Solved

HTPC Llano based need help

Use to build all the time but this will be my first new computer in at least 4 years. Reason: I'm cutting the cable.

Approximate Purchase Date: February
Budget Range: <1000
Usage: OTA DVR>Netflix>minimal gaming (old school like Diablo 2 and baldurs gate)
Only Website for Parts: newegg.com
Country: USA
Parts Preferences: A AMD Llano is the only nonchanger
Overclocking: No
SLI or Crossfire: No
Monitor resolution: Not sure my HDTV
Additional Comments: Quiet; trying to make it a nice fun build that will replace my DVR and cable service

Parts:

CPU - AMD A8-3850
Motherboard - Gigabyte GA-75M-D2H uATX any other suggestions but this looks good to me
RAM - 8 GB (2x4GB) G.SKILL Ripjaws 1866 again looks good

Case - NEED HELP built in PSU a good thing. I like cubes personally but HTPC style is okay if a better fit for MOBO
HDD - NEED HELP Thinking a 500gb-1TB leaning towards a TB so I can have TV recordings as well as some torrents
considering a SSD for OS which will probably be Win 7 64
PSU - How much juice should I be looking for and is there a decent case with a good PSU?
Optical Drive - Just need a player of some sort, doubt I'll need blu-ray but if its cheap might as well
Antenna card - ???? Very confused, but if possible two tuners so I can watch one channel well recording another
Remote control- ???? I've heard I can make my Android phone a remote control?
Keyboard/mouse- A good wireless setup for at least 12 feet away

If you need more info let me know. Things have become a bit more confusing since I last built a computer. Of course then I didn't need a computer that was specific for anything but hard core gaming and thus making a system was just put in as much juice that existed at the time.

Thanks!
13 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about htpc llano based help
  1. The integrated graphics in the CPU should meet all your needs. No need for an extra card. Motherboard is also fine.

    Save some money on the ram and get 1333 speed since you are not building a benchmarks for bragging rights rig here. You also do not need the type with fancy heat sinks unless you just happen to find a deal. The plain "unclothed" variety will be sufficient.

    For cases, I would look at Silverstone. They have various styles, many of which include a top quality power supply. 300 watts should be excellent.

    With the hard drive shortage, good deals are not to be had. For larger capacities, the Western Digital Green series might be your best bet right now. they are a bit slower, but that is not really an issue in this type of rig. I would get at least a 1tb to start with and possibly add more capacity later. Such media can fill up a hard drive faster than you think. You could also get an external to back stuff up on that you want to keep long term.

    I would look at Samsung DVD or Blue Ray drives. Generally very smooth and quiet.

    The top notch choice for TV cards is Hauppage. The other brands are a distant 2nd. They do make dual tuner models also. Most models come with a remote although I use the keyboard/trackball thing mostly.

    Which brings us to the keyboard. There are various schools of thought on this from phone sized micro keyboards, to full size. I went with something in between. http://www.iogear.com/product/GKM681R/

    It has it's quirks, but overall works well for me. One of the quirks was that some of the letter keys are only accessible by first pressing the function key. There may be a way around it, I just have not researched as yet as I really do not do a lot of typing on it.

    Mostly it works for me like a slightly oversized game controller. With one hand on either side, the trackball is under the thumb, and the right/left mouse buttons can be had on the front or by the trackball, whichever is most comfortable. I find the front to be the most convenient. The trackball can also be a bit tricky to get set right, but once it is, it is fine.

    It is not very game friendly though IMO. A wireless Xbox style controller or a traditional keyboard mouse might be better. i do not do game controllers, but this keyboard/mouse combo is very good. http://www.walmart.com/ip/Logitech-Wireless-Combo-MK360/17300885
  2. AMD A8-3870K Unlocked Llano 3.0GHz Socket FM1 100W Quad-Core Desktop APU with DirectX 11 Graphic AMD Radeon HD 6550D AD3870WNGXBOX
    $144.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819106001

    SILVERSTONE Sugo Series SG07-BW Black Aluminum / SECC Mini-ITX Desktop Computer Case 600W 80+ Bronze Certified / Single +12V rail Power Supply
    $209.99 and a $10 rebate makes it $199.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811163170

    ASUS F1A75-I Deluxe FM1 AMD A75 (Hudson D3) HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Mini ITX AMD Motherboard
    $139.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131789

    Seagate Barracuda Green ST1500DL003 1.5TB 5900 RPM 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
    $119.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822148725

    CORSAIR Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CML8GX3M2A1600C9B
    $49.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820233196

    SAPPHIRE 100314-3L Radeon HD 6870 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card
    $164.99 and a $20 rebate makes it $144.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102948

    Corsair Force Series GT CSSD-F90GBGT-BK 2.5" 90GB SATA III Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
    $139.99 and a $30 rebate makes it $109.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820233205

    HDHomeRun DUAL - High Definition Digital TV Tuner (Network Attached) HDHR3-US (Black) by SiliconDust
    $99.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16815345007

    The total for this HTPC is $1009.91 and it might not be what you were expecting but it does fit the purpose that you had in mind. The case comes with a 600w psu and Silverstone is a quality psu vender. I also chose the unlocked version of Liano since it came with a higher base speed and in the event that you might want to overclock just a bit at some point you do have that option. The tv tuner box connects to your network or your computer and will be able to recieve broadcast from an antenna and is dual channel. The SSD is 90gb and is big enough for Windows 7 64 Bit and all the updates and your main application and/or game.
  3. @tlmck
    Thanks for all the info on the keyboard options. I think I'll probably have a full keyboard/mouse like the logitech. And also a Xbox controller for playing some games.

    @inzone
    Do you think I will really need the extra video card? I thought by going with the Llano it would set me up for a nice smooth video experience.
    Thanks for putting me onto the TV tuner. Hooking through the network seems like a great idea. Do you use the system and is there any hangups with streaming the TV instead of direct connecting?
  4. I did just read that if I went with a video card that is higher than a 6670 it would disable the onboard graphics thus making the extra money for the CPU pointless, can anyone confirm this?
  5. Will Diablo 2 even run on an AMD A8-3850 correctly? I tried to run Unreal Tournament on a dual core once... and I swear I was outrunning the bullets from my guns. lol, the funniest thing... when the opening video ran... the audio couldnt keep up with the video.

    I had to reset up a single core computer just to be able to run it back in the day.
  6. IMO the nicest m-ATX home theater case is the silverstone GD 05
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811163166

    http://www.legitreviews.com/article/1348/1/

    Nice clean lines . Fits a full ATX power supply , and full sized graphics and/or expansion cards . The three 1200 fans are quiet anyway but do a 9 volt cable mod and they are silent and still have enough air flow for an HTPC
  7. flampton said:
    I did just read that if I went with a video card that is higher than a 6670 it would disable the onboard graphics thus making the extra money for the CPU pointless, can anyone confirm this?


    What Inzone created was a very decent mid-high level gaming PC which is kind of overkill for an HTPC and the games you run. I would start with the integrated video and if you find it lacking, then you can add in a 6670 card as a Crossfire option. http://www.amd.com/us/products/technologies/dual-graphics/pages/dual-graphics.aspx

    For what it's worth, I run my HTPC on lower level AMD 4250 integrated graphics, but I do not game on that machine. It is mostly a glorified DVR for local over the air broadcast(I like old reruns), and I watch some current TV shows online through the browser, plus the occasional movie.
  8. Okay I've decided that though I have a 1000 to spend on a HTPC I definitely don't need to. So I was kinda of thinking of going with a low power, low energy consuming machine that still can play those old school games and some emulator stuff. So here is a retry let me know what you think of this setup please...oh and some more questions to follow :)

    CPU - AMD A6-3500 Llano 2.1GHz (2.4GHz Max Turbo) Socket FM1 65W Triple-Core Desktop APU with DirectX 11 Graphic AMD Radeon HD 6530D AD3500OJGXBOX
    89.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819103951

    Motherboard -GIGABYTE GA-A75M-D2H FM1 AMD A75 (Hudson D3) HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Micro ATX AMD Motherboard
    84.99 rebate 74.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128517

    RAM - 8 GB CORSAIR Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMZ8GX3M2A1600C9B
    49.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820145345

    Case - SILVERSTONE Black Aluminum / 0.8mm SECC Grandia Series GD05B micro-ATX / Mini-DTX / Mini-ITX MB, 1x5.25", 2x3.5"+1x2.5"HDD or 1x3.5"+2x2.5"HDD, 3x120mm golf bladed fan, 11" expansion card capable HTPC Case
    89.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811163166#top

    HDD - Seagate Barracuda Green ST2000DL003 2TB 5900 RPM 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
    129.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822148681

    SSD - Corsair Force Series 3 CSSD-F60GB3A-BK 2.5" 60GB SATA III Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
    94.99 - 79.99 after rebate
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820233223

    PSU - CORSAIR Builder Series CX430 V2 (CMPSU-430CXV2) 430W ATX12V v2.3 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply
    44.99 - 16.99 after rebates
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139026

    Optical Drive -ASUS Black 12X BD-ROM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-ROM SATA Internal Blu-ray Drive Model BC-12B1ST/BLK/B/AS - OEM
    57.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827135247

    Over the Air tuner- HDHomeRun DUAL - High Definition Digital TV Tuner (Network Attached) HDHR3-US (Black) by SiliconDust
    $99.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6815345007

    Keyboard/mouse- IOGEAR GKM561R Black 2.4GHz Wireless HTPC Multimedia Keyboard with Laser Trackball and Scroll Wheel
    39.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16823176018

    Gaming -Microsoft JR9-00011 Xbox 360 Wireless Controller for Windows (Can't believe this costs more than the keyboard/mouse...smh)
    43.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16823109243

    OS - Microsoft Windows 7 Professional SP1 64-bit - OEM
    139.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16832116992

    831.90 (without rebates)
    31.81 shipping
    863.71

    Okay some final questions
    Considering this case instead because of the front USB 3.0 and the smaller size-
    SILVERSTONE Black Aluminum skin reinforced plastic front panel, 0.8mm SECC body MILO Series ML03B Micro ATX Media Center / HTPC Case
    59.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811163174

    however it has no cooling. Would I need to add 80mm fans to this? Also will I need a better heatsink for the CPU then stock?
    Can I get away without windows at all and go just with Ubuntu?
    Are SSD good for these setups or is this just a bragging thing? plus 60GB enough or definitely go for 90GB? The system will always be on for the DVR capabilites.
    I wanted to go with the smaller Llano for the 65 watt TDP, do I really save much on energy if I don't push the bigger Llanos?
    Am I going too crazy on the memory?
    Are the XBox controllers pretty much the standard for playing game nowadays?
    Still love to hear from someone who has used the dual tuner that was recommended.

    Again thanks for all the advice so far. I think I've picked up something from all the comments.

    Eric
  9. flampton said:
    @tlmck
    Thanks for all the info on the keyboard options. I think I'll probably have a full keyboard/mouse like the logitech. And also a Xbox controller for playing some games.

    @inzone
    Do you think I will really need the extra video card? I thought by going with the Llano it would set me up for a nice smooth video experience.
    Thanks for putting me onto the TV tuner. Hooking through the network seems like a great idea. Do you use the system and is there any hangups with streaming the TV instead of direct connecting?



    I actually use my blue ray player for internet to my tv for Netflix , Hulu , Amazon and others plus because it's connected to the network it actually sees the other computers on the network and can recieve music and video from them.
  10. You can use Linux for this and the good thing is it doesn't take up as much space as windows does so you could get away with a 60gb SSD. The good thing about a SSD is that is makes everything faster and snappier in the OS.
    You would need to add a fan or two for air flow and since you will not be overclocking or intense gaming the stock cooler would be fine.
    Since ram is so cheap right now you can't go wrong with 8gb for $50 and it's there if it's needed.
  11. Best answer
    The new APU should still do what you need.

    You can certainly do the SSD, but it is really an unnecessary expense for this application.

    As for Ubuntu, it is perfectly fine, but you really need to do your homework on a few things. First, I would check the compatibility of your games with Wine. http://appdb.winehq.org/ They are older games so they should be OK, but it never hurts to double check.

    Second, I would look into adding Mythbuntu on top for the HTPC stuff. It is downloadable through the Ubuntu Software Center. I would also check the Mythbuntu site for compatibility with your TV box.

    Same holds true with game controller. You might have to switch to a Logitech or something.

    As to Windows, unless you need the features in Professional, Home Premium would work just as well.

    You should also be fine on the case cooling, but if you do need to add fans, I would recommend Antec Tri-Cool. Has a three speed switch and are nearly silent even on high.
  12. Best answer selected by flampton.
  13. tlmck said:
    ...
    Same holds true with game controller. You might have to switch to a Logitech or something.
    ...


    Anything that supports the normal HID usb profile (read: pretty much any USB or wireless->USB receiver controller that's meant to be used with PCs) will work fine under Linux, you just won't use the vendor-provided software.

    In fact, you can use things like the 360 controllers or the sixaxis as well, but those require a little tinkering.
Ask a new question

Read More

New Build Systems Product