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Thoughts on my selection of new build? ($500, HTPC and home desktop)

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April 15, 2012 5:41:25 PM

I am looking at getting a new PC to replace my P4 2.4 with 1gig ram :whistle:  . This will be my home PC used for internetting and office primarily. In addition to this, it will also serve as my HTPC, where I run my TV as as secondary monitor in 1080 (as well as hosting a DLNA). No gaming requirements, but if I could get your thoughts, maybe if a certain component was a poor choice etc.

I've looked around but I haven't gotten a straight answer on this though: With the onboard video, can I run dual-screens? Is the onboard video with the i3 good enough to run a full HD mkv in 1080 lag-free?

My budget is around $500 preferably.

Thanks for your input!

Intel Core i3 2100 Dual Core Hyperthreading Processor LGA1155 3.1GHZ Sandy Bridge 3MB CPU

Gigabyte H67MA-D2H-B3 mATX LGA1155 H67 DDR3 SATA3 HDMI Crossfire Motherboard

Mushkin Enhanced Silverline Stiletto 8GB 2X4GB PC3-10666 DDR3-1333 9-9-9-24 Dual Channel Memory Kit

OCZ Vertex Plus 60GB 2.5IN SATA2 3Gbps Solid State Disk Flash Drive

LG GH22NS90 Super Multi 22X SATA DVD Writer Black OEM

OCZ FATAL1TY 550W ATX12V 20/24PIN Active PFC ATX Modular Power Supply 120MM Fan 80PLUS Black

Antec Mini P180 mATX Tower Case White 3X5.25 1X3.5EXT 5X3.5INT Front USB eSATA Audio

(I will add storage to this build)
April 15, 2012 8:49:02 PM

The GA H67MA D2H B3 does seem to support multiple monitors natively with the HDMI and DVI-D maxed out at 1920x1200 (it has FOUR total vga ports. insanity). That being said, the i3 2100 only has run-of-the-mill Intel HD 2000 graphics. The i3 2105 and the 2125 have HD 3000, which i think would run mkv 1080 better (i think their $20 extra).

I think you should downgrade your case a bit. $80 for a microAtx tower is a little pricey, especially for no psu. If you don't mind the size increase, then a good ATX mid tower for $50 should give you enough $$$$ for a cpu upgrade. also, Rosewill has both a MicroATX mini and a MicroATX mid tower from 35 to 40 w/ shipping.
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Anonymous
April 15, 2012 9:05:14 PM

there is no issues with HD playback with HD 2000
http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/graphics/display/intel...
and i haven't had any. i was watching a 1080p mkv while reading this post . .

but where are you getting that motherboard? i went to check prices to see if any alternatives exist and could find any in stock/active.
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April 15, 2012 9:48:53 PM

This setup is a package from a little local computer store, it's the only real info I have on it, sorry...

I can piece together the components by all means, I would rather spend the couple extra bucks if you guys think it'll be worth it.

I will check out the processors with HD 3000.

Is there another inexpensive mobo that would serve me better? All I'm really lookin for is HDMI, dual-screen ability, USB 3 and SATA 3. I don't plan on overclocking.


Thanks for the feedback so far!!
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April 15, 2012 10:02:28 PM

you seem to be hooked on Intel. Right now the AMD FM1 socket/processor is the best you can buy for what you want.
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April 17, 2012 4:35:48 AM

swifty_morgan said:
you seem to be hooked on Intel. Right now the AMD FM1 socket/processor is the best you can buy for what you want.


Most of what I've read has lead me to Intel. Maybe out of ignorance...

What would thoughts be on something like:

CPU - AMD A8-3870 Black APU Quad Core Processor W/ Radeon 6550D HD GFX Socket FM1 3.0GHZ 4MB Retail Box

MOBO - ASUS F1A75-M mATX FM1 DDR3 AMD A75 2PCI-E16 1PCI-E1 1PCI USB3.0 SATA3 HDMI DVI GBLAN Motherboard

Would run a little cheaper... What about the future though? In a year or three, I could get an i7 for cheap, would AMD still make a FM1 chip? It seems as though the i3 2125 beats the AMD except for in the graphics end... I don't plan on gaming, just HD video playback....
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Best solution

Anonymous
April 17, 2012 5:23:59 AM

just a suggestion for a HTPC/Home PC build


Intel Core i3-2120 Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz $127.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
ASRock H61M-GE LGA 1155 Intel H61 HDMI Micro ATX Intel Motherboard $62.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Antec EarthWatts Green EA-380D Green 380W Continuous power ATX12V v2.3 $39.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
PNY Optima 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 $24.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Western Digital Caviar Blue WD5000AAKS 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB $79.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Rosewill RANGER-M Dual Fans MicroATX Mini Tower Computer Case $39.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
SAMSUNG Black 12X BD-ROM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-ROM $64.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

$440.93

why deal with an IGP?
EVGA GeForce GT 520 1GB HDCP Ready Video Card $54.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


$495.92
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April 24, 2012 12:16:00 AM

Best answer selected by JohnnyT.
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