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Please critique my mini HTPC

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Last response: in Systems
July 27, 2010 11:42:02 PM

So I thought I would experiment and try to make an affordable HTPC using only new parts. 'Low end' would probably be an understatement here, but I thought I would give it a go and see what I can make work on it. I think it will be fun too. So anyhow my main concern is that the built-in psu @ 200w, will likely crap out on me pretty quick. What is most advisable, to not even bother with the onboard PSU and invest in a different one? Or can I get away with it for a time? My other question is if I should go with 1 or 2 sticks of ram. Only 2gb total though, either 1x2 or 2x1 (saving a dollar really isn't important here)

Thanks for any opinions!

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July 28, 2010 12:49:16 AM

anybody? advice.. pretty please?
July 28, 2010 12:32:43 PM

Intel Atom's are fine with 90W power bricks... the added video card will push you up a bit though. Here's the problem, your video card will not fit on that motherboard because it is PCIe-16x and the board only has a closed PCIe-1x slot. I suggest you either get an ION board that will have graphics capable of HD media playback and drop the video card.

Oh, and always get RAM in pairs to enable dual channel unless you plan to upgrade to that second stick in the near future.
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July 28, 2010 3:56:38 PM

For Intel, take the ION for its HD playback graphic capabilities.

For AMD, an Athlon II X2 2.7GHz with 785G chipset motherboard is more than enough.

Regarding the RAM, since you're aiming an HTPC, single channel or dual channel doesn't really matter. But for performance sake, go for the dual channel (2 sticks of RAM)

Get an 80+ PSU with active PFC. a 300W - 400W would do just fine. Don't risk your system by using low powered and low reliability PSU.