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Thread: HTPC PSU upgrade?

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    HTPC PSU upgrade?

    Hi All

    I've got an HTPC I built last year, it's running an i3 2100, old 500gb hdd and a blu-ray drive.

    It currently makes a right racket which I've narrowed down to the PSU which sits right on top of the cpu fan.

    The case is a Themaltake Element Q and the PSU is the 220w one it comes with.

    I don't think I need anywhere near 220w for my setup (I ran the same rig on a 120 watt psu in a different case) and was thinking of going down the PicoPSU route.

    Never used a PicoPSU before and wondering what peoples experience is like with them? Would one suit my setup? Or are there any other dead silent PSU's out there that fit the Element Q?

    Edit: Should also point out, as I no longer need the Blu-Ray drive, I could swap out the case completely. Ideally nothing bigger than the Element Q though.
    Thanks for any help!

  2. #2
    Poor graduate. Ulti's Avatar
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    Re: HTPC PSU upgrade?

    A PicoPSU would work completely fine, however, in the UK they are quite pricey and a 120W + 120W adapter would cost you around £40-50.

    They are virtually silent though and don't have overheating issues or anything like that so it should be fine for you. I've only owned one PicoPSU, the one that came preinstalled with my Antec ISK100 and I've never had any issues with it.

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    Re: HTPC PSU upgrade?

    Thanks.

    Just trying to work out whether I can get away with a 80 or 90 watt one.

    I was looking at the ISK100 earlier, but i think the its only a 80 watt psu??

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    Poor graduate. Ulti's Avatar
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    Re: HTPC PSU upgrade?

    Yup, IIRC it's something like a 90W PicoPSU but with a 80W adapter (meaning max input is 80W).

    Persosonally, I would be willing to "take the risk" with an i3 2100 and a 500GB HDD, I don't think you'll have any problems.

    The ISK100 is good but only fits 2x 2.5" disks and doesn't fit any optical drives, it's also slightly tedious to work with, due too it's small size.

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    Re: HTPC PSU upgrade?

    Thanks.

    I actually have a couple of 2.5 inch drives from my ps3's I don't use anymore so may change to one of them. I only need to run xbmc so don't need the extra space and I won't be using an optical drive either so I should get away withe the 80 watts.

    Does the case have a fan? Is it loud?

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    Re: HTPC PSU upgrade?

    I had issues running a sempron 140 + 785G mobo on a 90W PicoPSU. You might be alright - it mostly depends on the current available on the 12v rail...

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      • PSU:
      • Zalman Heatpipe 750 Watts
      • Case:
      • Cosmos
      • Operating System:
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    Re: HTPC PSU upgrade?

    Thanks, so the three options I've come up with:

    1) Get a PicoPSU, theres a 120 watt one on eBay for £60, although I did read one review that said the 120w brick has quite a loud fan in it.

    2) Go for the new case but risk not having enough power (Are there any other cases with picopsu's?)

    3) Sell my current HTPC and get an Acer Revo 3700 which people seem to say is great as a HTPC and eBuyer have for £190.

    What would you go for?

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    Re: HTPC PSU upgrade?

    The ISK100 does have a slim 100mm fan; I wouldn't say it's absolutely silent but because it's the only fan in my room, it's also the only thing in my room that makes noise so I do notice it if I am doing work etc. If yours is going to be a HTPC, it should be fine.

    If you're only going to be running XBMC then you don't need such high spec (yes I think an i3 2100 is rather high spec ) so it's personally I'd pick one of the last two. Depends on if you would rather fuss around with rebuilding, or just buy a slower solution that works out of box.

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    Re: HTPC PSU upgrade?



    Those despicable Elk,stealing the pond weed!

  13. #10
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    Re: HTPC PSU upgrade?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ulti View Post
    The ISK100 does have a slim 100mm fan; I wouldn't say it's absolutely silent but because it's the only fan in my room, it's also the only thing in my room that makes noise so I do notice it if I am doing work etc. If yours is going to be a HTPC, it should be fine.

    If you're only going to be running XBMC then you don't need such high spec (yes I think an i3 2100 is rather high spec ) so it's personally I'd pick one of the last two. Depends on if you would rather fuss around with rebuilding, or just buy a slower solution that works out of box.
    Thanks Ulti, the only reason I have such a high specced HTPC is it was orginally my server running Windows Home Server, but I picked up one of them HP Micoservers while the cashback deal was on. I am thinking I probably will go with the Acer as I think it also comes with a Vesa mount (well one of the reviews said it did) so would look pretty tidy.

    @Cat, thanks for the link. I might give it a go. Would free up alot of space in my case for a better cooler on my CPU too.

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