What should i get?

Discussion in 'Video Streaming Boxes & Services' started by Pizza, Feb 7, 2009.

  1. Pizza

    Pizza
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    For a while I've been streaming videos to my xbox using xbmc, or sometimes the xbox 360. But now i have a 720p tv on the way and i'd like to start watching a few hd videos on it. As far as i can tell, things like popcorn hour would be a good replacement, but they seem pretty expensive and hard to get. My other option is a HTPC. I have a pc near the tv at the other side of the room. If i was to get a long DVI to HDMI cable to the tv, and a long optical cable to the sound system, would that be all i need? I could also put a blu ray drive in the PC if it would play through the tv, which would all work out much cheaper than a popcorn hour. Any advice or alternatives?
     
  2. Buffo

    Buffo
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    If you don't mind a bit of messing around, turning your pc into a media center will work out cheaper than buying a dedicated box like popcorn hour. You'll need a pc with a decent spec though (not amazing, but decent - I have a dell c521 with 2gb of ram and dual core processor).

    However, it's not competely without cost. Unless you already have one, you'll need to get a video card that will output HD (this might cost you around £40). As you're familar with xbmc, you could use the version they do for windows (no codecs needed, it should work right out the box). I use vista media center, so i need a bunch of codecs to play hd content (core avc, haali media splitter and ac3 filter).

    Matt
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 11, 2009
  3. Pizza

    Pizza
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    Thanks for the reply. I have all the spec necessary already in my pc, except a spdif to optical sound thing, and the cables to go to the tv. What would be the best for picture quality, VGA or DVI to HDMI?
     
  4. Smurfin

    Smurfin
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    Not necessarily. If he doesn't have a decent spec PC currently this can get alot more expensive than using a popcorn hour. A PC is generally noisy whereas the PCH is silent. Another consideration is sound requirements; as far as I'm aware there's only one soundcard on the market capable of bitstreaming lossless audio, but how much is that on its own?

    That said, Pizza has said he already has a PC in the room so if the spec of this is good then it's certainly worth looking at :)
     

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