As Kelly and I plan our move, we've decided that now is the time to invest in a television. We're a little behind in technology here. Okay, more than a little, a lot. Our "big" TV is a 27" CRT that is about 10 years old. In our new (and small) digs, we thought it would be wise to go ahead and get a flat screen TV to save space. In Cincinnati, we have a living room (sans TV) and a family room (with the 27" TV). In Redmond, we'll have a single living space, so it'll need to house the family television.
We will still only have basic cable, because we don't want TV to be the center of our lives. But, I'd like to make a smart purchase on the television and try to obtain several features with one appliance. Here are the capabilities that I'd like the TV to have:
- Act as a receiver and watch basic cable with a coax connection
- Connect to the DVD player to watch movies and kids videos
- Connect to the VCR (yes, the VCR) to watch kids videos
- Connect to a Media Center PC to watch recorded shows and downloaded movies
- Connect to a Home Server to watch photo slide shows and listen to music
- Potentially hang on the wall over the fireplace
The other wildcards that I have here are that I don't know anything about Media Center PCs and I know virtually nothing about Home Servers, but I know that I want them both. My Vista Ultimate PC can act as the Media Center, and I plan to buy an HP MediaSmart Home Server. I assume that I can have a Media Center PC tune in and record TV shows (using a TV tuner card of course) off of basic cable, and store that video on the Home Server. Then that could get served to any PC or to the TV. That's the hope anyway.
I need assistance on what to buy and how to hook it up. I saw the HP MediaSmart TV, but boy it's pricey. And it looks like it doesn't connect to a Media Center PC yet. I would like to stay under $2000 for all of this. Any help would be appreciated.