With some help from a friend I've come up with a list of parts I'm considering for an HTPC build. Total including shipping comes out to under $350 so I'm pretty happy there.
Just wanted to get your opinions on whether this setup will do the things that I want:
-Run Ubuntu or other Linux using XBMC as the media center
-Play movies in standard definition for now, and maybe 1080p later. The motherboard has an extra slot for a video card if I want, or need, to upgrade in the future
-Output XBMC in 1080 very smoothly without lagging or slowing framerates
-This will primarily be used as a media center but will sometimes perform other tasks, surfing the wed etc., no gaming though
-Not be too power hungry or noisy, neither is a top priority though
Thats about all I can really think of, heres the list of the parts
That definitely a nice setup but for $100+ more dollars I don't know if I'd really need, or use, the extra power. And I'm kind of on a tight budget... The ability to upgrade the CPU down the line would be nice though.
Is there anything inherently wrong or not good about the setup I chose? Or is it just that thats a better system for a little bit more money? It's not going to be used for much else besides web browsing and XBMC..
Well, here's the thing...with the system you originally built, you're using older technology...like 2 year old technology...there is nothing inherently wrong with the build, it's just using older technology...
The CPU socket is already dead...Intel does not make processors for it anymore. There is no upgrade path in the future
The hard drive is also older technology...5400 RPM vs one of the fastest 7200 drives out right now.
The AMD processor I have chosen is the latest edition of the Athlon II X3...it's not the latest/greatest technology, but the socket chosen IS the latest/greatest AMD socket type. Given that AMD sockets last 4+ years, you have an upgrade path with the processor (if required/needed)
The motherboard also has the latest/greatest technology...SATA 6 and USB 3.0. Newer hard drives are coming out with SATA 6 capabilities and external add on's are starting to use USB 3.0
Don't get me wrong, I'm not trying to point you in a direction you don't want to go...I look at this as the best bang for your buck...Yeah, sure the computer you put together would do what you want...but for how long?
In the end it's up to you.
EDIT: Also, I wouldn't trust any "no-name" power supply with any computer I build. It's a small portion of the investment than truely can RUIN every component plugged in. Whatever direction you choose to go, I can't stress enough that you seriously consider a high quality, Active PFC, power supply. Highly recommended brands are Corsair & Antec
After looking around some I've put together a new build using that processor, mobo, only 2g of ram, different case etc. and have gotten it down to only about $40-$50 more. Which, even to me, is well worth it.
I definitely like the upgradeability of it over the other build. Thanks for the help, I appreciate it.