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Media server build

encino

Standard Member
Having lurked on this forum and others for quite a while, and not having exactly found the answers I need, I thought I'd throw my head into the fire and ask for some advice.

Here is what I want to achieve :
Central media server in cupboard to serve all rooms
At moment will be buying 3 dlna tvs, bit in future may use htpcs to control content
Server will hold ripped DVDs, mp3s, and record and store tv(fta and cable)
Also will serve as a printer server and connect to a router with voip capabilities (plan on naked dsl)
My brother works in IT and suggests rack mount as much as possible, but I'm guessing this will be more expensive and perhaps overkill. Am open to suggestions though.
So I'm going to need to buy a fair bit of stuff for the beast, including but not limited to :
Case
Gigabit switch
Patch panel
Voip router
Hdds
Mobo
2-4 tv cards

Etc

Any recommendation on suitable parts for the above greatly appreciated. Also any rack mounted suggestions welcome. Cheers
 

mattsouthgate

Standard Member
I have a similar setup but split in two. A FreeNAS backend for storage and sharing of files, using older energy efficient kit and a digitiser/display front end running Win7. The two are in different rooms and connected with gigabit ethernet. This way the front end can be turned off when not needed.
The backend can provide transcoding/print server/backup/webserver/bit-torrent functionality.

I agree a little with your brother about rack mount equipment, but I could not recommend them for a domestic user because of the price premium. I would recommend the energy efficient drives from WD (WD15EADS) and Samsung (HD15UI) for storage. They are 1.5TB drives, quiet and run cool. I have now problems running them in a miniATX case. Throughput is limited by the network.

For multiple quiet and effiecient frontends, I use Asus AMD 785 motherboards M4A78 variety with Athlon II processors. They provide HDMI, optical out for audio and handle HD easily with no need for additional hardware.

I hope this helps.
Matt
 

TheWander35

Active Member
You haven't mentioned how many drives you want this case to hold. Without knowing that it's difficult to recommend anything. For example, does this case fit the bill? Or this one? ;)

Sticking a rack-mounted server case in an enclosed cupboard might create a few challenges when it comes to cooling. Do you have any plans for how you're going to vent it?

This website might be worth a browse. build a media server
It's not a rack-mount setup but it seems to tick a few of your other boxes with regards what you're trying to achieve.

HTH :smashin:
 

encino

Standard Member
Cheers. Will probably aim for 4 drives.. 1-2TB each, depending on how quickly they fill.

Wow thanks that link is great. Only thing is I'm not up to date with parts, so if it's an old article I'll have to research the equivalent new stuff.
 

TheWander35

Active Member
Cheers. Will probably aim for 4 drives.. 1-2TB each, depending on how quickly they fill.

Wow thanks that link is great. Only thing is I'm not up to date with parts, so if it's an old article I'll have to research the equivalent new stuff.

That site looks fairly up to date. The setup is using 2tb drives for example. The kit they are using is here
 

encino

Standard Member
Cheers, yeah I noticed that. If I wanted to wun WHS or W7 I could keep the same hardware I guess?

Might go and treat myself to some parts today!
 

TheWander35

Active Member
Cheers, yeah I noticed that. If I wanted to wun WHS or W7 I could keep the same hardware I guess?

Might go and treat myself to some parts today!

Yeah, it's bog standard "desktop pc" stuff. will work with any os.

Not sure about the tuners and WHS tho. You'd have to look into that.
 

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