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Old 10-02-09, 08:10 AM   #1
tjohn
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Default Confused about what I can do with HTPC

I'm going to build a new pc and I'd like it to be an htpc but I'm not sure what I can do. I currently have comcast digital hd service. Can I use it like a dvr? And is that basically all I can do with it? Looking at the my current build in my sig, can I use it for an htpc? I'm thinking that might be overkill.

Thanks
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Old 10-02-09, 11:29 AM   #2
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Default Re: Confused about what I can do with HTPC

Good luck getting it to be a DVR, most subscribers will encrypt the signal and this won't allow you to record it on the HTPC.

Besides that, you can do tons of stuff with your HTPC:

* Watch movies (DVDs, Blu-ray, AVIs, WMVs, etc)
* Listen to music
* Play games on a big screen (PC games, emulators)
* View pictures
* Surf the web on a big screen (if you have one)

Those are just some of the things you can do, it's just up to you.
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Old 10-02-09, 12:35 PM   #3
tjohn
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Default Re: Confused about what I can do with HTPC

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Originally Posted by six_storm View Post
Good luck getting it to be a DVR, most subscribers will encrypt the signal and this won't allow you to record it on the HTPC.

Besides that, you can do tons of stuff with your HTPC:

* Watch movies (DVDs, Blu-ray, AVIs, WMVs, etc)
* Listen to music
* Play games on a big screen (PC games, emulators)
* View pictures
* Surf the web on a big screen (if you have one)

Those are just some of the things you can do, it's just up to you.
Thanks, I was afraid the DVR wouldn't work. If a pc had an HDMI out, couldn't I do all those things you listed?
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Old 10-02-09, 12:37 PM   #4
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Default Re: Confused about what I can do with HTPC

DVRs are much better at being DVRs than computers are, so I'd recommend getting an HD DVR from your service provider if they offer one. Pretty much the only plus side to using a PC as a DVR is the massive amount of storage.

As for everything else, the main benefit of an HTPC (to me) is the ability to download or stream shows and movies from the internet. Netflix has thousands of documentaries and movies available to watch online. Many TV stations put their shows online for free after they've been aired (Syfy, ABC, Comedy Central... to name a few). Hulu is basically a collection of all the shows you can watch online for free. And you can always download a show if you missed it on TV.

YouTube, as usual, is a great place to find just about anything if you're bored. Music videos, funny crap, educational videos, movie trailers... and more and more of them are showing up in HD.

Gaming on an HTPC can also be pretty awesome. Get some emulators and a couple Xbox 360 controllers and you can invite people over to enjoy some games they haven't played in decades.

Also, if you give your HTPC a ton of storage and some power efficient components they make great file servers to keep backups of all your data and make it all accessible from any PC in the house. We also use ours as a print server.
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Old 10-02-09, 12:57 PM   #5
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Default Re: Confused about what I can do with HTPC

I love my HTPC, I use it as a video jukebox T took most of my DVD collection and put it on the HDD's.
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Old 10-02-09, 01:25 PM   #6
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Default Re: Confused about what I can do with HTPC

Awesome! Thanks for the input, much appreciated
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HTPC == Gigabyte GA-MA785GMT | AMD X2 240 Regor | A-DATA 2X4 PC3 10600 | WD 1TB | LG Blue-Ray | Corsair 400W PSU | Lian Li PC-C37B | Win7 x64

Home Server == Gigabyte GA-MA785GM | AMD Sempron 2.7GHz 45W | G.SKILL 2X1 DDR2 667 | WD GRN 1 TB x3 | Seasonic 380W 80+ Bronze | Antec 300 case | Windows Home Server

Toshiba U405-S2830 Laptop | 13.3" - 1200x800 | C2D T8100 2.1 Penryn | 4 GB DDR2 677 | Wireless N | Intel X3100 Vid | 250GB HDD | Win7 x64

HP dm3 Laptop | 13.3" - 1366x768 | AMD Athlon Neo X2 | ATI Radeon HD 3200 | 4GB DDR2 | 320GB HDD | Wireless N | Bluetooth | Windows 8 Developer Preview
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Old 10-02-09, 04:57 PM   #7
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Default Re: Confused about what I can do with HTPC

OK, got the okay from the wife for the new htpc I will try and cannibalize some stuff from a few older builds around the house. I'll start a new thread for the build, hope I can get some help from you guys !!
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HTPC == Gigabyte GA-MA785GMT | AMD X2 240 Regor | A-DATA 2X4 PC3 10600 | WD 1TB | LG Blue-Ray | Corsair 400W PSU | Lian Li PC-C37B | Win7 x64

Home Server == Gigabyte GA-MA785GM | AMD Sempron 2.7GHz 45W | G.SKILL 2X1 DDR2 667 | WD GRN 1 TB x3 | Seasonic 380W 80+ Bronze | Antec 300 case | Windows Home Server

Toshiba U405-S2830 Laptop | 13.3" - 1200x800 | C2D T8100 2.1 Penryn | 4 GB DDR2 677 | Wireless N | Intel X3100 Vid | 250GB HDD | Win7 x64

HP dm3 Laptop | 13.3" - 1366x768 | AMD Athlon Neo X2 | ATI Radeon HD 3200 | 4GB DDR2 | 320GB HDD | Wireless N | Bluetooth | Windows 8 Developer Preview
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Old 10-03-09, 09:18 AM   #8
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Default Re: Confused about what I can do with HTPC

Quote:
Originally Posted by tjohn View Post
OK, got the okay from the wife for the new htpc I will try and cannibalize some stuff from a few older builds around the house. I'll start a new thread for the build, hope I can get some help from you guys !!
Looking forward to seeing it, I love checking out Work Logs.

Just write out what goals you want to accomplish with your HTPC and stick to them.
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Old 10-03-09, 02:38 PM   #9
tjohn
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Default Re: Confused about what I can do with HTPC

Quote:
Originally Posted by six_storm View Post
Looking forward to seeing it, I love checking out Work Logs.

Just write out what goals you want to accomplish with your HTPC and stick to them.
Thanks, I made a new thread over in gen/hardwre. Please check it out. I've always been an ASUS guy but that Gigabyte mobo has great reviews.
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Main Rig == ASRock Z68 Pro Gen3 | I7 2600K @ 4.6 | G.Skill Ripjaws 16 GB | CMV8 Cooler | Crucial C300 RealSSD 128GB | EVGA 570GTX | CM HAFX | Win7 x64

HTPC == Gigabyte GA-MA785GMT | AMD X2 240 Regor | A-DATA 2X4 PC3 10600 | WD 1TB | LG Blue-Ray | Corsair 400W PSU | Lian Li PC-C37B | Win7 x64

Home Server == Gigabyte GA-MA785GM | AMD Sempron 2.7GHz 45W | G.SKILL 2X1 DDR2 667 | WD GRN 1 TB x3 | Seasonic 380W 80+ Bronze | Antec 300 case | Windows Home Server

Toshiba U405-S2830 Laptop | 13.3" - 1200x800 | C2D T8100 2.1 Penryn | 4 GB DDR2 677 | Wireless N | Intel X3100 Vid | 250GB HDD | Win7 x64

HP dm3 Laptop | 13.3" - 1366x768 | AMD Athlon Neo X2 | ATI Radeon HD 3200 | 4GB DDR2 | 320GB HDD | Wireless N | Bluetooth | Windows 8 Developer Preview
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