Will my new desktop be an HTPC?

December 31, 2008 2:57 pm Published by 2 Comments

It’s been several years since microATX motherboards became commonplace, kicking the Home Theater PC movement into high gear. While researching hardware to build a new desktop computer, I ran into an interesting question: Can it be an HTPC? The “HT” part of the quotient would require it to be able to connect to my television, which is currently in a different room than my desktop, and I want to be able to still sit down at the computer. I don’t want heavy VGA running from the machine down the hallway. So it seems like I’ve only got a couple of options:

  1. Run cables down the hallway, and hope M doesn’t notice. (Good luck).
  2. Wireless video. Half junk, half expensive vapor.
  3. A thin client like a Sun Ray on my desktop.
  4. Give up and pick either a new desktop, or an HTPC.

Right now, option 3 sounds the most promising. There are a handful of people who have talked about hooking high-end thin clients up to their TV to act as a home theater interface, but I’ve found no discussion of doing it the other way, as far as I can tell. I’ll be investigating this deeper over the next few weeks. But experimentation might be too expensive; I might just end up going for option 4.

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  • GeoffDaddy says:

    You have access to the basement. Can you run the cable into the wall, down into the basement, and to the other room? Do you need acces to the TV or just to the cable? Does the cable come into the house through the wall on the living level or into the basement and then up to the TV? So many questions.

  • Plutor says:

    Running a cable from that wall following the cable television cable through the crawlspace would be feasible, but probably not simple. What I’m considering is using hardware to build an HTPC and just using it as a standard desktop for now, until I figure out if a Sun Ray or wireless video or some other option would work out.

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