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First Time HTPC Build

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August 18, 2011 4:48:32 AM

Approximate Purchase Date: Next week

Budget Range: $600 After Rebates

System Usage from Most to Least Important: 1080P video - Blu-ray, MKV, any format without lag or stuttering, Netflix, Hulu, Boxee, Internet usage, practically no gaming. No 3d movies either.

Parts Not Required: keyboard, mouse, TV/Display, HDMI Cables, OS

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg.ca, ncix.ca, memoryexpress.ca

Country of Origin: Canada

Parts Preferences: Either AMD Llano or Intel Sandy-Bridge. Still undetermined

Overclocking: No

SLI or Crossfire: No

Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080 - Panasonic 50" Plasma TV.

Additional Comments: Quiet and Looks good in the living room.


So far I have an AMD build:

CPU : AMD A8-3850 $139.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...

MOBO: ASROCK A75 $95.00
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...

RAM: Still undecided.. Some recommendations please?

HDD: SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB $74.99 --> Not sure about this heard good things though about the samsung drives. Recommendations?
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1682...

Case: nMEDIAPC Black Aluminum / Acrylic / Steel HTPC 6000B ATX Media Center / HTPC Case $99.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...

or

nMEDIAPC Silver Aluminum / Acrylic / Steel HTPC 5000S Micro ATX Media Center / HTPC Case $79.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...

PSU: Need assistance with this.. Any recommendations?

CPU Cooler: Do I need one? Is the stock one loud? Also do I need any other fans?

GPU: Hopefully can use the integrated one so I do not need a separate GPU. Will the LLano be able to handle 1080P and blu-ray without a hitch?

Optical drive: SAMSUNG Black 12X BD-ROM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-ROM SATA $64.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1682...

This is what I have so far. Any assistance is greatly appreciated. My budget is a bit flexible. I am sitting around $450 right now not including taxes or shipping. Does anyone have some good recommendations for a remote as well?

Thank you,

Sebastian




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August 18, 2011 1:16:55 PM

Thanks for your help mosox. What type of PSU should I get? Should I go with AMD or intel? Also I am tempted to get a more flashy case and I am willing to spend more on it. will this system as is be able to play video and stream HD flawlessly?
August 18, 2011 8:56:09 PM

Are these power supplies to much wattage for this system? Do you personally have a HTPC system? If you do, how is it?
August 18, 2011 11:08:21 PM

And is the hard drive I selected acceptable?
August 19, 2011 1:33:41 AM

So does the PSU matter? wont the higher wattage ones make more noise as the fan will need to keep them cooler? What about the HDD? Should I get the Samsung F3 or F4EG?
August 19, 2011 1:35:35 AM

also do i need a cpu cooler or is the stock one sufficient? will it be quiet?
August 19, 2011 1:56:17 AM

No, a power supply only consumes and provides the power needed by the computer.

That said, there is an ideal capacity for power supplies. You want to put a demand on the PSU that corresponds to where it is most efficient... generally that's 40-60% of it's rated wattage.

Seasonic makes some of the quietest PSUs around.

What will your system draw? I would like to know myself...

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/llano-apu-a75-mothe...

That looks pretty clear. Sadly, we aren't going to find much in the high quality 200W PSU area.

Most Seasonic built PSUs are very quiet at low loads. You could get a gfanless unit like this:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

But really why not have a fan that will kick in when it's really needed? Think of it as emergency cooling that is otherwise very quiet:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
August 19, 2011 11:46:04 AM

I don't think that one is very quiet. Looks like an original EA-430. It would be adequate in terms of performance, but it's got a little fan that will be a bit whiny.
August 19, 2011 9:08:09 PM

After help from everyone I am close to my final HTPC build.

CPU : AMD A8-3850 $139.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Produ [...] 6819103942

MOBO: ASRock A75M FM1 AMD A75 (Hudson D3) HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Micro ATX AMD Motherboard with UEFI BIOS $95.00
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...

RAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory $29.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1682...

HDD: SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB $74.99 --> Not sure about this heard good things though about the samsung drives. Recommendations?
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Produ [...] 6822152185

Case: Antec Black Aluminum / Steel Fusion Remote Black Micro ATX Media Center / HTPC Case $148.49
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...

PSU: Antec High Current Gamer Series HCG-400 400W ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V v2.91 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply $66.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...

CPU Cooler: Still no answer on this.... Anyone know if I should go with an aftermarket CPU cooler?

Optical drive: SAMSUNG Black 12X BD-ROM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-ROM SATA $64.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Produ [...] 6827151222

Okay I am about to pull the trigger.. Any other recommendations or comments? I am still unsure what to do about the CPU cooler and HDD.

Thanks.
August 19, 2011 9:21:55 PM

The case has two 120mm fans and the APU is not terribly hot. I think you are fine with stock cooling. You aren't going to fit a tall cooler in there anyway.

I don't know how the noise is on the stock cooler though. You could get a Shuriken and replace the fan with a taller one that's quieter...
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1683...
August 19, 2011 9:28:15 PM

Thanks Ill check that out. What about the HDD? is the samsung one good? or is there another model of samsung drive i should use?
August 19, 2011 9:41:42 PM

It's a very popular drive. If you get a Caviar Green or such it will be quieter, but then you sacrifice performance.
August 20, 2011 1:07:30 AM

How's the asrock mobo? Will it fit in that case?
August 20, 2011 3:52:53 AM

ASRock has been developing a rep for reliability on these forums for years. I would say it's a good choice and will fit fine. They are my second most recommended brand, behind Asus.
August 20, 2011 4:54:41 PM

Thanks proximon. One more question what would be an ASUS equivalent of that ASrock board I am interested in? ASRock isnt available locally so I was wondering what type of ASUS board I could use?
August 20, 2011 6:50:18 PM

actually, Newegg has a few combos running from $350 to $622 that would be excellent for you:

$345 A6 build, a basic computer with a middling (but not terrible) PSU:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboBundleDetails.aspx?I...
AMD A6-3650 Llano 2.6GHz Socket FM1 100W Quad-Core Desktop APU AD3650WNGXBOX
ASUS F1A75-M LE FM1 AMD A75 (Hudson D3) SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Micro ATX AMD Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
Kingston HyperX 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 Desktop Memory Model KHX1333C9D3K2/4G
Seagate Barracuda ST31000524AS 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
COOLER MASTER Elite RC-310-OWR460 Black SECC ATX Mid Tower Computer Case RS-460-PSAR-J3, Elite 460W Power Supply
LITE-ON DVD Burner - Bulk Black SATA Model iHAS124-04

$470 a8 Build. Similar to the a6 above, but with an A8 processor, windows included, and a slightly weaker PSU (430 vs 460W)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
MSI A75MA-G55 FM1 AMD A75 (Hudson D3) SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard
AMD A8-3850 Llano 2.9GHz Socket FM1 100W Quad-Core Desktop APU AD3850WNGXBOX
G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model F3-10666CL9D-8GBXL
Seagate Barracuda ST31000524AS 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit
LITE-ON DVD Burner - Bulk Black SATA Model iHAS124-04
Thermaltake VL84301W2Z V3 Black Edition with 430W Power Supply ATX Mid Tower Computer Case

$538 a6 build, an HTPC build
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
GIGABYTE GA-A75M-D2H FM1 AMD A75 (Hudson D3) SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard
G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-4GBNQ
SILVERSTONE Black Aluminum skin reinforced plastic front panel, 0.8mm SECC body MILO Series ML03B Micro ATX Media Center ...
AMD A6-3650 Llano 2.6GHz Socket FM1 100W Quad-Core Desktop APU AD3650WNGXBOX
Rosewill Green Series RG630-S12 630W Continuous @40°C,80 PLUS Certified, Single 12V Rail, Active PFC "Compatible with Core ...
Logitech Harmony 300i (915-000143) Universal Infrared Remote
LG Black Blu-ray Drive SATA Model UH12LS28 OEM LightScribe Support
Seagate Barracuda Green ST1500DL003 1.5TB 5900 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
AVerMedia AVerTVHD Duet - PCTV Tuner (A188 - White Box) MTVHDDUWB PCI-Express x1 Interface

$622 a8 HTPC build.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
AMD A8-3850 Llano 2.9GHz Socket FM1 100W Quad-Core Desktop APU AD3850WNGXBOX
GIGABYTE GA-A75M-D2H FM1 AMD A75 (Hudson D3) SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard
AVerMedia AVerTVHD Duet - PCTV Tuner (A188 - White Box) MTVHDDUWB PCI-Express x1 Interface
Kingston HyperX 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model KHX1600C9D3K2/4GX
Rosewill Green Series RG630-S12 630W Continuous @40°C,80 PLUS Certified, Single 12V Rail, Active PFC "Compatible with Core ...
Seagate Barracuda Green ST1500DL003 1.5TB 5900 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
LG Black Blu-ray Drive SATA Model UH12LS28 OEM LightScribe Support
Kaybles 6 ft. High Speed HDMI Cable with Ethernet and Gold Plated Connector Model HDMI-HE-6
Logitech Harmony 300i (915-000143) Universal Infrared Remote
Microsoft JR9-00011 Xbox 360 Wireless Controller for Windows
SILVERSTONE Black Aluminum skin reinforced plastic front panel, 0.8mm SECC body MILO Series ML03B Micro ATX Media
August 20, 2011 9:14:20 PM

Thanks for these combos! I am in Canada though so I doubt I can order any of these.
August 20, 2011 9:50:06 PM

^www.newegg.ca

There's enough love for Canucks to go around. Same combos available.
!