtower...

Have been enjoying the setup posted above for a few weeks now.

I am now running C2D E6400, 2GB DDR2-667 hooked up to the Panny TC32LX50 LCD TV 32" widescreen (DVI to HDMI). Manually set the BIOS for 256MB video memory (was 128). Then it took some tinkering to figure out the correct PC resolution (list all modes and select 1280x720, 60Hz) along with Intel Video controls adjusted to eliminate the 5-8% overscan I was getting in Windows.

The unit is not silent, though fan noise is only really noticeable when playing back hard drive movies at fast speed. More noticeable is the hard drive being accessed - will carefully select any future upgrade to a larger drive. I will have to say, that its stock Western Digital has outstanding scores according to PC Wizard 2006 tests.

Was pleased to discover the MCE My Movies add-on, which nicely displayed and arranged (courtesy of IMDB.com) the collection of DVD movies I have been archiving on an external FW drive. A little tinkering with the My Movies database in Microsoft Access was needed to manually input archives of TV series DVDs which didn't seem to show up automatically or lend them selves to being added by the Manage Collection utility.

I got the 2004 edition of the Microsoft MCE Remote which lacks the programmable TV on/off and volume controls (and the other mysterious 2005 bugs). Remote sends the Acer into standby very quickly, but then the USB receiver also goes to sleep and doesn's allow the Remote to wake the system. Initially, I thought it awoke from sleep once or twice, but I can't say for sure. So the glitch right now is that I have to "wake" the system by pressing the on/off switch on the front of the Acer. (and then there is that bright blue LED which flashes incessantly while sleeping...Apple sure got it right with the slowly "throbbing" sleep indicator)

correction - joeyjoeyjoey: "There is only 1 mini pci slot so if youre using the wifi card you have to go usb..."
The Acer comes with a really really small wifi card "under" the mini PCI slot for the LR351 tuner. One does have to dig out the Dremel and add hole(s) for the tuner card's input/outputs.
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post #72 of 108 Old 02-14-2007, 08:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigsnyder View Post

@Scummer

A beefier video card might compensate for the choppy HD playback. The 6000
series AGP cards lack some of the more advanced video accel functions that the
7000 series offers. If you ever get a chance to try a 7600GT or X1600/X1650, it
will be interesting to see your results. Just a thought.

C Snyder

I do have a 7600GT at home, but only as a PCI-E card I might have to wait until the 7600GT cards maybe drop below 80$ and then give it a shot.

The X1600/X1650 cards are not supported by Linux for mpeg2 HW acceleration. So all ATI cards are out of the question.

Go Bears!
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post #73 of 108 Old 02-14-2007, 10:51 AM
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Finally got my media center server and video distribution network setup and working great so I figured I would post and configuration update here.

My goal in putting this system togehter was several-fold. First, I wanted to Migrate my existing DVD collection (1000+ DVDs) over to an electronic format that could easily be distributed throughout the home. The second was the desire to have a PVR capable of both HDTV and SDTV that would allow me to share the recorded programs through the house as opposed to my DirecTV Tivo which each had their own recording programs and could not share them between rooms.

In addition, I was already in need of a multi-core server that would run multiple Virtualized Servers and act as a backup for the remaining systems in my home network (I also do some mission critical Web/Mail hosting and file archiving for Small businesses on the side). I decided to integrate this server into the home media network and act as my storage box.

Without Further Ado, here is my configuration (I can get some pics of the setup if anyone is interested).


Server Room
Media Center Server
  • Antec Sonata II Case
  • MSI 945P Neo3-F Motherboard
  • Intel Core 2 Duo E6300 processor
  • 1GB Corsair RAM
  • Lite-On 16X DVD Multi-format Drive
  • 1x 80GB Western Digital SATA HDD
  • 3x 500GB Western Digital SATA II drives
  • 1x Hauppague PVR-500 Tuner (DirecTV Standard Definition)
  • 3x Vboxx Communications Cat's Eye 150 HDTV tuners (OTA HDTV)
  • 2x VBoxx Communications USB-A-3560 USB HDTV Tuners (OTA HDTV)
  • NVidia GeForce 7600GT Video Card

DVD Archive Server/Backup Server
  • Coolermaster Stacker 810 Full Size Tower Case
  • Asus P5B-VM G965 Motherboard
  • Intel Core Duo QX6700 Quad Core Processor
  • 4 GB Crucial Technology Ballistix RAM
  • 8x Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD5000KS 500GB SATA II Drives (Storage)
  • 1x 80GB Western Digital SATA Drive (OS Load)
  • HighPoint RocketRAID 2320 8 Channel PCI Express to SATA II RAID Controller

Theater
HTPC DVD Player (Will retire with Transcode 360 works right)
  • Antec Fusion HTPC Case
  • Intel DG965OT VIIV Motherboard
  • Intel Core 2 Duo E6300 processor
  • 2GB Crucial Ballistix RAM
  • Asus EAX1600XT SILENT/TVD Radeon X1600XT PCI Express 256MB DDR3 Video Card
  • 1x 80GB Western Digital SATA drive
  • Lite-On 16x Multi-Format DVD Writer

Remaining Components
  • Theater HD-DVD/Media Center Extender: XBox 360 with HD-DVD Drive
  • Master Bedroom Media Center Extender: XBox 360
  • Guest Bedroom Media Center Extender: XBox 360
  • Exercise Room Media Center Extender: Linksys V1 Extender (No Digital TV)

General Server/Network Configuration
The Server room is exhaust vented and cooled to a constant 70 Degrees Farenheit. All machines are connected to an Ultra 1500VA (900WATT) Battery backup system, allowing for about 1 hour of runtime in a power outage.

The home network is based on a Comcast 8MB down/768Kbps Up Internet connection with a Verizon DSL live backup connection. All rooms in the home are wired for Networking and connected to one of two 8-Port D-Link Gigabit switches. I also have wireless 802.11G access via a LinkSys Access point for my Notebook computers and several tablet/wireless monitors.

Each of the XBox 360s and the Theater HTPC are connected to the wired network.

Media Center Configuration
My Media Center Server is running Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005. I had about 1.5TB of local storage for Television programs. I am also running the MyMovies add-on to distribute my DVDs to the XBox 360 Media Center Extenders. Transcode 360 is broken at the moment, so this is not working, but should be fixed soon.

The server is connected to a UHF antenna to pick up OTA HDTV as well as two DirecTV receivers that handle all other programming.

The HTPC in the Theater was my old DVD Server and is still being used to play movies via MyMovies on the TV or projector. I will no longer use this box once Transcode 360 is properly distributing movies.

Home Automation
My home is wired for X10 (about 85% of the lights, appliances, etc.) and controlled via a slew of wireless remotes (several in each room) and a Tablet in the kitchen and a Wireless PC that both connect to a webserver provided by my home automation software, HomeSeer2. I have a bunch of keypads throughout the home that run scenes like Movie Time (Dims or turns off all lighting) Downstairs Off (shuts everything down for night time), etc. I have also automated the lighting in my Crown Moulding, below my bathroom cabines and above my kitchen cabinets. Most of this lighting is dimmed to a level that does not take away from the movie (Crown Moulding lights are off) but still allows people to get to the bathroom or kitchen (for snacks) without turning on lights in the theater. My outdoor lighting is also setup to come on at sunset and go off at sunrise.

Well, that is about it. I am pretty happy with everything. I am still working out some kinks with a few parts, such as reliability of the USB HDTV tuners and some of the X10 signals but I am overall very happy with the setup.

Sorry this was so long but I'm like a proud Daddy and, now that it is almost done, I had to tell someone about it.

Shan
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post #74 of 108 Old 02-14-2007, 11:43 AM
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Antec Overture II Case
Asus P5B-E MoBo
E6600 Core2 (Blue Orb Sink/Fan)
2GB of Corsair Ram (2x1gb for Dual Channel)
EVGA 8800 GTS
WD 36gb Raptor (OS Lives here)
WD 500gb SATA II
Plextor SATA DVD\\RW
Xbox360 HD-DVD (PowerDVD HD Ultra)
Nvidia DualTV tuner
Divco FusionHDTV5 PCI-e Tuner
Onboard Soundmax HD sound passing through to a Sony HT-DDW700 HTS

Vista Home Prem.

Mits WD-52525 DLP

First HTPC and still tweaking on it. Been a hell of a learning experiance.

Just a simple man.
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post #75 of 108 Old 02-15-2007, 09:19 AM
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shan, can i come live at your place?

I have a similar "total system" in mind but i'll be skimping in a lot more areas than you unfortunately That woud've cost some serious mula all up, Im green with envy!
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post #76 of 108 Old 02-15-2007, 09:42 AM
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It was a little spendy, but less so that you might think. Using X10 for automation, for example, saves tons over a hardwired system or even RadioRA or similar competitors and once I have the additional boosters in place, relaiability should be around 99% (Insteon is even cheaper and more reliable out of the box). The worst cost was the XBox 360s. $400 for Media Center Extenders is a bit out there, but they are all that's there for now. When you can get a low end DVD player with MCE integrated for a $150 or so, it will be a lot more reasonable.

I also built up the server to covert my existing DVD collection to media files, which takes a lot of space. A person could easily start smaller if that was not a goal.

Good luck with your system. Keep us in the loop as you get it together.

Shan
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post #77 of 108 Old 02-15-2007, 10:45 AM
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Here's my HTPC and Media Server setup:

The front end HTPC (see attached image) was built using:

Zalman HD135 Case, Intel Core2Duo E6600, Intel DG965WH motherboard, 4 Gb RAM, 320 GB HD, NEC ND-3550A DVD Drive, ATI HD 5670 1 GB video card and a OCZ 700W Power Supply. The OS is Windows 7 64bit with Windows Media Center and the MediaBrowser plugin, Media Control Plugin and the Shark007 codec pack

The back end consists of two rack mounted media servers (see attached images)
MediaServer 1:
RM4U4018-SATAII-P650WRPS case from Rackmountpro.com, Intel Core2Duo E6600, Intel DG965WH motherboard, 4 Gb RAM, 3Ware 9590SE-16ML RAID controller, 320 GB HD for the OS and sixteen 750 GB SATA II hard drives in a hot pluggable RAID 5 volume of 11 Terabytes. The OS is openSuSE Linux 11.0 running SAMBA to make the RAID volume available as a Windows share to the HTPC.
MediaServer 2:
Norco RPC-4224 4U Rackmount Server Case with 24 hot-swappable SATA drive bays, Single Intel Xeon Quad-Core E5506 2.13GHz processor, Tyan S7002 motherboard, 8 GB RAM, Areca 1880-24 RAID controller, 160 GB external HD for OS and six 3TB drives for a 12TB RAID 6 volume. The OS is openSuSE Linux 12.0 running SAMBA to make the volume available as a Windows share.

The network switch connecting the HTPC and MediaServers is an Avaya ERS 5520-48-PWR with 48 GigE ports.The HTPC is connected via HDMI to a bedroom Pioneer PDP-5072HD Plasma TV and a living room Sony XBR-52HX909 LED TV. The tuner/amp is an Onkyo TX-SR701. 
My DVR is a Tivo Series3HD, with two CableCards. The MediaServers and other computing devices are protected by a CyberPower PR3000 UPS.

To control the TVs, HTPC, Tivo and Amp/Tuner, I use a few Universal Remote MX-850 and MX-450 RF remotes.

My current media collection has approx. 1500 movies (720p & 1080p) and 75 TV shows using about 10 TB on Mediaserver1 and 6 TB on MediaServer2.


Home Theater/Entertainment Center




HTPC

LL


MediaServer 1 & 2



LL
LEAD Technologies Inc. V1.01





MediaBrowser Plugin for Windows Media Center:
































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post #78 of 108 Old 02-15-2007, 11:39 AM
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And I thought I had a lot of disk space.

Nice looking setup there!
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post #79 of 108 Old 02-15-2007, 11:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sathyganesh View Post

I built my HTPC and Media Server recently and thought I would share what I did, if anyone needs ideas:

The front end HTPC (see attached image) was built using:

Zalman HD135 Case, Intel Core2Duo E6600, Intel DG965WH motherboard, 4 Gb RAM, 320 GB Hard Drive, NEC ND-3550A DVD Drive, Soundblaster Xi-Fi Xtreme Music, Asus EN7600GT/HTDI/256MB video card with HDMI and a ZM460B-APS Power Supply.

I use Windows XP MCE 2005 with the free and awesome "My Movies" plugin and ZoomPlayer with the CoreAVC, NVIDIA PureVideo, Hali H.264 Splitter and FFDshow codecs. Moving to Vista soon..


The back end rack mounted Media Server (see attached image) consists of:

RM4U4018-SATAII-P650WRPS case from Rackmountpro.com, Intel Core2Duo E6600, Intel DG965WH motherboard, 4 Gb RAM, 3Ware 9590SE-16ML RAID controller, 320 GB HD for the OS and ten Seagate 750 GB SATA II hard drives in a hot pluggable RAID 5 volume of 6.1 Terabytes. The OS is openSuSE Linux 10.2 running SAMBA to make the RAID volume available as a Windows share to the HTPC. I also run my web server on this rig using an Ubuntu VMware virtual machine.

The network switch is a D-Link Web Smart DGS-1224T with 24 GigE ports.

The HTPC is connected to two HD TVs, one with HDMI and the other with component connectors using the NVIDIA Clone mode.

I convert my DVDs into H.264 AVC format with built in subtitles using Nero Recode 2 with a file size for each movie ranging from 1.5 GB to 2.5 GB. Playing these HD files over the GigE network is no problem.

My DVR is a Tivo Series3, and this along with a Motorola HD Cable box is shared with 4 other TVs using a Channel Plus SVM-24 4 S-Video Modulator and the existing RG-6 cables in the house.

To control all this I use a few Universal Remote MX-850 and MX-350 RF remotes.

Took a while to put all this together.......It has been a great learning experience especially with deciding on a video format and codec....the AVS and Doom9 forums have been a great help.....I have about 200 DVDs converted so far with about 500 to go...Haven't yet started converting my music CDs...

Damn thats alot of $$$$$$$$$$

Nice setup, what I'd give just to have half of that file server.

- Josh
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post #80 of 108 Old 02-15-2007, 11:58 AM
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Thanks Shan......I haven't yet got into home automation like you have....but am reading a lot to learn more

In what format/codec do you store your converted DVDs ? Depending on the codec/format you choose for storing your 1000+ DVDs, you may need more hard drive space than you have........

yeah...I know...you can never have enough hard drive storage

Luckily storage prices are falling rapidly...the new Hitachi 1 TB hard drive has a list price of $399....can you believe that !!
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post #81 of 108 Old 02-15-2007, 01:02 PM
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My HTPC/Gaming rig:

Modified Ahanix D4 case with 2x80mm CM fans + 120mm TT fan
ASUS k8n-sli premium
CM Realpower 450W PSU
A64 X2 3800+ @2600 with cooler Freezer64pro
2x 7800GT Sli with cooler(s) NV silencer5(rev.3)
2x 1024Mb Patriot RAM
2x 80Gb Hitachi RAID0
160Gb 7200.8
320Gb 7200.10
NEC DVD-RW
PCTV USB2
Aerogate 1
Audio Gaming: Creative Audigy2 ZS > 3x3.5mm analog
Audio Music/Movies: M-Audio Audiophile 2496 > S/PDIF coaxial
AV receiver Yamaha RX-V459 > CAT5e UTP > Jamo e680
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post #82 of 108 Old 02-15-2007, 03:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sathyganesh View Post

Thanks Shan......I haven't yet got into home automation like you have....but am reading a lot to learn more

In what format/codec do you store your converted DVDs ? Depending on the codec/format you choose for storing your 1000+ DVDs, you may need more hard drive space than you have........

yeah...I know...you can never have enough hard drive storage

Luckily storage prices are falling rapidly...the new Hitachi 1 TB hard drive has a list price of $399....can you believe that !!


I revised my original plan a bit and I now only convert the new movies I purchase. Because of the time involved to do two-pass encoding on DVDs and the desire to have a perfect copy since I watch these on the projector, I simply rip them with RipIt4Me and leave them in Vob format with no further compression. Advantage: Fast and perfect copy. Disadvantage: 5-7GB for each DVD.

Since completing the setup, I have ripped about 180DVDs and still have over 2TB of space left. I have room in the case for another 4 drives (plus 4 more with a simple mod) and one free PCIe slot for another RAID controller. I am hoping to hold out until 1TB is either a little cheaper (that price is damn good already) or drives the 750GB down some more. I bought all my 500GB drives for $154 each. When 750s get there, I will add more space.

Shan
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post #83 of 108 Old 02-15-2007, 04:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shan View Post

I revised my original plan a bit and I now only convert the new movies I purchase. Because of the time involved to do two-pass encoding on DVDs and the desire to have a perfect copy since I watch these on the projector, I simply rip them with RipIt4Me and leave them in Vob format with no further compression. Advantage: Fast and perfect copy. Disadvantage: 5-7GB for each DVD.
Shan

The need for a perfect copy was very important for me but I couldn't justify the large space requirements.....so I checked out several codecs and found that the H.264 AVC codec gave me a near perfect (indistinguishable from the original to the naked eye) copy of a DVD movie from a resolution and video quality but at quarter of the space requirement.....I also don't care for the DVD menus or extras on most of my DVDs and so I rip only the main movie.

In my opinion saving the space will become even more important when HD-DVDs can be ripped easily. The H.264 codec has a higher bitrate option that is well suited for higher resolution (1080p) formats..

I also rip with Ripit4Me and DVDFab Decrypter. Since a two pass H.264 AVC encode takes about 3 hours for a 2 hr movie on my Dual Core E6600, I run several instances of Nero Recode 2, one for each movie and use an AutoIT script to batch encode 20 movies at a time. Takes about two and a half days for 20 movies but I don't have to baby sit the encoding process or do 1 movie at a time...
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post #84 of 108 Old 02-15-2007, 08:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shan View Post

Good luck with your system. Keep us in the loop as you get it together.
Shan



I will, although it won't be anywhere near as dramatic!
My requirements are more.... meagre ;-)

Will be re-purposing a slightly old A64 setup + a bit of tinkering around the edges.

On the backend my storage will start off relatively small. Exact specs are yet TBD but it too will be utilising some A64 parts.

Will move to a core2 based PVR/Frontend before the end of the 3rd quarter, if the need arises. Unless AMD's upcoming revamped quadcores turn-out to be competitive, then I may hold out till X-mas+.

Cheers,
jed
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post #85 of 108 Old 02-15-2007, 10:55 PM
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CPU: Intel Core2Duo E6600 Conroe
Mobo: Intel DG965MQ (integrated DVI-D hdcp)
PSU: ElanVital EVP-5007 500W (semipassive)
Memory: Corsair DDR2 Twin2X XMS2 800Mhz CL5 KIT (2x1Gb)
HDD: 1x Samsung T166 500GB, 1x Samsung P120 250GB
DVD-RW: Samsung SH-S183A SATA
HD DVD: Xbox360 HD DVD addon
Case: DIY - Passive heatpipe cooling system (see my signature)
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post #86 of 108 Old 05-12-2007, 01:52 PM
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Here is my setup...

Hardware:

AMD Athlon64 2800+
2GB Kingston Ram
160GB Sata WD, 250GB Sata WD
MSI GeForce 5700 256mb
Twinhan 102G PCI Satellite Card
Pioneer DVD burner
HTPC Thermaltake Case BACH

OS: Windows XP x64 Corp

I'm also building a new PC. I just purchased a new board - an Asus M2N 32 Vista Premium Edition with Screen Duo and 2 BFG video cards for a SLI configuration. I'm missing just the memory, CPU (probably an AMD 4600 X2) and the hard drives.
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post #87 of 108 Old 05-12-2007, 02:18 PM
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Here goes mine:-

a. Asus M2A VM HDMI mobo
b. AMD X2 64 AM2 4800+ EE CPY
c. Corsair 2GB 533mhz RAM
d. 1 TB (2 x 500) Seagate HDD
e. Zalman HD135 HD Case

OS: Windows Vista Home Premium

Pics below

HD HTPC in AV Cabinet & DVI cable run all the way down to lounge sofa, where 20" Dell WTFT is wall mounted. HDMI is connected to PX600 plasma via Sony STR-DA3200ES AV Receiver. All works as expected barring LPCM 5.1 sound.





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post #88 of 108 Old 05-13-2007, 10:40 AM
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My HTPC:

SilverStone SST-CW01 Case
EVGA 122-CK-NF68-A1 680i Motherboard
Core 2 Duo E4300 o/c @ 3.0Ghz
ARCTIC COOLING Freezer 7 Pro
CORSAIR XMS2 2GB RAM
SeaSonic SS-550HT PSU
EVGA 320-P2-N811-AR 8800GTS (96.94 driver)
HT OMEGA CLARO 7.1 Sound Card (Optical to Denon and Klipsch 5.1)
Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 ST3320620AS 320GB x2 Raid 1
VistaView Saber2020
SiliconDust HDHomeRun
Generic DVD drive for now - Blu-Ray and HD DVD when the time is right
MCE 2005
fireSTB 1394 from DCT 6412
PureVideo platinum
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post #89 of 108 Old 05-15-2007, 11:37 AM
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for now:

case: lian li 6077
psu: corsair 520w
mobo: asus a8n32-sli s939
cpu: opteron 165 s939
cpu cooler: zalman 9500
memory: corsair xms ddr400 2x1gb
gpu: evga 7900gt co
sound: creative audigy2zs
hdd1: wd raptor 36gb
hdd2/3: wd 250gb sata2
tuner: hauppauge hvr1600
os: windows mce

my future htpc:

case: antec fusion w/ stock psu or antec truepower 2 550w which i have lying around
mobo: asus m2npv-vm am2
cpu: amd x2 4600+ 65w
cpu cooler: still debating, any recommendations?
memory: patriot extreme ddr2 800 2x1gb
gpu: evga 8600gts
sound: ht omega striker 7.1
hdd1: either raptor or just a plain 80gb sata
hdd2+: take one 250 gb from the other pc and maybe get another
tuner: take tuner from other or get another
os: vista ultimate
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post #90 of 108 Old 05-15-2007, 09:32 PM
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nothing special but here it is:

Case: Generic
Cooling: 4x 80mm fans
Processor: Athlon64 3400+
Processor Cooler: Stock
Motherboard: Compaq mobo
NB Cooler: Passive
Video Card: 9800 Pro
RAM: 1GB Corsair
SW: Vista Ult x86
Analog Tuner: HDTV Wonder w/ Kram drivers
Digital Tuner: HD Homerun QAM tuner
Harddrives: 80GB for OS / 810gb everything else
Remote: Harmony Xbox 360 edition
Display: Samsung 32" LCD
Extender: Xbox 360

its really not an htpc honestly. a friend was selling a pc he got for dirt cheap and it became my htpc. ill be upgrading sometime the end of the year with a quad core and more ram.

since i use my 360 as an extender i dont have some of the problems others have. dont have to worry about overscan problems, dont have to worry about the noise level, and dont have to worry about standby issues. i pretty much use it for a HD DVR and listening to music or internet radio. when i go quad and get a new display, ill be doing a lot more with it.
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