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Thread: First build - HTPC/general purpose

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    First build - HTPC/general purpose

    I'm looking to start a build v. soon - my first ever so I'm hope some of the illustrious folks here will help me out

    It's primary duty will be as an HTPC and TV recording duties, but it'll need to be capable of other PC duties too - general PC stuff, enough power for some software development, and whilst I don't do much in the way of gaming at the moment, I'd like to be able to upgrade it at some point in the future so I could do moderate gaming. HDMI output and should be 1080p capable, though I'm only after a DVD drive at the moment.

    Since it'll be sat on fairly low utilisation recording stuff much of the time, lowish power and efficient is good, as is quietish since it's an HTPC.

    • Case - Silverstone LC16M as I like the look, it has media card slots, and reasonable room for expansion, and should (juuuust) squeek into the unit under my TV
    • CPU - was looking at E8400 for reasonable poke but low power, but an Intel build seems loads more expensive for little gain, so I'm currently thinking AMD Athlon II X4 620. 95W but I'm guessing it won't be that hot/hungry most of the time since I won't be pushing it?
    • HDD - 1TB, thinking Western Digital Caviar Green WD10EADS (or maybe Samsung Ecogreen F2)
    • Mobo - ATX or micro ATX (case takes both)? Asus M4A785TD-V EVO maybe?
    • Graphics - cheapish discrete up front or integrated with possibility for later addition?
    • Memory - 2GB probably - or should I go for 4GB since 2 is the min for Win7 64bit (any experiences?)
    • PSU - moderately clueless, other than something quiet and reasonably efficient (and pref able to support a future moderate graphics card)
    • ODD - preferably shortish (LiteOn?) given the central position in the case, Lightscribe maybe (though I'd probably never use it!)


    I'd be grateful for peoples thoughts, particularly on Mobo, Graphics, Memory, and PSU, or any of the above. And any experiences with the LC16M.


    I should have some time off next week and it would be great to get cracking!

  2. #2
    Bows out! CAT-THE-FIFTH's Avatar
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    Re: First build - HTPC/general purpose

    AMD will be releasing some low power consumption 45W derivatives of the X4 600 from what I have read too. However there is also the 65W Phenom II X3 705E which will do the job well:

    http://www.ebuyer.com/product/167111

    The rest of the spec looks fine. I would definitely look at an AMD 785G based motherboard unless your require 7.1 LPCM output which the 785G does not do!!

    I would look at this PSU as it is very efficient:

    http://www.scan.co.uk/Product.aspx?W...source=froogle


    Those despicable Elk,stealing the pond weed!

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    Re: First build - HTPC/general purpose

    Hi Cat - thanks for taking the time to reply. I worry for your sleep though!

    Quote Originally Posted by CAT-THE-FIFTH View Post
    AMD will be releasing some low power consumption 45W derivatives of the X4 600 from what I have read too. However there is also the 65W Phenom II X3 705E which will do the job well:
    http://www.ebuyer.com/product/167111
    Digging around, I assume you're thinking of the recently announced Athlon II X4 605e 2.3GHz and 600e 2.2GHz? Interesting thought, but I think it's worth having a slightly higher clock than that for performance on single threaded stuff. Shame they don't do something like the Athlon II x4 620 2.6GHz or the 630 but at 65W. I guess they're achieving the lower TDP but just slowing it down.

    The other option you mention (Phenom II X3 705E 2.5GHz) is a possibility. The 65W part is nice and it's not that much slower. I'm still quite tempted by the extra core and speed of the x4 620 though (who isn't always tempted by just a little more power !) - am I right in thinking most of the time it shouldn't be any hotter/hungrier?

    Quote Originally Posted by CAT-THE-FIFTH View Post
    The rest of the spec looks fine. I would definitely look at an AMD 785G based motherboard unless your require 7.1 LPCM output which the 785G does not do!!
    I can live without 7.1 LPCM, at least in the short term, if it saves me some £££. I may want it later though!

    Quote Originally Posted by CAT-THE-FIFTH View Post
    I would look at this PSU as it is very efficient:

    http://www.scan.co.uk/Product.aspx?W...source=froogle
    Thanks for that. Looks interesting. I'm guessing that's enough power with a little headroom for a future graphics card?

  4. #4
    Bows out! CAT-THE-FIFTH's Avatar
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    • CAT-THE-FIFTH's system
      • Motherboard:
      • Less E-PEEN
      • CPU:
      • Massive E-PEEN
      • Memory:
      • RGB E-PEEN
      • Storage:
      • Not in any order
      • Graphics card(s):
      • EVEN BIGGER E-PEEN
      • PSU:
      • OVERSIZED
      • Case:
      • UNDERSIZED
      • Operating System:
      • DOS 6.22
      • Monitor(s):
      • NOT USUALLY ON....WHEN I POST
      • Internet:
      • FUNCTIONAL

    Re: First build - HTPC/general purpose

    You may want to go for a 400W to 450W job if you intend to put a gaming graphics card.

    One of these will do the trick:

    http://www.ebuyer.com/product/152505

    http://www.ebuyer.com/product/152606


    Those despicable Elk,stealing the pond weed!

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    Re: First build - HTPC/general purpose

    Thanks again Cat. I'll have a think about how the likelyhood of me getting a graphics card soon. Reading around though, there seem to be reports of the Corsair hx450 being a bit on the noisy side.

    Any other thoughts from anyone before I go ahead and start buying stuff ?

    Is the mobo a good choice?
    Am I mad for considering the WD Caviar Green as the HDD?
    Any memory recommendations?

    Hope everyones remembered their extra hour in bed!

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