what hard & software do I need for building pc media center to go to my amp?

admin_exported

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Aug 10, 2019
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Hi guys, just wondering what hardware and /or software would be best for storing and playing music files from a pc to my amp.

Will need a decent sound card, graphics card for playing movies through tv and how about windows media center for the library?

Thank you
 

Overdose

Well-known member
Feb 8, 2008
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A lot depends on you budget, but have a look at the following......

Mac mini

ASRock Ion 3D Blu-Ray

ASRock Vision 3D Blu-Ray

No requirement for an external DAC and all have up to 500GB internal HDDs or can be upgraded to increase capacity.

The two ASRocks provide Blu-Ray compatibility. Software options are varied, with Linux, Windows and Mac OS. All three of these boxes are very small and unobtrusive, providing universal disc capability and a variety of streaming options. For anything other than vinyl, you only need an amp and speakers to complete the system, allowing you to be able to get rid of any other existing disc players.

Hope this helps....
 

dannycanham

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May 5, 2009
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I would recommend not too high powered as they tend to get hotter and require more air movement, all modern graphics cards should do 1080p just make sure it has HDMI out. You could go passive on graphics cards they can go quite powerful like the gigabyte 5750 silent cell if needed. I'd also dac rather than sound card or if you amp is an av one with hdmi just hdmi from the pc.

Mac Mini is great.

Dell Zino looks good as it is small with blu ray.

Windows 7 has media centre.

If I was building a quiet pc it would probably have the cheapest SSD, Sapphire 5450 fanless gpu, windows 7 and one of the cheapest core i's and a micro atx motherboard and case.
 

dannycanham

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May 5, 2009
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tino said:
Or something like this ... http://xtreamer.net/xtreamer-prodigy-upgraded/

Always wondered what one of these (or any half decent media player) + a good DAC would sound like. Wonder if the SPDIF oputput of these things is a jittery mess or reasonably good to feed a DAC and make good quality music from.

I was reading another magazine recently that review two £1500 plus CD players. One measured good low jitter levels. One measured poor high jitter levels (7 times the amount of the first CD player), worse than alot of budget players. They both received high ratings for sound quality.
 

kevinJ

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Nov 2, 2008
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Why not use a mediaplayer with built-in harddrive? I have a Mede8er 500x2 with a 2TB harddrive that holds all my (FLAC) cds, a bunch of Blu-rays and dvds.

But if you want a pc for that job, when there's a HDMI output, it'll be fine. And I can recommend Jriver media center as software.
 

nopiano

Well-known member
dannycanham said:
I was reading another magazine recently that review two £1500 plus CD players. One measured good low jitter levels. One measured poor high jitter levels (7 times the amount of the first CD player), worse than alot of budget players. They both received high ratings for sound quality.

Yes, it is that sort of thing that makes me believe we really know so little about what makes sound better or worse. That said, I tend to like stuff that sounds good and measures well, as that seems to cover both bases!
 

dannycanham

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May 5, 2009
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nopiano said:
dannycanham said:
I was reading another magazine recently that review two £1500 plus CD players. One measured good low jitter levels. One measured poor high jitter levels (7 times the amount of the first CD player), worse than alot of budget players. They both received high ratings for sound quality.

Yes, it is that sort of thing that makes me believe we really know so little about what makes sound better or worse. That said, I tend to like stuff that sounds good and measures well, as that seems to cover both bases!

Same here. I think we all really struggle with perspective when a limit to sound quality is measured in the digital domain. It is so easy to give a number compared to analog. Say for argument jitter creates a blurred out of focus effect at high requencies. A CD player is measured to have 1500ps jitter. A CD player is measured to have 150ps jitter. The second must be better!! Well no maybe not. An out of focus blurry effect can be created in the analog domain as well, and not be measurable in the way jitter is. There is nothing to say the jitter effect level is detremental much at a player of whatever price level as a player may at that level may never be in focus enough to matter anyway.

But given two players that both sound good to me. I will pick the one with better measurements. I love measurements and analysis in audio but it needs to go hand in hand with listening.
 

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