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Media Streamer Solution: HTPC or WDTV Live Hub?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Ok OCN, I know you guys can help me out with this.

I really want to consolidate all of my media into a single device that will allow me to play it on my TV.

- Add media via ethernet and USB
- 1TB or more of storage
- Hulu and some other internet apps (this would be a plus, but not entirely necessary)
- Downlading Cover artwork of movies and shows (which im pretty sure everything with this now does)
- 1080p playback
- Not too sure if I will be streaming all that much, because I will constantly upload/add media to it, but add in the possibility.

I'm basically trying to find the cheapest solution either with an HTPC or a device such as the WDTV Live Hub. Sorry this is all kinda general on specifications, but if I think of more I will update.

Thanks again guys!
 
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post #2 of 10
Definitely an HTPC as it is more flexible and you can run it in a reduced functionality state.

Definitely HTPC! Wait for the Zacates(Dual-core 1.6Ghz w/80 stream processor)
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post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 
Ok so for htpc, could i get something like those Zotac case's which come with everything except for the OS or just missing a few components like HD, ram, and OS.

Like this :

Or completely custom? If custom, what is a sufficient build?
 
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post #4 of 10
post #5 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slygamer View Post
Or completely custom? If custom, what is a sufficient build?
Been burnt by Zotac and Atom/ION. Never going with something that underpowered again. Unfortunately, that includes Zacate. I'm very much looking forward to Llano (K10+Redwood), though.

Personal preference for a low-budget HTPC:
785G/880G mATX + any Athlon II X2 + 2~4GB DDR3

One reason why I've sworn off barebones or anything with integrated/soldered CPU, you lose flexibility. If you go with regular parts, it should be fairly easy to upgrade the CPU or GPU to increase performance or add functionality. If you go with Atom/ION, you'd need to replace the CPU/MB in case you want to upgrade.
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post #6 of 10
Thread Starter 
Ok so i've laid out my options. I think I might be getting a NAS for my home, so all of the media can go there and it will stream through htpc. But for right now, if I want something that will stream media and be able to carry it between school and my house, the WDTV Live Hub would be alright?

Again this would temporary as I definitely see the advantage of an HTPC and will most definitely build one.
 
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WD Caviar Black 640GB Intel SSD X25M WD Caviar Black/Blue 1TB LITE ON 24x DVD Writer 
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post #7 of 10
I have owned both the the original WD Live and the Live hub since release.

The WD Live was good but had some shortfalls, but the Live hub is awesome.

It has handled every HD (1080p) media format I have with no issues. (all local, mind you) I dont use it for the services, except for Youtube.

If you just want to play HD content to a TV then you cant go wrong for that price with 1tb storage and access to Netflix, Youtube.
    
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post #8 of 10
Just for playing media I would just get a Popcorn Hour. The only reason I built a HTPC is to be able to record anything and pause live TV on my satellite receiver. However it took about a month of configuration and testing to get it to have smooth playback. I'm using SageTV which also costs $80

Now if you need a PVR as well then I would certainly suggest a HTPC
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post #9 of 10
I had a WDTV live plus, I sold that and built me a c2d HTPC - cost me all of $350 bucks but I did have a spare GPU....more flexibility = htpc, but you'll have the hassle of dealing with windows and you'll need a good UI - media center does the job, but XBMC works wonders with a htpc
 
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post #10 of 10
its a personal preference thing

the htpc takes up more room, uses more power, needs a remote of some type and at some point you'll still need a keyboard and mouse

a htpc is more flexible but then again its a real computer, they are updatable again its a real computer.

depending on what your doing with it from what i've seen in the last 2 years
90% or better of the people out there are just as good with the WD live,
I really like the boxee box software on a htpc but now you can get the boxe box hardware for about 200.00 and it will play anything. its not hardware updatable but you can write your on apps/scripts for it to access web feeds

get a WD live if it does everything you want then dont worry about the little stuff
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