HTPC + USB Blu Ray?

Found 27th Jan 2010
Hi All,

I built an HTPC trying to do everything on the cheap in December. What I've been left with is something that - whilst plays any video very well, is big, ugly, noisy and gets very warm... Because of this I'm already looking to ditch this and this time am going to look to spend a little bit more to make sure I don't have to repeat this process again for a while.

So far I've been looking at two main options - an all in one off the shelf package or building a new one with higher quality components.

For the off the shelf package I've been looking at this offer from maplin (£230 after the vouchers)


Which would appear to be a good solution apart from the fact it has no optical drive. I've had a brief look for optical usb blu ray drives but options there seem limited.

Second option would be to buy individual components starting with the Antec Micro Fusion case (link below) + MicroATX motherboard, CPU, Graphics Card, Memory + OS. After doing a brief search around ebuyer, I saw that this route would take me to around £300 (before looking at an optical drive) unless somebody know's different?


Has anybody been in a similar situation and could see a better option than either of these two routes?
Community Updates
Thankyou! Wasn't even aware that this was an option. I'll read up more on these and do some more research on other options which may be in stock now..
Does an external blu-ray drive specifically need to be HDCP compatible?
I think it would need to be HDCP compatible - the aim being that I can throw any file / any dvd / blu ray disc at the thing and for it to play it flawlessly. I think at the moment I'm leaning towards an Acer Revo and wait a few months for a cheaper usb blu ray player to become available.
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