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HTPC/General Usage/Light Gaming Opinions Needed

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April 6, 2010 2:16:43 AM

So I mainly use my PC as an all inclusive rig. I mostly use it for surfing the web, school work and my media center. My computer monitor is in my closet collecting dust because my computer has been hooked up to my HDTV for the past 4 years. It's ungodly old and upon me looking at the system requirements for Windows 7 I decided it was time to upgrade as my computer is 10 years old, the 2.4ghz P4 just isn't making the cut any more. Since my computer is hooked up to my Home theater system (which is a very high end system), I'm looking to build a computer that has great sound output (optical preferably) and good crisp HD video output. My budget is as cheap as possible but if I had to put a definitive cap $1K. I would like a system that can run games if I choose to start playing them on my PC again (opposed to my PS3) and that can multitask pretty well. The CPU/Mobo is my biggest part where I'm torn.

Here's the system I've put together so far:

CPU: Core i5-750 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Mobo: Gigabyte GA-H57M-USB3 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

RAM: 4GB (2 x 2GB) OCZ http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GPU: HD 5670 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HDD (Operating system/Apps): 32GB SSD http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HDD (Storage/Media): 1.5TB A/V Edt. Western Digital http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU: 430W Thermaltake http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

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

Thanks for the looking and any suggestions!
April 6, 2010 4:02:57 AM

Anyone? Mainly any thoughts or opinions on the motherboard?
April 6, 2010 12:40:27 PM

You should not cheap out on the power supply. If you are doing rebates then get this one instead: OCZ ModXStream Pro 500W $65 ($40 rebate).

The motherboard should be fine. This one is the same price and looks to me like it has a slightly better layout: ASUS P7P55 LX $119 ($7.56 shipping)

If it was me I would go for either of these SSDs over the Patriot:
Intel X25-V 40GB $125
OCZ Vertex Turbo 30GB $145 ($20 rebate)
Perhaps your research has shown that the Patriot is better, in which case ignore me.
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April 6, 2010 1:45:00 PM

As you seem to know the motherboard is not suited to your needs. Because it is a H57 motherboard it includes support for integrated graphics, the graphics is integrated onto the CPU in these cases, an i5 750 does not include integrated graphics. If you were to go with an i5 750 a better motherbaord would be the one below:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

The board "Silvune" suggested is an ATX board thus it is bigger with more features such as more PCI slots. If these are required than go with that board but if they arn't then go with the one I suggested.
April 6, 2010 2:04:06 PM

Err why not IGP now and a real gaming class GPU as/if u start gaming? Also for OS SSD drive i'd hit a min 60GB one if i was u ^^
April 6, 2010 2:21:16 PM

Thats what I thought but the OP said "that can multitask pretty well" so I figured a dual core wouldn't cut it.
April 6, 2010 2:23:31 PM

AthlonII X3/4 with 785G or 890GX if he wants SATA/USB 3.0?
April 6, 2010 2:45:05 PM

Yeah definietly much better, as I only thought about i3's because of his motherboard, oops. Are you going to supply links for him...
April 6, 2010 3:32:59 PM

Why am I unable to edit pages?

RunninRedlir since you are not going to start gaming and are not sure if you even will, then integrated graphics is a better option. It will save you money and later on if you decide to start gaming them you will beable to buy a better graphics card. This requires you to use an AMD processor as they have the best options for integrated graphics systems. These motherboards also come with HDMI output which could be benifical as you are using a HDTV. The recommended parts are below:

CPU: $100
AMD Athlon II X4 630 Propus 2.8GHz Socket AM3 95W Quad-Core Processor Model ADX630WFGIBOX - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

MOBO: $70
MSI 785GM-E51
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

If you want USB and SATA 3.0 then this motherboard is required instead:

$125
MSI 890GXM-G65
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
April 6, 2010 5:44:37 PM

As far as multitasking goes I normally have iTunes running, surfing on firefox (with multiple tabs open), do some photo editing or writing papers or reports for school. It's been about 10 years since I've built my last computer and I've only sparsely looked into the new CPU's and from what I've read Intel seems to be the better CPU so I would like to stick in the Core i-Line if possible. However, if you think AMD will be just as good that's fine. I would really like to have to not upgrade my computer for another 5 years or so. My main concerns that I don't want to cheap out on now are having good Audio/Video output so that I can stream my Blu-ray movies flawless and in FULL HD with DTS enabled (which I'm not even sure is full capable on HTPC but that's what I'm shooting for.
April 7, 2010 1:39:35 AM

Yes well thats not really heavily multitasking, a dual core would suit you fine. However since you won't upgrade for 5 years a quad core will probably be a better option. With AMD you will be able to upgrade easily later on as they are likely to bring out more processors for AM3, with intel you will not be able to upgrade to a latest CPU without getting a new motherboard.

Using the AMD system you will get flawless blu-ray playback in full HD, I don't see why you think you arn't able to.
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