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Ask Engadget HD: What's the ultimate HD movie HTPC setup?

Ben Drawbaugh

We love HD movies, but we also love HTPCs, and bringing the two together would make us very happy. But the problem is we demand the ultimate experience -- or at least the best we out there. While it seems the best solution is yet to come, we wonder how close it is to being a reality on a HTPC, so the question this week is.

What's the ultimate HD movie HTPC setup and what are the advantages and drawbacks over stand-alone players. Obviously a fast processor and video card are necessary, but which ones? What is the best video card and does it provide HDMI (1.2 or 1.3?). What is the best playback software, WinDVD or PowerDVD? And do they work with Windows Media Center? Which is the best HD media drive, does it support both formats? Can we enjoy any, or all of the next-gen audio codecs, if so how? Do OEMs offer the best solutions, or is the DIY route the only way to go? We want to know it all and we want to know why. So stop holding back and let us know.

Got a burning question that you'd love to toss out for Engadget HD (or its readers) to take a look at? Tired of Google's blank stares when you ask for real-world experiences? Hit us up at
ask at engadgethd dawt com and keep an eye on this space -- your inquiry could be next.

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