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$1500 HTPC with TV

$1500 HTPC Build with TV

I am planning to build an HTPC for my dad and I thought I'd ask the community for a few suggestions. I have a basic rough draft and I think it has some room for improvement. Also, he wants the case to be a normal ATX tower opposed to an HTPC case. It will be used for recording TV shows, watching movies, listening to music, being the storage center for a Windows 7 Homegroup, and the occasional game of solitare.

Disc Drive: HP 24X Multiformat DVD Writer Black SATA Model 1260i

Blu Ray Drive: LITE-ON Black 4X Blu-ray Disc Reader SATA Model iHOS104-08

Case: COOLER MASTER Centurion 5 CAC-T05-UW

Boot Drive: Western Digital Caviar Blue WD1600AAJS 160GB

Storage Drive: SAMSUNG EcoGreen F2 HD154UI 1.5TB

Motherboard: ASUS M4A785-M AM3/AM2+/AM2 AMD 785G HDMI Micro ATX AMD

TV Tuner: Hauppauge WinTV-HVR-2250 Media Center Kit Dual TV Tuner

Power Supply: CORSAIR CMPSU-400CX 400W ATX12V V2.2 80 PLUS Certified

Remote: Gyration GYR4101US Black 2.4GHz RF Wireless Mini Air Music Remote

RAM: G.SKILL 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066

Processor: AMD Athlon II X2 245 Regor 2.9GHz

TV: TOSHIBA 40" 16:9 8ms 1080p LCD HDTV 40RV525R
15 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about 1500 htpc
  1. get rid of the dvd-rw drive and just find a blu-ray drive (rom) that has dvd-rw built in

    ditch the WD160, the 1.5TB should be plenty

    save a few bucks and get the Thlon II X2 240, you won't even notice the 100MHz difference

    as for tower vs HTPC case, depends what you want to do and what your dad would rather like
  2. Getting a drive that does both would cost more and wouldn't be as good as having the two drives. I'll probably take your advice on the hard drive but the 245 is only 6 dollars more so I found no reason not to get it.
  3. darksupreme said:


    Thanks for posting that. I hadn't noticed it, it being out of stock. I'll be sure to wait for that one.
  4. Hi... here are some suggestions...
    Change the CPU, RAM and the mobo to these...You get DDR3, 1GB onboard for less...So it would be better upgradeable too...


    CPU - X2 240
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819103688

    Mobo - MSI 785GM-E65 AM3 AMD 785G HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
    140W, 1Gb DDR3 SidePort Memory, Easy OC switch
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813130233

    RAM
    Crucial 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820148194

    HDD -
    Samsung F3 1TB
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822152185

    PSU - Corsair 400
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139008

    And as for the case, take a look at these...
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=ENE&N=2010090007%2050001516%201054808292%201295819208&name=Antec&ActiveSearchResult=True
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129046
  5. gkay09 said:
    Hi... here are some suggestions...
    Change the CPU, RAM and the mobo to these...You get DDR3, 1GB onboard for less...So it would be better upgradeable too...
    Just to clarify, that MSI board has 1Gb sideport memory which equals 128MB (bit vs. byte) so it has the same amount of sideport memory as other boards that have that option.
  6. Best answer
    Setup looks good to me, I would also recommend ditching the boot drive. But instead of using one 1.5 tb drive I'd use two of these in RAID0. They're 750 gb each and in raid 0 will run much faster than the one 1.5tb you selected. The faster drive setup will be noticed greatly when you have 1tb of movies/tv shows and you are scrolling through your list of what to watch. My home theater setup has four 500gb in raid 0 and the performance is spectacular when i'm scrolling through hundreds of HD movie thumbnails.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136359
  7. ryanhmusic said:
    Setup looks good to me, I would also recommend ditching the boot drive. But instead of using one 1.5 tb drive I'd use two of these in RAID0. They're 750 gb each and in raid 0 will run much faster than the one 1.5tb you selected. The faster drive setup will be noticed greatly when you have 1tb of movies/tv shows and you are scrolling through your list of what to watch. My home theater setup has four 500gb in raid 0 and the performance is spectacular when i'm scrolling through hundreds of HD movie thumbnails.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136359


    Thank you. I knew when I posted that my HDD setup wasn't very good. I hadn't even considered a RAID setup until now and it sounds like a pretty good idea. The only thing I'm worried about is a drive going out. I'm very paranoid about storage, especially on a machine that will be storing a lot.
  8. hmm... If you're REALLY paranoid and want speed & reliability... here's what I'd do. (i'm not sure if you could work this into your budget) <-- the likely answer is no.

    I'd buy the two HD's that i linked. Put two in raid0 where everything would be run off of and put the hard drive that you had mentioned as a back up. Have the raid0 setup back up with the other single hard drive nightly (from like 2am to 4am) or when ever you'd never be using it. OR I'd buy a 1tb external that connects through firewire and back up to there. The only reason i'd go with the external is if something disastrous happened to the two the data would be protected on the external.

    Otherwise, if neither of those options fit into your budget, then i'd do the two 750gb hd's in raid 1 or 5 for data protection...

    You said your paranoid about storage... do you mean paranoid about protecting your data? <-- i hope so because thats what i originally thought...

    I have (in the past ten years) used around 100ish hard drives... (i work as tech for a rather large company) I've had a total of 3 hard drives go one me... I'm not sure if i'm obscenely lucky or if hard drives are that reliable for everyone... I defrag often and keep the drives cool for the most part.

    On my HTPC with the 4 drives in raid0 i've had no problems and it's been running like that for around a year. IF it were to die *knocks on wood* I'd be pissed, theres a lot of audio/video stored on there but all of my important stuff is saved elsewhere as well. If you want speed and data protection you're gonna have to spend some bigger bucks than you're currently planning on i think....
  9. "The only reason i'd go with the external is if something disastrous happened to the two the data would be protected on the external." when i said "two" i meant to type "tower" (sorry for the typo...)
  10. ryanhmusic said:
    hmm... If you're REALLY paranoid and want speed & reliability... here's what I'd do. (i'm not sure if you could work this into your budget) <-- the likely answer is no.

    I'd buy the two HD's that i linked. Put two in raid0 where everything would be run off of and put the hard drive that you had mentioned as a back up. Have the raid0 setup back up with the other single hard drive nightly (from like 2am to 4am) or when ever you'd never be using it. OR I'd buy a 1tb external that connects through firewire and back up to there. The only reason i'd go with the external is if something disastrous happened to the two the data would be protected on the external.

    Otherwise, if neither of those options fit into your budget, then i'd do the two 750gb hd's in raid 1 or 5 for data protection...

    You said your paranoid about storage... do you mean paranoid about protecting your data? <-- i hope so because thats what i originally thought...

    I have (in the past ten years) used around 100ish hard drives... (i work as tech for a rather large company) I've had a total of 3 hard drives go one me... I'm not sure if i'm obscenely lucky or if hard drives are that reliable for everyone... I defrag often and keep the drives cool for the most part.

    On my HTPC with the 4 drives in raid0 i've had no problems and it's been running like that for around a year. IF it were to die *knocks on wood* I'd be pissed, theres a lot of audio/video stored on there but all of my important stuff is saved elsewhere as well. If you want speed and data protection you're gonna have to spend some bigger bucks than you're currently planning on i think....


    I think I'll just try to conquer my fears and go with the RAID0. If something happens at some point then I'll add a backup. Thank you for all your help.
  11. the spinpoint f3 is amazing nothing will happen to it
  12. @rwpritchett my bad... How stupid of me to fall for that...I dint notice that small 'b'...Thanks for pointing out...

    And @foody you can also check out RAID 10 if you want speed and reliability...But you would need 4 similar drives(Maybe these -
    SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD502HJ 500GB ) for it to work...
  13. ryanhmusic said:
    Setup looks good to me, I would also recommend ditching the boot drive. But instead of using one 1.5 tb drive I'd use two of these in RAID0. They're 750 gb each and in raid 0 will run much faster than the one 1.5tb you selected. The faster drive setup will be noticed greatly when you have 1tb of movies/tv shows and you are scrolling through your list of what to watch. My home theater setup has four 500gb in raid 0 and the performance is spectacular when i'm scrolling through hundreds of HD movie thumbnails.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136359


    If speed was what you were looking for, those drives are not the answer. Not only are they green (low RPMs) but they have tiny 250GB platters as well.
  14. again spinpoint f3 +1 FTW
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