Best motherboard for media centre?

I'm looking for a reasonably priced motherboard for my media centre that gives good support for blu ray audio (either AMD or Intel)
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  1. Depends on your needs. Do you want it in a very small box? One with no extra noise from cooling fans? Can you use a bigger box with some noise from cooling fans? Will you do more than watch blu-ray disks? Gaming?

    Almost all medium to high-end boards built since 2008 can run blu ray or HD on Windows Media Center, Vista, or Windows 7. You'll need an HD graphics solution, either built-in to the board, or through a discrete video card, and a blu-ray capable Optical Disk Drive.
  2. I'll use my pre-existing nvidia geforce 8600GT (a few years old, but still works fine), samsung bluray player, superflower 600w psu, WD 250gb hard drive, two tv tuners (to allow recording and viewing simultaneously), 4gb ddr 2 RAM and antec sonata III case (quiet computing case, supports regular ATX motherboards) and Win 7 home premium.

    I won't be doing any gaming on this computer, just media for a Samsung 52" plasma (I think), so I'd like pretty high quality video.
  3. You'll need a larger HDD to record HD. The hauppauge 2250 is HD with ATSC/NTSC/QAM tuners. It has two tuners built in (along with hardware decoders, saving some CPU utilization), and allows recording on one channel, while watching another channel. Do you already have a CPU that you can use?
  4. nah, I'm looking into it elsewhere on here
  5. the cpu that is
  6. probs be an intel i3-530 or 550
  7. Now you're getting somewhere. Looks like you need 1 PCIe x16 (full length) for the 8600GT. Modern TV tuner cards are PCIe (usually short slots), you want 2, so you'll need 2 of those. Do you need any regular PCI slots? A floppy drive? Any IDE/PATA drives?
  8. nope, that's the lot
  9. Here's what I found at newegg, check out the speeds, prices, and ratings. You may be able to use something here.
    Intel Core i3-550: ~$152
    Intel Core i3-530: ~$115
    Intel Core i3-540 : ~$125

    motherboards based on having 1 PCIe x16, plus two PCIe short slots, and newegg ratings:
    GIGABYTE GA-H55-USB3 : ~$123
    MSI H57M-ED65: ~$133
    ASRock H55M/USB3: ~$95
    Intel BOXDH55PJ: ~$88
    ASUS P7H55-M PRO: ~$90
  10. legend, thanks :)
  11. so there's no compatibility issues between normal cases an micro ATX mobos?
  12. ahh, damn, sorry to waste your time, but I've had a change of heart and decided to go with the AMD Athlon II x4 640:
    (, just want a bit of longevity with my product so I doesn't get phased out in 2-3 years.

    The board I'll use is the ASUS M4A87TD/USB3:

    Hopefully I'll get a few solid years out of this one, will cost me $239 all up, so reasonably cheap as compared to the intel option. Any opinions/criticisms/suggestions?
  13. Quote:
    legend, thanks :)
    Your welcome. :)

    so there's no compatibility issues between normal cases an micro ATX mobos?
    As I recall the Sonata cases have the stand-offs for both ATX and microATX.

    I did forget to find some RAM selections; I was tired. :sleep:

    .........I've had a change of heart and decided to go with the AMD Athlon II x4 640....
    That's OK, it's your money. I'm not that familiar with AMD systems, although I've thought about building one. Still, read the motherboard manual while you're waiting for delivery. I hope it POSTS on your first attempt.
  14. yeah, with any luck it will :s Now all I have to do is convince the parents to fork out $300 bucks :)
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