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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
First I want to start off by saying I am new to computer building process.:doh: I have some idea of how the process works though. However, I would this build to be as easy as possible (that a toddler could do it).

I am looking to build a device to store my ever growing dvd and music collection. I own over 2100 movies at the current time and still growing. I would like something that will allow for the movies to be played in 4 different rooms simultaneously (different movies). It should offer the ability to play Netflix, Youtube, Hulu, etc. I would like for it to offer a front loader, but this is not etched in stone. I also need to be able to locked some of the contain as it shouldn't be viewed by my son. Since i will be adding movies I need something that will offer auto rip to the hard drive in the easiest process. Also interested to know if there is a program that offers any upscaling on playback (making a standard definition dvd appear in a more HD quality). I need complete hardware, software, and general dynamics for this system. Any help would be truly appreciated.
 

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The easiest and cheapest solution is to either have a NAS device or build a computer to be used as a NAS that has a built in Bluray player so that you can rip movies onto the box. Then stream that content to other computers or devices with streaming capabilities like most of the new bluray players on the market or something like a Roku XDS.

If you were to build a computer that would output directly to TVs and/or a multi-zone AVR you would spend a lot more money.

Figure $300-$400 for a good NAS with a lot of space on it and $400 for 4 Roku XDS's.

You could build your own NAS by stacking a lot of hard drives into a mediocre PC. Throw on a few optical drives (the more the merrier) for ripping and your set. Make sure you have a good network too. Wireless N or Gigabit preferred. You could build a high capacity NAS/DVD Ripper for under $600.

Figure you'd spend at least $400 on a couple dual HDMI video cards alone if you were to build a system that didn't stream. BY not streaming I mean outputting directly to the devices. You'd also spend a fortune on HDMI cables and would need repeaters on long runs. If you go that route be prepared to spend at least $2K.
 

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You could build your own NAS by stacking a lot of hard drives into a mediocre PC. Throw on a few optical drives (the more the merrier) for ripping and your set. Make sure you have a good network too. Wireless N or Gigabit preferred. You could build a high capacity NAS/DVD Ripper for under $600.

Read more: Home Theater Forum and Systems - HomeTheaterShack.com - Reply to Topic .
So what components should I get to build the NAS. Since I've never done this before, I kinda of need guidance on what hardware to use (case, motherboard, etc.). Also what software should I use to rip the dvd's. I actually have a Roku now. How can it be used to stream the movies. And can some the more adult movies be blocked.

Again, I appreciate any help with this.
 

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Oops sorry. I guess the Roku only does internet media. There are other media streamers that will however. Most of the new Bluray players will.

If you want instruction for a toddler then building your own from scratch might not be the right idea for you. It's not complex, but it's not child's play.

If I were to build one, I would get a decent motherboard with onboard video and gigabit LAN. Throw in a few terrabytes of hard drives, a few optical drives and a decent enclosure (case) with a good power supply (Enermax, Antec, etc).

The other option is buying a NAS enclosure and just popping in some hard drives. Then use your existing PC to rip movies. DVD shrink is pretty good and it's free. There are better but they cost money. http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/rip_your_movie_dvds_and_watch_them_anywhere. There is also a good guide here at the Shack somewhere.
 

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I went the route of building a media server. I looked into a NAS device but I didn't see much of a cost difference between them and just building a server.

I have over 1500 movies, so I know what you are saying and where you are coming from. That's another reason why I went with a server over a NAS unit. In order to have enough drives to hold all my content I would have had to have several NAS units and I wanted to keep things to one unit if possible. I have 20 hot swappable drive bays and right now 20TB of storage with 4 empty bays. I can max it out to 40TB using all 2TB drives or when the 3TB drives come down in price and are more stable it could max out to 60TB. It would take me quite a few NAS units to get the same amount of storage.

That's just my take on things though. There is nothing wrong with NAS units, for my needs though they weren't what I was looking for.
 
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