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HTPC Only system (no gaming) - advice?

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February 22, 2010 2:48:40 AM

I'm rebuilding my Media Center. Looking for advice on whether I'm buying too much or too little. My usage for this box will be strictly as a Windows Media Center with BluRay (no gaming).

Here's what I plan to buy:

MB: MSI 785GM-E65
CPU: AMD Athlon II X2 255 Regor 3.1 Ghz 65W dual core
OR: AMD Athlon II X3 425 Rana 2.7Ghz 95W triple cor
MEM: Kingston 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600)
VIDEO: onboard ATI Radeon HD 4200
AUDIO: onboard Realtek ALC889 (7.1 with S/PDIF out)
PSU: Antec EA380D Green

I already have:
- HDHomeRun digital tuners
- NVidia DualTV analog tuners
- Blueray drive (SATA)
- 1TB SATA drive
- Nice Case
- Windows 7

I considered the MSI Media Live DIVA motherboard, but I need a PCI slot for the tuners I have.

My main question: am I buying too much or too little CPU and Memory? Is it better to get slightly lower speed to get the triple core (for same price)?

Thanks!

[Message originally posted in Home Theatre forum by mistake]
February 22, 2010 11:52:10 AM

I would actually go with an i3/H55 onboard graphics setup. The onboard you have is slightly underpowered for full 1080p playback. Here's a combo with the i3-530 and Asus P5H55-M Pro for $215.

You don't need a powerful CPU or lots of memory for an HTPC. If all you're doing is playing media, you definitely don't need a triple core.
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March 6, 2010 2:16:26 AM

well, I went with the triple core. And it's working very well. Now if only the MCE software were better.
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