I built my first HTPC almost 10 years ago with old spare computer parts and hooked it up to a Samsung 27 inch SD TV. It all started with an AMD K6/2 processor, a Diamond TNT graphics card and a SoundBlaster AWE64 sound card on a DFI motherboard with a maxed-out 512MB of PC100 SDRAM. For the time, not a shabby start for a dedicated music and movie player.
The first front-end I used for the HTPC was myHTPC software (which eventually became Meedio and then sold-out to Yahoo!). Later, I used Freevo and MythTV. After the introduction of the PVR capabilities, I went back to Windows for better support and a richer selection of available software.
Over the years, my HTPC has evolved and been consistently upgraded. It now pulls double-duty as a home server and theater system. My HTPC currently runs Windows Vista with Media Center as the primary front-end. I am testing Boxee and am working on a solution for seemless MLB.tv experience.
My HTPC Hardware Overview:
- Thermaltake DH-101
- Coolmax M-500B Green Power Supply
- AMD 780G Chipset
- ATI Radeon HD 3200
- Realtek ALC889A 7.1+2 Audio with DTS
- Realtek RTL8168C Gigabit Network Interface
- HDMI 3.1 Output
- AMD Athlon 64 X2 6000+ Processor
- 2GB DDR800 RAM
- Hauppauge WinTV PVR 350 TV/FM Tuner
- Realtek RTL8139D Network Interface
- Samsung SATA DVD–RW
- Maxtor 120GB SATA Hard Disk Drive
- Maxtor 120GB PATA Hard Disk Drive
- Maxtor 160GB PATA Hard Disk Drive
In the near future, I hope to upgrade to two, mirrored 1TB SATA Hard Disk Drives. I’m also excited for Windows 7 to be released! I will likely upgrade right away. Although I haven’t had too many issues while running Vista on this hardware, I am excited for the performance increase and updated Media Center.