Best Solution For Media Streaming?

Discussion in 'Technology' started by supersonic, Jun 3, 2011.

  1. I want to build a barebones HTPC that will stream Netflix, play Blu-Ray and 1080p video without glitches.

    Can someone help me configure the cheapest PC to do this. I already have a GTX280 that I can put in for the video card for now.

    I was thinking this was a good deal for $300:

    But will that POwersupply be able to handle the video card?

    Edited for least descriptive title ever...
  2. If that PSU is a Thermaltake, then it will handle it right. And that system in combination with your 280 will do those things you mentioned smooth.

    You could also play most games on it pretty well, aswel as emulation of PS2 games in HD resolutions, so you dont have to buy those HD versions if you were intrested anyways;)
  3. lol an htpc with a gtx280 (enthusiast vid card) lol. just pick up a cheapo vid card second hand!! or even trade your 280 for one... shoot I'd one day ship a GT210 to your house if you give me your 280 :)

    or an HD5450
  4. Pdraggy has a point, but if he has the 280 laying around anyway, he could play games awel on his HTPC.
  6. I third the PS3 option.

    The GTX 280 is a power hungry beast and that ghetto PSU probably isn't going to cut it.
  7. Do you guys really find your PS3 that trouble free as a media centre? Mine drops out all the time when streaming video wirelessly and has all the limitations with playing media directly (FAT32 4GB limit, file type support).

    I guess if I hooked it up via ethernet it would be fine though.
  8. The PS3 has gigabit ethernet. Get a gigabit switch and any problems you're having with streaming will vanish. Wireless in general is too flaky for media streaming.
  9. Isn't there some good programs for that sort of thing - never done it myself though.
  10. There's PS3 Media Server, which does on the fly transcoding, but it's not necessary. Windows media player can stream any video files you have on your PC with just a few setting changes. The PS3 doesn't support MKV, so MKV2VOB is a must for HD content if you plan to use windows media player. It lets you quickly convert mkv files to something the PS3 can read. Honestly though, avi is still much more common than mkv, and the PS3 has no trouble reading divx and xvid avi files.

    PlayOn is a nice program that lets you stream online content from Hulu, Youtube, and other sites. You have to pay for it, and the program can be a little flaky, but it works most of the time. Netflix is supported by default.

    If you haven't used your PS3 for media, you're really missing out. It's one of the best media hubs out there for the money. I hardly use mine for games. It's primarily a media center.
  11. He has an integrated HD4320 on board so... why not just go with that?? But yeah, if you didn't order it already you might consider a PS3 or even a bluray player/ media streamer.

    @Super- you not only don't want an enthusiast card in you htpc cus it's power hungry (and loud), but because you leave your htpc on like 24x7, it's just not efficient AT ALL!!

    also the other choices are thinner and more svelte :)
  12. I've never had any wireless problems with my PS3. In fact I bought a second one to use as a media center in the bedroom.
  13. So did I. Thought I was the only person around here to do that.
  14. I did that too, but then, I do play games on the PS3.
  15. It seems the PVC 2 PS3s club is growing by the minute.
  16. Not in 2011. I stream all kinds of media (music, movies, photos) wirelessly to my TV and to my iPad and it works extremely well. That's from both local and external sources. And buying a PS3 simply for media streaming is triple the cost of $99 solutions... :D
  17. What are some of these $99 solutions?

    I actually have tried the PS3 with PlayOn solution. But I'm having problems with wifi as some alluded to. It down scales the quality quite a bit or pauses when I try to stream on wireless. I was thinking about just running a 100 ft cable, but was looking for a more elegant option.
  18. does your level of encryption have anything to do with your thoroughput?
  19. Well, it does involve an Apple logo (Apple TV 2 for $99), but you can also use a fairly routine hack and XBMC to widen the file formats etc. However, the catch with this for your own situation is that the 1080p streaming appears to chop frames (!), so probably 720p is going to be the best playback option, which is no different than the non-hacked Apple TV. Since I don't own a ginormous TV at 40", 720p streaming has never been an issue in terms of quality. That might be different for yourself. XBMC also appears to support Netflix streaming, so you're not losing that native Apple TV feature either.



    (engadget's video is fairly slapdash and LITE on content, but at least it gives a quick overview)

    I don't use XBMC, but it seems to have a legit reputation. I'd recommend checking out their site for FAQs etc. if you have an interest in a very inexpensive 720p solution.