Need a CHEAP Htpc

Hey guys

well i'm getting a Panasonic VIERA TC-P50S30 50-Inch 1080p Plasma HDTV

^ its a good choice right? I have 1k to spend on a tv set inc taxes.


Now onto the HTPC

I have a laptop, but it doesn't have a hdmi or dvi port, soooo I guess i'll have to build a htpc


Reqs:
Cheap
Stream free tv shows, without any lag, and youtube videos.
DVD drive
hdmi port

The setup doesn't need to be able to play games, just streaming shows


Umm.. I also don't need a windows copy, and i don't need a tv tuner or any of that.

would a ps3 suffice or would i be better off building a cheap htpc?
31 answers Last reply
More about need cheap htpc
  1. If you have a PS3, I'd use that.
  2. i don't have a ps3, :( but if its the cheapest option i guess i can get it
  3. Well, if you want a PS3... they're pretty cheap. You can get one for less than $250 which is a great price.

    You could build a Llano/Ci3 based HTPC for similar cash.
  4. could i get a build on newegg for the best htpc i could get for 200-300?

    I already have 2 4gb sticks of corsair vengeance ddr3 desktop memory if that makes any difference to the price.
  5. http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.739029 <-- This combo plus your RAM would make a super cheap HTPC :D
  6. thanks finn, this is the ram i have http://www.amazon.ca/Corsair-CMZ8GX3M2A1600C9B-Vengeance-PC3-12800-1600mHz/dp/B004QBUL1C/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1319451420&sr=8-2

    is it compatible?

    if it is, wouldn't i need other things like a case and stuff

    It needs to be under 300 with taxes / shipping

    Im not going to be doing anything on it except stream tv shows /movies on mega video / putlocker

    so i don't need a large hdd either
  7. get a PS3.
  8. PS3's primary use is gaming, i'm probably not going to be gaming on it at all, so wouldn't a htpc be better?
  9. This is what i built for my HTPC....streams tv flawlessly, i wasn't sure about the integrated graphics but was pleasantly surprised

    Bought this case so that i could move it between rooms/tv's and again was surprised by the build quality at this price point

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811154094 $24

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827135204 $20

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817371033 $40

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.739029 $127 $5 MIR

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822145299 $50 (i used a different Hdd but was sold out)

    Shipping $15 +/-

    Total $275


    With the money left over (assuming $300 budget) you could do alot of things.....add a gpu (5670) add another Hdd for storage etc etc

    System has given me a lot of flexability but use it for netflix, hulu, espn3, music over surround system and works great

    Good luck!!
  10. That's pretty much what I had in mind but I'm too lazy to post a complete build :lol: Very nice.
  11. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16883108619
    $159.99 ThinkCentre 9384/2.2/2G/750/XPP Refurbished Desktop PC Athlon 64 X2 2.2GHz 2GB DDR2 750GB HDD Capacity Windows XP Professional
    Recertified $21.07 Shipping

    More specs info..
    Expansion Bays Total (free) 1 ( 0 ) x front accessible - 5.25" x 1/2H
    1 ( 1 ) x front accessible - 3.5" x 1/3H
    1 ( 0 ) x internal - 3.5" x 1/3H
    Expansion Slots Total (free) 1 ( 0 ) x processor - Socket AM2
    2 ( 1 ) x memory - DIMM 240-pin
    1 ( 1 ) x PCI Express x16 - low-profile
    1 ( 1 ) x PCI Express x1 - low-profile
    2 ( 2 ) x PCI - low-profile


    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814161374
    $69.99 HIS H657H1G Radeon HD 6570 1GB 128-bit DDR3 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready Low Profile Ready Video Card Free software coupon (It includes the needed htpc software like divx, ect)

    Grand Total:* $229.98 (plus taxes and shipping)

    -Add a hdmi cable, wireless keyboard/mouse that uses either aa or aaa batteries.


    Smaller computer with built in 160 shader gpu so you don't need the hd-6570 card.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16883109071
    $269.99 COMPAQ 100B (XZ846UT#ABA) Desktop PC AMD Dual-Core Processor E-350(1.6GHz) 2GB DDR3 500GB HDD Capacity AMD Radeon HD 6310 Windows 7 Professional 64-bit
  12. http://www.walmart.com/ip/HP-750GB-DC5750W7/16880176
    $199.00 HP DC5750 Desktop PC with AMD Athlon 64X2 Dual-Core Processor, 750GB Hard Drive and Windows Home Premium (Monitor Not Included), Refurbished

    (it would need the half-height video card too)

    http://www.walmart.com/ip/RCA-46-LED-Full-HD-1080p-120Hz-HDTV-LED46A55R120Q-with-RCA-Home-Theater-System-6ft-HDMI-Cable-Bundle/16914175
    $789.00 RCA 46" LED Full HD 1080p 120Hz HDTV, LED46A55R120Q with RCA Home Theater System, 6ft HDMI Cable, TV Bundle
  13. http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboBundleDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.753182
    $297.99 Core i3-2100/H61/4GB/1TB SuperCombo
    Complete DIY Solution on Core i3 DUAL-CORE CPU

    Plus video card since the board lacks a hdmi plug. This case takes full height cards so the card is cheaper.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814150553
    $54.99 $24.99 after mail-in rebate XFX GT-240X-YAFA GeForce GT 240 512MB Free Call of Duty4 game
    $3.99 Shipping

    or you can still get the hd-6570 card if you want.

    A bit more cash but its faster and it's new(not refurbished i.e. used).
  14. pacific27 said:
    This is what i built for my HTPC....streams tv flawlessly, i wasn't sure about the integrated graphics but was pleasantly surprised

    Bought this case so that i could move it between rooms/tv's and again was surprised by the build quality at this price point

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811154094 $24

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827135204 $20

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817371033 $40

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.739029 $127 $5 MIR

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822145299 $50 (i used a different Hdd but was sold out)

    Shipping $15 +/-

    Total $275


    With the money left over (assuming $300 budget) you could do alot of things.....add a gpu (5670) add another Hdd for storage etc etc

    System has given me a lot of flexability but use it for netflix, hulu, espn3, music over surround system and works great

    Good luck!!


    Ok, i think this setup suits my needs the most, i built my own computer ages ago, lost like 2k doing it because i was a little kid and i didn't know what rma was lol,

    but i think i like building computers, so id like to build the htpc.

    Few questions for the build you suggested:

    would it be loud? I'd rather not hear any noise when the system is on.
    With the system you mentioned above, would i be using the ram i have mentioned earlier?
    Im not sure if they're compatible.

    and what do you guys think about this build: http://gadgetscholar.com/2011/01/build-a-htpc-on-the-cheap-under-250/
  15. I just ordered my components for my HTPC today but I'm reusing an old Core 2 Duo build for the main hardware. Everything else I purchased for this purpose. But check this out:

    Case: HEC 7106B - $39.99
    PSU: Corsair Builder Series CX430 - $44.99
    Motherboard: AsRock ASH61M - $69.99
    CPU: 2.60GHz Intel Pentium Dual Core G620 - $74.99
    RAM: 8GB Corsair Vengeance (2 x 4GB) PC 12800 1600MHz - $51.99
    HD: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB - $69.99
    Optical: LG Super Multi - $69.99
    Keyboard / Mouse: Logitech MK260 - $28.99
    OS: Windows 7 Home Premium - $99.99

    Total: $548.99
  16. I built my first computer a little over two years ago as i needed an upgrade from my aging Pentium 4 system that was nearing 10 years old. Like many I was a little hesitant to make the plunge but after watching videos and reading a bit i decided to do it, and very happy i did. The two main things i got out of it were a great computer at a fraction of the cost and an increased knowledge base to help with future upgrades and troubleshooting. Its all pretty much "Plug and play"

    My system is pretty quite i've added an 80mm fan to the front of the case to help move air and a 500w PSU which blows air out the back. The two fans are pretty quiet the only time i hear the HTPC is when i boot it up and the HDD spools up. It depends a little on how close you will be to the case as far as sound goes but the build i listed is quiet.

    I checked biostars website and although i didn't see your ram listed it does support certain sticks of corsair ram. I may be wrong and please be diligent and chk, I doubt they have the time to test every configuration of ram with each mb. I've never had a problem using ram that wasn't on the approved list. Your ram is DDR3 I'd imagine it would be find...and ram is pretty cheap these days anyway.

    There are tons of options out there the build you listed would work but its a little more dated with DDR2 ram (you have DDR3).

    Also the chip i listed has the opportunity to be unlocked to a quad core (The MB supports this feature). Its a gamble though mine unlocked to a triple core as the fourth core was not stable. Its also a black edition chip which means you can overclock it easily with just a multiplier bump. Not that you would need to for an HTPC but if it did unlock and was stable it would prolong the life of your system as software become more multithreaded. Would also double as a solid "backup" computer

    This build would be nearly half the size, but not have the potential to unlock cores

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827135204 $20

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811154091 $40 Free shipping Promo EMCJKJB24

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811154091 $90

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819103951 $100 New APU with graphics on CPU

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820220580 $65 - $25 MIR Only 32gb enough for OS

    Shipping $10 +/-

    Total $ 300 +/-

    Much smaller form factor, triple core APU, SSD for much faster boot time and no noise. Your memory should work with this MB but verify. I've had my HTPC for two years now and use it as a back up computer when needed so the larger case works well for me. If I was building another solely as an HTPC i'd probably go with something smaller like this to fit in with my surround sound reciever in my media center and keep temps cool.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822148698 this is the HDD i used but its sold out.

    Depending on how many programs you plan to run the SSD may not be a good option as it may not be large enough. But if your just going to have your OS and a few other programs it would work. You could always add an HDD down the road for music, movies etc.

    I picked up a wireless keyboard and mouse for 20$ and it works great.

    Wow i got a little long winded lol.
  17. edit: Thanks so much for the huge post above :P you made it a lot easier

    Once i figure out what i want, i'll update my post or do another reply to get your opinion xD
  18. Ok I think i finally got a build together, after looking at a couple of sites and after looking at toms, i'm in canada, so the prices might be a bit higher.

    Case: http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811204035
    (I couldn't find any other micro atx cases that looked like this for cheaper)

    AMD CPU + MOBO Combo (GPU is intergated in CPU I Think): http://www.newegg.ca/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.739041

    Ram: http://www.amazon.ca/Corsair-CMZ8GX3M2A1600C9B-Vengeance-PC3-12800-1600mHz/dp/B004QBUL1C/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1319556524&sr=8-1

    PSU: http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817371033

    HDD: http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822148698

    Wireless card: http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16833166063


    Ok so i think thats the best set up for me, total comes around 350~ ish without the ram,

    I wish i could find a cheaper case :( that looks similar.

    1. If there are any better options for any of the components for someone on a budget, id love to know!

    2. I need to know if everything is compatible, if everything would fit e.g. ram not touching anything, ram fitting in mobo, mobo good enough to fit in case etc..

    3. I also need recomandations for a wireless keyboard / trackpad, hopefully one with backlit keys.

    I already have the ram so thats why i can't go for a cheaper option

    Am i missing anything aside from a optical drive? and is this set up overkill for just streaming free tv shows / movies on megavideo / putlocker ?

    I really apperciate you guys answering, Thanks a lot!
  19. looks like a solid build. The chip/motherboard combo is nice and has the ability to overclock easily and possibly unlock a couple cores. I have the same chip which unlocked so i decided to put it into a gaming rig. So for my HTPC I rebuilt with this chip

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.739037

    (not as easy to oc/no unlocking of cores either) but more than enough for streaming video. Same mb which has integrated graphics (4250) and plays video flawlessly on my system. The Phenom chip is more powerful

    Case is nice looks like it has good ventilation....be sure to chk its dimensions and that it will fit where you intend to put it.

    Quality power supply, HDD looks good for your purpose, i used a usb wireless adapter which has worked great for me

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16833130066

    Backlit keyboard would be nice a nice touch. I believe the mb has "bio remote" feature which works with droid/iphone and allows some control from your phone...i have a windows phone so havn't been able to try it out. I googled it for more info

    I originally bought a similar case but found that while it fit in my media center it's dimensions didn't leave much room for airflow and computer temps went up by about 20 degrees from having it outside the media cabinet. Something to think about depending on your set up.

    Looks like you got it all....good luck and let us know how it turns out
  20. heyy guys, well ill keep this topic updated and once i get my parts ill upload pics and etc

    I was just wondering, do components / parts go on sale on boxing day?

    should i just wait till then or should i just go ahead and buy as soon as i can..
  21. ScrewySqrl said:



    huh..? I already have the parts i'm gunna buy, i asked if these things go on sale for boxing day or something
  22. depends where you are. christmas sales start on Black Friday/Cyber Monday
  23. bump deciding between ( i can only buy it at amazon.ca )

    http://www.amazon.ca/Corsair-CMPSU-430CXV2-Builder-Certified-Supply/dp/B004W2T2TM/ref=sr_1_4?m=A3DWYIK6Y9EEQB&s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1321594834&sr=1-4


    http://www.amazon.ca/Antec-Supply-Ea-500d-Earthwatts-Active/dp/B002VLYKDO/ref=sr_1_22?m=A3DWYIK6Y9EEQB&s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1321594834&sr=1-22


    which one is better for the price?

    corsair psu:
    47 dollars ( free shipping)
    430W ( i won't use more then this)


    the antec psu
    84 dollars ( free shipping)
    500W
    Recommended by a lot here.


    should i shell out 40 dollars more..?

    and i can only buy it at amazon, so its these 2 choices, unless theres a better option at amazon.ca

    and i need an answer before tomorrow :P, i need to use my gift card before then

    help me out here guys!!!!

    Thanks so much
  24. would be apperciated ALOT if someone could give me an answer to the above question
  25. Go with the Corsair and save the bucks.

    -Wolf sends
  26. corsair PSUs are very good, get that.
  27. They are both good PSU...i've used both brands in builds. Honestly since your system is designed as an HTPC and not going to be power hungry i'd save the money and go with the Corsair. I used a corsair 650w in my gaming rig and have had no problems. Don't think you can make a bad decision choosing either of those.
  28. Thanks, just ordered the psu :)

    now i just need to find a good micro atx mobo because my first choice isn't available lol

    is this a micro-atx mobo? even though it says atx;

    http://www.amazon.ca/ASUS-M4A89GTD-PRO-USB3-Motherboard/dp/B003964KK8/ref=sr_1_1?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1321675017&sr=1-1

    and is it any good for the price?
  29. No. It's not a Micro-ATX. Generally, Micro-ATX motherboards only have four expansion slots. Generally, their dimensions are 9.6"x9.6"

    -Wolf sends
  30. thanks a bunch.
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