04.26.10

Amazon HTPC Spec

Posted in Home Theater, Windows at 7:25 am by mike

I put a new HTPC spec up on Amazon listmania.¬† I’m not sure why… ūüôā

04.24.10

Couple Interesting Finds

Posted in Home Theater, Windows at 11:35 pm by mike

Hanging out in Santa Cruz this weekend, using the new hammer drill to bore through some tile and concrete floor. Quite pleased with the result. Found a couple other things that I need to follow up on this week.

  1. Microsoft Silverlight 4 It looks like they added the h261 hardware accelleration in this release, just like Adobe is doing with Flash 10.x.¬†¬† The one thing Microsoft likes about Apple these days is Steve Jobs telling everyone Flash sucks, but I don’t think we’ll see Silverlight on the iPAD anytime soon.
  2. oishiiunko on TGB just posted a link to his Remote Control application for WM 6.5!¬†¬† He’s now officially my new hero.¬†¬† I’ve already installed it on the Tilt 2, but of course, I can’t do anything else until I get back home and install WMC Controller on the HTPC.¬†¬†¬† I can see some late nights and low contracting productivity¬† coming this week.
  3. Speaking of gigs, I just finished a little HTPC R&D project for a customer.¬†¬† I’m considering posting a version of the results on Amazon’s Listmania to see if I get some more traffic back to here.
  4. So I used the proceeds from #3 to order¬† a MSI ATI Radeon HD5450 1 GB DDR3 VGA/DVI/HDMI PCI-Express Video Card R5450-MD1GH from Amazon.¬†¬† Two things about this card.¬†¬† The most important is I’ll finally be able to send the TrueHD audio track from a BluRay Disc to my receiver.¬†¬† In short, the studio’s insist on a 100% hardware encryption/decryption scheme for the audio track on a BD, so you need a complete hardware solution to play it.¬†¬† My recommendation to anyone else is just buy a $99 BD Player and get on with your life.¬†¬† That said, Intel has just released a processor line that will do it, along with ATI and Nvidea.¬†¬† This ATI card is only $70.¬†¬† It doesn’t have any of the fancy 3D engines (actually, I think the 3D is slower than my current card) but aside from the TrueHD bitstreaming, it also has DDR3 SRAM, which runs cooler than DD R2 and hence doesn’t need a fan.¬†¬† The only remaining noise after installing the SSD is the fan on the ATI 4850, which I now know is much more graphics card than I needed.¬†¬† I’ll see if I can resell it on EBay, since this is still a decent gaming card.
  5. Finally, I also game across a Windows Services Hacking article on hack7mc.   This will be another time sync, but it will be nice to free up some memory on Windows and get the boot and response time just a little bit faster.

That all should keep me busy for a while (not to mention I’m doing another LCD screen mounting and install for another customer this week).¬†¬† If you know anyone looking for help setting up their Home Theater, Flat Screen or HTPC, please send them my way.