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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I originally posted in the the "Guide to building a HTPC" thread, but I found that I learned more form individual experiences and decided to make a log of my progress to help both myself and anyone else who can learn from my experiences. I'm in the figuring out what to order phase, which was reflected in my first post:


"Happy New Years, everybody. To start off the new year, I'm thinking of building a simple htpc. This guide (and other threads) are great, but a bit overwhelming. First, my goals:


1. Stream internet media (ie. Hulu, Joost, etc...)

2. Play Blu Rays.

3. Surf the net.

That's about it. I don't need 1080p or anything but 2 chan sound. This is going to be hooked up to an upstairs TV only, no receiver.


Here's the part list that I've come up with:


Memory- G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400)


HD- a 1tb Samsung HD that I already have lying around.


MoBo- GIGABYTE GA-E7AUM-DS2H LGA 775 NVIDIA GeForce 9400 HDMI


CPU- E5200 Wolfdale


Blu-Ray Drive- LG GBC-H20LI


Case- Antec Aluminum Veris Fusion Black 430 Micro ATX Media Center


I'm not wedded to any of these parts, so any suggestions are appreciated! I may pick up a cheap Hauppauge tv tuner but I don't need any pvr capabilities. Please let me know what you think! Thanks."



Since I made that post, I've changed my mind a bit about the setup. I'm pretty set with the mobo, cpu, HDD and memory (although still open to suggestions) but I've decided that I want pvr functionality. I've decided to include a hdhomerun in the mix. I have a crappy indoor antenna which I'll try first and then upgrade if needed.


I'm excited about this build but nervous too. There really is a ton of info out there and it is a bit confusing, but I'm almost readt to order. Now all I'm waiting for are some promised Christmas gift cards and I'm off. Wish me luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Some more thoughts-


OS- I think that I'll use Vista home, although something in the back of my head is telling me to postpone this build until we hear some beta reviews from Windows 7.


Hdhomerun- I plan to have one tuner connected to comcast and one to OTA and see what I think from there. I'm a little confused about how hdhomerun actually works. It looks like I plug the cables into the box and then a network cable into my router which will allow and computer on my network to view it. I don't really know much about networks, so please correct me if I am wrong. My HTPC will be connected to the router via a cat5 cable. I think that I should be able to watch or record live tv on both tuners at the same time, ala Tivo.


Case- Not thrilled with it but I want a nice AV looking case. I don't think that heat will be an issue with no sound, video or tv capture cards.


Thanks for reading.
 

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nice man. i just ordered that gigabyte motherboard and the same processor that you did. i got some slightly different ram, but i wanted a little more overhead for overclocking.



i will be using these parts for an htpc build coming up in the spring, im getting them in now for testing and to upgrade my current machine for a little while.


im looking to play blu-rays w/lossless 5.1 sound, surf the internet, listen to music and use it as a DVR from OTA signals.



ive never messed with hdhomerun so i cant help ya on that one. i will be doing a lot more research into tv tuners here in a bit. ive got a couple months though before i decide what to go with.
 

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If cabling is going to be routed in walls, be sure to go cat6 rather than cat5. At least use cat5e. At most, cat6a or cat7, if available.


Many routers do not support gigabit ethernet so be sure that's an option. If you intend to stream video over ethernet, using 1000mbps or greater would be better I would think. I don't stream across mine here, but do use Gbit ethernet. fyi, on cat5e, I've had cables not allow connection other than 100mbps. Replacement cables work ok but that tells me it's a bit weak.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by hogues /forum/post/15433896


Hdhomerun- I plan to have one tuner connected to comcast and one to OTA and see what I think from there. I'm a little confused about how hdhomerun actually works. It looks like I plug the cables into the box and then a network cable into my router which will allow and computer on my network to view it. I don't really know much about networks, so please correct me if I am wrong. My HTPC will be connected to the router via a cat5 cable. I think that I should be able to watch or record live tv on both tuners at the same time, ala Tivo.

Yes, that how HDhomerun works. It connects to the LAN port on your router, just like you connect your PC. You can simutaneously connect and view/control 2 HDhomerun tuners from 1 or 2 PCs on your network. It's one of the best tuner out there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the reply's everyone.


Haste- Good to hear that someone is thinking along the same lines as me, makes me feel a bit better about my choices. I'll be interested to know how your system comes out. I'll post my experiences with my hardware here. Good luck!


K-spaz- Thanks for the advice on routers, I'm not very knowledgeable in this area. I currently have this airlink router , i guess i may have to upgrade. Lol, this build keeps getting more expensive.



dangtong- Thanks for the confirmation, I'm looking froward to testing it out.



More thoughts-


I'm going to wait until CES to order my parts. I've read the roumors about a sub-$1k cablecard pc and I want to see what that is all about before i take the plunge.


I think that I have settled on the antec case, but this version , which comes with a remote, and get a separate power supply. Haven't decided which one yet. Since I'm not using any cards, I don't need a big one.


As always, thanks for reading and commenting.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
ZeeVee is out with a new product, the ZvPro that looks very interesting. I'm defiantly going to wait until after CES to do anything. Dave Zats has a story about it HERE .
 
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