I am going to build a new HTPC for my family room and hook it up to our new 42" 1080p Phillips LCD which as 3 comp. and 3 HDMI.
I am considering using a mATX AMD780G w/ HDMI onboard with a 45w AMD X2, 2GB DDR2-800 Mem. and a notebook 2.5" 160GB harddrive w/ XP Pro 32bit or Vista HP 32bit.
the idea is to have a silent HTPC that will play 1080p movies such as Blue-Ray, HD-DVD and downloaded HD movies without lag, show back family photo's and be very energy efficient as well. Thats why I want to go with the notebook HDD and the 45W X2. I have a DVR through Dish Network, so I dont need the pc to act as a PVR/DVR. I will have a system on the network that will be my backdoor for all my media storage w/ 1.5TB storage for media.
Im pretty sure I can meet my needs with the system I have spec'ed out, but I would like some opinions on the HW and SW side of the build.
A 780G and low power AMD CPU are a great foundation for a HTPC. I'd highly recommend Vista as the OS. The built-in media center actually works very well. I use Vista for my HTPC and have been very happy with it.
thanks, thats also why I will go with just a SATA notebook HDD too. but I need it to play all 1080p movie formats including downloaded from the web. I was considering vista, but i love the performance of xp. and the system will have to be on standby but able to back and operational my tapping a key in only seconds. (thats the only reason vista is in the mix. it has better powersavings without hanging too bad.
Vista plays all the formats that I use, including downloaded content. I use the Vista codec pack. Vista is also very fast resuming from standby. Since SP1 the performance of Vista is neck and neck with XP in a lot of things.
I'd use a hard wire if you have the option. Wireless hasn't been the most reliable in my experience. It's also pushing it to try to stream HD content over a wireless connection. A hard wire ensures you're getting the full speed out of your network without signal variances and possible dropped connections. I also had the option of using WirelessG, but chose to hard-wire it instead. I'm very glad I did.
From what I've read, the 780G can handle all 1080p reguardless of file format, even with a single core. Some mobos utilze sideband memory for some dedicated onboard graphics memory.
however, a low end graphics card will give a slightly better picture. I'm guesing it isn't anything that can be seen easily. it is also more power draw.
I think the 4550 is under 25 watts, a 4670 is 60 watts peak. so its not to much power.
I also vote for Vista64 and 4 gigs.
I've had VERY bad luck with 780G Gigabyte boards. 1 month of use out of 3 boards.
I have a Gigabyte 780G with sideport w/ 8GB of ram and a X2 6000 OC'ed to 3.4 on Air with a AC Freezer Pro 64 in a CAD box that I have had for about 6 months and its doing well. It can 3d render a ext. view of a house in under a minute. (knock on wood)