Saskatoon Computer Repair - Computer EMS

By: Computer Ems  09-12-2011
Keywords: Windows, Hard Drive, Video Card

I've had many people request assistance with connecting media center computers (MCE/HTPC) to home stereos and televisions. Experienced with Windows Media Center (MCE) and it's operation with many types of stereos and televisions/monitors. Whether you need to connect your existing tv / stereo or want advice or help procuring new equipment, we can help.

Equipment hook up experienced with, but not limited to: Windows XP Media Center Edition, Windows Vista Media Center, Windows 7 Media Center, Media Center Extenders.

Audio Hookup

Video Hookup

Conventional TV

While I don't recommend conventional television hookup for surfing the web, you can definitely use it for audio/video presentation and recording, providing your video card has a RCA Video out port (Video In/RF Ant required for recording).


If you want to surf the web on your tv, you should have a 1080i HDTV with DVI and/or 15pin VGA inputs. Depending on your video card, you should connect the monitor/tv using the DVI (best), 15pin VGA (good), S-Video (good) or Video out (worst) connections. While lower end (720p or less) HDTVs will work, their picture will not be as good when using the computer (fine for video/DVD).

Video Capture/Recording

  • Video capture/tuner card - Sell for $50 to $300. If using a tuner card, make sure it handles digital nowdays.
  • Video card - Sell for $50 to $400+. Make sure it has video outputs for your tv/monitor (i.e. DVI, S-Video, Component or Composite video).
  • S/PDIF 5.1 output (optional) - If all you want is to play music, the standard line-out/headphone jack will probably work just fine. To get digital 5.1 sound, you will require a S/PDIF coaxial or optical output. If you don't have S/PDIF coaxial or optical outputs, you can purchase an internal sound card or a USB External 5.1 Sound Card for typically under $100.
  • Hard disk space - Video takes a lot of room (4Gb or more for a 2 hour movie). I recommend a hard drive with at least 20Gb free space (now days drives are cheap and the bigger the better for Media Centers).
  • DVD Burner (optional) - If you want to backup your recordings, you will require a DVD burner. These days, you can pick up a dual layer DVD burner for under $100.
© Copyright 2011 {Computer E.M.S.}. All Rights Reserved.
The information in this article was current at 06 Dec 2011

Keywords: Hard Drive, Video Card, Windows

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