Media server: Build new or retire oldish gaming box?

I'm looking to upgrade/build a new media & file server for my home network.

Amongst some recent acquisitions are a Squeezebox music player, an xbox 360 (is that a dirty word here?) and a pretty fancy LG plasma telly. To supply this lot with data & media is my creaking old file-server (a P3 dell workstation - so old it's beige).

I'm thinking this will shortly be in need of upgrading in the least as it's only got 256Mb ram, of which it's expected to run a DLNA server, Squeezeserver, web server, windows file-server plus also manage a few other functions as and when I see fit to call upon it.

I could retire my current desktop/gaming box which is about 5yrs old: Opteron185@2.6Ghz/3Gb/HD5700 however I'm not finding it lacking in the titles I'm currently playing (Fallout 3/GTA4 - I know, I'm a bit behind :) )

For what I see, a dedicated fileserver would be quieter & more efficient that my opty box, probably definitely more efficient that the P3 and would cost less that building a current gaming rig of equivalent capability to my opty box when it was new..

However I doubt I'd get the same value as far as performance/£ invested.

So the question is below..

If anyone's got any thoughts as to a starting point on answers 2 & 3 then please share, it's not just my gaming that's out of touch.. :D

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  1. Honestly, the cheapest/probably best option would be to use the old machine. However, there's something to be said about those new SB processors.... $500 for a gaming/HTPC? Not bad.
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