A question of simplicity??

Discussion in 'Desktop & Laptop Computers Forum' started by buns, May 19, 2001.

  1. buns

    buns
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    Now I cannot claim to know the least thing about HTPC's, but I know well that alot of people are claiming very big things about their performance. I cannot deny that there is a very big potential for that. But surely if you decide to go down this route, you are sacrificing simplicity in a big way! As my system is, I have all my kit programmed into my universal remote. So I sit down on my seat, press one button on the remote, and I am ready to go.When you are talking about HTPC, do you not need to turn the computer on, start up the necessary programs, set the specs you want and do the button press I have for what remains of your kit? To me this is very arduous! It would be like having to connect all the wires up each time I wanted to watch a movie! Does this just show me to be a lazy Home Theatre nut as opposed to a true addict?

    Just when the thought is in my mind....computers are horrible things when it comes to their electrical aftermath. When I had one connected on the same circuit as my hifi......the noise the pc induced into the power supply was phenomenal....highlighting the points companies like Russ Andrew make. Before this experience I thought that the idea of spending £500 on a mains block was madness....but my mind was changed. How do all those who have htpc's deal with these problems....or is home cinema equipment not sensitive to this as hi-fi is?

    ps. whatever I say, I would still love to build a htpc if I had the slightest idea how!
     
  2. Spacecat

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    i find it very simple , i get no interference with my audio equipment and i use an infra red keyboard thats acts as a remote control.Tales about 5mins max to set a film up , including the boot up sequence.
    A small price to pay for the quality

    What are you doing with a gun in space ?
     
  3. buns

    buns
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    5 minutes addmitedly doesnt seem very long....but in time I guess that having to take 5 minutes every time you want to watch a dvd is a real bugger.....i frequently sit down for 15 or 20 minutes to flick through extras, doing that would be plain annoying if I had to spend 5 minutes to get started!

    Is there not also the issue that you have to constantly keep downloading the latest updates etc to keep the system as good as possible? I have enough software problems as it is with office and such, I am not keen on the idea that my HT system will crask the way my pc does!
     
  4. Metric

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    newer machines quick boot, especially winME. You can replace the shell so that a commands can be sent via a pronto such as play, stop and shutdown the pc...no major problem

    the improvement in quality would be worth 5 minutes...if it took that long

    Mike
     
  5. buns

    buns
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    OK, since you seem so convinced upon this point.....give me an idea of how much I would have to spend on an HTPC to match up to a pioneer 737 with the scaling, interlacing etc of an iscan pro?
     
  6. Jeff

    Jeff
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    From a cold boot I'm up and ready to press play on my pronto in about 45 seconds. The cost depends on a number of factors, but about £1000 should take care of it. The biggest thing about HTPCs is that they take a lot of effort to get right. A lot of people spend a lot of money and time only to fail. I wrote an article for HCC about my HTPC which can be found in the technical articles section on this web site.

    Good luck

    Jeff
     
  7. buns

    buns
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    As i say, i am sorely tempted to try to make one of these things......but I am really worried that it will be a base over apex project because I mave never built a computer before and have no idea of how to do bios settings etc etc and I am afraid that I will find spiralling costs! It seems so much easier just to buy an iscan and top dvd player....but Im not giving in that easy! I will be using a projector of somesort...unlikely crt cos of its cost! So if anyone readin this has any good links that may lessen my worries about the whole thing....please tell me!
     
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  9. GarryF

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    What display device are you using Buns ? The benefits of a HCPC become more apparent at the higher end of scaling, I personally have a NEC 9PG projector and somewhere around line tripling is the best resolution for it. Comparing the HCPC versus a Quadscan (the only real option for tripling below the rock at £3000+) fed from my Nakamichi DVD-10S I see considerable improvements.

    As for simplicity I would say I'm similar to Jeff in being ready to hit play in under a minute. You could if this bothered you leave the PC on all the time. I have been playing with Girder over the last few weeks and it can pretty much do anything you want, in my case I couldn't get autoplay to work as I wanted so I have a button on my pronto for HCPC then I just have to hit a button corresponding to the region disk I am watching then girder opens dvd genie, sets region, closes, then start winDVD. The only thing I have to do now is get the serial port of the quadscan working from the PC to select ports automatically (the quadscan remote is terrible)

    Half of that is probably meaningless to you and I guess my point is that HCPC can be a lot more complicated that plugging in a DVD player to the back of your amp. It is possible however to make the HCPC transparent in use and just as simple as a standalone DVD player if you are willing to put in the time and effort on the automation side.

    [ 21-05-2001: Message edited by: GarryF ]
     
  10. Metric

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    I got this pc from dell:
    http://commerce.euro.dell.com/dellstore/config/frameset.asp?s=uktra&l=en&m=gbp&c=644&n=998&cu=uktra&v=n&cc=&ogn=&kcd=&ad=3566&mc=002&rs=&cuid=&cg=&pch=1&pn=-1&demo=&gc=&sbc=uk dhsdi]http://commerce.euro.dell.com/dellstore/config/frameset.asp?s=uktra&l=en&m=gbp&c=644&n=998&cu=uktra&v=n&cc=&ogn=&kcd=&ad=3566&mc=002&rs=&cuid=&cg=&pch=1&pn=-1&demo=&gc=&sbc=u kdhsdimen&co=&b=22298

    They also do a desktop geoplex but only goes to 1ghz

    Mike

    [ 22-05-2001: Message edited by: Metric ]

    [ 22-05-2001: Message edited by: Metric ]
     

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