HTPCs: Small (and good looking) form factor cases kept aside with decent enough build for good Home theatre with speakers and LCD panels of your choice with the storage enough to store your music, photos and movies- a lot of them (and maybe double them up as a download rig). Input devices like wireless keyboards and/or mouse is also something any HTPC user would like. You have the needful? You’re entertainment pad is set!
Easier said than done. A friend and a fellow Techenclave member who is putting up a HTPC for himself can say this far better than I would.
Speaking of HTPC cases, it goes without saying that HTPC cases are priced much higher than a standard case. Now one will say that good functionality and looks will add to the cost, but there are very very few choices for people who don’t want to spend much. Very recently when my good friend and I were speaking with Coolermaster India’s “the 1 man army”, he told about this case where it was primarily was made for office PCs, but a lot of people picked it up for HTPCs. Its not surprising: people pick the “slim” looking version of matx cases simply because there are no decent enough HTPC cases that fill the void between Rs. 2,000- Rs. 3,000. HTPC users are increasing in India and such users will like something that looks good and its not much of a hassle to work with when upgrading. I can always add up features like “silent” HTPCs, but it goes without saying that such will increase the cost. A good HTPC case costs as much as an AMD Brazos board bundled with a memory kit and a storage drive- not a good sign.
At the same time, it shouldn’t be put together like a garbage bin made with something equivalent to a tin foil. Is it too much to ask for starters?
Wireless devices also pretty much in the same situation. Anything that costs high: build quality issues (even at times, lack of basic functionality) and if anything more, expensive. I started with Lenovo’s N5901 mini wireless keyboard- and let see how she goes.