Sunday, 11 May 2014

My current home media center build: Mythmaster

Apologies - working for two long under various agreements that mean I can't discuss my work means I haven't posted anything in too long.

Hardware

Bought from eBay from Tamsolutions (there may be more available as they seem to have shipments regularly as of May 10th 2014). The computer is quite noisy so it is based down in the basement and connected to the TV by an HDMI extender and a USB extension cable.

Case: AIC RSC-4ED2 with 6x SATA-II 3.0 Gbps four position backplane (TW-000-51675-AR).

Motherboard: SuperMicro H8DME-2 nVidia MCP 55 Pro.
 - Modified one of the PCIe 8x sockets to accept a x16 GFX card by opening the end of the socket.

GFX Card: GeForce GT 240. [Chosen as it can do the most complete deinterlace on 1080i video]
 - Modified with a flywire to connect the PRSNT#1 pin (1A) to PRSNT#2 (48B) so the motherboard detects the card in the modified PCIe 8x socket.

CPU: Two Quad Core Opteron 2389s. [An eBay purchase to replace the single Dual Core 2212 HE. Don't forget the extra CPU cooler]

Memory: 24 Gigabytes of PC-5300P. [Increased by another eBay purchase]

3x SATA Controller Cards: AOC-SAT2-MV8

Drives:
2x HP ST3250824AS 250GB SATA HDDs in Linux Software RAID 1. Note please don't waste time trying to enable SATA-II or NCQ on the HP versions of this disk. They are SATA-I and don't advertise NCQ.

6x 2TB Seagate or Western Digital HDDs managed by ZFS.

TV: 47" VIZIO E470VA

HDMI Extender: No real name HDMI over dual CAT5e or CAT6 cables from Amazon.

USB Long Cable: An active USB 2.0 cable from Amazon.

ATSC Receiver: HDHR4-2US Silicondust HDHomeRun Dual Tuner.

Remote control: Lenovo RC-6 receiver by SMK RXX6000-40.

Software

OS: Linux Ubuntu 14.04 LTS.
 - nVidia drivers from Ubuntu 319.
 - Pulseaudio removed to enable sound in XBMC standalone
 - User autologin running XBMC standalone.
 - Modified the udev rules to enable the IR remote (MCE USB by SMK) device ids, read this thread for details.

Disk Management: ZFS on Linux, GIT head (as the current 0.6.2 release is old and the new version is about to be released. To work on Kernel 3.14 the latest GIT version is necessary).

Frontend: XBMC 13.0 Gotham.

Backend: Mythtv 0.27 managing the Silicondust HD HomeRun and scheduling recordings.

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