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TV/media streaming PC-build advice


Server Grunt

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Server Grunt

Hi,

 

I am planning to build a small computer to handle TV-related tasks, including:

• Receive tv-signals (four external usb-cards)

• Distribute cards (with DVB-link) – 2-4 TV:s and up to 3-mobile units

• Record tv

• Clean out commercials

The capacity of the computer should be such as it can do all these tasks at the same time

 

Ideas and pre-requisites

• Placed in cupboard so it has to run cool – but also quiet (prefer fan less, but ultra quiet is acceptable)

• SSD for system drive

• Small/slim form factor

• Second/storage HDD can be external (usb 3.0)

• Headless and remotely managed

 

Any suggestions on HW and SW appreciated

 

//Grunt

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Sorry I can't go into detail, writing this on my phone.

 

But:

 

What's your spending limit

And to confirm, all tuners you already own are external?

 

Spec-ing out is always fun

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Yeah...I don't think your rack and Norco is going to work here. :)

 

If it were all SD tv I'd almost suggest a D525 Atom box. The one I have (from PCDoc) can record a couple HD streams or multiple SD streams from my HDHR tuners. It's not the fastest at ShowAnalyzer, but it gets the job done. I wouldn't use it for *watching* (unless you have one of the improved nVidia versions) but for recording/streaming not bad.

 

If you really want a sharp, quiet, and cool box check these out (courtesy of the Entertainment 2.0 guys) http://www.lowcarbonpc.com/

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Josh Pollard

Server Grunt,

 

To me it sounds like you're going to want something moderately powerful. I wouldn't recommend an Atom for this. At the very least I would go with an Intel Core i3, or possibly step up to an i5. Low Carbon PC, that TimeKills mentioned, offers models for each of those processors. They are small, quiet, powerful, and look great. If you're going to be hanging all of those USB tuners off of this box, and then using ShowAnalyzer to find commercials, and then also streaming I would want something decently powerful. Hopefully that helps a little.

 

TimeKills, thanks for mentioning Entertainment 2.0 and Low Carbon PC. I appreciate that!

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Server Grunt

Guys!

As always this community offers fast, informed and wise advice.

Many thanks!

@welchwerks: For tuners I will use a couple of AnySee USB tunes with CI-modules and I will store on server, but would like to have a high capacity local disc (could be an USB 3.0) to use for short time storage of file s waiting to be ShowAnalyzed and re-encoded

@timekills: The low carbon-stuff looks great! However, I am in Europe (explains the use of DVB-Link, which foremost is a PAL adapyed solution, for those of you who wondered), so it might be an expensive exercise to acquire one of those boxes.

@Josh: I was thinking along those lines – thanks for confirming my suspicions. But what i3 wold you reccomend? Why would an i5 be better?

BTW: I have trouble accessing the lowcarbon-site. I get an "operation borted" error message when I am trying to load the products or store pages

 

//Grunt

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Several people, including myself, have had great success with SilverStone cases. A Core i3 will do the job and 4 gigs of RAM is more than ample.

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Josh Pollard

The only reason I said that I might go with an i5 over the i3 is that in my experience these types of boxes always have their duties grow. You might find that as long as that box is running anyway, why not have it do a few more tasks for you around the house? I'm not familiar with the other machines you have around your house though. But if you're only going to use it for these tasks, then yes, a Core i3 would be fine. I would leave it up to someone smarter than me to recommend a specific i3, but I would recommend not going with the "T" series as you'll want to the faster processors in the i3 line.

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