Hardware requirements.

Discussion in 'Computers' started by Matt_Beals, Jun 8, 2006.

  1. Matt_Beals

    Matt_Beals Extra

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    I'm looking at building an HTPC and I wan't to know what parts of the system are taxed the most.

    For instance, would it be worthwhile spending the extra cash on a dual core processor, or would something as slow (and cheap) as a Celeron D at 2.5 GHz, be plenty of chip? Will DDR2 make a large difference? Should I be looking a single large SATA drive, or will IDE or even an IDE RAID work just as well.

    I'm trying to put together a good system for not a lot of money, so I'm trying to optimize the system and not have a lot of extraneous power I won't end up needing. It's going to run dual tuners with hardware encoding and I want it to be able to time shift and record simultaneously (or dual record), or dual time shift.

    The other question I have concerns tuner cards. Right now I have digial cable and would like to keep it. Do I just need to buy a digital tuner card, or do I need something else from the cable company to make it work. I'm not running high def, and I don't use the premium channels all that much, so i guess I could live with analog, although I would miss the music channels.
     
  2. Vivek_IVB

    Vivek_IVB Stunt Coordinator

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    What will you do with it? DVD? TV? What kind of TV do you have?
     
  3. Matt_Beals

    Matt_Beals Extra

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    I'll basicly use it as a DVR with time shift, so I plan on playing back video recorded to the HD, but I'll stull use my normal DVD player for disc play back. I do intend on using it to archive recordings though. The TV I have is just a normal CRT flat screen with component jacks, so I don't need support for HD at the moment and not likley for a while.
     
  4. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    Dual core is probably not necessary for your current needs, but I would personally be hesitant to get a single core processor right now. If you're planning to upgrade to Vista when it comes out then dual core would be very beneficial at that point. But since you're not doing HD you should be able to get away with a single core.

    Additionally, I would set 1GB of RAM as the absolute minimum -- and make sure it's a good brand name of RAM.

    I would go with SATA hard drives. They really aren't much (if any) more expensive than IDE at this point. Most newer motherboards have SATA raid support built in. You might consider two identical drives and either mirror or stripe them, depending on your needs. If money weren't a concern I would suggest getting two 250GB drives and setting them up in RAID-0 and then getting a 500GB external drive to back up your RAID volume.
     

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