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Educate a Padawan.

Last response: in Systems
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February 25, 2007 3:05:50 AM

Please help. This computer (my first build!) will be my main media centre PC. It needs to be/have;

Great for gaming; all current-gen games at great settings and speed.
Silent; going in the living room of a small condo, can’t make tons of noise.
Storage: Lots of television/movies/games.
Fast hard drive: Mounting images, fast boot up.
High quality video output: To a 32 inch LCD.

I already have a Turtle Beach 5.1 surround card system and speakers, as well as the wireless keyboard and mouse.

Case: T925-2178 Thermaltake Black Bach HTPC Home Entertainment PC Case
Motherboard: A455-1091 :: Asus P5B Intel Socket 775 ATX Motherboard / Audio / PCI Express /
CPU: CP2-DUO-E6600 Intel Core 2 Duo E6600
Video Card: B52-7818 BFG GeForce 7600 GT OC / 256MB GDDR3
Memory: O261-8032 OCZ Dual Channel XTC 2048MB PC5400 DDR2 667MHz Gamer Memory (2 x 1024MB)
Hard Drive: TSD-250KS Western Digital / Caviar SE 16 / 250GB / 7200 / 16MB / SATA-300 / OEM / Hard Drive
Fans: C283-1034 Cooler Master Vortex TX / Socket A/754/939/775/370 / Full Copper / CPU Cooling Fan
S457-1007 Masscool 80mm Sleeve Bearing Case Fan
S457-1004 Masscool Hard Drive Cooler Fan
PSU
C283-1131 :: Cooler Master / iGreen / 500-Watt /

More about : educate padawan

February 25, 2007 3:39:46 AM

I would avoid ECS. They make some real craptacular motherboards. Not as bad as PCChips though.

Look at Asus/Gigabyte/DFI.
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February 25, 2007 3:41:28 AM

Updated. Thanks! Anything else? How are my parts for my objectives?
February 25, 2007 5:55:39 AM

With a lot of Media files, hd will fill fast. I would try for 500 gb total.
February 25, 2007 1:14:36 PM

The psu is not good. Pick one from my link.
February 25, 2007 1:31:50 PM

Updated! Thanks for the suggestions. What else? Is it fast? Quiet?
February 25, 2007 1:56:34 PM

Don't get a 500 gig hard drive. Get 2 - 250 gig drives. If something happes to your 1 500 gig, then you're screwed and you lose EVERYTHING. Backup, backup, backup drive. It's your best friend. You can always add another/more HDD's later, no big deal. Don't put your eggs all into one basket man, you'll be sorry.
February 25, 2007 2:39:45 PM

The 7600gt is a bit underpowered for your objectives, in my opinion. I'm assuming your 32inch tv is running at 1280x720, right? If you want to play current games (oblivion, fear, etc.) at great settings and speed at that resolution, you should consider getting an nvidia 8800gts 320mb, such as this one http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681... . This will future proof you too for when directx 10 games come out, unless you feel like buying another graphics card in the near future.
February 25, 2007 3:34:32 PM

Save yourself some money. This card will perform everything you need, with future overclocking capabilities, if you want. It is very quiet, and for HTPC, has much better video resolution than the nVidia cards in the same category. Performance-wise, it is on a par with the 7950GT. Those high-end gaming cards, suggested by the other posters, generate a lot of heat -- causing your fans to run -- and they are noisey on top of that.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

Quote:
Don't get a 500 gig hard drive. Get 2 - 250 gig drives. If something happes to your 1 500 gig, then you're screwed and you lose EVERYTHING. Backup, backup, backup drive. It's your best friend. You can always add another/more HDD's later, no big deal. Don't put your eggs all into one basket man, you'll be sorry.

Good advice but a bit short-sighted. With the money saved on the vid, get two 500gb hard drives, or at least a small drive for your OS and a 500 for your files. The Western Digitals are very quiet -- I have three and you have to put your ear right next to them, to even tell if they are running. Video anything is a hog, and if you're digitizing your DVD's or recording TV, you're going to suck up a lot of disc space in short order. The more space the better.

Addendum: You best check that case in person, esp with regard to the video card. Many HTPC cases won't take a full length, or heighth video card because of their compact size. Even some of the better, for example Silverstone, cases have clearance problems between either the hard drive bay or the optical drives.
February 25, 2007 3:44:00 PM

Quote:
Save yourself some money. This card will perform everything you need, with future overclocking capabilities, if you want. It is very quiet, and for HTPC, has much better video resolution than the nVidia cards in the same category. Performance-wise, it is on a par with the 7950GT. Those high-end gaming cards, suggested by the other posters, generate a lot of heat -- causing your fans to run -- and they are noisey on top of that.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

Don't get a 500 gig hard drive. Get 2 - 250 gig drives. If something happes to your 1 500 gig, then you're screwed and you lose EVERYTHING. Backup, backup, backup drive. It's your best friend. You can always add another/more HDD's later, no big deal. Don't put your eggs all into one basket man, you'll be sorry.

Good advice but a bit short-sighted. With the money saved on the vid, get two 500gb hard drives, or at least a small drive for your OS and a 500 for your files. The Western Digitals are very quiet -- I have three and you have to put your ear right next to them, to even tell if they are running. Video anything is a hog, and if you're digitizing your DVD's or recording TV, you're going to suck up a lot of disc space in short order. The more space the better.

Yeah those x1950pro's are solid cards no question, and i think you will really appreciate the storage that another 500gig drive will provide. It's just a question of what is more of a priority to you. If you think movies and tv are mainly what this computer is for, then go with the x1950 plus hard drive. If you think gaming is what you will spend more time doing, then go with the gts 320.

I think it's hard to make a bad decision in between these two options, both are powerful cards.

good luck :wink:
February 25, 2007 6:09:33 PM

Yes Mad, it's entirely a question of budget. I had assumed he was looking to save money overall. However, if he can save money from other components and reinvest, then 2 - 500 gig drives would be very nice.

Either way, I'd highly recommend getting 2 drives, in whatever size the budget allows.
February 26, 2007 1:40:12 PM

You just need to ask yourself whether you want to buy another graphics card when dx10 games come out (which will be VERY soon, think no more than 6 months) or whether you'd rather just spend 100 bucks more now and be ready for them. Yes, the x1950pro is a sweet dx9 card, my uncle has one and it smokes dx9 games, but like I told him, he's going to be pretty dissapointed when he has to buy another card in the near future.
February 26, 2007 2:31:08 PM

Can someone speak to the actual difference in noise between the gts 320 and the x1950? Noise is a real concern for me. I wouldn't mind futureproofing to DX10 for an extra 200 bucks, but if it's loud and ugly I won't bother.
February 26, 2007 4:09:10 PM

As I stated in my ^^post, the HIS X1950Pro, 256mb with quiet cool 3 is absolutely silent, inaudible, no noise. Highly recommended.
February 26, 2007 4:21:11 PM

HIS usually makes very good coolers, so it should be cool and quiet.

The stock cooler on the 8800GTS is also very silent and cool as well.


So you gotta figure: do you have the budget now? And you do want to wait for more DX10 cards? Then you have your answer. Both are good, quiet cards.
!