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Projects

September 05, 2017
Choosing the right DC-DC PSU

August 27, 2015
AMD's Project Quantum

August 13, 2015
The Redstone PC is the ultimate Mini-ITX Minecraft Machine

October 09, 2014
The "Restomod TV"

April 09, 2013
Installing NAS4Free

February 28, 2013
Building an XBMC 12 Home Theatre PC

January 25, 2011
XBMC Guide updated to version 10.0

August 06, 2010
Building a Green PC

February 15, 2010
Building an ION powered HTPC with XBMC

October 10, 2008
The "Cambridge Autonomous Underwater Vehicle 2008"

Mini-ITX Online Store

September 12, 2008
"Florian", the DVD burning robot

September 05, 2008
The "i-EPIA"

May 22, 2008
The "GTA-PC"

April 14, 2007
The "Digg" Case

January 19, 2007
The "ITX-Laptop"

December 07, 2006
The "Tortoise Beetle"

October 02, 2006
The "DOS Head Unit"

August 31, 2006
The "Janus Project"

August 05, 2006
The "Leela PC"

June 26, 2006
Nano-ITX in a Football

May 17, 2006
The "EPIA Alloy Mod"

April 11, 2006
Neatorama's Collection of Case Mods

February 18, 2006
The "Rundfunker"

October 24, 2005
The "ITX TV"

October 06, 2005
The K'nex-ITX

August 05, 2005
The "Waffle Iron PC"

July 21, 2005
The "Supra-Server"

July 18, 2005
The "Mega-ITX"

July 07, 2005
The "Encyclomedia"

May 25, 2005
The "Accordion ITX"

Mini-ITX Online Store

May 16, 2005
The "FileServerRouterSwitch"

May 15, 2005
The "Mini Falcon"

May 13, 2005
The "Bender PC"

May 11, 2005
The "BBC ITX B"

May 10, 2005
The "Frame"

April 20, 2005
The "Jeannie"

March 09, 2005
The "Cool Cube"

January 30, 2005
First Nano-ITX Project?

January 17, 2005
The "iGrill"

January 15, 2005
The "Gumball PC"

December 15, 2004
The "Deco Box"

December 03, 2004
The "TERA-ITX"

October 06, 2004
The "Coealacanth-PC"

September 17, 2004
The "Gramaphone-ITX-HD"

August 26, 2004
The "C1541 Disk Drive ITX"

August 25, 2004
The "SEGA-ITX"

August 13, 2004
The "Quiet Cubid"

August 06, 2004
The "BMWPC"

July 14, 2004
The "Moo Cow Moo"

July 02, 2004
The "Mini Mesh Box"

Full alphabetical archive on right hand side of page...


"The Clock"
By Jukka Talvio - Posted on March 25, 2003

The LCD screen in front of the case uses the printer port. IR receiver uses the serial port. Then there are naturally the network cable and the S-Video to the TV. Those of you who think that my poor TV image is because of the self assembled S-Video cable in this picture, I must regrettably tell that this is not the case. I did try a good quality S-Video cable from EPIA to the TV directly. No improvement.

The hard drive is of the quiet type. You see it above the DVD drive. Although you may not see it clearly in the picture, it is suspended with rubber bands. It makes practically no sound.


As you see in this picture, all the wires inside are just short ones and lead to the clock case connectors. The monitor connector is not connected to the motherboard. At least not yet...

Below the non-functional monitor connector you see the network connector. Then from left to right: TV antenna, audio out, S-Video in, audio out, and S-Video in.

As you see, I did not want to take risks with bad ventilation inside the case. AMD did teach me at least that. The two smaller holes are for air in and the larger 8cm hole with the Papst fan for the air out. Heat is not an issue. Finger guards are on my table awaiting installation.

Most or all of the noise comes from the processor fan on the mother board. This is not very loud, but still enough that my wife prefers to shutdown the machine when we are not using it. When you press the power switch, the machine goes into hibernation.


I think the "clock" appearance is acceptable. It works reasonably well, though reading other project reports I did expect better DVD and DivX playback. Also, the TV output leaves something to be desired. Especially the Hauppauge TV card through the EPIA TV output does not work well enough. This could also be a processor performance problem.

I hope to solve all or at least most of these problems by upgrading to a later EPIA motherboard. I am tempted to invest in an EPIA M, but then I could just as well wait for an even better performance Nehemiah core.


The Clock is best suited for MP3 playback and DivX movies. Unexpectedly some DivX movies play better than most DVDs. DVDs drop frames even in fairly slow scenes. Some people tell me that using another DVD software player could help. I have not yet tried that.


The best feature of the system is the remote control. I used the previous media computer with the keyboard and mouse. The remote has made this almost unnecessary. I can choose a WinAmp "channel" that is actually a playlist. There are several playlists: all the music, my favorites, my wife's favorites, classical, and naturally one for the kids. The remote works perfectly with the DVDs, but unfortunately DVD playback is so bad I don't use it at all. There aren't menus in DivX medias, but at least the play and pause buttons work as they should.

Software

Conclusion

This kind of project should certainly be worth some nerd points. I have managed to make the system almost usable by non nerds as well. The remote is vital for this.

I enjoyed the project and I enjoy the result. My only wish is now that I had an EPIA M with Nehemiah core from the start... But then, the case is a standard Mini-ITX case and fitting a new motherboard in it should go smoothly.

Gallery





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