James C. Dastrup <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> says:
> I think the point here is that we know spending a months salary or
> more will get us a superior system, which is obviously what you've
> done, unless you have more creative ways of obtaining your hardware,

We're not very far apart; I'm a cheapskate, too, and bought said
server plus enclosure on eBay. The nine 400GB drives cost twice as
much as the server, actually, even though I got a fantastic price on
them through an unusually-generous CompUSA sale a year ago.

> but myself and others believe we are just building a fancy VCR, and
> we actually enjoy pushing the envelope of our older unused hardware,
> and we simply enjoy the challenge. It's fun to find out how far some
> old motherboard can go and what we can do for cheap. I'm much more
> impressed by someone who can get MythTV up and running on some old
> junk than by those that do it the "proper" way.

No disagreements here. But what about when the hardware really isn't
sufficient? Sadly, a lot (OK, most) of the time, we get anguished
laments on mythtv-users, punctuated with the occasional user who is
positively upset because reality has cruelly shattered his hopes for a
cheap TiVo. Going HDTV has further raised the bar; heck, as I've noted
elsewhere, I made the mistake in thinking that a $80 6200TC would be
sufficient for a 100%-perfect HDTV image on my 37" 1080p panel (which
I paid $1460 for through careful vendor selection and some opportune
griping to the right person when it bungled the delivery) instead of
the 97% perfect I'm getting now. I'm not going to spring for a $120
6600GT because the 97% is good enough for now, but were I to do it
again I'd have paid the extra money, yes (or, if also feasible, spent
$30 *less* for the PCX 5300).

I've been 100% Linux at home for ten years this month, and every
moment of tinkering has been enjoyable worthwhile. I also, however,
believe in building things that last. I'm also a software person at
heart, and by comparison fiddling with hardware is a major
pain. That's why I went to the effort of building a RAID array on real
server hardware instead of (since I didn't have an unused system in
the closet) trying to cobble together something from cheap $399 PC
specials at CompUSA. I won't have to worry about upgrading the
hardware there for a few years to come. Similarly, with the Myth
frontend/backend, I bought a classy-looking Sony 3.0GHz Pentium 4
system at Fry's at its day-after-Thanksgiving sale--again for a
terrific price--rather than trying to shoehorn my four year-old AMD
desktop into the task or going for one of the el cheapo
Celeron/Sempron wonders also advertised that day. In my experience
this approach saves time, grief, and yes, money, in the long run.

Yeechang Lee <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> | +1 650 776 7763 | San Francisco CA US
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