AVS Forum banner
1 - 8 of 8 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi All,


I'm looking to build an HTPC with Linux with Ubuntu or a variant as OS. I'd like to start inexpensively. Advise would be appreciated.


- smooth Linux support

- LCD display (I want to be able to play CDs without needing to turn on TV)

- remote support (to save some cash, I'd like a case that comes with a remote, though this may be upgraded later to something more universal)

- no HD (no TV to support it yet - though upgrading will happen in the medium term)

- no PVR (my cable box does that)

- no large HDD, I'll be storing all media on a nice reliable NAS

- the case must look good


I've been thinking of using some sort of solid state media, which doesn't need to be large, perhaps even booting of some sort of flash disk (maybe USB).


I'd like something that is both noiseless (or nearly so) and energy efficient. The box will probably be either switched off or suspended when not in use.


I'm principally looking for case advise at this stage though I'd be keen to hear from anyone who's built or building a similar sort of box and of the hardware/software experiences that they've had.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by wnewell /forum/post/15453687


I can't help you with the case as I use the $19 ones. As for booting from a flash drive, no problem.

What kind of flash drive do you use? Something that connects to the PCI bus or something external via a USB port?
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
1,686 Posts
What you describe is not an inexpensive case. With an LCD display they range up to $3,000.


I am very happy with my Silverstone GD02 and SS-300ET super-high-efficiency PS. It'll take full-height cards, and has room for the XP-120 and HR-05/IPX heatsinks. It has built-in infrared Rx (USB), touch-screen display (USB), front-panel audio, firewire, and USB ports, and I installed a SIIG 9:1 flashdrive in the 3.5" bay.


Only catch is it supposedly requires a slim optical drive, although it looks to me like it will take a regular size; I'll be trying that soon.


I've gotten the LCD display to work, but it's basically a right-hand extension of the main desktop. Haven't experimented further.


Good quality.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,280 Posts
Since your needs are not really too HTPC needy, I think that you should concentrate on LCD displays that are supported in Linux.


I recently converted a WMCE 2005 box that I built, to MythTV. I used an Ahanix D5 case, with a built in iMon display and remote.
http://ahanix.com/products/mce/


It had an early version of the iMon inside (remote/display), and supposedly it works in Linux too. The remote would hang up and not work for a while, or it would cause MythTV to crash. I could get the LCD to work, but it would never survive a reboot. The LCD is really too small to see, anyway.


I just ripped it out, and replaced it with a Windows MCE USB remote. I took the guts out of the USB remote and mounted it inside of the case where the iMon was located. Works great now!


I'm gonna throw the iMon in the trash, f*cking piece of ****!


So, the moral is, even if the LCD is reported as working in Linux, be wary.


Just my $.02 worth.


Correction: My case (D5) had a VFD, not an LCD.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,793 Posts
Here are some Linux LCD display project links, so you can focus on LCD/VFD display hardware that is known to work in Linux:

http://lcdproc.org/

http://www.linuxfocus.org/English/Ma...ticle286.shtml

http://www.mv.net/ipusers/cdwalker/lpt_driver.html

https://lists.ubuntu.com/archives/ub...er/008362.html

http://shop.tuxgraphics.org/electronic/index-lcd.html


LCD displays can use good old RS232 serial ports, parallel ports or USB.


Just be sure the media player software you plan to use, like Audacious, Banshee or whatever, supports output to an LCD info display, usually through addon plugins or via LIrc


If you plan to add the LCD/VFD yourself, I highly recommend this case for a media PC:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...Center%20Cases


Don't let the low price of the Apevia X-Master 500 fool you- it is not "cheap" by any means. A great value, yes. Good build quality, layout and design.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
524 Posts
I don't have much experience with really cheap HTPC cases. However, I currently use the Omaura TF-8 for my HTPC which is "cheap" relative to the high-end class of cases, of which it is a part. Dell used to carry them; I'm not sure if they are still available.


I use the Addonics CF-SATA HDD Adapter , along with a 4 GB Compact Flash card as the only drive in my HTPC. One nice feature, it comes with full-height and half-height PCI adapters. This allows you to eject the CF card and image it without opening the case. If you go this route you'll need to buy one of the more expensive 266x CF cards, as well as keep your media on another computer. Same goes for the MythTV backend, if you're running Myth. I run XBMC and MythTV on my box.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
566 Posts
I used cheap 4GB USB flash drives for a couple of frontend only machines. They aren't real fast. After doing this I checked for speeds of drives, There's quite a difference in some of them and the ones I got were the slower models. Best bet would be ones that do 30MBs. Mine only do about 10.
 
1 - 8 of 8 Posts
Top