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Windows 7: What to replace my HTPC with? ADVICE PLEASE? (Does anyone make this?)

22 Sep 2014   #1

7 hom pro 32 bit
What to replace my HTPC with? ADVICE PLEASE? (Does anyone make this?)

ADVICE PLEASE? What to replace my HTPC with? (Does anyone make what I describe??!!)
I have a 70" Sharp Aquos, an Assassin HTPC, HDHomeRun 3ch Tuner, COX HD chip, and Onkyo TXNR-509 Surround Sound Receiver. I've enjoyed the set-up immensely EXCEPT for the Windows 7 aspects and overall complexity of keeping things talking to one another. I am now at the point where I suspect a MS W7 update corrupted my sound drivers (in roughly August timeframe others reported this same issue!) and nothing I seem to do will get HD audio going into the Receiver. I'm at my wits end as I already removed and reloaded the Drivers, restored to a good recovery disk image, and replaced both the HDMI and TosLink cables.

I don't know what else to do so I'm thinking of going to Plan B and starting all over since I've had this system for 2+ years now and these occasional software issues aren't worth the hassle.


1) I don't watch much network TV and subscribe to only the COX basic cable here in Phoenix. I do record things off of FX Network, SyFy, Comedy Central, History Ch, NatGeo which I do receive under Basic Cable.

2) I download a lot of movies and cable shows and would like a device that I might transfer these files to via WiFi (I stopped using Torrents on the Assassin HTPC out of fear that would cause problems so now I download them on my MacBook and WiFi transfer them over.)

3) I never did use the Commercial Skip software that was an initial driving force behind getting the Assassin so I do not need those PC capabilities.

4) I would prefer to avoid a subscription service provider of hardware like TIVO, DISH, et al, and would rather have the abilities I enjoy now with recording 2 shows while watching another - but (without the PC and Windows issues) without paying a monthly fee.

5) I would love a more simpler device that eliminates the need for the Onkyo Receiver and the associated handshake issues that comes with it.

Does anyone make a device that records several shows at once, sends an HD surround sound signal out to the speakers, allows for additional hard drive add-ons, does not require a subscription service, and might allow for the transfer of recorded media onto itself? NOTE: This last item might be the least important because I've become so used to plugging in the MacBook directly to the TV to watch shows. HOWEVER in doing things this way I am losing the effect of surround sound which I would prefer to get back. So if there was a device that allowed you to move recordings onto it for playback that would be ideal.

Is the Motorola Eastlink 500GB 3D-Ready HD PVR Receiver (DCX3400-M) such a device possibly?

Are there others I should look into?

Or am I crazy, dreaming, and asking too much?

(The real pisser is that none of the torrents caused me any problems - but - that one recent MicroSoft Windows Update in August has cost me hundreds of hours of research and fiddling and hiring "AV experts" to no avail)

My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Sep 2014   #2

Windows 7 Pro x64

First of all thank you for supporting Assassin HTPC!

One last thing to check. It might not have been a windows update at all.

Every once in a while, a new hardware or software change, etc. a power disruption, a grounded wire, etc. could cause a change in bios. Not common but we've seen it.

Please enter BIOS to check HDMI audio is enable (BIOS, Advanced, Chipset Configuration, onboard HDMI HD Audio [Enable]).

There will usuall be Onboard HD Audio setting (make sure its enabled) and also an onboard HDMI HD audio Setting.

Then check to see if its working.

If it still not,
Install both Audio and onboard VGA driver (if using onboard VGA).

Check the Windows sound playback device has set to HDMI as default.

Test with another known good HDMI Cable.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 What to replace my HTPC with? ADVICE PLEASE? (Does anyone make this?)

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