new Home Cinema Setup with a PC media center (or a MAC!?)
I am in the process of designing my ideal Home Cinema setup for my new house, trying to get the best possible equipment within my budget.
Although WHFSV is an amazing source for finding and comparing ideal Speakers, Receivers etc, I can't find anything in regards to using a PC or MAC as a media centre and the trouble is that I can't find reliable sources elsewhere either.
Basically what I am planning to do is slowly built the following:
1) an AV Receiver of around £1000 (currently keeping my eyes on the new Onkyo TX-SR 875 and eagerly awaiting for the forthcoming review in the next issue
2) a 5.1 speaker setup (with the possibility of later upgrading to 7.1) Waiting for the review of the new B&W 600 series! Come one when is the next issue coming out!
After some time I would like to replace my current old style CRT TV and a huge tower pc which I use for a DVD player and sound source with a new TV (havent though much of which one yet although I really like the Sony Kdl40w2000) and a new source of media player
That source is what is puzzling me most. I know that the best is to get good quality separates (DVD player CD player, tuner each) but that would cost too much and is not as exciting as a media centre PC. Can a top quality PC(or MAC) offer similar results? I was checking out the new Sony VAIO Range that comes with dual tuners and blue ray drive! It looks great for the living room too! However I can't find a serious review from true audiophile people to see how close it comes to their tastes. It is only reviewed in computer sites that rave about it's features and not the quality of the AV.
And then there is MAC. The new MAC pros look fantastic and supposetly are used by pros to produce sound and video. How good are they for playback in a Home theater environment though? Are they cabable of playing HD sound? How about 7.1 surround sound?
Further more a media center PC (MAC) offers the possibility to store family photos and videos, use it for quick light surfing (checking a review of an upcoming movie on cable?) or getting directions just before living home over the Internet?) etc.
Did any of you guys came across articles and reviews of the above systems to be used the way I would like to?
Do you have any comments yourselves?
Anyone did the same?
I am somewhere in between the two edges: lots of features vs. excellent sound and video quality