HTPC - please help w/last few parts

Am trying to finalize my HTPC build within the next few weeks and would like some input. Please take a look and let me know your recommendatons. Thanks!


BUDGET RANGE: $300 to $400-ish after rebates

- streaming movies, tv and music online (Boxee, Hulu, etc) and locally (NAS)
- internet (shopping, email)

- monitor, speakers, hard drive, power supply, motherboard

- newegg
- amazon
- any other reputable site that doesn’t charge a fortune for shipping


What I think I still need:
Case: Does not need to be fancy. Just needs to fit on shelf in cabinet. Amount of space available: D 19 7/8“, H 9 7/8“, W 21 7/8”. Am installing fans (kind of like this) in the cabinet to help with cooling. Also, not a problem if the case comes with a power supply - can either use it or the new one in a different machine or return the new one.
Keyboard/mouse: preferably a wireless keyboard that has a built-in trackball or touchpad
DVD Drive: Blu-ray is not a necessity at this point.
RAM: The board I bought takes DDR3.
TV Tuner
Other Parts: Did I forget anything?

MONITOR RESOLUTION: The tv’s manual, says “optimum resolution 1360 x 768 and frequency @ 60Hz”. TV has a VGA port on it that I’ve been using with my existing desktop. I currently have open HDMI ports on the TV and receiver and would prefer to use one of those with the new machine.

OS: Am currently trying a couple different Linux distros on another machine so will probably end up using one of them on this new one. If none of them work for me, will go with Windows xp or 7

Parts I’ve already purchased:
Hard drives (might end up putting one or more of these into the NAS that I’m also building):
2 of these: Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 ST3500418AS 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive
1 of these:HITACHI HDS721050CLA362 (0F10381) 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive
Motherboard: MSI 790GX-G65 AM3 AMD 790GX HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard
Power Supply: Antec EarthWatts Green EA-380D Green 380W Continuous power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply

Thanks for your help!

19 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about htpc last parts
  1. keyboard

    Also be aware that based on your dimensions that you will most likely be using a MicroATX case, most of which have limited 3.5" Hard Drive bays. 3 drives is pretty ambitious. Mine uses only 2 HDDs so I have a 500 GB OS disk and a 1.5 TB media disk(which is almost full btw, converting all my DVDs to digital, 7.5 GB each)
  2. Good keyboard when it works. Trackball control and mouse key locations take a bit of getting used to. The automatic sleep function (to save battery life) is a bit short for my liking (seems like just a couple of minutes), but easy to wake up. Mine, came with an incorrect key mapping. There is a key combination (FN+NumLock) that toggles to the correct one, but often, when the keyboard went to sleep, it reverted back to it's default (incorrect) mapping.

    Tech Support is severely lacking. What follows is my discussion with their Tech Support:

    My keyboard defaults to an incorrect setting where various keys do not correspond to the correct values. For example, typing in:


    could result in the computer receiving


    Using the FN+NunLock keys sets the keys correctly, but if the keyboard enters sleep mode, it reverts to the incorrect setting. How can I set the default key setting to the correct key setting?

    Thank you!
    Submitted May 26, 2009 07:48 pm


    Hi there,

    On your BIOS (Basic Input/Output System) You NumLock might be set as ON. That is why every time your keyboard wakes up the NumLock is active. Please set to OFF.


    Adesso Tech Support
    Jun-01 2009 03:35 pm.


    Hello and thank you for your response.

    My NumLock was indeed set as ON in BIOS, unfortunately, setting it to off was unsuccessful in resolving the issue (ASUS A8N-VM motherboard). In addition to the keyboard resetting when entering sleep more, it also resets on a system reboot (I performed several post BIOS update).

    An alphanumeric keyboard comparison between the correct setting and the keyboard's apparent default setting is below:



    I look forward to your next suggestion.

    Thank you!

    Jun-01 2009 05:33 pm.

    Hi there,

    Sorry for the late reply. I lost this case number. What is the update of your keyboard?


    Adesso Tech Support

    Jun-15 2009 11:25 am.


    There has been no update since my last reply. Again, whenever the keyboard goes to sleep or the system reboots, the key mapping returns to the default (incorrect) settings as posted in my previous reply:

    When I type:

    I get:

    Again, thank you for your support. I look forward to your next suggestion.

    Jun-17 2009 04:08 pm.

    Please review this request. It's been over two weeks since the last reply from Adesso Tech Support.

    Jul-02 2009 07:31 am.

    One week later and still no response. Please reply.

    Jul-09 2009 06:53 pm.

    Two weeks later and still no response.

    Jul-17 2009 09:49 am.

    You must hold down the FN key on your keyboard and the NUMLOCK/INSERT key simultaneously (1 time) to go back to the default letters on your keyboard.

    Aug-07 2009 03:57 pm.

    This request has been deemed solved Aug 07, 2009

    -Wolf sends
  3. Wow thats terrible wolf. Glad mine worked!
  4. As always, I'm gonna throw in a pitch for the keyboard I've been using for 3 years.

    Moneual Lab 2.4GHz RF Wireless Computer Keyboard

    It's only $30 and works great. I've actually been on the prowl for a replacement keyboard (just because I want something shiny and new) but I can't find another keyboard that is the right size with good battery life and range.

    Here is a site that has a bunch of... unique... keyboards that are good for HTPC use. There's even one shaped like a remote with a touchpad (Rii)!
  5. Also the Antec Fusion Black HTPC MicroATX case comes with an IR remote with a thumbpad style joystick with buttons all around it.

    It's good for a fill in when the media keyboard is on the other couch
  6. Unfortunately the OP has already purchased an ATX MB for this build.
  7. Hi...

    Thanks a bunch for all of your responses. Definitely helped me make some decisions.

    Will be getting:

    Athlon II X2 260
    G.skill 4GB DDR3 1333 CL8 1.5V
    Moneual Lab 2.4GHz RF Wireless Computer Keyboard

    Proximon said:
    As far as KB... I really don't know. This is a fancier one:

    Definitely agree with this being fancy...I really like it, but is a little more than I can justify spending. Will probably get it if I can find it on sale or w/a rebate.

    I saw the keyboard in a about the same size as my phone. I was able to find an application for my phone that turns it into a remote for Boxee/XBMC. Does anyone happen to know if there's another one that will let me use a Motorola Droid as a bluetooth keyboard?

    For now, I'll get the $30 one listed above.

    Anonymous said:
    Good keyboard when it works....reverted back to it's default (incorrect) mapping....Tech Support is severely lacking.

    That's horrible. Thank you so much for the warning. Will definitely NOT be purchasing that one.

    As far as the case, the Silverstone one that Proximon recommended seems ok, but I like the way that the APEVIA X-MASTER-AL/500 looks in either the all-black or the silver+black. The reviews have nothing nice to say about the power supply but I've already got another one so wouldn't mind if I needed to just throw out the one that comes with the case. Any thoughts on it?

    TV Tuner: I've also heard good things about Hauppauge, but could use a little more guidance. I've had cable for the past several years and currently have DirecTV. Honestly, I don't even know how to watch TV over-the-air anymore since there's no more analog signal. The last time I bought anything w/TV capabilities was ATI ALL-IN-WONDER 9600XT 100-714120 Radeon 9600XT 128MB 128-bit DDR AGP 4X/8X Video Card back in 2004. What I'd like to be able to do is record TV shows onto the compter. I don't know what I need in order to accomplish this. Can someone please point me toward as site that does a decent job of dumbing it down simplifying this for me?

    DVD Drive: My current machine has 2. They both work just fine so I might just pull one out and stick it in the new machine.

    Thanks again for all your help!
    - MARISA
  8. This site has really good tuner info. It also breaks down all of the popular tuners in a table to compare and has a couple "best tuner" lists to match your application.
  9. rwpritchett said:

    The site was very helpful. Thanks.
    Looks like I'll be ordering the Hauppauge WinTV-HVR 1850
  10. I now have nearly all of the parts I need and would like to get the rest by the end of this week.

    Still needed:
    This one was recommended earlier: G.skill 4GB DDR3 1333 CL8 1.5V
    But what about this one?: G.Skill 4GB DDR3 1333 CL7 1.5v

    TV Tuner: Opinions on the Hauppauge WinTV-HVR 1850?

    Keyboard/mouse: The Moneual Lab 2.4GHz RF Wireless Computer Keyboard is currently out of stock. Any other suggestions?

    DVD Drive: Have decided against my earlier idea of reusing an old drive. Any sugestions on a new one?

    Other Parts: Did I forget anything?

    Already purchased:
    Hard drives:
    2 of these: Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 ST3500418AS 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive
    1 of these:HITACHI HDS721050CLA362 (0F10381) 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive
    Motherboard: MSI 790GX-G65 AM3 AMD 790GX HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard
    Power Supply: Antec EarthWatts Green EA-380D Green 380W Continuous power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply
    Case: APEVIA X-MASTER-AL/500
    Processor: AMD Athlon II X2 260 Regor 3.2GHz

    Thanks for your help!
    - MARISA
  11. The new version of the Moneual keyboard is available at quietpcusa.

    It looks like they've added a scroll wheel and media buttons.
  12. Best answer
    The CL 7 RAM looks great.

    Only thing else I have to say is a good quiet CPU heatsink is desirable.
  13. Thanks SO much for all of your help! Decided that I also need to get a video card (found a game I actually want to play), so am waiting a little bit on the TV Tuner and Keyboard. Got the rest of the parts and put it together today. Went ok except that, sadly, the reviews on newegg about the case's Power Supply were quite accurate. Mine was DOA, so am waiting on a replacement.
  14. Are you saying the EA-380D was bad? I don't get why you would be worried about the case PSU when you have already purchased the EA-380D.
  15. It was the PSU that came with the case that didn't work properly. The EA-380D is installed in the machine right now and working perfectly.
  16. There is no Apevia PSU in existence that is worth 10 cents, unless you like doorstops. Any Delta-made Antec 380W will deliver more power much more stably, than a 500W Apevia. Don't even think about using the 500W they send.
  17. Best answer selected by marisajoy.
  18. New machine is up and running smoothly. Thanks a bunch for all of your help!
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