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Home theater on a computer?

by krvach / April 2, 2006 5:28 AM PDT

I'm not to sure if this is possible or not, but I thought I would give it a shot. I was talking to my friends about how nice it is to have all of my cds downloaded on my computer, and I was thinking that it would be fantastic to do the same with my dvds. I currently have my computer set up as a media center pc so I can play all of my music through my home theater system. So here is my question to you folks. Is it possible to put all of my dvds on my computer or are there restrictions/legal issues with it? Thank you.

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Space and viewing is an issue
by Dan Filice / April 2, 2006 5:42 AM PDT

Forget about the legal issues. Some people say it legal to make a backup copy for personal use, others say you can't. But, there is software that allows you to rip DVD copies of protected discs, so that's not an issue. The potential issue is space and watchability. DVDs use about 4+GB of space each, But you can certainly use an external HD for storage. But once you do this, you've got to figure out how to watch the movies. If you want to watch on your computer screen, that's easy. But you'd need to tote your computer to where your TV is and connect your computer to it to watch. So in theory, you can do it, but for the low cost of typical DVD, it seems like a lot of work to do just to keep movies on your computer. Music is another thing because it uses so little space and you can transmit music to your stereo via wireless connection. You can't do wireless to a TV for movies.

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HTPC - Home Theater PC
by steve.trelease / April 4, 2006 5:57 AM PDT

Video takes up a considerable amount of disk space, so you're probably better off sticking with your DVDs.

If you're interested in extending the utility of your computer, you can turn it into a true HTPC by adding a TV tuner card. This will allow you to view and record (a la Tivo) both broadcast and satellite/cable TV. This is particularly handy if you have a large monitor or are connected to a big-screen TV.

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