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Thread: Vortexbox system

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    Vortexbox system

    I'm interested in building a Vortexbox from scratch but dont have an old system laying around. Do you recommend getting an old system off Craigslist or buying a barebones system from newegg?...

    Craigslist find for $75
    Dell Dimension E310 desktop computer with INTEL P4 HT Processor 2.8 GHz, 1 GiG of DDR2 Ram, 80 GiG SATA Hard drive, DVD Burner and Front Card slots, Windows XP Media Center and Office 2007 installed with all updates

    Newegg barebones systems for $150-200
    http://www.newegg.com/Store/SubCateg...rebone-Systems

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    Administrator Scott DeLeeuw's Avatar
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    $75 isn't bad for that find. It has the ram you need, has an SATA controller (so you don't need to mess with a card), and has the DVD already. I guess the only thing that would concern me is power usage if that is important to you? Dell usually has specs on their site about power usage of their systems. Overall it looks good though...

    If you want low power usage go for one of those barebones Atom solutions. I think you'll want at least a 2TB drive for the Vortexbox, so make sure it supports that.

    It really wouldn't work for this for the price, small hard drive, and need of USB DVD drive, but I also like the Acer AspireRevos from a size perspective.



    A Dell Zino may do the trick too, some are on ebay for decent prices.

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    When thinking long term, I like the low power & small form factor pc's. Is RAM an important factor? You would think if it's serving up video it would need to be sufficient or at least expandable.

    So if I did the Acer AspireRevo AR3700-U3002 for $340
    I would still need a usb dvd drive $40
    and a 2tb 7200rpm HD WD2002FAEX $217

    I would be pushing $600!

    Unfortunately, drives are pretty high right now... so I guess I'd want to work on finding a cheaper solution for the box.

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    Administrator Scott DeLeeuw's Avatar
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    The Vortexbox serves video by DLNA, so it's over the network... the only thing that matters in that instance is throughput, 100BaseT should be sufficient. Ripping video takes some memory, but 1GB is sufficient. If you also run Squeezeserver and have the ram available you can apply it to the DB for faster speed. I'd go with the Craigslist find and add a drive.
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    Is there any way to get the Vortexbox to stream to a TV without DLNA? with it stream through a roku box or like?

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    Last I checked Roku doesn't do DLNA, but that could have changed. Boxee does DLNA. Most game consoles will also do DLNA, some DVD players do as well... What do you have for equipment at the moment?
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    At our main TV,
    Pioneer Plasma 2009 without DLNA
    Old DVD player
    Denon Receiver
    Time Warner DVR HD box

    Bedroom TV,
    Dell LCD 2007 (ancient but works great)
    Roku HD wired for better speed

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    Without having DLNA capability on any of those devices, I think I'd opt for a blu-ray player with DLNA capabilities. The Samsung BD-5500 is just one that has it, there are many.

    http://www.amazon.com/Samsung-BD-C55.../dp/B000B60H0G

    Around $100, you'd be able to play movies via the Vortexbox and by DVD if needed...
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    Ok I've picked the Samsung BD-D5700 since it's got built in Wi-Fi and I wouldnt be able run a cable to it right a way. If my signal is strong, should I have any streaming issues?

    http://www.amazon.com/Samsung-BD-D57...8883060&sr=1-1

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    Administrator Scott DeLeeuw's Avatar
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    Based on your other thread of 8-9Mbps max on the wireless it's possible you may have streaming issues. Is running a cable to it not a possibility in any way? You could also look at powerline networking, I have this article on that. http://www.homenetworkenabled.com/co...ine-networking
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    FYI, check out the deal PlayOn has going on right now. Free Roku box with purchase of PlayOn. If you are going this route anyway, it's a stellar deal.
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