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Did You Build Your Own Htpc?

Discussion in 'IPTV Hardware' started by inkahauts1367066121, Feb 17, 2011.

  1. inkahauts1367066121

    inkahauts1367066121 New Member

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    Feb 16, 2011
    If so, what OTA cards did you use? What hardware in general, and how many streams can it handle going out at once (to other devices)?

    I am thinking of building one myself, but I would want it to have as many OTA tuners as possible, in addition to being a main source for Netflix streaming, and others...
     
  2. houskamp

    houskamp Active Member

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    I just use my laptop.. have a WinTV HVR 950Q tuner.. would expect 4 would work fine.. past that drive subsystem would start to overload..
     
  3. bonscott87

    bonscott87 Cutting Edge: ECHELON '07

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    I use the SiliconDust HDHomerun which is a dual tuner device and puts the OTA tuners on your home network (thus it can be located anywhere in the house). Then any computer (including Macs and Linux) can access these tuners if one if free. I much prefer this solution as then I don't need to worry about putting in a tuner card with heat and space in my HTPC *and* I can watch live TV on any computer in the house, not just on my HTPC. If you want more tuners add another HDHomerun. It also supports clear QAM.

    W7MC by default will support 4 tuners but you can hack it to support more. But I would be concerned with hard drive bandwidth if you go over 4.

    Ceton has their 4 tuner cable card version, although it's expensive and a 2 month waiting list.
    HDHomerun is also supposed to release a 3 tuner cable card version sometime this year.

    There are plenty of internal card tuners that are liked highly but I'm not familiar with them.
     
  4. inkahauts1367066121

    inkahauts1367066121 New Member

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    Feb 16, 2011
    Interesting.. I wonder how that would do with a deca directv system.. I am guessing, as long as its not in the deca cloud, it won't bog down MRV.

    Do you find that it slows down your internet connection?

    And do you ever use something like a roku to watch it or content from your HTPC on a tv (assuming its a tv not hooked up to your htpc)?
     
  5. David Bott

    David Bott Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    Traveling...
    I use 3 HTPC's in our home and I have then all running off 4 HD HDHomerun.

    I gave two of the HTPCs 3 tuners and the other just 2. But I made sure I did not use the same actual HDHomerun unit more than once on a given HTPC. Why? Well if you had one HTPC using one HDHomeRun and that HDHomerum locked up or whatever, your shows would not be recorded. So now if one locks up, it will look to use another tuner.
     
  6. bonscott87

    bonscott87 Cutting Edge: ECHELON '07

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    Doesn't slow down the Internet since it's not using the Internet, only internal network. I only have 100mb internal (plan to upgrade to gigabit soon) and it doesn't slow anything down. On one HTPC I've had 2 full HD streams going (which total would be under 40mb) and streaming Netflix or Hulu at the same time with no issues. Have also had another PC downloading stuff at the same time as the above with no issues.

    I can see if you had 4 HD streams at once recording and only a 100mb network you might start to run into issues if you're doing other heavy traffic but shouldn't be an issue at all with a gigabit. Now the HD Homerun is only a 100mb device itself but the rest of your network would be at gigabit speeds obviously and thus traffic overhead no issue.
     
  7. houskamp

    houskamp Active Member

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    How does WMC handle the tuners? What if you had one connected to OTA and one on cable? can it choose the right one for a channel?
     
  8. David Bott

    David Bott Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    Traveling...
    WMC will check to see what it can see when it sets itself up. It will look for AIR or Cable based on what you tell it to look for.
     
  9. houskamp

    houskamp Active Member

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    Sep 14, 2006
    but would it do both at the same time?
     
  10. bonscott87

    bonscott87 Cutting Edge: ECHELON '07

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    As far as I know, yes. So in the guide it configures itself to use the tuner it knows that channel is available on. So if tuner 1 is QAM and tuner 2 is OTA then it will only try to record QAM channels on tuner 1 and OTA channels on tuner 2. I'm pretty sure it works like that anyway.
     
    1 person likes this.
  11. inkahauts1367066121

    inkahauts1367066121 New Member

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    Feb 16, 2011
    Interesting... I may have to pick up one of these and test it out and see how I like it...
     
  12. dodge boy

    dodge boy R.I.P. Chris Henry

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    I have a gateway I got a year or so ago, it was a Vista Machine, when I went to Windows7 I can no longer get any channels onthe OTA tuner that was built into it. I do run Play On on it and streal it to my Logitec Reveiw (for Hulu) and multiple DirecTv DVRs. I also have a little acer desktop (xp) and a Compaq laptop (Vista) both of wich use XBMC adn on my laptop it has WMC aswell.
     
  13. houskamp

    houskamp Active Member

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    I have a WinTV HVR 950Q attatched to my laptop.. works great with WMC and win7.
     
  14. bonscott87

    bonscott87 Cutting Edge: ECHELON '07

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    Have you checked to see if there are Win 7 drivers for the tuner card?

    Other thing I can think of is if you actually did an upgrade from Vista (vs. installing Win 7 clean) is that things got borked up in the upgrade (very common). Reinstall all the tuner software and drivers (get the most up to date Win 7 compatible versions) and go from there. Once you get the tuner to work with the software that came with the tuner then you can move on to Media Center and get that set up.
     
  15. dodge boy

    dodge boy R.I.P. Chris Henry

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    The plan was to do an upgrade (I bougth the right software) but somehow it would not install. I eventually (after 3 days of messing with it) I just paid geek squad to upgrade it..... I am not really worried about it right now. If it does become an issue I will retire that computer and a HTPC built for me.
     
  16. cygnusloop

    cygnusloop Hall Of Fame

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    I'm using 2 (home built) dedicated HTPCs, and use a couple of other laptops for TV. Here's another plug for the HDHomerun. It really is a cool device.
    My dedicated HTPCs are both Win7/Media Center based, and the laptops can access either recorded TV off the HTPCs or live TV off the HDHomerun.
    While not for everyone, and still (a little bit) clunky, Media Center PCs are really quite good now, IMO.
     
  17. Fin745

    Fin745 New Member

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    Mar 18, 2011
    I didn't build my HTPC as much as added parts to an existing system. I'm using my main PC as a HTPC. I have a 32in HDTV, a dell 580 and a core i3-530 6GB of memory and onboard HDMI video. I have one AVerMedia AVerTVHD Duet which is used for OTA and one Hauppauge Colossus* which is used to record HD programing off of my cable box(Which is good instead of a cable card device because the Colossus doesn't apply any DRM even with shows that air on HBO and the like) and one SiliconDust HDHR3 for OTA(And also one Hauppauge HVR-1950 for analog cable).

    *I using this with SageTV right now as Hauppauge hasn't released any WMC drivers.
     
  18. brant

    brant Icon

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    The xbox 360 is the best device for watching content from your WMC HTPC.

    I have one in my bedroom networked to the HTPC and it provides an identical interface; I use it to watch live and recorded TV, ripped movies I have saved to the HDD, listen to the radio (I have an FM tuner in the HTPC), listen to ripped cd's, check the weather, etc. . . It can do pretty much what the HTPC can do but does not have the same codec support nor does it have a web browser. I have a program that transcodes DVD's to the xbox, and ripped blu-rays are converted to a format compatible w/ the xbox.

    You can also watch netflix w/ an xbox live gold account. The interface is not the same as the HTPC, and you have to exit the media center session to access it from the xbox dashboard. It has been reported that hulu plus will be available on the xbox in "spring 2011".

    For $200 (xbox slim 4GB) its far cheaper than building an HTPC for each room.
     
  19. Jazz308

    Jazz308 New Member

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    Apr 22, 2013
    East...
    Please talk in English! I have no idea what you mean by OTA, HTPC, etc! I would like to learn about setting up a media PC, but I need a "Media PC for Dummys" kind of discussion! Thanks!
     
  20. bonscott87

    bonscott87 Cutting Edge: ECHELON '07

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    All you can do is keep reading. There is a very large HTPC forum at AVS Forums with a ton of info.

    HTPC = Home Theater PC
    OTA = Over the air...as in an antenna. Main way people get HD with a HTPC if they don't have cable.

    Setting one up isn't for the faint of heart. I had to become a near expert it seems in various video and audio codecs, HDCP and more. You typically gotta know your stuff to build a HTPC right.
     

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