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Need help with 2 new home system builds

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February 16, 2012 4:52:14 AM

Hey guys, I wanted to look for suggestions on 2 new builds I’m going to create for some friends of mine. Some of the computers they were looking at on HP and Dell were way too expensive and I thought I could do better for cheaper and make a much better system with free labor. So this is my attempt! I am still very new to this so (going to be 3rd and 4th build) so please let me know where I might be able to make improvements.
Approximate Purchase Date: This Month

Budget Range:
System 1: 500-600 Before Rebates
System 2: 1000 Very flexible

System Usage from Most to Least Important:

System 1: Basic Family computer – Watching/streaming videos, multiple browsers, word processing (I’m thinking basic needs while maintaining fast boot)

System 2: Multimedia center – Watching/Streaming videos, Stream/record TV (Tv Tuner), music, Play videos from camera, etc.

Parts Not Required:
System 1: Monitor, keyboard, mouse
System 2: monitor

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Open to anything, I normally use Newegg

Country: US

Parts Preferences: I prefer Intel. Open to suggestions though.

Overclocking: No

SLI or Crossfire: No

Monitor Resolution:
System 1: 1024x768 to 1600x1200
System 2: 1920x1080

Additional Comments:

System 1: His main concern is to have a “fast” computer, So im looking at including an SSD. He also wants a compact system, So I was looking at mini –ATX boards/cases. I don’t believe a GPU would be necessary for this build and would be fine with just an i3 with integrated graphics.


What I Have so far!

System 1:
ASRock H61M/U3S3 LGA 1155 Intel H61 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Intel Core i3-2120 Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz LGA 1155 65W Dual-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 2000 BX80623I32120
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Mushkin Enhanced Silverline 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model 996770 ---- A bit overkill but its great memory for only $10 more
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Seagate Barracuda ST500DM002 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Crucial M4 CT064M4SSD2 2.5" 64GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

APEX TM-524 Black Metal / ABS Micro ATX Tower Computer Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

LG DVD Burner 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 8X DVD+R DL 24X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM Black SATA Model GH24NS70 - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Grand total for system 1: $573.92



System 2:

Never built a media center before this will be a bit interesting!

Intel Core i7-2600K Sandy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 3000 BX80623I72600K
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I understand that having a K series and not overclocking is kinda a waist but the difference I have seen between the integrated graphics (2000 vs. 3000) actually would benefit the 3D processing. Also - going to an i7-2600K from an i5-2500k would be better for video encoding.

GIGABYTE GA-Z68X-UD3H-B3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Mushkin Enhanced Silverline 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model 996770
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

2xSAMSUNG EcoGreen F4 HD204UI 2TB 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Should be plenty to start.

LIAN LI Black Aluminum PC-C33B ATX Media Center / HTPC Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Sony Optiarc Black 12X BD-R 2X BD-RE 16X DVD+R 12X DVD-RAM 8X BD-ROM 8MB Cache SATA 12X Half Height Tray Blu-ray Writer BD-5300S - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

AVerMedia 3D AVerTV CaptureHD Hybrid, True HD 1080i, Support 3D TV, HDMI/HDCP c
http://www.expresspcparts.com.au/Items/drp-111-alt-avtv...

Yea, I know it's in Australia. would be $170 total to get it here.

COOLER MASTER Silent Pro M600 RS-600-AMBA-D3 600W ATX12V V2.3 SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Bronze Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I have this system at about $1,350.


So there ya go, thanks guys for all your criticisms (constructive :)  ) and support! If you think these builds are set, let me know too. Confirmation is always a great thing!

More about : home system builds

February 16, 2012 8:16:01 PM

Personally I'd look at the AMD FM1 socket, those CPU's are great for multimedia machines. Intel HD isn't actually that great for HD video, I know a lot of people who get small amounts of stutter on it when viewing HD content. Even the lowest end AMD fusion CPU's have much better integrated graphics than any Intel CPU currently.

Something like this would be good for machine #1:

AMD A6-3500 - $79.99
ASRock A75M-ITX - $89.99
Mushkin Enhanced Essentials 4GB (2 x 2GB) - $21.99
Crucial M4 64GB - $94.99
SAMSUNG Spinpoint M8 2.5'' 500GB - $89.99
SAMSUNG 8X Slim Internal DVD Burner - $25.99
StarTech SLSATAADAP Female Slimline SATA to SATA Adapter - $10.99 (So the slim optical drive will go in that case and connect to this mobo/PSU.)
Antec ISK 310-150 - $79.99

Total - $493.92 + OS = ~$590

3 cores, decent graphics and a good SSD will make this a quick machine and it shouldn't ever pull more than like 90W under full load. Also, that case is absolutely tiny.
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February 16, 2012 8:29:26 PM

I know right? The case is way small which is what he was looking for. I appreciate the input and I'll look into those components a little more. Have any ideas on the HTPC?
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February 16, 2012 9:57:47 PM

Yeah sure.

My first observation would be that the i7 seems quite overkill, it's quite expensive and the graphics aren't that great. I think pretty much any quad core would be fine even for the encoding. I have a first generation i5 and it's still pretty quick for that kind of thing.

The PSU is also massively overkill, that rig would pull around 100W, maybe 150W absolute maximum. (Under load)

I'm somewhat of an Intel fanboy but for a media machine like this I would certainly go with AMD Llano.

AMD A8-3870K
Kingston HyperX Blu 8GB (2 x 4GB)
ASRock A75M FM1
Crucial M4 64GB
Seagate Barracuda Green 2TB
LIAN LI Black Aluminum PC-C37B
SeaSonic S12II 380B 380W
LITE-ON Black 12X Blu-ray Burner
Scythe SCSK-1100
Logitech K400

Total: $839.90

After your TV card and OS you hit around $1050.

You lose some raw processing power but I don't think you would even notice it in a HTPC. The bonus here is that you have MUCH better graphics, a smaller version of that case, a SSD, Bluray burner and that nice keyboard/touchpad combo which is perfect for this kind of thing. I imagine this build would be quieter as well.
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February 16, 2012 9:58:48 PM

cpfergus1 said:
I know right? The case is way small which is what he was looking for. I appreciate the input and I'll look into those components a little more. Have any ideas on the HTPC?


Before I answer that - are you planning on gaming with this build? That CPU is way overkill - you could get by with an i3-2120 and save an extra $200 on it.

Try something like this:

Case; http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite... - Silverstone HTPC Case - $149.99
PSU: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite... - Corsair CX600 - $69.99
Motherboard: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite... - Intel DLH67CLB3 - $89.99
CPU: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite... - 3.3GHz Intel Core i3-2120 - $129.99
Cooler: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite... - Cooler Master Vortex - $24.00
RAM: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite... - PNY 8GB 1333MHz - $49.99
SSD: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite... - 128GB Crucial M4 - $179.99
HD: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite... - Seagate Momentus XT 750GB SSD Hybrid - $129.99
Optical: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite... - LG BD-R Burner - $79.99
Video Card: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite... - Sapphire Radeon HD 6850 - $149.99
Keyboard / Mouse: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite... - Microsoft Wireless Desktop 5000

Total: $1,140.98
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February 16, 2012 10:35:30 PM

The idea for this second system is to be an HTPC. This system is supposed to record TV, burn Blu ray, hold all music, render 3d video live (why I chose to go with a K series for integrated graphics 3000) - no gaming has been considered for this machine. I know I went a bit overkill in some areas but as I stated above, I figured the CPU would be best for HD video encoding.

Also - from what I have read about HTPCs is once they are going you never really turn them off which is why I decided to blow off an SSD. Space wold be more important for this kind of build instead of boot times right?

I love the idea of switching to a cooler, quieter system. It's been a while since I have payed any attention to AMD CPUs, but because of your feed back, I'll spend some time tonight going over those parts and look at the integrated graphics on AMD.

I appreciate the great feedback and hope to hear some more ideas from you all.

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February 16, 2012 11:13:13 PM

- Without question, the i7 would encode faster than any other CPU we have mentioned but saving a few seconds here and there doesn't seem worth $200 extra.

- The SSD will also help program loading times and will make the HDD have to spin less meaning less noise and power consumption too.

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February 17, 2012 3:08:14 AM

Best answer selected by cpfergus1.
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February 17, 2012 4:14:07 AM

Quote:
Also - from what I have read about HTPCs is once they are going you never really turn them off which is why I decided to blow off an SSD. Space wold be more important for this kind of build instead of boot times right?


I can't see how that would affect an SSD at all. Having your system always on isn't going to affect drive performance. Having the SSD as your primary will make boot, load and burning times go a lot quicker. Yes space is important but so is speed which is why the Seagate Momentus comes into play here. The 2.5" form factor is great for an HTPC setup because the small form factors generate less heat compared to the full size 3.5" counterparts.
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February 17, 2012 4:38:48 AM

I'm sorry - I meant that it would not be utilized as much (mainly just to boot), but after looking around some more, I agree that an SSD would be ideal and I looked to include it in the build. Still going over the AMD Vs. Intel, but thank you once again for for your input so far I have this setup (again still looking into AMD):


SILVERSTONE Black Aluminum / 0.8mm SECC Grandia Series GD05B micro-ATX / Mini-DTX / Mini-ITX MB, 1x5.25", 2x3.5"+1x2.5"HDD ...
Model #:GD05B
Item #:N82E16811163166
$70.00

ASRock Z68M/USB3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard
Model #:Z68M/USB3
Item #:N82E16813157270
$84.99

CORSAIR Builder Series CX430 V2 (CMPSU-430CXV2) 430W ATX12V v2.3 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply
Model #:CMPSU-430CXV2
Item #:N82E16817139026
In Stock
$44.99

Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 3000 ...
Model #:BX80623I52500K
Item #:N82E16819115072
$229.99

CORSAIR Vengeance 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Low Profile Desktop Memory Model CML4GX3M2A1600C9
Model #:CML4GX3M2A1600C9
Item #:N82E16820233187
$31.99

Corsair Force Series 3 CSSD-F60GB3A-BK 2.5" 60GB SATA III Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
Model #:CSSD-F60GB3A-BK
Item #:N82E16820233223
$94.99

2xSAMSUNG EcoGreen F4 HD204UI 2TB SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
Model #:HD204UI
Item #:N82E16822152245
$319.98

Sony Optiarc Black 12X Half Height Tray Blu-ray Writer SATA BD-5300S - OEM
Model #:BD-5300S
Item #:N82E16827118065

XIGMATEK Durin D982 92mm Rifle Ultra Low profile CPU Cooler
Model #:D 982
Item #:N82E16835233059
$27.99

just about $990 without the AVerMedia 3D AVerTV CaptureHD Hybrid, True HD 1080i, Support 3D TV, HDMI/HDCP card

oh and yea I like the i3 idea too, probably going to drop to that if I go towards intel.
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