Back to building multimedia PCs

This time with Windows. First off, go and read Part I and Part II of “Building a Home Theater PC” at ExtremeTech.

So, we’re done, right? Well, I had some interesting ideas while talking to Dave about this. What about making this your one and only PC? Well, the resolution of a TV isn’t good enough to really work with the Windows desktop, and using just a large-ish flat panel screen (say a $1200 19” one) is still lots smaller than a 32” TV for watching movies.

How about 2 monitors? This is my big idea. Attach the TV out to your TV. Now, get a long VGA cable, potentially with booster or some such to prevent signal degradation (I don’t know enough about this right now to speak to this – I’ll do some research). Connect that to wherever your “desk” is going to be. You did get a wireless, RF keyboard and mouse, right? Carry those between your “desk” and your living room, and you’ve got the best of both worlds. Might take a hefty CPU to be able to handle MS Word on the desk and “Attack of the Clones” in the living room….

I might just be able to do this with my current PC. The motherboard can handle Athlons, and it definitely needs an upgrade from the current 1GHz Duron. Also, it has a GeForce2MX that would get replaced with an AIW card. Well…I don’t have cable right now, and the GeForce does have TV out, so I could even stick with that. Hmmm.

What about the other way? i.e. desktop with cables to TV? I think more cables over more distance. This bears thinking about!