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Thread: Stylish HTPC system

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    Stylish HTPC system

    Hi again all!

    I've decided it's probably best if I build my HTPC system before the gaming system otherwise there is too great a risk that I keep gaming and don't get around to the HTPC. Plus, the HTPC can then distract everyone else so I can get on with the gaming and I can perhaps pick up some January sales goodness on the more expensive parts for the gaming rig.

    I've fallen for the Streacom F1C ('silver' version) which means I need to be particularly careful about the other components as this case is only 197 x 197 x 75mm. There is a later version of this case, the F1C EVO, but for some reason I really don't like the disc eject button being central and much prefer it off to the side as in the original! This limits the optical drives that it'll work with but this ODD is the least interesting and just about the least costly element anyway so no I'm not fussed about using the recommended Sony drive.

    Thoughts on fundamental interconnectivity, CPU cooler (needs to be no more than 40mm high!) and PSU particularly welcome and I need to add a nice quiet 40mm case so if there any recommendations I'd be pleased to hear them.

    GA-A75N-USB3 Motherboard
    AMD A6 3500, S FM1, Lynx Core, Triple Core 2.4GHz, GPU AMD Radeon HD 6530D 443MHz, 65W, Retail
    Gelid Slim Silence AM2 Low Profile AMD CPU Cooler
    8GB (2x4GB) Corsair DDR3 Vengeance Jet Black Low Profile, PC3-12800 (1600), Non-ECC, CAS 9-9-9-24, XMP, 1.5V
    64GB Crucial M4 New Slim 7mm 2.5" SSD
    1TB Seagate ST91000640NS Constellation.2, 2.5" HDD, 15 mm, SATA III - 6Gb/s, 7200rpm, 64MB Cache, 8.5ms
    Sony BC-5600S Blu-ray
    160W PicoPSU
    I'll add the best prices I can over the next day or two as I'll need a bit of shopping around just find some of these in stock!

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    Re: Stylish HTPC system

    OK, I could resist it and it didn't take as long as I thought! Seems I was wrong about the ODD being inexpensive though!!

    Streacom F1C £55.82
    GA-A75N-USB3 Motherboard £71.94
    AMD A6 3500, S FM1, Lynx Core, Triple Core 2.4GHz, GPU AMD Radeon HD 6530D 443MHz, 65W, Retail £52.02
    Gelid Slim Silence AM2 Low Profile AMD CPU Cooler £14.99
    8GB (2x4GB) Corsair DDR3 Vengeance Jet Black Low Profile, PC3-12800 (1600), Non-ECC, CAS 9-9-9-24, XMP, 1.5V £29.76
    64GB Crucial M4 New Slim 7mm 2.5" SSD £54.77
    1TB Seagate ST91000640NS Constellation.2, 2.5" HDD, 15 mm, SATA III - 6Gb/s, 7200rpm, 64MB Cache, 8.5ms £220.78 - ouch!
    Sony BC-5600S Blu-ray £117.48 - ouch!
    160W PicoPSU £89.99

    Total before HDD & ODD £369.29 (+ any P&P)
    Total with HDD & ODD £707.55 (+ any P&P)
    The HDD is eyewateringly expensive for 1TB as it's 2.5" I guess. This is also the largest drive I could find as I would prefer 2TB... but not at these prices! I think I may have to stick with 1TB and/or use an existing 2TB external HDD I already have and tuck it out of sight.

    I may also have to explore other slim Blu-ray drives with ejection buttons on the left!

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    Re: Stylish HTPC system

    CPU: Any thoughts on whether it's worth the extra ~£10 to get the AMD A6 3670K given this has 4 cores over the 3500's 3? Produces a bit more heat I imagine but otherwise it seems like a small price to pay.

    I've found a Hitachi 1TB Travelstar Internal Hard Drive (2.5" SATA-III Hard Drive, 5400RPM, 8MB Cache) for £68 which seems a much better price! I've never had a Hitachi drive before - what's there reputation like given the enormous price difference fro the Seagate? This info sounds promising but was from a couple of years ago:

    Newegg lists users who bought that particular product from them so you know they're not bogus reviews. If a Seagate drive has 20% one-egg (worst rating) reviews and Samsung drive has 8% one-egg reviews, that says a lot about the quality and reliability of the drives.
    I'm not having any luck finding other/cheaper BR drives with eject buttons on the LHS though.
    Last edited by Jake_UK; 25-10-2012 at 10:58 AM. Reason: Added quote on reliability

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    Re: Stylish HTPC system

    OK, this is where I've got to so far with vendors who (mostly) have the stuff in stock:

    Gigabyte A75N-USB3 AMD A75 (Socket FM1) DDR3 Mini ITX Motherboard ** FREE NEXUIZ GAME **
    £84.89
    60GB Corsair Force Series 3, SATA III SSD, SandForce SF-2200, Read 525MB/s, Write 490MB/s, 80K IOPS
    £54.24
    AMD A6 3670K Black Edition, S FM1, Lynx Core, Quad Core, 2.7GHz, GPU AMD Radeon HD 6530D 443MHz, 100W, Retail
    £61.63
    8GB (2x4GB) Corsair DDR3 Vengeance Jet Black Low Profile, PC3-12800 (1600), Non-ECC, CAS 9-9-9-24, XMP, 1.5V
    £29.76
    Streacom F1C Silver Home Theatre Aluminium Chassis
    £55.82
    Hitachi 1TB Travelstar 2.5" SATA-III Hard drive- 5400RPM 8MB Cache
    £68.00
    picoPSU 160W picoPSU and AC/DC adapter block
    £89.99
    Gelid Slim Silence 775 Low Profile LGA775 CPU Cooler
    £9.49
    Streacom Sony BC-5600S Slot Load Blu-Ray Drive
    £117.48
    A bit of P&P
    £8.17
    TOTAL £579.47

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    Re: Stylish HTPC system

    Quote Originally Posted by Jake_UK View Post
    I'm not having any luck finding other/cheaper BR drives with eject buttons on the LHS though.
    Could you just rely on software for ejecting? Not that hard to right click on the drive in My Computer and eject, especially if it saves you a chunk of cash!

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    Re: Stylish HTPC system

    I thought you had bought the system!! I would really consider waiting for this motherboard:

    http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showpr...pping&pup_c=gs

    Trinity has some 65W TDP quad cores like the A8-5500 and A10-5800K and the 65W TDP A8-5400K dual core.

    OTH,the A6-3670K is a good allrounder. Here are some of our Hexus reviews:

    http://forums.hexus.net/hexus-reader...ew-thread.html

    http://forums.hexus.net/hexus-reader...le-review.html

    http://forums.hexus.net/hexus-reader...amacallit.html

    The second one looks at power consumption using a m-ATX motherboard. You are looking at well under 100W during a gaming load.

    Having said that,the A6-3500 does consume very little power:

    http://www.anandtech.com/show/5696/p...-at-65-watts/2





    A few other things:
    1.)Go for a decent power block
    2.)Try to check the motherboad power efficiency too


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    Re: Stylish HTPC system

    Quote Originally Posted by jimbouk View Post
    Could you just rely on software for ejecting?
    Unfortunately it would play too much on my OCD to have a button on the front of the case that didn't work! Plus, the other half needs to be able to use it as well and that probably is asking too much of her!

    Quote Originally Posted by CAT-THE-FIFTH
    I would really consider waiting for this motherboard
    For future upgrades/longevity or for any other reason? Does anyone know the timescales for the FM2 mini-ITX boards? I get the impression no-one has them in stock yet.

    In terms of timescales I was thinking build this HTPC before Christmas and then buy the parts for the gaming system in the January sales.

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    Re: Stylish HTPC system

    FM2 is meant to have an upgrade path to Steamroller based CPUs next year. The platform also has better IGP performance too,and more 65W TDP CPUs.


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    Re: Stylish HTPC system

    Quote Originally Posted by Jake_UK View Post
    I've fallen for the Streacom F1C ('silver' version) which means I need to be particularly careful about the other components as this case is only 197 x 197 x 75mm. There is a later version of this case, the F1C EVO, but for some reason I really don't like the disc eject button being central and much prefer it off to the side as in the original!
    It looks like they've discontinued the non-EVO version so you're going to be stuck with the button in the middle!

    I must admit I'm getting tempted by one of these cases for a media centre build to replace my rather huge Antec Fusion cased system. Maybe opt for the Streacom F7C EVO and slot in a PCI-E TV tuner to keep everything neat and inside the case. Although the Streacom FC8 EVO looks pretty awesome with the CPU cooler built in. I can see this getting rather expensive!

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    Re: Stylish HTPC system

    The A10-5700 looks pretty decent:

    http://hexus.net/tech/reviews/cpu/47257-amd-a10-5700/


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    Re: Stylish HTPC system

    Quote Originally Posted by jimbouk View Post
    It looks like they've discontinued the non-EVO version so you're going to be stuck with the button in the middle!
    I've just ordered the last one then (on eBuyer)! Also bought the HDD so that Hitachi 1TB is what it'll be.

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    Re: Stylish HTPC system

    Quote Originally Posted by CAT-THE-FIFTH View Post
    The A10-5700 looks pretty decent
    I've been thinking one of these would be perfect for an HTPC build and the Hexus review has me convinced. Unlike Jake I'm going for a totally silent build and, as mentioned by others, Streacom do a good range of fanless cases.

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    Re: Stylish HTPC system

    Quote Originally Posted by quarkslot View Post
    I've been thinking one of these would be perfect for an HTPC build and the Hexus review has me convinced. Unlike Jake I'm going for a totally silent build and, as mentioned by others, Streacom do a good range of fanless cases.
    http://wccftech.com/amd-a10-5700k-apu-fanless/

    The case must be very expensive though!!


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    Re: Stylish HTPC system

    You are not wrong.....prices on Scan START at £130 for the fanless cases, I'll just have to make sure I get good use out of it (£140 on a Lian-Li for my first desktop build 10 years ago and still using it - though it's a very different PC inside from 10 years ago).

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    Re: Stylish HTPC system

    From experience I wouldn't put a 100W APU in an mitx case for HTPC use. I have a 3670k and the stock cooler spins very fast to keep it down to 50C in my somewhat larger mATX cube. That means it's shifting a lot of hot air around which it will be difficult to get out of a small case without several small, noisy fans.

    As CAT says, it's probably a good idea to wait for the FM2 mitx motherboards to get into stock, then base a rig around either the A8-5500 or the A10-5700. The A8 should have very similar performance to the A6-3670k, and the A10 should be a bit faster, but both have much lower TDPs which means they'll be much easier to keep cool.

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    Re: Stylish HTPC system

    This mini-ITX FM2 motherboard even looks better:

    http://www.scan.co.uk/products/msi-f...-hdmi-mini-itx

    It also has Wifi and Bluetooth.


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