Completed My dad redid his house - in comes the HTPC! (1 Viewer)

RubenD

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January 5, 2012
9
1
Netherlands Netherlands
Hi All!

I have been a HTPC user since 2004, I started with Windows XP MCE edition and an Hauppauge Analog card. I was a student back and needed a fast computer (University of Automotive Development -> Solidworks). Since I didn't want to by a TV which would clutter my Dormroom I decided to go for the HTPC solution instead.

After MCE I tested MythTV (don't like it cause I can't be bothered understanding Linux), XBMC and Mediaportal. End up back with MCE due to lack of time and other interests.

After a fews years I moved for work and got myself a nice telly and left the computer upstairs.

Till a while ago:

My dad and his wife decided to redo the house, in fact, the first floor. What did they do:

- Double the floor size
- New kitchen
- New furniture
- Everything new ;)

My dad is a big music fanatic (check out the right side of some pictures, that isn't even all). He has a big music collection (CD, DVD, bluray, video, LP and casette). As you can imagine he also loves youtube.

And he is a fanatic movie watcher and recorder (DVB-C HD material).

To play all material specified above you need a lot of gear or you can cut that in halve by getting yourself a HTPC. So that's what happened!

HTPC specs:
- Case: Antec Veris Fusion Remote with the standard iMon Pad
- MB: MSI 880GMA-E55 (USB 3.0)
- CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 840 / 3.2 GHz
- Scythe BIG Shuriken SCBSK-1000
- MM: 8GB Corsair XMS3
- GC: Club 3D Radeon HD 6870 1GB DDR5
- SSD: OCZ Agility 3 120GB
- HDD: 1TB
- PSU: OCZ ModXStream Pro 500W
- DVR: Terratec Cinergy C PCI HD (with USB smartcard reader)
- LG Bluray burner

My dad uses this gear to play cd's:
Marantz KI series amp
Marantz KI series CD deck
Dynaudio Contour 3.3
(as I said before he really likes music)
and he also has 2 STAX electrostatic headphones


For movies he has this:
Denon 5.1 Receiver (toslink in)
Denon VM1 center speaker
Dynaudio Contour fronts
Technics SB-F2 (studio speakers) rears
Dynaudio active sub
Panasonic Plasma TX-P50GT30

The HTPC is hooked up via HDMI to the Plasma. I use toslink for audio out, so my dad can choose if he wants to listen 2.0 or 5.1.
The toslink is splitted, one end goes straight into the Denon 5.1. The other one goes to an Creative Emu external soundcard. This one is hooked up (analog signal) to the Marantz.

My dads wife didn't wanted to look at all the electronics so a need piece of furniture had to be sourced and purchased.

That's were I came in view again ;), since I'm an engineer by trade I decided to design the TV Unit/Sideboard!

So please check out the images shown below, hope you like em!

Lets see if you can spot all the gimmics ;) (I know the pictures don't show the endresult, still have to mount the center speaker on the wall, right next to the TV).










Regards, Ruben

I do now however still have to overcome several stability issues and not being able to keep the TV server going steady.

Combine that with an impatience dad who knows how to email and copy DVD's and you are in a load of trouble ;)
 

RubenD

Portal Member
January 5, 2012
9
1
Netherlands Netherlands
Well, I first had to buy the HTPC case, te be 100% about it's dimensions. I already measured all other components. I drew them and 3D and designed the cabinet arount the components.

Because of the double silding door I sourced the extra long and strong sliders for the turntable. Behind the right door the right door you will find the Marantz gear and ampswitch. And the headphone stax unit too.
Left of that there was room left for 2 big drawers to store manuals, headphones and DVD's.

The design of the cabinet + sourcing material took me several evenings, in fact I don't have a clue. Because I debated about the design a few times and altered it several times.

In the left halve you find the remote control unit rack which has space for 6 remotes (no remote pile anymore:p).
Next to that you see the HTPC with on top of that the Denon 5.1 reciever.

Vertical mounted is the Creative Emu for the digital to analog signal converter.

Whats left are the turntable and the cassette deck.

The cabinet alone weighs over 150kg ;)


Since I don't have the tooling, nor the space to build it myself we had somebody build and paint it (high gloss, same as kitchen). He needed a lot of time too.

And the install of the HTPC is still going, I have a lot of trouble with the TV recording function (DVB-C Ziggo, the Netherlands). Over here the system works with a smartcard. And sometimes the decoder program (newCS 1.65) won't start up properly.

So I have to see how I can solve that issue.

And just finished installing the bluray software (to playback blurays, like David Foster: Hitman Returns).
 

porky996t

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  • May 21, 2008
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    Bolton, Lancashire, England
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    Fantastic job Ruben!!

    That looks a real cool room and the design is thought through too - very clean lines, chic and contemporary. The pics could have come from an Interiors magazine - the cabinet and HTPC blend in very well.

    The picture of modern living!

    Great work!



    M.
     

    RubenD

    Portal Member
    January 5, 2012
    9
    1
    Netherlands Netherlands
    Thanks a lot for the nice words. The bookshelf integrated in the kitchen was an idea of me as well ;)

    This Saturday I installed the center-speaker next to the TV with a home made (welded) wall-mount. Looks very neat.

    I'll make some new shots and upload those too.
     

    RubenD

    Portal Member
    January 5, 2012
    9
    1
    Netherlands Netherlands
    Thanks, the answer to your question is actually quite simple: Aesthetics.

    It has everything to do with the rule of thirds.
    Rule of Thirds

    Because the living room has to look good too, we measured out the TV & one third from the left ;)
    In fact, the TV is pretty much in the center. The cabinet isn't.
     

    4Fred

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  • December 8, 2005
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    In the left halve you find the remote control unit rack which has space for 6 remotes (no remote pile anymore:p).
    Nice work dude!

    Next project when you have all the stuff configured the way he wants it, "One remote to rule it all" :p
    I have a Logitech Harmony 900 remote with the RF system and I love it, my stuff looks something like your dads and I can have everything behind closed doors thanks to the rf system.
    Here is the remote I'm talking about: Logitech UK - Harmony® 900 Universal Remote Control
    Good luck! :)
     

    porky996t

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  • May 21, 2008
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    Bolton, Lancashire, England
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    Ruben said:

    It has everything to do with the rule of thirds.
    Rule of Thirds
    I have come across that one before in photography, however, when I'm designing buildings I try to work to the golden ratio - not quite the same, but still a mathematical basis for positioning and it does give great proportions to elevations.



    M.
     

    RubenD

    Portal Member
    January 5, 2012
    9
    1
    Netherlands Netherlands
    Thanks for the tip, I should check the measurments, might even be according to golden ratio ;)
     

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