I have been following the forums for a while now but this is my first post ever. I have been thinking about building an HTPC for my living room but I am kinda new to the HTPC scene, so I would like to get some advice. Even though I have built my own computer before, I am not an expert so feel free to correct me if I say something wrong or silly. Also please offer any other alternatives to what I've chosen as I could have missed some better alternatives.
Approximate Purchase Date: within 2-4 weeks Budget Range: less than $350 (I have a strict budget at the moment, but I would like to have the opportunity to upgrade in the long run) System Usage from Most to Least Important: I am going to use it strictly for streaming media from the web to my TV for now and perhaps watch DVD/Blu-ray in the future. I might also use it to download torrents and other files. I already have a gaming PC so I don't care about gaming. Parts Not Required: keyboard, mouse, speakers, optical drive, OS (I will be using Ubuntu) Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg Country of Origin: USA Parts Preferences: I prefer AMD for their low prices, although I am open to any Intel product if it's a good deal. Overclocking: No SLI or Crossfire: No Monitor Resolution: This is what I have: TOSHIBA 32" 720p LCD HDTV - 32AV500U
but I might get a better one in the long run Additional Comments: Although my build is cheap, I still would like to have the opportunity to upgrade in the future in case I got a 1080p TV so tell me if my build has potential for upgrades, or what I should do to make it more upgradeable. Also I would like my build to be as silent as possible
I have a spare DVD Burner, so I might use that before I buy a blu-ray drive
Case hec Black 0.7mm Thickness SECC Steel 7K09BBA30FNRX Micro ATX Media Center 300W Power Supply / HTPC Case
Now this case combo looks like a very good deal. A 300W PSU is included and I think 300W going to be enough for this build until I get a GPU (I hope I'm right), but the problem is I've never heard of this brand and from what I see from the reviews, PSU seems to be bad. Still I think I'm going to take my chances with this one. Also I'm not sure if the fan is going to be as silent as I think, so I might replace it with a better one (I'll probably get a Scythe)
I think the integrated graphics on 880G is good enough to play 720p content. Do you guys think it could handle 1080p? If ever buy a 1080p HDTV, my plan is to get a GPU and upgrade my PSU as well as my case, does that sound like a good plan?
So without the optical drive, the build comes around to $300-$325. I hope I didn't leave anything out. Does my build have any potential for future upgrades? Let me know what you guys think.
Motherboard is a 880G MSI, with quite a bit of upgradeable for an Micro-ATX board. Plus it has an HDMI out, and an onboard HD 4250 GPU, which can play 1080P HD just fine.
CPU, is a dual-core, but still has a lot of bang for buck.
Memory, no need for anything fancy, this stuff works perfectly fine.
HDD, 1TB Spinpoint F3, massive storage, for lots of media, and the speed of an Spinpoint.
Case, first off its an Antec, so you will have a good quality case, plus it comes with an 350w 80+ PSU, which is good for HTPCs.
You have the potential to upgrade all the way up to an quad-core if you want to in the future, also you could add an HD 5570 in the future too, if you want a really good GPU. 4-memory slots means you can easily go to 8GB when you need too.
Thank you guys for the answers, I got one more question to ask; do the MSI 880GM-E41 and the BIOSTAR A880G+ support ATI Hybrid? It doesn't say anything about it on newegg but some websites say the biostar one has it. Also I've never worked with a mobo with ATI Hybrid support, so is it something good to have just in case?
If you get it from Amazon, it's free shipping so that about evens the price with the Minuet from Newegg.com. You'll have a great PSU and more room to upgrade in the future. For instance, the 2nd 5.25" drive bay you can put and IR receiver / LCD display in if you want (ala Antec Fusion Remote).