View Full Version : htpc suggestions

7th May 2007, 09:48

Following this (http://forums.murc.ws/showthread.php?t=61687) thread, I'm looking at what my options are in building a simple htpc (case + mainboard + cpu + memory + hdd + TV-card).
Sole purpose of the system now is to record TV programs, I could expand it in the future with a proper videocard (hdmi) and hd drive (hd or bluray).

Any suggestions for a mainboard (preferably with an s-video / composite output)?
I am looking at htpc cases by Zalman and mCubed (passive cooling), other alternatives?
And finally: what are good TV cards?
(I intend to run Windows Vista Ultimate on the system)


7th May 2007, 10:40
What TV standard do you want to receive? Are you sure you can get your system completely passively cooled in the summer?

If you have money to burn, look at PCs from hush.

8th May 2007, 05:31
Analog cable.
I prefer a system in which I have freedom of components (which rules out the Hush).

I found this mainboard: Asus m2npv-vm (http://www.asus.com/products4.aspx?modelmenu=2&model=1138&l1=3&l2=101&l3=0&l4=0), but it is an AMD one. I somehow am leaning more towards Intel. Perhaps I should stop looking for a mainboard with an onboard videocard that offers tv-out, and just go for a cheap videocard.


8th May 2007, 05:44
These (http://event.asus.com/vista_ready/spec.htm) look interesting... They lack onboard video but seem quite future proof in that aspect.


8th May 2007, 09:29
Are you going to have a large HTPC?, since you are going for the ATX standard?

K9AGM2-FIH from MSI, cheap and well stacked, perhaps with a Gerforce 8500 or 8600 passived cooled so that you can get hardware decoding?. Or you can use the X1250 onboard gfx module. And miniATX.


8th May 2007, 09:56
My current favorites are:

Case: http://www.antec.com/us/productDetails.php?ProdID=92400
Motherboard: http://www.asus.com/products4.aspx?modelmenu=2&model=1585&l1=3&l2=101&l3=496
CPU: Athlon X2 3800 EE (65W)
Remote + VFD: http://www.soundgraph.com/Eng_/Products/imon25.aspx
1GB of the Cheapest 800Mhz DDR2 RAM
Black DVD burner
160-250GB HDD - I prefer those who come with a 16MB buffer and 5 years warranty

From there on, you can put a better quality soundcard (Envy24HT chipset for example), TV capture card, better graphic card etc.

This rig is supposedly MythTV compliant for the Linux lovers. Case has a very good WAF (Wife Acceptance Factor), at least from what I've gathered so far.

9th May 2007, 02:10

The reason I'm looking at some htpc is because I'll work away from home (about 250km) and will stay there during the week. Chances are I only have a very limited number of TV channels there, and to have something to look at I would record programs at home, copy them to an external storage and view them on laptop.

As such, noise of the system is of no importance... I'm now wondering if I should not just keep my dual Xeon (which will remain at home) running and simply add a tv-card to it... :ermm:
But it is of course a "big" system to keep running 24/7...


Fat Tone
9th May 2007, 03:56
You need a good internet connection and a slingbox :)

9th May 2007, 07:08
No internet-connection available there... :(