Jump to content
RESET Forums (homeservershow.com)

TV/media streaming PC-build advice

Server Grunt

Recommended Posts



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



Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 23
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

  • pcdoc


  • ikon


  • Server Grunt


  • Josh Pollard


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




What's your spending limit

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


Spec-ing out is always fun

Link to comment
Share on other sites

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/

Link to comment
Share on other sites

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!

Link to comment
Share on other sites


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



Edited by Server Grunt
Link to comment
Share on other sites

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.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

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.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Similar Content

    • Dave
    • Dave
      By Dave
      The SDM R4 is SOLD OUT!
      The SDM R4 is a bracket that facilitates mounting two additional 2.5″ drives in a HP MicroServer Gen8. There are also mounting holes for fans across the bottom to help cool RAID/SATA cards. The kit includes all the fasteners needed to install.
      With optional Stackers you can run four 2.5″ drives on the SDM R4. The SDM R4 will support four 9.5MM 2.5″ drives. If you want to run four drives on the SDM R4, you need to order SSB stacking brackets listed below. One set of SSB per drive pair, four drives will require two SSB kits. Because of the size of the SDM R4, if you are going to boot your server using the internal USB port, you will need to use a USB stick that is shorter than 1″. For more information on mounting instructions look here: http://homeservershow.com/forums/index.php?/topic/5960-hp-ms-g8-25-drive-bracket-revision-history-new-rev-35-and-rev-4-info/?p=137922


      The SDM R3.5 is in stock and ready to ship!
      The SDM R3.5 is a bracket that facilitates mounting one additional 2.5″ drive in a HP MicroServer Gen8. The kit includes all the fasteners needed to install.
      With optional Stackers you can run two 2.5″ drives on the SDM R3.5. The SDM R3.5 will support two 9.5MM 2.5″ drives. If you want to run two drives on the SDM R3.5, you need to order SSB stacking brackets listed below. One set of SSB per drive pair. For more information on mounting instructions look here:  http://homeservershow.com/forums/index.php?/topic/5960-hp-ms-g8-25-drive-bracket-revision-history-new-rev-35-and-rev-4-info/?p=137922


      SSB-9.5 for 9.5mm drives $10
      Schoondoggy Stacking Brackets can be used to stack two 2.5” drives. All screws are included


      SSB-7 for 7mm drives $10


      SOC-MSG8-R1 kit for 9.5mm optical drives to latch it in place. Screws included $9.


      The SDM R4 is SOLD OUT!
    • Joe_Miner
      By Joe_Miner
      This was just posted at HPE a couple days ago -- I really like this video --
      I'm checking out what's below the heat sink shortly....................
    • Dave
      By Dave
      Panos Panay just wowed the Microsoft crowd with two incredible hardware reveals. The first was the SurfaceBook i7 with a whopping 16 hours of battery life.  The second was Surface Studio. I dare you to call it an "All in One" after today.
      I'll be chatting about all this gear on my new podcast, RESET. Find it here: mccabe.io

      Surface Studio
      The specs of Studio are impressive but visually it is stunning. It has 28" of wow that can be manipulated to however you prefer to create.

      Screen: 28" PixelSense Display
      Resolution: 4500 x 3000 (192 DPI)
      Color settings: Adobe sRGB, DCI-P3 and Vivid Color Profiles, Individually color calibrated
      Touch: 10-point multi-touch
      Aspect Ratio: 3:2
      Surface Pen
      Zero Gravity Hinge
      Quad-core 6th Gen Intel Core i5 or i7
      NVIDIA GeForce GTX 965M 2GB GPU GDDR5 memory or NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M 4GB GPU GDDR5 memory
      It looks like a creative persons dream machine.  Apple picked a bad week to follow Microsoft when it comes to hardware reveals.  I personally would like to try the Studio and Dial with some video editing software.  I think it will be great for that.
      Look at the Microsoft Store online for more photos.  It really is a nice looking Surface. Link Here.
      Surface Book
      The Surface Book is plain and simple; More.  More graphics and more battery.  It's a little heavier and starts at 3.6 pounds where last year's Surface Book was 3.3 pounds.  Maybe it's the new 6th Gen Intel Core i7 or the i7: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 965M with 2GB of GDDR5 memory.  That's nice but Panos stated they just put in more battery!  It's nice to see that.  Adds a little weight but for those that want the battery life it's a welcome change.

      Surface Dial
      The Dial is impressive.  It's compatible with any Windows 10 enabled PC, laptop, or tablet as long as it has the Anniversary Update.  Don't try this with your Surface Pro but it will stick to the screen of the Surface Studio!  It will have optimized off screen compatibility with Surface Book and SP4.
      It's a jog dial on steroids and Panos and software partners demo'd many uses of it. Color wheel, zoom in, etc.  It's $99 and can be purchased now for delivery on November 10th.

      Thanks for shopping with my links.  Maybe I can get one too!
    • barry
      By barry
      Hey so I'm a recent fan of the podcast and so far am having fun going through the old episodes and getting caught up on the discussion.  Lots to learn in the Home Automation world.  I'm a fairly competent hobbiest - i usually build my own PCs.  Going to be trying my hand at a laptop next once that one dies.  
      Ok to my problem.   We just moved to a new house with lots more space.  Yay!  The old place was a 1200 square foot place - little shoe box basically.  Now we're in 4600 sqft with 5 BR, a couple large living rooms, bed rooms spread all over, 3 car garage.  I'm starting to peel back the layers a bit to see what's under the hood and to my delight, I found that the builder ran CAT5e for the phone jacks (just twisted 2 pair and ignored the others).  I have COAX in most of the rooms as well (but not in the same locations and not all in the same rooms).  These all run from a central point in the basement utility room.  Those wires are all currently just banded together with very little organization.  The FIOS installer used a splitter to activate a few of the COAX runs and use a wall jack up in the living space to install the FIOS Router and a white COAX/Ethernet Bridge device.  I have an appleTV device, a PC computer with a wired/wireless networking capability, an XBOX360, a home theater system with only an ethernet port.  We also run a few iPhones and iPads through the house on the wifi.  
      I can handle the first couple steps but if anyone has suggestions on this please advise:
      1 - to have all the COAX set up in a box in the basement to distribute that data through the house.  We have about 15 cable runs through the house.
      2 - repurpose the phone jacks through the house to Cat5e network data jacks.  will require a punchdown rack mounted box in the basement sending signal out.  also will need new wall jacks and punchdown fittings.  On a few walls... I have a jack on one side of the wall that i would also like to have a live connection on the other side.  (i.e. the current run is to a bedroom, i'd like to keep the bedroom active as well as directly on the other side into that living space.
      Once I have this distribution solution in place is where i start to get a bit fuzzy.  The end state once im done is the following ideas:
      I would like to start to add Apple HomeKit devices throughout the house.  I'd like to be able to see all wired and wireless devices on the network.  I'd like to have flexibility to install wall mounted home control panels at the once main entry and perhaps in the kitchen.  Home Automation goals to include;  motion activated lighting.  Scene selected lighting.  Whole home audio.  Distributed AV to the TVs.  Locks.  exterior Cameras.  Interior cameras at entry doors, in the garage, basement utility room.  Water Sensors.  I would like to have a router in the basement utility room send data through the ethernet but also utilize the wireless router for the wifi - and have all that still able to talk to each other.  Most if not all the home automation hardware will be on the wifi but i might have cameras on the wired ethernet in some places - would just depend on layout etc.  
      I am at the very beginning stages of planning this out.  The only real commitment I have made is to the Apple HomeKit universe, which is entirely based on security and simplicity.  I would prefer to keep the number of required apps and software interface among the devices as low as possible.  I plan on adding the HomePod device as it becomes available.  Also for note... the WAF (wife acceptance factor) is a concern.  

  • Create New...