The SFF (Small Form Factor) market has been revitalized with a surge of all-inclusive mini PC systems marketed by companies such as ACorp, AMS, Biostar, Hush Technologies, MSI, Shuttle, Soltek, and VIA. SFF type PC’s have a great advantage of minimizing desktop space requirements and at the same time bundle all the essentials required to assemble a complete system. While the popularity of these types of systems continues to grow there is of course the associated cost factor. For the DIY type market, there is a wide variety of off the shelf parts that can be assembled together to create a Home Theatre PC System. A Home Theatre PC or HTPC in its basic form is an ordinary personal computer married with a high definition capable television, video projector or monitor. The advantage of a HTPC system is the ability deliver better picture quality than an ordinary store bought DVD player as well as the ability to host a wide variety of multi-purpose multimedia applications. Most HTPC’s have been designed to fit desktop and slim line cases utilizing smaller motherboard form factors such as mATX, Flex ATX and the new ITX. The focus of this article will be to document the construction of my own personal HTPC system. This article does not intend to be an all-inclusive guide to HTPC’s since there are better sources available online. Instead, Part 1 of this guide will provide information on the construction phase and Part 2 will inform you on what applications I will be using to control and automate my HTPC system.
Home Theatre PC Project (Part 1)
MODTHEBOX has put together part 1 of building your own HTPC. These systems have gained popularity over the past several years. Coming in smaller, more powerful sizes, a home theatre PC can really spice up that entertainment center.