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Thread: HTPC Options/Alternatives

  1. #1
    HEXUS.social member Allen's Avatar
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    HTPC Options/Alternatives

    When the Raspberry Pi was announced I thought it was an awesome device I could attach to my TV via HDMI to watch videos, movies and browse the web. However, when I finally received the email to say I could order one, I was disappointed to find the delivery time was 11 weeks. So now I am looking at alternatives as I am too impatient to wait that long.

    I found this: http://apc.io/about/ which is almost the same as the Pi, but a bit bigger, but again that doesn't have a release date (only early July) and no info about shipping time, let alone costs from the US.

    I have an old ATX mobo with CPU, RAM and GPU that I could use, but that would be too loud, large and draw too much power, unless I find a really quiet HSF and silent GPU and a smallish case to hold ATX mobos. Would also need a new PSU for it, so getting expensive.

    Mini ITX boards and cases look great, but they are pretty pricey as well once you get everything for them.

    Then I read about the Nexus 7, and although a bit more expensive that getting a Mini ITX mobo, I would have alternative uses for it being a tablet. But, I have read that the Nexus 7 doesn't support HML, which is a real shame.

    I have already bought a HML cable for my HTC Sensation, and although it plays SD stuff fine, it struggles with even 720p, lagging quite a bit and sometimes not outputting at all. I am not sure if this is somehow a limitation of my Sensation or if it's a cheap cable or something.

    So, does anyone know the cheapest options to create a HTPC of sorts, even if it's a portable device, prebuilt or if I have to make it myself? What do you use, and how much did it cost? I'm struggling to think of alternatives.

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    Re: HTPC Options/Alternatives

    i have micro atx llano build for my htpc in my living room and have just ordered a m-itx zacate board to see what there like.


    ordered this board yesterday

    http://www.ebuyer.com/345309-msi-e35...ard-e350is-e45

    and this case along with some ram, i already have a blu ray and hard drive to go with it.

    http://www.ebuyer.com/205560-black-m...h-sata-pix1001

    my llano build was around £200 and i spent £120 yesterday, could have been a bit cheaper if i had gone for 2gb ram instead. i used old hard drives for both builds though as all my media is stored on a nas.

    how much do want to spend and will be using hd content?
    Last edited by spiral out; 05-07-2012 at 10:27 AM.

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    Bows out! CAT-THE-FIFTH's Avatar
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    Re: HTPC Options/Alternatives



    Those despicable Elk,stealing the pond weed!

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    Allen (09-07-2012)

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    Re: HTPC Options/Alternatives

    that case looks good, i've gone for the cheapest case i could that holds 3.5 hard drives and normal blu ray drives.

    look forward to more itx cases appearing as the choice quite limited at the moment. would love a white case.

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    Re: HTPC Options/Alternatives

    I am currently using my R-Pi as a HTPC using RaspBMC, and although it is a bit buggy and the the interface a little slow, it does the job.

    If you want something you can get now, I have not tried it myself but all the reviews I have seen of the WD TV Live seem very positive, so you might want to take a look at that

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    Allen (09-07-2012)

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    Re: HTPC Options/Alternatives

    WD TV Live?


    I think it does pretty much everything I've used my HTPC for (separate BluRay/HD DVD/DVD players)

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    Allen (09-07-2012)

  12. #7
    HEXUS.social member Allen's Avatar
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    Re: HTPC Options/Alternatives

    My flat mate has one of those, says it's got a pretty awful GUI. The Boxee is supposed to be pretty good and is £130 at Scan, so may be tempted to pick one of those up, but that'll have to be next month maybe. For the time being, I think I'm going to stick with my old PC kit, just gotta find a PSU and case for it.

    Would love to get something smaller and quieter, but on a tight budget right now.

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    I have a boxee and its brilliant. Does AirPlay which is handy as I have an iPhone. GUI is great and its now been hacked and development taken over by the users. Well worth the investment

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    @allen, the original wdtv was a terrible GUI, I upgraded from it to the boxee but the latest gem wdtv is meant to be a big improvement. Not quite boxee or xbmc standards but not far off

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