That was my next question. How to you get the video signal out of the PC?
HTPC has just a normal DVI video card something like a ATI 2400 or Radeon G8600 (I think those are the numbers). I then simply connect a DVI to Component video adapter so I can plug my HTPC into my Extron video switch.
CQC handles controlling the switch and also what the output of the HTPC video will be such as the ripped DVD?
CQC controls the Extron over a Serial connection. Note: CQC is a software package running on ANOTHER PC, that PC has a serial board so I can connect upto 8 different serial devices (I can expand if needed).
CQC controls the HTPC too. CQC knows where the ripped movie is...example \\\\Avserver\\M1\\movies\\310 TO YUMA\\VIDEO_TS.IFO. CQC can control movie playback software on the HTPC, Zoomplayer or TheaterTek are the most commonly used. Both have IP based remote control ability. CQC simply tells the playback software to play the video_ts.ifo file. Clear as mud
Does the HTPC need to have CQC installed on it?
Well if you want to START a program on the HTPC you need to install a CQC app server program but that is about it.
Why have two HTPCs? Could you have two video cards in the same PC? I guess this wouldn't give you two different movies at the same time because you can't route movie one to video card one and movie two to video card two?
Move playback software can not play more then one movie on a PC so two video cards wont matter. It would be nice to have a very high end HTPC and have the ability to play two movies concurrently but it just doesnt exist today. The only thing that is need here is playback software everything else would work. We actually can playback music concurrently, I can have up to 4 songs playing at once through my HTPC. Sound cards have multiple zones and Music playback software can select a zone on the sound card ( ie...CQC and JRiver)
I have a CQC PC to control everything, that PC also plays back music to all zones (up to 4 concurrent songs). I have 2 HTPCs, one is a low end PC (about $300) for normal SD DVD playback, its still great!! and I built a custom high end HTPC to playback BluRay and HD-DVDs.
Im sure this is all confusing, I hope Im helping a little. CQC is confusing at first but just when you think you are totally lost everything starts to make sense.