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badbinary

HTPC under $400

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This is what I tossed together. Everything is in the air, but it needs to be under $400. I'm looking for suggestions that may make this build better in your opinions. Optical drive is purely optional as 99% of what I use is streamed or downloaded.

 

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it's an htpc so drop the ssd for a much larger storage hd. you'd be surprised how quickly it can fill up, i have 6TB in my media system and still want more.

also you don't need super fast read/write speeds for video, i believe even for 4k video recording a minimum write speed of 30MBs is more than fast enough for real time recording, 1080p (high def) video is even less. (not talking about uncompressed video here, only professionals use that, and needs something like 3Gbs or more.)

 

personally i don't like your case, but that's just a personal cosmetic thing and think this looks nicer :- http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811108065

overall tho i think your going to have a very nice htpc system.

 

i'd definitely add a dvd drive tho.

 

:b33r:

Edited by terry1966

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I would substitute this mobo+cpu for that A4, it'll handle any transcoding much better, it employs their new audio engine which truly sounds phenomenal and will provide an upgrade path should it be needed in the future. http://www.microcenter.com/store/add_product.aspx?productIDs=0423952,0427565

Edited by Tx Redneck

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for an htpc tx you want low power draw, if you want fast transcoding that's what your main pc is for, so nice as that cpu is it's way over the top for htpc, even the one bb has chosen is a bit over the top for a dedicated htpc system in my opinion. ;)

 

:b33r:

 

nigel uses a rasberry pi for his htpc system which i believe draws 5 watts of power.

Edited by terry1966

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I get the power consumption part, but doesn't having to use a separate pc to transcode defeat the purpose? That's why I recommended the cpu/mobo combo I did. It'll have enough huevos to do the job and when *not* transcoding, it sips power to the tune of a mere 41w @idle and a meager 124w full out. It handles all aspects of the htpc on die, thus eliminating any extra components.http://www.guru3d.com/articles_pages/amd_a10_7850k_apu_review,7.html

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it's an htpc so drop the ssd for a much larger storage hd. you'd be surprised how quickly it can fill up, i have 6TB in my media system and still want more.

also you don't need super fast read/write speeds for video, i believe even for 4k video recording a minimum write speed of 30MBs is more than fast enough for real time recording, 1080p (high def) video is even less. (not talking about uncompressed video here, only professionals use that, and needs something like 3Gbs or more.)

 

personally i don't like your case, but that's just a personal cosmetic thing and think this looks nicer :- http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811108065

overall tho i think your going to have a very nice htpc system.

 

i'd definitely add a dvd drive tho.

 

:b33r:

 

i use NAS for storage and i don't record live tv (i got rid of my cable) so having large internal storage is unnecessary. i was going to go wtih a 32GB ssd but decided on the larger one so that i could play around with it more.

 

that is a nice looking case, but i don't know if i can trust the psu. that's the main reason for the antec case, i trust antec psu's. i am considering it, however, as that in win looks nice.

 

 

 

I would substitute this mobo+cpu for that A4, it'll handle any transcoding much better, it employs their new audio engine which truly sounds phenomenal and will provide an upgrade path should it be needed in the future. http://www.microcent...0423952,0427565

 

that is a nice combo there. i could even use that to play some games on my tv. i would be concerned about heat and power draw, however, AND it puts me over budget.

Edited by badbinary

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i don't record live tv

storage not really a problem then, and ssd is always better to have just because they are silent and not for any real speed benefits.

 

 

but doesn't having to use a separate pc to transcode defeat the purpose?

not at all, you don't need to use another pc to transcode, it will just take longer on the htpc and your not sitting there waiting for it to finish so there's no rush and the htpc has plenty of time to complete the job, not that there really is to much to transcode on a htpc system when it's up and running anyway most things are recorded, watched then deleted with nothing transcoded.

 

what you need to remember is more power draw, more heat, so more fans needed to keep it cool.

with something sitting under the tv, the last thing you want is fan noise to spoil your enjoyment of watching/listening to your media. plus running costs mount up quickly, there's a huge difference between running a 65 watt system to a 125 watt system over a year.

 

so usually when building a htpc your trying to build the lowest powered, quietest system you can.

there is a reason why raspberry pi, atoms, arm etc are all very popular choices when building a htpc.

 

ok if it's going to be a gaming/htpc system then of course you'd build one with more capabilities, more expensive to run and louder, but then in my mind that's not really a htpc it's a gaming pc used for media.

 

i don't call/think of my system as a htpc, even tho that really is what it's main job is, just because it's way to loud and big for a true htpc.

a true htpc in my mind sits quietly under/next to the tv, sipping as little electric as possible, never heard or noticed, and just getting on with it's job.

 

this offers some good advice and i especially like the htpc cases pictured (way expensive tho) and what i'd probably use if i ever built a "true" htpc. :laughing:

http://www.digitaltrends.com/home-theater/how-to-build-home-theater-pc-htpc/

 

:b33r:

Edited by terry1966

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