Author Topic: LinuxMCE best hardware suggestion  (Read 5085 times)

sonicwind

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LinuxMCE best hardware suggestion
« on: March 01, 2010, 06:37:26 pm »
Hello, is there a suggested/best hardware list for a LinuxMCE machine? I want to initially build a Hybrid and 1 really small, cheap and elegant Media Director to drive a late model 1080p TV. Is there a best in class list of motherboard and other standard parts with high compatibility list somewhere? I want the Hybrid to be stable and fast, and the Media Director to be as cheap as possible. Does it even need to have a harddrive?

Thanks for any advice or direction.
LinuxMCE 8.10 - Intel E7500 -  Intel BOXDP43TF - GeForce GT240 - HDHomeRun - iPhone - luser
::Use a VGA port for first configuration:: ::Setup your network from the get-go::

alx2k

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Re: LinuxMCE best hardware suggestion
« Reply #1 on: March 01, 2010, 06:50:17 pm »
You have a lot of small MD you can buy on the market.

If you want it prebuild, you can use any ION based PC (I am planing to upgrade to ASUS EB1501, which has DVD drive on it). If not, I would also recomend any ION based MOBO. MD doesn't need HD as it gets anything it needs from the network.

I build my new Hybrid last weekend, mainly from old parts and the new ones where bought "low-noise-wise"

Specs:

New Asus P5QL-EPU, check this: http://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=9637.0
Old 2x1gb ram
Old E4400
Old HD for system (160gb)
New HD for media on its way
New noctua nh-u12p fan (sure it is not cheap, but worth every peny, now processor temp is 32ยบ, and barely audible)
New GT220. check this link for HDMI audio: http://wiki.linuxmce.com/index.php/NVidia_GT220_HDMI_sound.
old 450w PSU (nox urano)

Used it with UI2 W/Alpha and up to now, I saw no tearing.

With the links I gave you, you have the Hybrid working almost out of the box.

dlewis

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Re: LinuxMCE best hardware suggestion
« Reply #2 on: March 01, 2010, 06:59:46 pm »
look into lmcecompatible or Dianemo

B34N

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Re: LinuxMCE best hardware suggestion
« Reply #3 on: March 01, 2010, 08:12:39 pm »
Hello, is there a suggested/best hardware list for a LinuxMCE machine? I want to initially build a Hybrid and 1 really small, cheap and elegant Media Director to drive a late model 1080p TV. Is there a best in class list of motherboard and other standard parts with high compatibility list somewhere? I want the Hybrid to be stable and fast, and the Media Director to be as cheap as possible. Does it even need to have a harddrive?

Thanks for any advice or direction.

Read the Wiki, browse the forums and if you are familiar enough with current hardware specs, you should be able to answer those questions. I'm a few years behind on hardware specs and while I'm sure I could build my own, I still can't figure out how much power to get and which components will work best. I decided to punt and have lmcecompatible.com build me a barebones hybrid. I'm using existing hard drives (one for OS and one for data) and DVD. It didn't cost too much more to have them put together something using their knowledge on what works and doesn't work. I'm expecting that the slightly higher cost will be well worth the savings in frustration.

alx2k

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Re: LinuxMCE best hardware suggestion
« Reply #4 on: March 01, 2010, 08:31:19 pm »
I agree with st8ofmi9d,

there are tons of examples on the wiki and forums. And for sure, if you are newby on hardware, or linux, I would also recomend some of the preconfigured options you have been given.

Eitherways, If you are willing to install your own system (wich I recomend for the fun of it), you also should be prepared for some headaches with unsuported components.

And finally, do some digging in the forums/wiki, that's where I started, and after somes days/weeks of reading, I started my first core.

sonicwind

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Re: LinuxMCE best hardware suggestion
« Reply #5 on: March 01, 2010, 09:55:49 pm »
I just priced some components and researched compatibility. Still unsure about a few things, but a quad core i5 kit with 4gb ram, 2tb hdd and nVidia GTX260 is running about $1000. This is for a hybrid. I'm not sure if this is way overkill. I want a good strong system, but I really only want to meet minimum requirements for a LinuxMCE system. Is 2gb ram, a base model video card with HD support and core 2 processor plenty? (I don't really like AMD processors, been disapointed too many times.) Those seem to be plenty for my Windows based media center, so surely a Linux system doesn't need more. I think I'm answering my own question here. Plus older hardware will likely be more compatable. Dang I like buying new stuff, though. But I still have the cost of all the home automation stuff. So... I kind of wanted to keep my current Windows system intact so I don't miss out on any shows while I build the LinuxMCE system. Thanks for all the input so far.
LinuxMCE 8.10 - Intel E7500 -  Intel BOXDP43TF - GeForce GT240 - HDHomeRun - iPhone - luser
::Use a VGA port for first configuration:: ::Setup your network from the get-go::

tkmedia

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Re: LinuxMCE best hardware suggestion
« Reply #6 on: March 01, 2010, 10:30:56 pm »
4Gb  is way over kill 2 Gb is plenty.
Since an ATOM 330 is enough to run a dedicate core.
A quad is over kill as well.
For painless install, stick w 8x-9x nvidia
I am sure the  GTX260 works well but may need some TLC to get it to work.


just my 2 cents


HTH

Tim
My Setup http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/User:Tkmedia

For LinuxMce compatible  systems and accessories
http://lmcecompatible.com/

macaroni

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Re: LinuxMCE best hardware suggestion
« Reply #7 on: March 01, 2010, 10:55:18 pm »

sonicwind

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Re: LinuxMCE best hardware suggestion
« Reply #8 on: March 02, 2010, 02:02:24 am »
Here's what I ended up after painstaking research, LOL. I didn't follow all advice completely, but I cut a good $300 off the price by lowering specs. I basically looked for LinuxMCE, MythTV or just plain linux support of the parts. The motherboard + Nic support (want gigabit, but then realized at the end that I only really need 1 gigabit, the internet side need not be gigabit, I guess):

Directron      
Processor   Intel Core 2 Duo E7500 2.93GHz 1066MHz Socket 775   
      http://store.yahoo.com/directron/bx80571e7500.html
CPU Cooler   Zalman CNPS7500-AlCu LED CPU Cooler   
      http://store.yahoo.com/directron/cnps7500alcule.html
Video Card   XFX GT240XYAFC GeForce GT240 512MB PCI Express 2.0 Video Card   
      http://store.yahoo.com/directron/gt240xyafc.html
Case   SilverStone HTPC Computer ATX Case LC17-B   
      http://store.yahoo.com/directron/sstlc17b.html
DVD Burner   Lite-On 24X SATA DVD Burner   
      http://store.yahoo.com/directron/ihas12404.html
Power Supply   Black CoolMax 600W ATX12V / EPS12V Computer Power Supply   
      http://store.yahoo.com/directron/cu600b.html
HDD   Western Digital Caviar Green 3.5in 1TB SATA 3Gb/s Internal Hard Drive WD10EARS, 7200RPM, 64MB Cache   
      http://store.yahoo.com/directron/wd10ears.html
Nic #2   Intel PWLA8391GTBLK Pro 1000 GT Gigabit Copper Desktop NIC 32-bit 66MHz PCI   
      http://store.yahoo.com/directron/pwla8391gtblk.html
$573.63       

NewEgg      
Motherboard   Intel BOXDP43TF LGA 775 Intel P43 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail    
      http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813121351
Memory   Kingston 1GB 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Desktop Memory Model KVR800D2N5/1G - x2   
      http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820134114
$146.34       
Total $719.97       

I already have an HDHomerun card, so it appears there is already support for that. After some more reading I'll order initial home automation parts.
LinuxMCE 8.10 - Intel E7500 -  Intel BOXDP43TF - GeForce GT240 - HDHomeRun - iPhone - luser
::Use a VGA port for first configuration:: ::Setup your network from the get-go::

theteju

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Re: LinuxMCE best hardware suggestion
« Reply #9 on: March 02, 2010, 05:19:21 am »
I am a big quality music fan,

I would recommand again, Asus Xonar series sound card.
I use Xonar D2/
Logitech Z-5500 speaker system.
my system controls the speaker system by USB uirt !!!  It is really amazing for less money. It will fill your room.

Hope this helps.


sonicwind

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Re: LinuxMCE best hardware suggestion
« Reply #10 on: March 02, 2010, 06:03:21 am »
I would recommand again, Asus Xonar series sound card.

Really? Not a Creative Labs product? That's interesting. I've been sorely lacking in sound quality for a while. My motherboard's digital sound is whack somehow so I've been stuck with plain old stereo for a while.

Looks like I'm going to pull the rest of the trigger on Insteon products. This endeavor has become a proof of concept for a local home automation business, and it sounds like Insteon is the only thing you'd want to sell to someone else and stand behind what you sell. Having X10 have time delays and inconsistent response, and ZWave not support 2 way or status comm, leaves Insteon as the quality product.

Am I wrong, but is LinuxMCE the choice for home brewed home automation and potentially the best base software for an integrated home automation/media center solution? I know there are other commercial products, but they aren't open source and therefore less configurable. I know I'm asking the cat where he hid the cheeze, but is there another software source that has more current support? Being a Windows junky, I'd rather work with Windows. Mister House appears not to have had an update in years, and I don't think has Insteon support. My 2 biggest concerns using LinuxMCE is that it doesn't look like it has full Insteon product support (thermostat, USB Controller etc) and that it doesn't look there is any BlueRay support. The Insteon thermostat support should be programmable. I'll have to learn at least Pearl first, then I'll have to learn "Insteon", but the existing modules should be a good starting point. I'll not be programming Blue Ray support into Linux any time soon.
LinuxMCE 8.10 - Intel E7500 -  Intel BOXDP43TF - GeForce GT240 - HDHomeRun - iPhone - luser
::Use a VGA port for first configuration:: ::Setup your network from the get-go::

sonicwind

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Re: LinuxMCE best hardware suggestion
« Reply #11 on: March 05, 2010, 05:17:10 pm »
Well, I booted with the KUbuntu 8.10 disk and both the onboard nic and the addon nic work, and the sound works, and I didn't see any significant errors. So that's a pretty good start. Started the LinuxMCE install (the first attempt, anyhow). Automation stuff doesn't come in until next week. It's OK to add that stuff and configure it later, right?
LinuxMCE 8.10 - Intel E7500 -  Intel BOXDP43TF - GeForce GT240 - HDHomeRun - iPhone - luser
::Use a VGA port for first configuration:: ::Setup your network from the get-go::

Techstyle

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Re: LinuxMCE best hardware suggestion
« Reply #12 on: March 05, 2010, 07:12:26 pm »
Quote
Automation stuff doesn't come in until next week. It's OK to add that stuff and configure it later, right?

Absolutely, in fact I didn't even have my media drives connected during install.

davidsmoot

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Re: LinuxMCE best hardware suggestion
« Reply #13 on: March 07, 2010, 05:42:26 pm »
Hey Sonicwind... I noticed you got a big chunk of your parts from Directron. You would not happen to be near Houston. TX (Directron HQ)? I'm in Pearland (or will be soon, close on a new house in a couple of weeks).

sonicwind

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Re: LinuxMCE best hardware suggestion
« Reply #14 on: March 08, 2010, 05:32:22 am »
Hey Sonicwind... I noticed you got a big chunk of your parts from Directron. You would not happen to be near Houston. TX (Directron HQ)? I'm in Pearland (or will be soon, close on a new house in a couple of weeks).

I sure am. In in the Galleria area. Why don't you drop by hear and help me configure my misbehaving hybrid? ha ha
LinuxMCE 8.10 - Intel E7500 -  Intel BOXDP43TF - GeForce GT240 - HDHomeRun - iPhone - luser
::Use a VGA port for first configuration:: ::Setup your network from the get-go::