Geekzone: technology news, blogs, forums
Guest
Welcome Guest.
You haven't logged in yet. If you don't have an account you can register now.




4025 posts

Uber Geek

Trusted

# 20920 9-Apr-2008 22:35
Send private message

Still toying with ideas and options for HD and a HTPC, but prices of course are the final decider, like for most people

So im trying to price up a cheap good system which could handle DVB-T and Mediaportal etc.
This is not what i plan on getting, its simply planning and looking at pricing. However others who want a HTPC could use this build if it checks out.
I might buy a few months or sooner, i just want some kind of guideline of what the minimum spec is and the current cost to compare with a STB or whatever. I know a HTPC has many benefits over a STB or even PVR but theres also the issues that come with it too.


Case/PSU/Fans/DVD Drive/Hard Drives not included - i have these already and they depend on what you prefer (eg big hard drive)

Prices from C1 Shoppingmall except tuner (computerlounge)
PENTIUM DUAL CORE E2180 2.0GHZ - $120
Asus EN8500GT SILENT/HTD/256M - $105
Asus P5KPL - $106
Kingston DDR2 1GB PC2-6400 800mhz - $34
Hauppauge WINTV HVR2200 PCI-E (White Box) DVB-T - $141
Total - $506

Concerns are the processor - is it good enough? The motherboard - 1x PCI-E 1x slot - means only 1 PCI-E tuner card unfortunately. Any better ones that are still low cost?
Also, will there be/is there a motherboard with good support for hardware H264 onboard? This could lower the cost a bit. 1GB of ram is enough?
The tuner - i understand this allows you to watch one channel and record another? Also it has S-Video in, which could be possible to hook sky up to this, but this means probably getting a MCE remote + Blaster. Its too bad none have component in which would be nice.

Any suggestions on what you would do for a cheap build welcomed.

Create new topic
5777 posts

Uber Geek

Moderator
Trusted
Lifetime subscriber

  # 122445 9-Apr-2008 23:08
Send private message

Looks good, I'd suggest going for an 8600GT though in terms of GPU.  and perhaps the Hauppauge HVR3000 although I'm only saying this from personal experience and I havent' tried the card you mention.

The 8600GT is a must though I think, from reading up about peoples experiences with HD playback on lesser cards it seems the 8600GT is a solid platform to start from.  I've got an XFX Fatal1ty 8600GT Silent, was about $175 from memory but well worth it.

28260 posts

Uber Geek

Moderator
Trusted
Biddle Corp
Lifetime subscriber

  # 122461 10-Apr-2008 08:07
Send private message

I have an 8500GT that works well. If you want to do any gaming on the machine however you would be better off spending a bit extra and getting the 8600.

 
 
 
 




4025 posts

Uber Geek

Trusted

  # 122556 10-Apr-2008 15:42
Send private message

I forgot to mention it's only function would be a media centre running mediaportal.

The 8500GT plays everything seamlessly? doesnt get too hot?

I'm not too happy with the motherboard though, only 1 PCI-E slot for a tuner card.

Other than that, that system would work as a mediacentre flawlessly?
If so, $500 is my base price atm for how much a HTPC will cost compared to a STB, and thanks, might help me be a bit less undecisive.

Mad Scientist
20897 posts

Uber Geek

Trusted
Lifetime subscriber

  # 122807 11-Apr-2008 11:37
Send private message

i've done some mental calculations - it ALWAYS ends up cheaper buying the set top box. the only problem is there isn't one with a PVR for freeview HD at the mo.

ok let me put down mental into some numbers
lets say a VERY EXPENSIVE PVR which you can actually buy off trademe now is $800 okay -

so what will a HTPC cost me
- video card $200
- cyberlink powerdvd 8 $99US = $125
- tuner hvr2200 $140
- mce remote $60 (well if you buy nova t 500 remote comes with it)
- dvbviewer $30
- plus motherboard, RAM, HDD, windows vista, etc etc etc ...

plus constant instability!




Involuntary autocorrect in operation on mobile device. Apologies in advance.


Hawkes Bay
8477 posts

Uber Geek

Mod Emeritus
Trusted
Lifetime subscriber

  # 122810 11-Apr-2008 11:43
Send private message

joker97: i've done some mental calculations - it ALWAYS ends up cheaper buying the set top box. the only problem is there isn't one with a PVR for freeview HD at the mo.

ok let me put down mental into some numbers
lets say a VERY EXPENSIVE PVR which you can actually buy off trademe now is $800 okay -

so what will a HTPC cost me
- video card $200
- cyberlink powerdvd 8 $99US = $125
- tuner hvr2200 $140
- mce remote $60 (well if you buy nova t 500 remote comes with it)
- dvbviewer $30
- plus motherboard, RAM, HDD, windows vista, etc etc etc ...

plus constant instability!

HTPC is a great concept, and worked well for me when i was prepared to put in the time and effort to maintain it.

Now I have MySky, and my time spent maintaining it is zero.

I am happy.

My gal is happy.

I miss my HTPC, but I dont miss the aggravation.









4025 posts

Uber Geek

Trusted

  # 122901 11-Apr-2008 17:27
Send private message

joker97: i've done some mental calculations - it ALWAYS ends up cheaper buying the set top box. the only problem is there isn't one with a PVR for freeview HD at the mo.

ok let me put down mental into some numbers
lets say a VERY EXPENSIVE PVR which you can actually buy off trademe now is $800 okay -

so what will a HTPC cost me
- video card $200
- cyberlink powerdvd 8 $99US = $125
- tuner hvr2200 $140
- mce remote $60 (well if you buy nova t 500 remote comes with it)
- dvbviewer $30
- plus motherboard, RAM, HDD, windows vista, etc etc etc ...

plus constant instability!

The only thing im concerned about is the fact that recordings are only available off the HD if you get a PVR. HTPC is a bug plus in the fact that you can watch it on any computer in the house.

Video card is $100 - 8500GT
Cyberlink codecs arent required, theres a driver package with accelerated h264 free
dvbviewer is also not required - gbpvr or mediaportal
motherboard + ram is around $150 HD depends on preference, im not a fan of vista and i have most of the other bits :)

@Tony:
We are probably getting mysky HDi if it doesnt cost an arm and a leg, but we watch TV1-3 most of the time, then prime, sky sport and possibly discovery.
And since sky and freeview etc won't cooperate, TV1-3 wont be HD on sky, probably still the same old compressed rubbish.

2118 posts

Uber Geek

Trusted

  # 122904 11-Apr-2008 17:54
Send private message

tonyhughes:
HTPC is a great concept, and worked well for me when i was prepared to put in the time and effort to maintain it.

Now I have MySky, and my time spent maintaining it is zero.

I am happy.

My gal is happy.

I miss my HTPC, but I dont miss the aggravation.


So you have had 100% reliability and no issues with things like series linking, or the small disk size?

Most of my sales enquiries these days are from people who are unhappy with MySky. Sadly our product often doesn't prove suitable as we can only do a single Sky chanel via an STB.

Most of the MySky issues are with missed recordings.




Generally known online as OpenMedia, now working for Red Hat APAC a Technology Evangelist and Product Manager. Still playing with MythTV and digital media on the side.


 
 
 
 


Hawkes Bay
8477 posts

Uber Geek

Mod Emeritus
Trusted
Lifetime subscriber

  # 122929 11-Apr-2008 19:24
Send private message

openmedia:
tonyhughes:
HTPC is a great concept, and worked well for me when i was prepared to put in the time and effort to maintain it.

Now I have MySky, and my time spent maintaining it is zero.

I am happy.

My gal is happy.

I miss my HTPC, but I dont miss the aggravation.


So you have had 100% reliability and no issues with things like series linking, or the small disk size?

Most of my sales enquiries these days are from people who are unhappy with MySky. Sadly our product often doesn't prove suitable as we can only do a single Sky chanel via an STB.

Most of the MySky issues are with missed recordings.

MySky has missed exactly zero recordings for me.
Series link went all screwy once - lost every link. Have since had box replaced, and no issue since.
Far less issues (i.e. down to zero issues now) than HTPC.

If I had the time to pour into it, I would still have an HTPC though.

MySky has high WAF.







Mad Scientist
20897 posts

Uber Geek

Trusted
Lifetime subscriber

  # 122935 11-Apr-2008 19:49
Send private message

wait a few months and your mysky WILL miss recordings due to software bugs - we've found that after 12 months it just randomly forgets to load repeat recordings, needing a reboot every 2 weeks! so we gave it back. plus we were only watching tv2 and tv3 (and f1). oh well!




Involuntary autocorrect in operation on mobile device. Apologies in advance.


Create new topic



Twitter and LinkedIn »



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when new discussions are posted in our forums:



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when news items and blogs are posted in our frontpage:



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when tech item prices are listed in our price comparison site:





News »

Major Japanese retailer partners with smart New Zealand technology IMAGR
Posted 14-Oct-2019 10:29


Ola pioneers one-time passcode feature to fight rideshare fraud
Posted 14-Oct-2019 10:24


Spark Sport new home of NZC matches from 2020
Posted 10-Oct-2019 09:59


Meet Nola, Noel Leeming's new digital employee
Posted 4-Oct-2019 08:07


Registrations for Sprout Accelerator open for 2020 season
Posted 4-Oct-2019 08:02


Teletrac Navman welcomes AI tech leader Jens Meggers as new President
Posted 4-Oct-2019 07:41


Vodafone makes voice of 4G (VoLTE) official
Posted 4-Oct-2019 07:36


2degrees Reaches Milestone of 100,000 Broadband Customers
Posted 1-Oct-2019 09:17


Nokia 1 Plus available in New Zealand from 2nd October
Posted 30-Sep-2019 17:46


Ola integrates Apple Pay as payment method in New Zealand
Posted 25-Sep-2019 09:51


Facebook Portal to land in New Zealand
Posted 19-Sep-2019 18:35


Amazon Studios announces New Zealand as location for its upcoming series based on The Lord of the Rings
Posted 18-Sep-2019 17:24


The Warehouse chooses Elasticsearch service
Posted 18-Sep-2019 13:55


Voyager upgrades core network to 100Gbit
Posted 18-Sep-2019 13:52


Streaming service Acorn TV launches in New Zealand with selection with British shows
Posted 18-Sep-2019 08:55



Geekzone Live »

Try automatic live updates from Geekzone directly in your browser, without refreshing the page, with Geekzone Live now.


Support Geekzone »

Our community of supporters help make Geekzone possible. Click the button below to join them.

Support Geezone on PressPatron



Are you subscribed to our RSS feed? You can download the latest headlines and summaries from our stories directly to your computer or smartphone by using a feed reader.

Alternatively, you can receive a daily email with Geekzone updates.