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Discussion Starter #1
I'm planning on building an htpc. I think I have in mind already what I want to do but I'd like some suggestions on things to change if necessary. Here's what I'm building.


P4 2.6c

gigabyte board

1 gig of ram

80 gig hd

ati 9600 xt video card

sb audigy z2 sound card

ahanix divine 5 case

fortron psu

plextor 8x dvd burner
 

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what do you want to do with your htpc? What type of TV do you have, or will you playback on your pc? If you start with goals in mind, it'll be much easier for you. I'd try searching on what others have done.


BTW - your hard disk is waaaaay too small; you'll likely need much bigger, esp if you plan on ripping DVDs. Also, if you store TV [don't see a TV card, so maybe you won't] - I personally have anywhere from 60->100GB of TV shows, based on how long it's been since I watched them.


Also, why do you need 1GB of RAM? I guess it's cheap, so no biggie. Are you doing non-ht stuff [i.e., home movies, etc], where RAM will be needed?
 

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Thank you for the response. Actually the HTPC is a pass-thru to my main computer that has a terra-byte of hard drive with expandability and does playback. I have selected an HTPC because moving analog/digital information from my equipment rack to my home office for editing would require to many cables. The HTPC will reduce the amount of cables significantly since every item on the rack would be tied into the HTPC located in the equipment room.


I do lessons for learners in multi-media and want the capability of recording video/audio from my equipment rack. I receive over-air, cable, Directv, and have videos, 8mm, 16mm, slides, CD's DVD', and prints from US and Oversea's woodworking equipment manufacturers dating back to early 1900's. I am attempting to capture all the old pictures, slides, films, and video/audio tapes to CD/DVD format.


I will continue to sort through my requirements with help form fellow forum members. Thank you. "Wuddoc"
 

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Would you categorize your main computer as primarily a file server/video processor [i.e., you'll have Adobe on it], and that the HTPC needs to capture all these types of A/V?


I'm trying to distinguish between what you'll use your main pc for, and what you'll use this PC for. If I understand correctly, this computer will:

- capture TV

- capture home movie

- capture pictures

- capture/rip DVDs and CDs


Your main pc will:

- edit above to your hearts content.


In this case, you'll need a TV capture card to capture the cable & DirecTV

signals. A popular one is the PVR-250. If you search on that in this forum, you'll see threads with people discussing it's competitors.


The 9600XT is a video-out card. I don't see anything that you're doing [i.e., no gaming] that would require such an expensive card [it's $200]. You could get by with just a 9000 which is $60 after rebate if you want to output to TV from this pc. If you're not going to output to TV from this PC, you could just use the VGA-out on your motherboard of choice.


In terms of processor speed, I aso don't see anything that you're doing that would require such a fast processor. Your main PC is doing all the transformations; the PVR-250 will perform the mpeg encoding in hardware, so your processor won't be tasked. You may want to consider slower, or at least AMD processors. You can get an Asus motherboard and an AMD processor for $150 max that would be good enough for you.


As your other box is the file server, I'll retract my earlier statement about needing HD space - all you need is a stable network cxn between the 2 of them.


I also am no expert in Audio, but are you outputting sound to a receiver? If this is a capture-only unit, what were you planning on using the Audigy for?
 
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