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Need some Advice on Building a high end HTPC

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August 25, 2010 9:59:49 PM

Hi guys! im just about to put together my first Gaming/HTPC
iv been researching for days now, but im a bit stuck :( 

i will be using the pc with a 40" HDTV (not a monitor)
i need it to play HD MKV Movies (with DTS-HD Sound), and play a feu games etc.
i want a "high end rig" but i don't want to go too crazy.

So far im leaning toward the following Parts:
CASE: Antec Twelve Hundred
PSU: Tagan PipeRock Series TG900-BZ Power supply - 900 Watt
CPU: Intel Core i7 Processor i7-920 2.66GHz (oc to 3.80 or 4GHz)
CPU Cooler: no idear
MOBO: ASUS P6X58D Premium
RAM: 12 GB 2000 Mhz or so.
VGA: ATI Radeon HD 5870 1 GB DDR5
HDDs: SSD 80 gb + WD 1 Tb
DVD/BLURAY DRIVE: LG Electronics LightScribe SATA Blu-ray Combo Drive
MULTIMEDIA: Antec Veris Elite IR Receiver
FAN CONTROLLER: Scythe Kaze Master
OVERCLOCKING: Yes


However i am really stuck on a few things!
My questions are:
1) I know many have the "Antec Twelve Hundred CASE" but is there a one better?
2) Power Supply 800 900 or 1000Watt?
3) MOBO is the ASUS P6X58D Premium the wright way to go? i really cant deside what mobo is wright.
4) Ram, any poetically good brands?
5) CPU Cooler, i need a Quite one! and im OCing the CUP so.. any ideas?
6) Is a ATI 5870 good for powering a 40" TV* and should i go Sapphire* or another brand?

Any help or advice on any of these 6 points would be SO appreciated!
Thanks!! :) 

(Side Point: I believe the best way to get "HD" sound if from the HDMI on the ATI 5870? hooked up to the Logitech Z-5500 Digital Surround Sound. so no need for a sound card.)
August 25, 2010 11:43:25 PM

I would consider the following changes:

1) Go with the i7-760 CPU rather than the i7-920. It costs less and consumes a little less power; roughly 30w - 35w on full load. While the i7-760 may not have hyperthreading (if that is what you are interested in), in many cases it can hold up quite well against the i7-920, even barely beat it. Most games do not take advantage of hyperthreading and the i7-750 actually beats the i7-920 in Crysis and X3: Terran Conflict benchmarks. However, encoding video is a different story; Handbrake can take advantage of hyperthreading.

See following review:
Intel Core i5 and Core i7 Lynnfield review (Note: it does not review the faster i7-760 which I recommend)

http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/cpus/2009/09/08/intel-...

2) I would probably recommend the ASUS P7P55 WS SuperComputer motherboard for a LGA 1156 CPU like the i7-760. It supports both SLI and XFire; just in case...

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

3) A good quality 600w PSU can easily power your proposed system. I recommend Seasonic PSUs; Seasonic is a premier brand know for excellent build quality and reliability. They also manufacture some PSU models for PC Power & Cooling, Corsair and Antec (in order of preference).

4) RAM.... I prefer using Corsair RAM, been using their RAM since before 2000. I was never disappointed. I think 4GB is fine, others may say otherwise. My recommendation...

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

5) I can't recommend a CPU cooler since I haven't researched any that are LGA 1156 compatible.

6) The case is a personal thing... my HTPC case actually looks more like an A/V unit rather than a computer case. The following is a review of my case, Silverstone Crown CW02, if you are interested...

http://www.techradar.com/reviews/pc-mac/pc-mac-desktops...

7) The HD 5870 will be fine for 1920 x 1080. I'm using a HD 5850 for a 1920 x 1200 monitor. I have a Sapphire; no complaints. XFX is good if you intend to select later on 'cause the warranty transfers to the new owner; the warranty can only be transferred once.
August 28, 2010 5:20:16 PM

Thanks for the help jaguarskx!
iv revised my plans a lot. less ram etc.
i think i will stick with the i7 thiugh.
but sapphire looks good for the ati.
thanks
!