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Most silent HTPC - 1600$

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March 1, 2010 4:30:17 AM

Hi All, I'm kinda new to this forum but have heard (and read) a lot in here so I guess it's the best place to get pro answer ;) 

I'm trying to build the most silent HTPC that in general will be used for Movies (Full HD of course ...), Music (will be connected to Onkyo 607 reciever), Gaming (medium demanding graphics), photo editing and internet.

The HTPC system should be:
- Very silent (most improtant)
- Great looking (to get my wife's approval :)  )
- Smooth running of Windows 7 + XBMC ( + photoshop editing)

The current configuration I have:

CPU:
‏Intel Core i5 750

CPU Fan:
Option 1 - Scythe Ninja Mini fanless
Option 2 - Noctua NH-U9B SE2

MB:
Gigabyte GA-P55M-UD2

Graphic card:
Option 1 - Sapphire ATI HD4670 Ultimate 512MB
Option 2 - HIS HD5670 512MB

HDD:
WD 1TB Green (already have it)

DVD Burner:
? (need your advice)

Case:
Option 1 - Zalman HD135
Option 2 - SilverStone GD05

PSU:
Option 1 - Zalman ZM600-HP 600W
Option 2 - Seasonic X-650


Keyboard/Mouse:
? (need your advice for short awake time from standby keyboard with integrated mouse)

I'd like to get your comments/opinions regarding:
- Can all these parts get along?
- Do you have any other part that can perfrom the same/better work but can be more silent?

Thanks,
Lirsch.

More about : silent htpc 1600

March 1, 2010 6:22:00 AM

about the keyboard and mouse, i myself got http://www.edbpriser.dk/Product/Details.aspx?pid=205165
it is a very little keyboard with a integrated mouse up in the right corner which i think works perfectly. Also it connects with the tv so you don't need to have both the remote and the keyboard.

but if you need to dit pictures and stuff like that i don't know if that would be the right choice. But for all the other stuff it is perfect.

Or you could go with
http://www.amazon.com/Microsoft-Remote-Keyboard-Windows...
This is a little bit bigger, and of course, if you're going to write a lot then this would be the best chioce, there have been some complain about this mouse though, but i've tried it myself, and all it takes is a couple of weeks and you've learned to use it. little frustrating in the begginning :p 
March 1, 2010 7:03:56 AM

Thx mufassa, the first keyboard looks great indeed, but, as you wrote, it won't be too good for photo editing and for games (try playing Fifa2010 with it ;)  )

I've found these keyboards as potential keyboards -

http://www.electricpig.co.uk/2010/02/08/msi-air-keyboar...

http://www.focus.com.tw/ShowProduct.php?proSN=68

http://www.shintaro.com.au/products/06_keyboards_mice/k...

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B000FE7SGA/ref=asc_df_B000FE7S...

http://perixx.com/en/products/12_kb_HTPC%20touch.htm

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Another Issue I'm thinking about is the SOUND CARD ... do I need a better than onboard sound card to support HDMI audio and new formats? do you guys have any recommended sound card?



Related resources
March 1, 2010 6:08:00 PM

Hey guys, anyone??

I need to know whether all these parts can fit together in these cases ...

Any opinions about sound cards with HDMI and new codecs support?
March 1, 2010 8:30:00 PM

I use the Zippy RF-666 keyboard for my HTPC. It really has a nice feel to it (at least for me).

http://www.zippy.com/K_Product_detail.asp?pk_rfnbr=250&...

The integrated trackball is nice, but for gaming and photoshop I really recommend you buy a wireless mouse. Integrated pointed devices are not really meant for precision in my opinion.


For a little more precision, you might want to check out the Zipp RF-636 which has an integrated mouse pad on the right side.

http://www.zippy.com/K_Product_detail.asp?pk_rfnbr=249&...


There is the yet to be release Zippy RF-612, but it's not likely to be released anytime soon.

http://www.zippy.com/K_PRODUCT_DETAIL.asp?pk_rfnbr=230&...
March 1, 2010 9:10:19 PM

All parts should fit together. The Noctua HSF has a 92mm fan so I would assume the full height of the HSF is around 125mm which means you have about 25mm to spare.

The HD 4xxx and 5xxx has integrated sound as long as you use the HDMI cable. You just need to make sure that the audio driver for those cards are installed. You shouldn't need to worry about codecs. Whatever program you decide to use to play back audio files should have the codecs already integrated.

If you want to play games I would get the HD 5670 since it is about 20% - 30% faster than the HD 4670. Plus it has true-bit audio streaming; meaning it has pass-throught DTS-HD and Dolby True-HD audio capabilities.
March 1, 2010 9:18:58 PM

jaguarskx said:
All parts should fit together. The Noctua HSF has a 92mm fan so I would assume the full height of the HSF is around 125mm which means you have about 25mm to spare.

The HD 4xxx and 5xxx has integrated sound as long as you use the HDMI cable. You just need to make sure that the audio driver for those cards are installed. You shouldn't need to worry about codecs. Whatever program you decide to use to play back audio files should have the codecs already integrated.

If you want to play games I would get the HD 5670 since it is about 20% - 30% faster than the HD 4670. Plus it has true-bit audio streaming; meaning it has pass-throught DTS-HD and Dolby True-HD audio capabilities.


Thanks for the reply.
I chose the 4670 (the Sapphire one) for a reason ... It's fanless ... so it should be much more quiet than the 5670, isn't it? do you know a 5670 hich is fanless? (might be great)
March 1, 2010 9:44:12 PM

There is no fanless HD 5670 yet, however there is a fanless HD 5750.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

It should only be a matter of time before a fanless HD 5670 comes out since it's power consumption envelope is not that much greater than the HD 4670.


Also, a 650w PSU is overkill for your system. I have a 550w Seasonic PSU power the rig in my sig and I have 2 optical drives and 4 hard drives as well.
March 2, 2010 4:05:58 AM

Ok guys, thanks for your recommendations ...

Now, If you had the chance, now, in March-2010 to build the most silent HTPC that will be good enough for mid-range gaming, but mostly listening/watching advanced formts of AV while still having lower power consumption which components (not neccesarily from my list) would you use? (of course they all hould fit together... ;)  )
March 2, 2010 7:31:40 PM

Any thoughts?
March 6, 2010 2:39:14 PM

Does someone knows where I can buy (and ship internationally) the POWERCOLOR Go! Green HD5750?
I heard it's the fastest card I can get with passive cooling for now.
March 23, 2010 11:34:46 PM

You will need to strike a balance between Fan and passive cooling … With a passive CPU cooler and a passive GPU … you have very little cool air moving in the case … Ensure you have a low RPM 120MM fan bringing air into the case.

Considering your system will be pulling triple duty running graphics, games, and HDTV, you might consider stepping up to 5770 based GPU with the original ATI packaging as this will vent warm air out of the case. The generic ATI packaging has a low volume sound output from its fan.

FYI: I just completed the build of my system – VERY similar to what you where looking for. However, I opted to use the Sapphire Vapor-X Radeon HD 5770 in my build and located my media externally in a NAS allowing me to go small with a SS drive:

• HTPC Case - Silverstone CW02
• PSU - Silverstone ST60F
• Mother Board - Gigabyte GA-P55A-UD4P
• CPU - Core i7-860S (Yes – I know, TDP=82 W- I wanted some HP here)
• CPU Cooler - Thermalright MUX-120 Quite
• Memory (8GB) - Crucial DDR3 1333 MHz
• Hard Drive – Intel 80 GB X25M (SSD) Retail Package SSDSA2MH080G2R5
• Hard Drive Bay Converter (3.5 to 2.5) – Silverstone SDP08
• GPU – Sapphire Vapor-X Radeon HD 5770
• Off Air / Cable Tuner – AVerTV HD Duet PCI-e Tuner Card
• Blu-ray player(s) - Pioneer BDR-205 12X Blu-ray Burner
• Remote Keyboard – Focus RK-750
• Windows 7 OS
• Iomega StorCenter ix2 2TB fail over NAS

HDMI Output from the 5770 goes to my Yamaha RX-V2600 – providing clear surround sound. Video pass through from the Yamaha has no problems driving my 65” Display.

All in all – your specs look like a great HTPC system – keep cool air coming in and look at stepping up the GPU one level.
!