I recently decided to buy a Mac Mini to use as my primary media system so I decided to re-task my old media PC. Since I'm a bit crazy about the noise that most PCs make I tend to go a bit overboard on the 'silence' side... Hence the Mac Mini. It took some time, but I finally managed to I managed to get my first system working (with HDMI audio and an Apple remote) so I thought that I should share the build here. The only thing not quite working now is sleep but I can live without that. Specs: Asus Rampage II Gene http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/Intel_ ... e_II_GENE/ - I used IDE rather than AHCI for the drives and configured the system with 1 2GB DIMM and 1 CPU to do the initial install. NVidia GT240 - Gigabyte GV-N240SL-1GI http://www.gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=3609#ov Intel Core i7 950 http://www.amazon.com/Intel-i7-950-Processor-3-06GHz-LGA1366/dp/B002A6G3V2/ref=sr_1_1?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1316872839&sr=1-1 mCubed Case http://www.kustompcs.co.uk/acatalog/info_1276.html Seagate 500GB Momentus XT 2.5" Hybrid SSD/HDD (mostly because they really are very fast compared to a standard drive! Already Owned Main Media Storage - Norco RPC-4220 case - Supermicro X8DTH-6F - 20 x Samsung F4 - 2 x 6 core Xeon - 48 GB RAM - Seagate Hybrid to boot to ESX. ok... overkill for media storage... in fact it's running ESX 3.5 and MS Storage Server as a Virtual for media... the rest is for my development work. THE BUILD The build was challenging but I got there in the end as follows: First... create an iBoot CD and boot with it. When the system finishes booting, swap the iBoot CD for retail Install disk and install on basic hardware as in: See: http://tonymacx86.blogspot.com/2010/04/ ... -x-on.html It took me a while to get the motherboard configuration just right but would up with the BIOS configured for 1 CPU and IDE (rather than AHCI ... for the drives) and physically configured with 1 2GB DIMM. Before the MultiBeast setup I created a user DSDT file using the DSDT Updater tool here: See: http://www.insanelymac.com/forum/index. ... pic=235523 and left it on my desktop. Next I ran MultiBeast... (Note... Don't just select everything... you MUST select only the options that you need/want, which is dependent on your motherboard / setup. It helps to understand what every one of the settings do. If minimally you know what every option does, you will find it much easier to resolve the minor problems that you encounter. MultiBeast does a great job at managing a broad range of configurations but you really do need to understand what you are setting. I first managed to get Voodoo audio working with the built in XFi chip and the kexts that came with MultiBeast but the quality was pretty poor. So I decided to disable the XFi chip and rely try to get HDMI audio working. I went through an Asus 5740 and GT210 before settling on the Gigabyte GV-N240SL-1GI. It's passively cooled and has a reasonably low profile so it fit well in the mCubed case. I found that many of the passive cards that I looked at had heat pipes that extended up quite some distance from the radiators. By comparison the GV-N240SL has quite a low profile. This tutorial proved useful in getting it working properly: See: http://tonymacx86.blogspot.com/2010/10/ ... tions.html Th 'Advanced Method' worked just fine for me and because the card is a GT240 I did not have to bother with the 'Advanced DSDT Fixes'. The standard configuration works just fine with the I have yet to try the new nVidia drivers. That's the next step for me. Also worth reading is this: viewtopic.php?f=162&t=22028 I quite like the apple remote so I buoght an actual Apple IR.. This guide helped a great deal: viewtopic.php?f=76&t=8913 As an asside... For those of you in the UK... I just tried a Bluemicro Pro Bluetooth dongle on a i5-2500K / HA65M-D2H-B3 that I am playing with. It can be had for £5 with free shipping on Play.com and work perfectly on OSX (at least it does on Lion)! COMMENTS After just about everything was working and I had installed Plex I found that the system was not being discovered properly so I installed the RealTek 81* kexts using MultiBeast. So far this seem to have resolved the problem with Bonjour. For the moment I am sticking with OSX 10.6.7 because I know that it works quite well with Plex but will try to move to 10.6.8 or Lion at some point. For an HTPC though I am not sure that there is a particularly good reason to go to Lion. The BEST resources that I found for a mini project of this sort are: This site! http://tonymacx86.blogspot.com/ TonyMac86 wiki: wiki/index.php/Main_Page http://www.insanelymac.com/ http://www.insanelymac.com/forum/ http://www.insanelymac.com/osx86db/ http://wiki.osx86project.org/wiki/index.php/Main_Page So far, I've had 1 unexplained freeze in the last 3 days or so but otherwise Plex is working perfectly using HDMI for audio and video. I would suggest to anyone attempting a build to check out the following tools: - an account at tonymac86! - iBoot - viewforum.php?f=125 - MultiBeast - viewforum.php?f=125 - Hex Fiend - http://ridiculousfish.com/hexfiend/ - DSDT SE - http://www.osx86.es/?p=610 - XCode Be prepared to do allot of tinkering.... but it does work and when done plays silky smooth video and perfect audio (over the HDMI) New Media New downloads all go on a Synology 1515+. These things are GREAT. I highly recommend them to anyone who is building a home media system. I also quite like FreeNAS for storing media... it's easy to use and free. I have a couple HP Microservers running FreeNAS too. For those of you who are interested in storing large amounts of media I suggest that you take a look here: http://www.servethehome.com/ . It's a great site for all things storage!