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Okay, I am trying to get caught up on all of the benefits of HTPCs for 2005 and do not see a sticky anymore, so maybe this will get one started. Some basic questions I have are:


Are we still unable to connect D* to HTPC except through S-video into a basic video capture card (i.e., still no D* HD / no HDCP compatible digital inputs or pass throughs and no capture cards that decode D*)?


Does this also mean we still can't time shift D* via HTPC?


Is the only HD available on HTPC still the lousy 4 OTA channels?


Can your HTPC serve as your pre-processor? Seems like there is a lot of debate as to whether cards that can out 5.1, 6.1, or 7.1. I thought all cards could do this via the analog outs, then just connect them up to a decent amplifier (not a receiver mind you).


How does the HTPC work with things like the new MS media extenders? If the above are true, does it mean all that can be broadcast through the extender is an MP3 collection, ripped DVDs, standard definition D* / cable, and 4 HD broadcasts?


I know there are lots of other basic questions, but hey, it's after 1:00 a.m. Maybe this will just get the information flowing and we can sticky this.
 

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Is the only HD available on HTPC still the lousy 4 OTA channels?
Depends on where you live and your reception of the locals and if your cable company encrypts it's QAM HD channels.
 
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