and antiquated notions
The little GX280 SSF will I think work very shiny as the media PC. I found a GeForce 8400 that fits into it which is HDCP compatible, so in theory it will play directly to the big screen in 1080p glory, and it sure as hell looks like it is. I was briefly playing F.E.A.R. on it tonight, though I really need to run a network cable down and patch the living hell out of everything. Still, there is a bit of awesome happening there. It's a 2.8GHz P4 with 2.5G of RAM and a 360G HD. I have a USB cable run to it for the mouse and keyboard (it's a bit too far for the wireless), and I can power it on and off (or at least sleep mode) from the keyboard which is nice. I'm going to have to add a soundcard though. I can live with that.
I have four of the machines currently running XP pro, with significantly large hard drives. One of them is a baby, a 4600C with only 512MB of RAM. I actually planned to put a gig in it, but it turns out it takes PC2700 DDR, and I got different> I can still use it in one of the bigger machines, but five of the machines I've got here take PC2700, and if I want to actually use them with XP, I need to get the right memory installed.
The 4600C also has an AGP slot for video, and it's half-height. If I can find a decent AGP video card for it, it would make a dandy little portable machine for hauling around for showing movies in high-def. If not, it might make a cute little media server. There is an on-board VGA that will pump out 1280 x 1024 32 bit color, but it's pretty ringy... a DVI port is a lot better, and if it's one that's HDCP compatible, it could be perfect. Something like a GeForce 6200 or a Radeon X1050.
Then again, it may not be worth it. It's just so Cute.