The Treehouse Blog

AV stuff

on May.18, 2005, under Computers

Well, I didn’t end up going the HD route. When I began thinking about the fact that <1 % of my existing media is HD, that HD-DVDs are aways off, and that I have no interest in paying for cable/satellite HD service, the option began to get far less appealing. I ended up going with a 27″ flatscreen RCA from Walmart. It’s got decent picture, but crappy sound, which didn’t matter as that will be handled separately. Lot of TV for not much dough, which is pretty much what I needed.

In the sound department, I knew I wanted to do something that supported SPDIF, but was wary of the price of most home theater systems. However, as it turns out, I went to the Silver Springs Flea Market on Sunday, and there was a nice looking, complete, Kenwood home theatre set for $150. Obviously, buying anything like this at a flea market is a gamble. But, I estimated the stuff to be worth at least $250 or so, and offered the guy $125. Looking it up online, it turns out to be a Kenwood HTB-503 which retailed for $500ish. So, what was wrong with it, you ask? I wish I could say nothing, but the front left and right speakers were blown out (four speakers in two boxes are ‘open’, but the tweeters work). So, I moved the rear speakers to the front, used the rear speakers from my computer set, and I’ve got decent sound for not all that much.

The MythTV project is still a work in progress. I got an ATI RF remote control that is interfaced with a USB dongle that acts like a keyboard. It works alright, but not perfect. Some misses and repeats. I still need to get a capture card (gave my old one to Chris earlier this year), and need to do more hardware juggling. Still trying to get xv working right in tv-out mode on the Geforce 2 MX 400 I’m using, but it’s livable in x11 mode for now. This project has been eating up way to much time, but its costs have stayed relatively low so far.

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May 2005


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