Today I'm going to fill you guys in on how to build your own Tivo aka Mythbox. It's a great Christmas present ~ people love DIY stuff and it's a freakin DVR! Some advantages of a Mythbox over a Tivo include:

  • No monthly fees!!!
  • Easy to control what does/does not get recorded (Skip commercials)
  • Has web interface, weather, and mame (old school game emulator)
  • Streams movies
  • Simple DVD creation
  • Can be networked so the whole house can easily use it

1. If you don't have an old computer that you can use you can build a new one for under $300 on right now: (If you do have an old PC lying around skip to step 3). Case______: $30.96 MID TOWER 5BAY MATX w/ 300W PS Motherboard: $37.97 MSI K8MM-V CPU______: $31.45 SEMPRON 3000+ PGA754 RAM+Optical: $30.79 256 MB PC2700+CDRW/DVD Drive Wireless Card: $31.97 Linksys WMP54G HDD______: $36.49 WD 80GB SATA Video Card_: $78.08 Hauppauge WinTV-PVR-15

Total Cost_: $283.71 --- Everything includes free shipping and must be made as separate purchases to get a $20 google checkout coupon with each purchase. ***You can use a cheaper network card, but I find it's always better not to skimp on wireless cards to avoid headaches. You also might want to upgrade to 512 mb of ram (Kingston PC3200 512MB $37.94) 2. Once you receive all your parts assemble your computer (This step requires prior computer knowledge, but once I find a good tutorial I'll a link). 3. Once you have a functioning PC it's time to install the Mythbox software. There are tons of tutorials out there but I think Myth PVR has the best tutorial around and recommend following it. 4. After Mythbox is installed you need to get the wireless card working. You can either use the linux drivers for the card or use a program called NdisWrapper. NdisWrapper defined: " With ndiswrapper, virtually every miniPCI (builtin), PCI, PCMCIA (Cardbus only) or USB wireless network card works in Linux. Although ndiswrapper is intended for wireless network cards, other devices are known to work: e.g., USB to serial port device, ethernet card, home phone network device etc. See Wiki entry List for devices known to work." *The wiki also has windows drivers for most cards.