Consumer hi-fi equipment - like DVD and DivX players - are easy to handle, but reach their limits quickly. The main problem is that if a new video or audio format comes out, or there is a new version of a codec from Real, Quicktime, Windows Media or DivX, the device often cannot play back the data correctly anymore. Also remember that high-definition television (HDTV) is almost here, which also means that looking to the future is more important than ever before.
Home Theater PCs, also called HTPCs, are much more future-proof, because updating their software is much easier to do than with a consumer unit. The HTPC concept also affords the buyer more latitude in choosing hardware.
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