I am currently trying to look for the best streaming solution (in order to unleash the power of my new Home Cinema). While there is a lot of hardware and software solutions on the
market, it is quite difficult if not impossible to futhfill all my wishes...

Currently I have following possibilities:
  1. Buy a dedicated embedded appliance (Hauppauge, Pinnacle, linksys others) they are cheap but firmwares update is dependent of a company, and not all movies may be correctly played on them.
  2. Mod a device, XBOX (powered by XBMC) and/or XBOX360 (soon possible with I.C.E mod chip??) and run a dedicated Linux HTPC on top of it.
  3. Buy a dedicated Media Center PC but then It is full of DRM, and I am blocked in a Microsoft world....expensive, noisy (for the least expensive model)
  4. Build a customs PC, with selected and dedicated hardware and run on top of it, Microsoft MCE 2005 or Linux MythTV (www.mythtv.org) or MediaPortal  (www.team-mediaportal.com)
  5. Buy a dedicated powerful appliance, for example a Dreambox (www.dream-multimedia-tv.de), but I would rather wait on the Dreambox HDTV model
My preferences would go to 5 (if available), or 2 (the XBOX360) but I may try 4.

Anyway, I will document the build and show here the result. In between, You may be interested by these links:
  • The Linux HTPC How toThe purpose of the Linux HTPC How to is to help educate people who are interested in learning about or building their own media computer (aka HTPC).
  • MediaPortal is an Open Source application ideal for turning your PC in a very advanced Multi-Media Center / HTPC. MediaPortal allows you to listen to your favorite music & radio, watch your video's and DVD's, view, schedule and record live TV and much more. You get MediaPortal for free, as Open Source software. This means anyone can help develop MediaPortal or tweak-it for their own needs
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