Building a reliable HTPC/Media Centre PC

  Airster 17:22 24 Nov 2007

I'm looking to build a decent HTPC to replace our (brilliant!) Thompson DHD4000 and add PC/web functionality. I don't need to be able to play the latest games but it would be good be be able to play something like GTA SA. The main thing is that it must function like a dedicated TV device - quick on, reliable recording/playback/chase/twin channel record, good epg, twin digital tuners etc, and surf the web. I've read a few articles, and seen a few ready-made devices (usually pretty poorly spec'd for the price though) but I want to get your thoughts. I just wondered if anyone here had built their own and could pass on tips, specs, brands, models etc. Oh, it needs to be quiet but doesn't need to be attractive - it will sit behind frosted glass.

We don't need a media server or want to watch streamed stuff either, and web connection will probably be wi-fi (or maybe via electric ring main).

Any thoughts would be much appreciated.


  Airster 17:23 24 Nov 2007

software as well. I'm guessing I'm going to have to go for OEM Vista Home Premium rather than MCE or Media Portal through XP.

  X™ 17:34 24 Nov 2007

YOu might want to go for dual core, and you might not. It's not really neccesary, unless you are going to use it as a gaming HTPC. click here for some good parts, has a whole section on HTPC's too.

You're going to need a decent TV tuner aswell, shop around. Check on that site, then post back and I'll give you some more help.

And a budget?

  Airster 16:31 29 Nov 2007

Thanks X. I'm checking out the site you mentioned. Budget is probably around £400-£500 mark.

ATM my main concern is the software. I've tried Media Portal and it was rather varible in its results, and from what I've heard of Vista and its compatibility issue.

Will keep this post updated although it may be a week or two before much happens.

Thanks again.

  Airster 16:55 29 Nov 2007

Thats a great site. I will use this as the basis of my research. What's this ViiV about? Is it worth having (I'm looking at the barebones systems now)?

This thread is now locked and can not be replied to.

Elsewhere on IDG sites

Best Amazon Echo: What’s the best Alexa speaker?

Kano Computer Kit Complete review: A fun DIY 'laptop' that teaches kids to code

Best pro photo editors for Mac 2018

TV & streaming : comment regarder les Jeux olympiques d’hiver 2018 ?