If you are looking for a HTPC compilation that allows you to download all media from local sources, e.g. FreeNAS and streams can be played back, maybe find some inspiration here.
Since the ATV1200 android box, which is currently in use, has problems with some media and also has to be configured relatively for use with e.g. Netflix (e.g. switching between root and non-root, various VPN settings), there are still plans to switch to an HTPC with Windows 8.1. The advantage of this is: complete freedom in terms of media playback, all streaming services are supported (Amazon Prime Instant VideoWatchever, Netflix, Google Play Movie - the latter without problems with error 43) and also for new services you do not have to wait for an app.
The HTPC Composition 2014
The most important thing is of course the hardware. While many people rely on the Intel "Next Unit of Computing" NUC systems, I would opt for a different configuration. My main concern is extensibility, at least in terms of CPU, and enough power so that I don't have to upgrade too soon.
- ASUS H81T Socket 1150 Mainboard (68,- EURO at Amazon)
- INTEL BXHTS1155LP Heat Sink (25,- EURO at Amazon)
- INTEL Core i3-4130T 2.9GHz Cache 3MB (120,- EURO at Amazon)
- 2x ADATA Premier SO-DIMM 4GB, DDR3L-1600 (36,- EURO each at Jakob Elektronik)
- Lian Li PC-Q05A (57,- EURO at Amazon)
- Corsair M500 120 GB SSD (65,- EURO at Amazon)
- 19V, 90 Watt Notebook power supply (20,- EURO at Amazon)
All in all this compilation currently costs 417,- EURO - if you take a weaker CPU you can save a good 85 EURO, a Celeron G1820T with 2x 2.40GHz also fits the cooling capacity of the case and fan. With this, all HD media can be played without problems, only the gaming suitability is even more limited than with the Core i3 - here, everyone has to decide for himself how much performance he needs.
As always, there are also ready-made alternatives, but they take away the fun of putting it together yourself and do not necessarily offer a price advantage. First of all there are the already mentioned Intel NUCbut you still have to buy RAM and hard drives. Then there are the Zotac Zboxwhich is available with both AMD and Intel CPU. Last but not least, Gigabyte is now also available with the Brix Series corresponding small computers, which are suitable as HTPC.