New to HTPC, looking to convert old computer to HTPC!

aingeal

Weaksauce
Joined
Aug 3, 2005
Messages
74
Hey all,

I've had an old computer laying around for about a year now and have no really big use for it so I decided that I would jump into HTPC's and convert my old computer into one. I'm not exactly sure what other components that I will need so I'm here for inputs on everything I will need!

I want to be able to use my computer to play standard dvds and rip them, Blu-ray dvds and rip them, watch tv (including HD channels), and record tv (including HD channels).

I have an older HDTV that is about 65 inches and its a rear projection screen if that matters, it does not have HDMI, only component and S-video. I have satellite cable from DirecTV and the box is a high-def box so I get high-def channels.

My old computer consists of the following:

Chenming Case
AMD 3200+ Venice
1 GB G. Skill DDR400 PC3200
Asus A8N-SLI Motherboard
Pioneer DVD-RW
WD 60GB HDD
BFG 6800GT OC
Enermax 460W PSU

So, what other components would I need to get in order to accomplish the tasks I want to.
 

deruberhanyok

2[H]4U
Joined
Aug 22, 2004
Messages
2,098
Well, if you want to record HD content from your satellite box you're going to need a tuner/capture device that can accept component input; the Hauppauge external box HD-PVR is one such device.

The only other things you would need are PVR style software that supports the device (Hauppauge's software is good, but you may want to look at something like SageTV, BeyondTV, Media Portal, etc, if you want something that would function as a living room type of device) and a lot of hard drive space.

You could probably tone down the video card a bit, too, maybe an 8600GT, Radeon 3650 or thereabouts.
 

aingeal

Weaksauce
Joined
Aug 3, 2005
Messages
74
So the only thing I am lacking is the tuner card, the software and a bigger hard drive?

EDIT: Seems like the HD-PVR is a little on the expensive side at $250 for the box. What is the next best solution or am I stuck not being able to record HD channels onto my HTPC hard drive?
 

deruberhanyok

2[H]4U
Joined
Aug 22, 2004
Messages
2,098
Pretty much, yeah, the rest of your box would be fine for HTPC use. My HTPC is an Athlon 64 3000+ with 1GB of RAM and that runs great with SageTV.

If you want HD channels off of your satellite box you're going to need something that can accept HD component input; Hauppauge's box is one of a handful of options. I think there's another company that has one for around the same price and beyond that you get into even higher prices.

Any other tuner could be connected via S-Video and you'd have a really clean SD capture, though. :) One that could receive ATSC broadcasts, assuming you're in an area with good reception, could at least record the networks and such in HD.
 

aingeal

Weaksauce
Joined
Aug 3, 2005
Messages
74
So just a basic tuner card, like the PVR-150 will work just fine for recording standard television shows?
 

deruberhanyok

2[H]4U
Joined
Aug 22, 2004
Messages
2,098
That's correct, although a newer tuner card, even SD only, may have better picture quality than the PVR-150. There are several tuners available based on ATI's Theatre 550 that aren't very expensive and may be worth looking at.
 

Adidas4275

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Mar 11, 2006
Messages
5,986
i had a PVR-150 and then got a HVR-1800 and the 1800 has a much clearer analog signal from my experience
 
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