AVS Forum banner

Best Budget HDTV Media Center Solution

  • PS3

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Xbox 360

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Acer Aspire Revo

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Other (please describe in post)

    Votes: 0 0.0%
1 - 8 of 8 Posts

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


I have recently found myself the happy recipient of a 42" 240mhz Vizio LCD TV (best present ever!!!) anyhow I'm looking to setup some kind of media solution on the cheap and needed some advice.


First let me explain what I use my TV for so as to prevent ideas with unnecessary features that cost more money that I don't have
.


I basically only watch HULU, YouTube, Downloaded Videos, and DVD's. Right now I have my MacBook Pro jerry rigged to the TV, but I don't want to always have to decide between using my laptop or watching tv. There may come a time when I have more free time and decide to sign up for basic cable and wouldn't mind having my rig be able to play DVR (but this is like the very bottom of my priorities list).


With that in mind here are the ideas I've come up with so far:


PS3: As far as I can tell about all this will do for my needs is play games and, watch Blue Ray, and stream netflix...


Xbox360: More of a media center it seems but not sure how well it will handle streaming HULU and such, but if it can meet all my needs and play Gears of War then HUZAH!


AcerAspire Revo (AR1600 or AR3610): These are both cheap and small net top boxes that have HDMI out and nVidia ION graphics. The 1600 is a bit cheaper and less powerful than the 3610 (ION vs ION LE, Intel Atom 330 vs 230 and Windows 7 vs XP).


My main concern is that I'm on a very tight budget, I'd like to get blue ray and some kind of media center and spend less than 500$ for both. I'm fairly handy at building PC's but have been out of the loop so long I don't even know where to start looking at components and such.


What I need is suggestions: Do I have the right idea with this list? Are there other budget boxes out there with a small form factor that will meet my needs I haven't found yet?


Thanks for any and all help!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
885 Posts
I'm not sure an Atom based system will play Hulu smoothly - even my somewhat powerful normal PC has trouble with that. (As far as I know the new flash beta with hardware accel. support is not there yet - I've tried it and it fails).


I would suggest building a system with a 2.6 Ghz or greater AMD cpu (AMD Athlon II X2 240 Regor 2.8GHz Socket AM3 - $57 free ship with a fan too), an ATI 5450 video card and a decent motherboard with solid state capacitors. If patient, and you have a Fry's nearby, sometimes they have combo deals with a free motherboard. That's a good place to start.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,764 Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by papaslides /forum/post/18153994


I just came across this combo deal at newegg.com seems like a good fit for what I need.


Thoughts?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboB...t=Combo.328189

Looks fine. Mind you, you'd still need to get an aftermarket cooler as the processor included in the bundle is OEM. Personally, I'd try pricing a similar build replacing the processor with an X2 Regor and going for a simple 2x2GB RAM instead of 4x1GB sticks.

Quote:
Originally Posted by aducrejr /forum/post/18159622


+1 Acer Aspire Revo AR1600

This would be a decent option when Adobe releases Flash 10.1 stable. Unfortunately, I'm still having problems with Hulu Desktop on my ION build with the current beta.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
113 Posts
I built my first htpc with a small case... never again... regular "small" tower for here on out... or at least a case I can add graphics cards or other cards (like usb 3.0). But some don't like having a "seen" computer in the living room... which I understand 100%.


So, I'd look to buy all components for the same price as the bundle.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,890 Posts
the ps3 and xbox arent htpcs, they are media streamers...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,764 Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by HTPC4Ever /forum/post/18163845


But some don't like having a "seen" computer in the living room...

For some, it's not a question of having a "seen" computer but rather, merely a question of space. I find it's fairly easy to fit an amplifier/receiver-sized HTPC in the living room. Unfortunately, the same could not be said of bedrooms, kitchens, etc.
 
1 - 8 of 8 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top