Need Advice on $500 HTPC

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: (1-2 Weeks) BUDGET RANGE: ($400-$600) Before Rebates

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: (recording TV shows, streaming Netflix/Hulu, watching DVDs, backup/ripping DVDs, maybe browsing the web)

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: (keyboard, mouse, monitor)


PARTS PREFERENCES: (these are the parts I have come up with after doing some research, but I would like to get some second opinions/recommendations before I buy)

Motherboard: GIGABYTE GA-MA785GMT-UD2H AM3 AMD 785G HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail $89.99

Processor: AMD Athlon II X3 435 Rana 2.9GHz 3 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM3 95W Triple-Core Processor - Retail $87.00

RAM: Crucial 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model CT2KIT12864BA1339 - Retail $54.99

Hard Drive: Western Digital Caviar Black WD1001FALS 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive $99.99
Western Digital Caviar Green WD10EADS 1TB 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive $84.99

TV Tuner: Hauppauge WinTV-HVR-2250 Media Center Kit Dual TV Tuner 1213 PCI-Express x1 Interface - Retail $149.99

Video Card: Haven't decided yet. (I believe I will have to have a video card for YPRPB component out? Otherwise I would use the HDMI out on the motherboard)

Case/Power Supply: Haven't decided yet. I do want an HTPC-style case, though. How many watt power supply will I need?


MONITOR RESOLUTION: (1920 x 1080, right now I'm connecting it to an old HDTV through component (YPRPB), but am eventually planning on getting a new TV with HDMI inputs)

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: (I would like it to be quiet)

This is my first HTPC build. I want it to last me a couple of years. I plan on adding a Blu-Ray player later on down the road.

How does my build look so far? What would you change? Will the "green" hard drive work for what I am wanting it to do?

Right now my total is $466.96 or $481.96 (depending on which hard drive I end up getting), so that leaves ~$150 for the video card + case/power supply.

I plan on running Windows 7 MCE.

Any comments are welcome!

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More about need advice htpc
  1. PSU: 450W would be the safe bet. Look for an Antec, OCZ, FSP, Fortron, and the likes.

    CASES: Anything mATX would be fine.

    GPU: Nah, you don't need a gpu. Use the onboard IGP ATI Radeon HD 4200 which can handle 1080p in Windows. Linux, not so much due to sucky drivers/media players.

    BD/DVD: I think it'd be best to pick up a drive right away cuz otherwise, you're picking up a DVD burner. Might as well do it right now and save the $20. Most slim mATX cases have only 1 5.25" drive bay. Unless you're talking about towers/desktops.

    For BD/DVD reader:

    For BDROM/DVD burner:
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