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Thread: living room HTPC build

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    Question living room HTPC build

    Hi Everyone,

    I'm planning on putting together a new htpc for the living room, and I'd appreciate a bit of input. I was looking at getting the following:

    Case: E49.90 Maxinpower including 250w psu

    SSD: E58.46 Ocz Onyx 32gb

    Processor: E29.85 OR E53.73 Semprom 140 OR Athlon ii x2

    Ram: E45.80 4gb ddr3

    Mobo: E79.77 Gigabyte GA-880GM-UD2H

    Tv Tuner: E79.90 Hauppauge WINTV HVR 3300

    As I have said, this htpc is for the living room, and it will be used to watch & record tv (Saorview and Freesat), play movies, tv shows, music (which are stored on a freenas computer). My main concerns are power consumption and noise.

    I'll be using Windows 7 Media Centre with Mediabrowser.

    The total price comes to just under E400 including delivery. I'd like to keep the price under E400 . I was also thinking of using the Semprom over the Athlon (saving 24 ish euro w/ chance of unlocking) and cutting the ram from 4gb to 2gb (saving 22.90 euro) to cut the price further.

    I've picked the Maxinpower case as it will fit perfectly where the htpc is being placed.

    So, basically is it worth the savings getting a Semprom and 2gb?
    Any other suggestions?

    -->I already have Windows 7 & no games will ever be played on this pc, and all files are stored on a file server
    Last edited by dk-spec; 26-01-2011 at 03:45 PM.

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    Re: living room HTPC build

    Personally I think an SSD for a HTPC is a waste of time.

  3. #3
    Not a good person scaryjim's Avatar
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    Re: living room HTPC build

    Quote Originally Posted by dk-spec View Post
    ... I was also thinking of using the Semprom over the Athlon (saving 24 ish euro w/ chance of unlocking)
    If you unlock a Sempron to a dual core it will consume ~ 20W more power. I use a Sempron in my HTPC but I've left it locked as a single (even though it does unlock successfully) and have under-volted it to reduce power draw further: mine runs stably at 1.05V, and the system consumes only ~55W at load. Since you're using yours to record TV though (mine is only ever used for playing DVDs ) I think you'll be better off with the Athlon II.

    It's generally better to get memory in pairs for AMD processors as they have dual channel memory controllers. That said, I use a single 2GB stick in my HTPC and I've not had any problems. That said, I put my HTPC together while DDR3 was still pricey, and since memory is basically cheap nowadays I'd go for 4GB. If you've decided to buy from pixmania I'd suggest you go for this 4GB kit which is only 39.50

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    Re: living room HTPC build

    Personally I think an SSD for a HTPC is a waste of time.
    I think the quiteness and speed over the hdd makes it worth it for this HTPC though, especially considering I dont need to store any files locally.

    If you've decided to buy from pixmania I'd suggest you go for this 4GB kit which is only 39.50
    Nice, didn't spot that kit.

    I think I'll opt for the Athlon II and undervolt/underclock.

    Would I see any benefit with an Athlon ii x3 compared to the x2's when undervolted & underclocked, or would it be a waste having the 3rd core and higher power consumption? In another HTPC I have a C2D e6600 clocked @1.6ghz and undervolted, but sometimes it seems as if its a tad slow, but that may be down to the laptop hdd I have in it.

    The x3 costs less than 20 euro more than the x2, probably not worth getting a 3rd core for a HTPC though is there?

    Btw, thanks for ye're replies.

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    isn't trying to wind U up Shooty*'s Avatar
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    Re: living room HTPC build

    Quote Originally Posted by dk-spec View Post

    I'll be using Windows 7 Media Centre with Mediabrowser.


    Mediabrowser FTW.

    Though I don't like what someone has done to the Chocolate theme with the new build.
    My HTPC: Linky

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    Re: living room HTPC build

    i'd recommend media portal..

    with streamedmp or maya skin

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k7NTRu33J60

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    Re: living room HTPC build

    A word of caution with the 32GB SSD; a basic Windows 7 32-bit install will use about 20GB + pagefile + hyberfile would bring it up to 30GB if using 4GB RAM. Also, if any media cache locally that could create a few more issues. For an extra E23 a 40GB Intel may save headaches down the line. http://www.dabs.ie/products/intel-40...2-5--778Q.html

  8. #8
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      • Memory:
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    Re: living room HTPC build

    Quote Originally Posted by Skulltrail View Post
    A word of caution with the 32GB SSD; a basic Windows 7 32-bit install will use about 20GB + pagefile + hyberfile would bring it up to 30GB if using 4GB RAM. Also, if any media cache locally that could create a few more issues. For an extra E23 a 40GB Intel may save headaches down the line. http://www.dabs.ie/products/intel-40...2-5--778Q.html
    Good idea, didnt even cross my mind that 32gb would be a problem. I changed mobo to http://www.dabs.ie/products/asus-am3...ata6-752G.html which is about E10 cheaper, and I've found a 4gb ram kit for 35E used, so the 40gb drive only adds a couple of euro extra to the overall cost.

    Thanks for the link.

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