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Configuration for a media center cum programmer's desktop

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  • New Build
  • Desktops
  • Media Center
  • Configuration
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September 16, 2012 5:44:55 AM

Configuration for a media center cum programmer's desktop


Hi, I want to assemble a new desktop - a media center cum programming (with application servers, db servers, studios, etc) one. After so much research online, I have decided to buy the following parts:


Item Brand Model
---- ----- -----
CPU Intel i5 - 3450 / 3.1 GHz
Mboard ASUS P8H77-M PRO
Monitor Samsung LS22B370H (2ms) (existing)
Hdisk Seagate 1TB (6GB/S) SATA
RAM corsair 4GB * 2
DVD Writer Samsung

Please note that - I may use upto 3 optical drives in the near future. The Samsung monitor is an existing one. I am living in Chennai, TamilNadu, India.

I am not an expert in these things and so have so many questions and doubts. Can any one please answer any or all :)  of these questions? Any suggestion is welcome. If possible, pls give good alternative solutions also. My advance thanks!

Question 1: Is the above config a good one? Is there anything better? I am not into gaming. I want excellent video and audio and high data transfer (between pend drive to HDD or external HDD to internal HDD).

Question 2: Is intel DH77KC is a better mother board than the ASUS one mentioned above? The ASUS is mATX and the Intel is ATX. Is that the only difference? Which is more durable? Is there any better motherboard with H77 chipset?

Question 3: What kind of cabinet is good? Pls note that I will use upto 3 optical drives. Also, I would like to have 4 USB ports and a headphone socket in the front. Is it possible?

Question 4: Should I buy a separate SMPS or the one that comes with the cabinet is enough? If it is better to buy a separate smps, which brand and what wattage I have to go for?

Question 5: I want to buy an APC UPS. what model and what VA is the best? Some ppl say 600 VA is enough including my monitor but others say 700 VA is a safer bet if I want power for my monitor also (30 W is it's peak wattage).

My advance thanks again!

More about : configuration media center cum programmer desktop

September 16, 2012 2:21:01 PM

Nothing obviously wrong with the build. If you are not overclocking you don't have any specific needs, in terms of RAM TYPE, that you don't specify. What you ideally need for RAM is 1600 MHz Cas9 DDR3.
As you are not having seperate graphics card, if you can get it, where you are, the i5-3475S has better onboard graphics, than the one you've chosen. The only other i5, with the better graphics is the i5-3570K. That's the one that can be overclocked, but there's no reason not to use it, just because your not actually overclocking.
The only main thing that the mATX boards don't have is a lot of spare expansion slots, for extras, like graphics cards, but that's not an issue for you. The Asus is certainly very good quality, and has all you're likely to need.
As to cases, your slight difficulty may be in having 4 USB front ports. Something like the Corsair Carbide 500r, whilst slightly "overkill" in some respects, has all your needs, other than only 3x USB (2 of them USB 3), and is very high quality, and not ridiculously expensive. You have plenty more USB at the rear.
Ventilation in that case is a lot more than you need, so should be possible to run fans at reduced speed, so quiet.
If you are not having a seperate graphics card you only need modest power supply, although it may be worth having around 500w, just in case you do add GPU, later. No problem with being a bit oversized, provided it's a good quality PSU. Antec Basiq, are a good budget power supply. Seasonic are very good quality, if a bit pricey. BeQuiet, XFX, Corsair also pretty good. Difficult to give specific one, without knowing whay's available.
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September 23, 2012 8:48:50 AM

Thank you so much for the answer! It is informative. The 3475S is not available here and the 3570K is 3000 rupees more here!!! :( . If the difference in video quality is significant, I will try to buy this one. Pls let me know if it is significant. Also, the difference between 2*4GB modules of Corsair 1333 MHz and 1600 MHz is about 1000 rupees. If the difference in performance is significant, I will go for the 1600 MHz modules as you suggested. Pls let me know if it is.

By the way, I live in Chennai, India.

As for the PSU, We don't have too many models in Antec and Seasonic here. None in the BeQuiet,XFX or OCZ. There are many Corsair models available though. I spent a lot of time on the net and narrowed my choice to two Corsair models - Corsair CX430 V2 (430 watts) and Corsair GS500 (500 watts). The former one is rated "Gold" and the latter one "Silver" at the "hardwaresecrets" site. In "newegg" site also, both of them are rated very high. The wattage calculator at ASUS (http://support.asus.com/powersupply.aspx) recommends I have to go for at least 350 watts and the mother board user manual also says the same. The thermaltake psu calculator (http://www.thermaltake.outervision.com/) suggests 400 watts. Pls let me know your thoughts.

the Corsair cabinets are a bit costly for my budget (which is 50k rupees or about 1000 dollars) :(  . But I can find a local brand. The zeebronics I already have is a decent one with four USBs in the front. I may buy the same one again.

My advance thanks! I hope I am not imposing too much!

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