alternative to HTPC (ps3 + nas)?

Discussion in 'Home Theater PCs & Equipment' started by jcmuse, Sep 23, 2008.

  1. jcmuse

    jcmuse Limp Gawd

    Feb 10, 2006
    i currently use my desktop PC to playback media on my TV. i find i dont even use the vista media center interface so i'm not tied to that. i play stuff like MKV and AVI mostly, sometimes i'll play dvd images (ISOs).

    i'm getting a laptop, selling the desktop, so i'll be needing another alternative for HTPC work.

    my current idea is to get a PS3 and use some sort of upnp server to stream media to it (possibly a NAS).

    My question is: anyone have any experience with this or possibly have a better idea for media playback w/o a HTPC? there are also units like the tvix by dvico that serve for htpc work but i hear they're pretty buggy still. i could use my xbox but its hardware is dated and doesn't do HD MKV very well.

    I would just build an HTPC but i don't like the heat they generate + power they use. I want something more minimal (this will be used in my tiny bedroom). the ps3 route may not be low power, low heat, but at least it will be small and easier to boot up/down.
  2. timme

    timme Gawd

    Jun 21, 2008
    If you would only use the NAS to stream media of it, I would find the PS3+NAS solution too complicated and probably expensive aswell.

    A cheap 780G mATX board with a 45W TDP AMD processor (4050e, 4450e, 4850e, anything like that) doesn't use too much power, and you gain a lot of flexibility.

    With a small HTPC case like the Antec NSK1480, it won't take up much more space than a PS3.

    I still find the PS3 overpriced and the fact that you will need additional storage doesn't make it any better. With an AMD based HTPC, you will save money up front and have a 'real' second PC if you ever need one.
  3. StorageJoe

    StorageJoe Limp Gawd

    Jun 14, 2005
    The only downside is that the PS3 is fairly limited compared to a HTPC in terms of what media formats it will play.
  4. nitrobass24

    nitrobass24 [H]ard|DCer of the Month - December 2009

    Apr 7, 2006
    You could grab one of those Sage TV media Extender things, they have a 7w max power draw and are small.....I know gjvrieze uses them with his setup...He records like 1tb a week of tv to a server and it all gets streamed from there. pretty cool setup IMO You could do the same thing with that and a NAS or build a WHS box....

    I have my WHS box, and I built a HTPC with Vista x64.

    There are just so many options now days that you kind of need to decide what is most important to you and how much you are willing to spend on your setup.
  5. Elledan

    Elledan [H]ard|DCer of the Month - April 2010

    Oct 18, 2001
    Yes, that's my experience as well. My housemate and I have each our own DLNA server setup on our respective PCs (TVersity and MediaTomb). Without transcoding and other tricks enabled, the PS3 can play only a fraction of the files on our PCs. Even then ISOs don't work unless mounted on the fileserver first. The PS3 also stumbles over files with even minor corruption or so in the header or frames, leading to it stopping playback or the image freezing up while the audio continues.

    All in all I'd much rather use an HTPC than a PS3 for playing back media.