Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

HTPC and NAS/Storage advice

Last response: in Systems
February 17, 2012 8:49:29 PM

Hello all,
I have spent most of the day browsing forums trying to find the answers and advice on building a good HTPC and a good NAS/Server for my new house I am building. I would like blu-ray, 3d, TV, from my cable provider if possible, DVR, online gaming like LOTRO, downloaded movies, and want to store and backup my personal pictures, videos, music and be able to access this stuff from any of my other computers on my home network, or possibly while I am out of town. You know, just the basic things and such :-D My problem is, I am not sure what components go in which box, eg.. I know I want 4 x 1tbs HDD in the NAS, but do I need 1 x 1tbs HDD in the HTPC or will 500gbs work? Or do I need 2 HDD in the HTPC? Should I run a RAID 10 on the NAS, to make streaming from storage faster? From what I think I have read, I need to go from my modem into the NAS then out from there to the wifi router. Is that correct or if not what do I need to do? Also what extra components do I need to make all this work?? LOL I have build a few computers so I know what parts I need for a nice gaming desktop but the NAS / Server is a new thing for me. Am I way over thinking this whole thing, and it is as simple as just building two computers? :-)

So here is the template for the HTPC :


Approximate Purchase Date: 1 Month or so

Budget Range: up to 1000

System Usage from Most to Least Important: DVR, watching TV, movies

Parts Not Required: keyboard, mouse, I have a high end receiver w/ hdmi outs and a 65" flat panel hd tv

Preferred Website(s) for Parts:

Country: USA

Parts Preferences: would like small HTPC case if I have to have it by the TV, not can be kept in closet don't care :-)

Overclocking: no, unless by manufacturer

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe, I have sli experience but no idea about crossfire

Monitor Resolution: (e.g.: 65" widescreen flat panel hd tv

Additional Comments: none that I can think of :-)

And for the NAS / Server:


Approximate Purchase Date: 1 Month

Budget Range: up to 1000

System Usage from Most to Least Important: reliable storage with no lost data

Parts Not Required: keyboard, mouse, monitor

Preferred Website(s) for Parts:

Country: USA

Parts Preferences: Don't care

Overclocking: Maybe

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe

Monitor Resolution:

Additional Comments:


Thanx in advance. Sorry if this is in the wrong thread
February 18, 2012 8:56:50 AM

You shouldn't need to put the NAS outside your network. Any proper router can be configured to allow access to that particular port.

Your NAS speed is limited by the onboard networking and network speed. RAID is not needed.

I really like the NAS boxes
That's all you need.

Now onto the HTPC. You can't put it in the closet because you need to have remote control, and probably want wireless keyboard as well.

  • Western Digital AV-GP WD10EUCX 1TB IntelliPower SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
  • Hauppauge WinTV-DCR-2650 (CableCARD TV Tuner) 1450 USB 2.0 Interface
    Not real sure on this. Consult your cable provider.
  • GIGABYTE GV-R657OC-1GI Radeon HD 6570 1GB 128-bit DDR3 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready Video Card
    A smaller GPU, just to extend your ability a bit.
  • Sega Gift
    Came with the GPU, free
  • Antec EarthWatts Platinum Series EA-450 450W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS PLATINUM Certified Power ...
    You could spend less here, but it's going to run very cool and sip power
  • Mushkin Enhanced Essentials 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model 997029
    Low coltage RAM
  • ASUS P8Z68-V LE LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
    HAS onboard internal USB 3.0 connector
  • Rosewill RRC-126 Windows 7 Certified Media Center Infrared Remote Control with Netflix Function

  • Intel Core i3-2120T Sandy Bridge 2.6GHz LGA 1155 35W Dual-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 2000 BX80623I32120T
    Low heat CPU, but strong.
  • Microsoft Windows 7 Professional SP1 64-bit - OEM
    Professional for backups to the NAS... Premium does not have that functionality.
  • Crucial M4 CT064M4SSD2 2.5" 64GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
    A zippy SSD for your OS and programs
  • LIAN LI Black Aluminum PC-C60B ATX Media Center / HTPC Case
    Very nice case
    TOTAL: $1,169.89

    Did you need a Blu-ray burner or just player?
    February 18, 2012 1:37:56 PM

    Thank you for the fast response. May as well do the burner :-D I definitely want to be able to watch 3d. So from what I am seeing is, I just need to build a kick-butt computer for the HTPC. But more freeflowing than power hungry like a big arse gaming box. That sound about right?
    Related resources
    February 18, 2012 7:43:50 PM

    You want a quiet discrete machine as a priority. The less heat generated the better. You don't need a gaming machine, I gather, but the build provides some light capability in that area. It also has enough computational power to take care of the jobs that come up, like AV or backups, and still serve up the media with no lags.

    The build I made is on the strong side to be sure, but it's always better to err in that direction. If you had less total to spend I might well have done it another way.
    You could just do an AMD Llano build for instance in an ITX form factor. But it's good to keep the options open.

    Asus burner
    February 18, 2012 8:06:04 PM

    Yep I agree. I was wondering why it would be better to go with the external top box tv tuner instead of an internal one?
    February 18, 2012 8:16:06 PM

    It seems to be more compatible with digital cable, and provide more features... it's a cable box replacement it seems.

    It needs more research.... here is a good product description. Note that you get a CARD from the cable provider to make it work
    February 18, 2012 8:28:08 PM

    My tv is going above my fireplace and there is no room for many components. Since I am building the house I can have all the wiring ran through the walls before the drywall is put up. That's where the " keep it in the closet " statement came from. But yeah, I am trying to eliminate being able to see any components. Thank you for all the great work you have done. At least now I know what parts I need :-D
    February 18, 2012 8:34:04 PM

    You might want to check for WiFi control then. Perhaps a simple Android tablet might control that system in the closet ... then you would have a great deal more flexibility in all the parts, and actually save money.
    February 18, 2012 9:27:39 PM

    I was wondering why it would be better to go with the external top box tv tuner instead of an internal one?

    It seems to be more compatible with digital cable, and provide more features... it's a cable box replacement it seems.

    While I certainly respect Proximon's views and comments, I have to disagree with this statement. As Ceton InfiniTV4 PCI-E owner, I've had nothing but success with this card. Upgraded with the latest firmware, this internal card can do everything the Hauppauge card can do.

    Aside from being internal, I'd say the only difference between the two is that the Ceton card has more tuners (four vs. two) and rather than dynamically assigning a tuner to a specific extender/HTPC, the Ceton card will dedicate a tuner to an extender/HTPC in another room.

    That's not to say there is anything wrong with the Hauppauge DCR-2650. If that's all you need, there's no point in going with something as costly as the Ceton card and there is one con to going with the internal Ceton card; that being, it does get hot. While I've not had any issues with my card being seated right next to my HD4670 graphics card, I really would prefer to have some extra space between the two. Again, I've not had any issues. I've had two programs recording while watching a third and my HTPC never even hiccuped (see specs in my signature).

    Other than that, I don't see anything wrong with Proximon's build except for maybe the case. My only concern about the Lian Li case is the lack of rear fans. Maybe look at the nMediaPC 6000B as a less expensive alternative.

    Just a thought or two.

    -Wolf sends
    February 18, 2012 10:02:55 PM

    Especially since you are going to want to put this in the closet, I think you can afford the more expensive card. This build is getting more interesting :)  Maybe we can get some further recommendations also.

    I'm very interested in how the remote interface will work out.
    February 19, 2012 12:31:09 AM

    Yeah me too :-D the guy that is building my house ran all his wires upstairs. So in his living room all you see is the TV. His top box, stereo receiver, dvd player, vcr, all that stuff is upstairs in his components closet. And he just had to get a special universal remote that has good range and the signal can go through walls. It's pretty nice looking. But..... I have to be " that guy " and throw a kink in everything and want all the high tech stuff :-D LOL. So that's where I am at now. Just want clean install with no components or wires showing.

    Best solution

    February 19, 2012 6:34:33 AM
    February 19, 2012 1:47:45 PM

    Oh... I see some real opportunities here. ;) 

    If the house is being built and if you run networking throughout the house. I might consider going with a full ATX motherboard/case. The idea is to give you extra PCI-Ex1 slots to add in a second Ceton InfiniTV4 card later down the road; giving you a total of eight tuners. Then each tuner could be dedicated to separate rooms and you'd still have enough tuners for recording purposes and what not.

    Have a look at the Ceton Echo: (first 5 minutes)

    These haven't been released and the cost hasn't been announced yet, but imagine it. Each room that has an HDTV (or projector :D  ) and network wiring could have a Ceton Echo in it. Now you have the full capabilities (or near it) of having a Media Center in every room; each with it's own dedicated TV Tuner.

    -Wolf sends
    February 20, 2012 5:36:08 PM

    Nice!! I love savings. Thanx guy's for all the help.
    February 25, 2012 11:08:01 PM

    Best answer selected by Chridijon.