DIY HTPC vs Mac Mini?

Discussion in 'Technology' started by ali_f, Feb 28, 2015.

  1. HTPC or a Mac Mini?

    Have been a PC boy my whole life. But should I give a Mac a chance?
  2. It's whatever you can justify financially.

    Mac Mini with wireless kb/m is boss. One of the slickest looking options around but costs $599. You can get the same functionality from a ugly $200 mini-tower instead. Cmdrmonkey has a few posts about his NUC & Brix which comes a close 2nd to a Mac Mini in appearance, IMO.
  3. Raspberry Pi HTPC FTW. I'm thinking of building one just for the fun of it. It's cost about $60 plus a remote.
  4. Raspberry Pi is too slow and laggy. If you wanna scrap the bottom of the barrel, can't do better than this for $40.
  5. The Pi 2 has double the RAM and a quad core 900MHz CPU so is quite a bit more powerful than the old model.

    Having said that I haven't seen anything about actual performance yet so can't say how it would do.
  6. Still $35.
  7. Discussing CPU/GPU is a little over my head. I know it doesn't always come down to numbers, but the MK numbers are bigger.

    - Broadcom BCM2836 900MHz quad-core ARM Cortex-A7 CPU
    - Broadcom BCM2836 VideoCore IV dual-core GPU

    - Rockchip RK3188T quad core Cortex A9 1.4Ghz
    - 2GB DDR3
    - Quad Core Mali-400 GPU
  8. I always thought an HTPC was supposed to include an HDD or SSD.
  9. Dropped frames. Extremely long load times. You get what you pay for. Get something with at least a Core i3 or AMD APU if you don't want to be banging your head on the wall.
  10. Ridiculously priced Mac Mini knockoff that can be Hackintosh'd:

    Still a bit weary of pulling the trigger... the warranty is useless. Some slickdealers claim to have good results though.
  11. I would stick to the Brix or Nuc. If you have an issue, you will have a real warranty and can get help.
  12. After you add memory and storage this becomes a better deal I think.

    Alienware Alpha Compact Desktop: i3 4130T, GTX 860 $400

    $499.99 - $100 w/ coupon code 1KHQR?2D3XRKWZ = $399.99. Shipping is free.

    Intel Core i3-4130T Dual-Core CPU
    4GB DDR3L
    500GB HDD
    Alpha Chassis with NVIDIA GeForce GTX GPU 2GB GDDR5 (customized GTX 860)
    Xbox 360 Wireless Controller
    Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 3160 1x1
    Windows 8.1


  13. My biggest hangup is not wanting to abandon extra parts I have lying around...

    I've got a 2.5" HDD, but the NUC/Brix takes mSata (except Celeron models)...
    I've also got memory, HDD, and powersupply to build a cheap Mini ITX PC, but it seems so big now.
  14. Core i3? No wonder you get $100 off.
  15. What's wrong with a Core i3? A 4100 in passmark is pretty fast.

    Truth is there isn't much difference between intel's Core architecture based dual core chips, especially the mobile ones. You have to step up to the actual quad core and six core chips to see a big jump in performance, and most of those are desktop chips.

    Not true:

    That's actually the one I'm using. I threw an old Intel SSD and some old DDR3 into it. Works great and is still really tiny. Putting it together is a little tricky because it's so tiny.
  16. Sweet! I guess I didn't click on enough of them. My 2.5" isn't a SSD. Some people are claiming a non-SSD will overheat, do you think that is true? Will pick it up and see how it goes either way...
  17. Mac Minis are pretty good as they have optical out, fits straight into your AV receiver. I got the base version for browsing and watching films on my TV, not too shabby, but rather slow with that snide 4GB ram..