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HTPC Ubuntu based MediaCentre need some advice

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Matticus, 8 Apr 2008.

  1. Matticus

    Matticus ...

    23 Feb 2008
    Likes Received:
    So I am about to get an old slimline but pretty sexy case and put some old hardware in for a media centre.

    It will be hooked up to my TV using scart and my downstairs TV using the 3 cable scart thing, you know yellow video, white and red audio.
    It will be mainly used for listening to music and watching movies, and maybe the occasional browsing of the net.

    I have a few questions...

    1. Would S-video be the best way to link up to the TV, currently my TV only has coaxial (I think its called, the one from the arial), and scart.
    So I could use an S-video to scart adapter right.
    The problem lies in the fact I am not sure whether the card I intend to use has s-video out, Its in the loft, theres a bunch of stuff, but I am too impatient to go look at it before I post this.

    2. Is ubuntu my best bet for a media centre, if so which version as the newest may be slightly more bloated for my old hardware, I will hook the system up using a USB wireless adapter, or a slimline PCI one if the USB doesnt work too well.
    The reason I say ubuntu is because I know it well and its easy to set up ndiswrapper and networking in general is a breeze.
    Are there any programs I should get in particular for it. And anything I should kill so I can have a slightly faster system.

    3. I dont think I have any slimline graphics card or backplates, would running it backplateless be ok providing I dont move it around much?

    Also I was planning on a cheap ebuyer value wireless keyboard and mouse pack for around £10 :thumb: I have never had wireless keyboard and mouse, would I need any drivers, and if so how would this work out using ubuntu.

    Also is a digital tv tuner so I can get freeview through it a wise investment, or am I best off sticking to a freeview box?

    Anything else I would need or that you would suggest?

    Thanks in advance
  2. completemadness

    completemadness New Member

    11 May 2007
    Likes Received:
    What software do you plan to run? Mythtv?
    I recommend a digital tuner, i use a couple of Hauppauge Nova-T 500's - their £50 each but they are dual tuners (you can record 2 things at once) but they can be a bit hard to setup

    How are you going to connect the Scart input? (or composite - the yellow plug thing) you will need a framegrabber thing of some sort (the digital tuners are cheaper then the analogue ones you need for that)
    Don't forget, even if you use S-Video -> scart you may well be pumping composite (although sending it over the s-video connection) you need to make sure you TV actually accepts S-Video if that's important to you

    Id say ubuntu is a good choice (IMO, i use it and prefer it over Windows MCE), however i have found wireless to be a bit unreliable, and extra processes may not be an issue as ubuntu is pretty low in memory usage, by using mythtv i avoid GDM/KDM which is quite bloated and slow
  3. Elv13

    Elv13 New Member

    26 Apr 2006
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