Ongoing My HTPC project (1 Viewer)

warped6

Portal Member
Goals:
1. Replace current entertainment center & stereo. Less space, added functionality.
2. Convince my wife that this is a good thing. :lol:

Hardware:
1. Shuttle SK43G. Yes I know this particluar box seems to be cursed, but the one I'm using seems to be stable.
2. AMD Athlon XP 2500+ Barton core (possible to upgrade to 3000+)
3. 2 sticks - 512 mg Corsair memory
4. 120 gig SATA Western Digital HD
5. ATI All-In-Wonder 9800 Pro video
6. Creative Audigy 2 sound card
7. Creative 5.1 speakers
8. Motorola DCT2224 - Cable box

Software:
1. Windows XP Pro SP 2 and all latest updates
2. Media Portal 0.1.1.1

Now the questions:
1. Is it possible to control this cable box throught a serial cable from Media Portal? I'd rather not use a IRBlaster if I don't have too. Yes I'll have to call the cable company to enable the port, that's on the list.

2. Is it possible to control a LaserDisc player from within MP using a serial cable? I have an older LaserDisc with a serial port and would be nice to be able to control it. (It's a Pioneer 4200 if I remember correctly...) I know older verions of Windows had the drivers for this device. I haven't check XP yet.

3. Does anyone have any experience with this piece of hardware?
http://www.thinkgeek.com/computing/drives/6908/
It too is controlled through a serial port.

4. Would there be any reason to upgrade the processor to a 3000+? It's only a bump of 500 mhz so seems like not really worth it.

OK Thats' it for now. More will come later I'm sure.

Mike
 

SiLenTYL

Retired Team Member
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  • April 23, 2004
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    i'd recommnd u get a very fast CPU if u intend to play back high def content

    i have a MSI MEGA 65 with a 3.2Ghz CPU and a very nice ATI 9800pro which does the job :)
     

    TheVideoViking

    Portal Pro
    November 30, 2004
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    Groningen, Netherlands
    Dear Wife,
    this sounds like a really good thing. And, the best way to judge a man is by his HTPC. Ask anyone around here, a real man has a HTPC.



    I would recommend a bigger HD tough, so you can keep DVD's and movies on there. But if you don't need that, this one will do fine.
     

    Lyxalig

    MP Donator
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  • January 30, 2005
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    Sounds like a good setup, but I have to second using a bigger HDD. I started out with 120GB, but ended up with 400GB.
     

    warped6

    Portal Member
    I'll keep the bigger HD in mind. For now it will be mostly just recording TV, watching, and then deleteing. I do have room for a second SATA drive.

    Now a dumb user question... Is there an easy way to set the channels in the TV section? Although if I get the serial-to-cable box working, all I need is channel 3 to work.
     

    warped6

    Portal Member
    Well after stress testing the Shuttle box over the weekend, I've deceided it's not going to work. Not so much the box more like it doesn't really like the video card and being on all the time. So made a deal with the Wife. Going to swap her computer for the Shuttle (after I remove all the really good stuff, she won't miss it). Then take the good stuff from hers and from mine and put it in this case. http://thermaltake.com/xaserCase/tenor/black/black.htm

    What do you think?
     

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