DIY media server is like $1000 (with drives!)
My 50TB Flexraid media server probably cost me $2500 with the 50TB of storage drives and operating system, software license etc. This also includes i7 CPU and 20 bay hot swap chassis. The best part is I was able to grow as I go adding one drive at a time over the coarse of two years until all 20 of my hot swap hard drive bays are now populated. I didn't start with 50TB, I started with 12TB. I chose this solution because it had the ability to add more drives over time without data loss, I could even add full drives or drives with data already on them. I can also restore a failed drive and replace it's contents on a new replacement drive with two clicks. Or, I can remove a drive and it's contents are still readable on any other system. This isn't possible with most solutions, but being a PC guy this was important to me. My media server also has an i7 CPU that's more than capable of transcoding on the fly to different resolutions, even two or three at a time. That way I can enjoy my media on all my devices, like my ipad or iphone, android, kindle windows phone, ROKU(we are big ROKU family) laptop, and my Audio/videophile HTPC on the theater. I can even watch my media when traveling and away from home. On my honeymoon I watched in Hawaii waiting for a delayed plane in the airport and my my media server is half way across the world in MA ! Plus, the front ends like mediabrowser or xbmc are slicker and have more features than most private media servers. Mediabrowser in particular is quite robust and allows for coming soon plug ins, even custom intros like "welcome to xyz theater"... And since I have so much media I love having trailer support so I can quickly play a trailer for something I've forgotten what it's about and decide if I want to watch it or not. All in all I'd put my solution up against any commercial offering at any price.... It's it cost me a fraction of the cost.
The biggest part I have with the commercial offerings is the excessive makeup and the proprietary designs. They lock away your media under a lock and key and you must pay a ransom to release it. You have to buy their front end HTPC machines and the unit isn't accessible like my media server is to other devices or multiple operating systems. I don't want to pay up excessively for a second or third room extension, I'd rather buy an $80 ROKU at Costco for the kids rooms. It works juts as good. Picture quality wise my HTPC probably looks better at playback than theirs also, but that's another story for another day.
Anyone wants more info or help feel free PM me.
"Too much is almost enough. Anything in life worth doing is worth overdoing. Moderation is for cowards."
Last edited by Mfusick; 08-09-2014 at 07:20 AM.