Blu Ray HTPC

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Already Started / Next 2 Weeks


PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Keyboard, Mouse, Monitor.


PARTS PREFERENCES: Intel, Giga-byte Western Digital, Crucial


MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1920x1080 Samsung Full HD 32in Widescreen TV

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Must be as quiet as possible and I have 5.1 Creative Z5500

BUDGET: £350.00 - £400.00


Parts I have already selected are...

E6300 Core2Duo 1.8GHz (This will probably get overclocked) (have bought this already cheap from ebay)
Giga-Byte GA-P965-DS3 (Got this Cheap off Ebay)
2GB (2x1GB) Crucial Ballistix DDR2 - PC8000 (Got this Cheap off Ebay)
Lite-On Blu-Ray (bought this already)
Silverstone LC17B Case (bought this already)

Had some thoughts on GPU...HD3450 512MB or something of similar Ilk
Can this GPU take the burden of the Blu-Ray from the processor?
Also I have been looking at the 3D Club version of it, It has DVI VGA and HDMI (HDMI is preferable) but it seems cheaper than some of the other manufacturers versions (even though it sports th HDMI port where others don't. I have no experience of 3D Club and didn't know if they are inferior in any kind of way?

Not sure on PSU (already asked a question about this here
Just need to find something which is compatible with the LC17 case as it has some mounting issues (
Also must be really quiet
and be around £40.00 or less

Probably going to get a WD 1TB HDD Eco (already have one of these and seems to be super quiet) but open to suggestions.
I also usually look to get another 120GB drive to run windows vista with the 1TB as a slave.

Just looking for someone to back-up my thoughts that this will do what I need to do and some suggestions on my components left to select.

I have built 8 or 9 PC's so have plenty experience but this will be the first time doing a budget build and the first time building a HTPC.


16 answers Last reply
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  1. If all you are concerned with is Blu-Ray and HD content at 1080p, I'd consider going with an Atom + Ion setup. You could also go with the E6300, but you will be adding much more bulk with the the discrete gfx card. I also would recommend against overclocking, if you really need more speed, spend more on a faster CPU. HTPC's aren't roomy to begin with, and airflow isn't so great with the small form factor cases. Also, places where people tend to stick HTPCs, cramped spaces surrounded by A/V equipment that are also dumping tons of heat, tend to do bad things to the HTPC's operation.
  2. I have updated my post but your advice is very helpful, as you can see some of the items have already been bought. What do you mean by...adding more bulk? just that the gfx card will help offset the load?
  3. just physical size in your system.. when you compare the size of an intel atom cpu + NVIDIA Ion gpu, and the HD 4350, the HD 4350 is much larger.

    What you said is also true, but somewhat irrelevant since your purchased motherboard does not have an integrated graphics chipset, and all graphics processing is going to be performed by a graphics card.

    How much budget do you have left for a card? the 5750 is available now and pretty nice.
  4. Not really that much, was hoping to keep it more along the £30 mark and passivley cooled. However I am open to suggestions. I am just keeping things to the minumum as its not my main computer, as long it can handle blu-ray, dvd, avi (etc) music and internet I am happy.

    Will I need something more than the HD3450?

    Thanks very much for your help as well
  5. the 3450 should be adequate, though I would make sure that which ever card you do select specify that it is "HDCP" ready, not all 3450s are I think. This will also provide you with an HDMI out on the card and makes it connecting to an HDTV much more simpler.
  6. Thanks very much again, will make sure and might go for something a bit more hefty. Just dreading inserting a blu ray and it skipping all day.
  7. Looks good, over here, the 4350s are not that much more than the 3450s, but I'm not sure if the same is true for you over there. If there isn't too much of a price difference, the 4350 gives you a bump up in performance, and has better power efficiency. If the price difference is too much though, stick with that 3450.
  8. your exactly right mate, about the same price and it is still passivley cooled.

    Thanks Again
  9. yeah, the 5750 has some nice features, but it's not priced well I think. I think ATI thinks it can suck in the mainstream market at a premium price simply because the 58XX series is so hot right now. Also, the 5750 would blow the OP's budget right now unfortunately.
  10. yeah it's priced much higher just hard to know whether or not i need it for 1080p blu ray. It sounds like the 4350 will do the job (I Hope)
  11. Just thought I'd chime in... I've been playing Blu-Ray for a year now using a passive cooled HD3450 and it has handles everything perfectly. No worries there. If you plan to use HDMI audio, however, you may want to go for the HD4xxx series or wait until the low-end HD5xxx series come out in '10.
  12. rwpritchett said:
    Just thought I'd chime in... I've been playing Blu-Ray for a year now using a passive cooled HD3450 and it has handles everything perfectly. No worries there. If you plan to use HDMI audio, however, you may want to go for the HD4xxx series or wait until the low-end HD5xxx series come out in '10.

    Well for the price increase I may as well go for the 4xxx series however its great to know you have been running blu-ray on the 3450. Not sure I will be using HDMI audio or quite how this works. I run the audio direct 5.1 at the moment as I have a dvd player plugged into the coaxial port and xbox into the optical on my speaker system. This means I dont have to swap cables. How does hdmi audio work? through the same cable or another? Also I may be able to use my samsung lcd as an interface as i this obviously has hdmi in and audio in for the xbox then would output through the speakers? does this sound correct?
  13. I would say to not get too concerned about the high definition audio unless you were connecting to a high end stereo system where you may actually hear a quality difference. The HDMI cable is capable of sending Dolby digital 5.1, and possibly signals using even newer codecs with the later revisions. Even if you have to output sound as analog stereo from your computer, it still sounds pretty good, at least to my ears.
  14. the speaker system I have is dolby digital however I know what you mean. I am not concerned

    thanks mate
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