One of my problems with MythTV has been the old Pentium 4 Dell desktop I use as a backend. The monster draws upwards of 100 W. 24/7. Just to record 5 hours of TV a week and serve out videos.
Well look at what we can build now:
- SheevaPlug 5W ($79)
- HDHomerun 5W ($159) Dual HD TV Tuner
- 1.5TB USB Hard Drive 10 W ($110)
- 20 W for $348
The hard drive cost and the dual tuner are constants when building a MythTV system. I'm not counting the cost of an ethernet switch, as I assume most of us would have an extra port regardless. The major point is using a SheevaPlug for a MythTV backend would be much cheaper even then using a NetBook $250, and would very rapidly be cheaper than even re-using an old desktop $10/month electricity versus $0.50/month for just the SheevaPlug.
And it should be quiet.
On the down side, it would be useless as a frontend, and probably not up to the task of re-encoding videos.