Looking to build a HTPC to run Ubuntu/XMBC on my old non-HD TV and analog stereo (but with option to upgrade to HDTV in the future). Top priorities are smooth performance for media playback and streaming (including Flash formats such as Hulu and Youtube, but not necessarily Netflix/Silverlight), energy efficiency, and budget. I will not do any gaming, so any additional performance is secondary. Leaning toward a Celeron build but also considering E350. I am planning to keep most content on external HDD so leaning toward SSD for speed. I have a gift certificate from Newegg so prefer to get items there unless I am missing a major discount. Total budget around $300, looking to purchase within the week.
This is my first build so I would appreciate help with checking parts compatibility and anticipating any rookie mistakes.
Will this work with my TV/stereo? Do I have all the necessary connections, or is there a more efficient way? With my regular-def TV, would there be any advantage of doing HDMI-to-TV?
Do I need any extra fans for cooling?
Do folks with experience with XMBC recommend keyboard, mouse, media remote, or all three?
What would be the likely disadvantage of a cheaper MB, such as ECS or MSI?
Thanks for the vote of confidence! Apologies for posting an outdated case. I swear it was in stock when I posted it. Only problem with the MI-008 in your link is that it is Mini-ITX but I believe the Asrock MB is Micro-ATX, but I should be able to find a comparable case in a similar price range. Or is there a Mini-Itx MB that you would recommend as comparable to the AsRock? That would give me more case options.
Intel Celeron G540 Sandy Bridge 2.5GHz LGA 1155 65W Dual-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics BX80623G540
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1 SAMSUNG DVD Burner SATA Model SH-224BB
SAMSUNG DVD Burner SATA Model SH-224BB - OEM
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1 ENCORE ENEWI-1XN45 Wireless N150 Adapter with 5 dBi antenna, IEEE 802.11b/g/ n 2.0 PCI Express Up to 150Mbps
ENCORE ENEWI-1XN45 Wireless N150 Adapter with 5 dBi antenna, IEEE 802.11b/g/ n 2.0 PCI Express Up to 150Mbps
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$39.99 -$26.00 Instant $13.99
1 Rosewill RHRC-11002 Windows 7 Certified MCE IR Remote Controller/Windows 8 MCE + Small USB Dongle Type, with Netflix CD
Rosewill RHRC-11002 Windows 7 Certified MCE IR Remote Controller/Windows 8 MCE + Small USB Dongle Type, with Netflix CD
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$34.99 -$15.00 Instant $19.99
1 Coboc 6 ft. 3.5mm Stereo Male to 2 RCA Male Cable (Black)
Coboc 6 ft. 3.5mm Stereo Male to 2 RCA Male Cable (Black)
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1 PC MAC VGA to TV AV Composite RCA S-Video Converter Box
PC MAC VGA to TV AV Composite RCA S-Video Converter Box
Sold by Imagestore What's this?
Yes, but biostar is bad for rebates. You have to make copies of everything and remind them after 12 weeks to mail it to you. But they will send it if you follow directions exactly. Hardest part is peeling off the id label on the motherboard box. You'll need a copy of the rebate form for warranty since the label with the serial number will be taken off the box for the rebate. I sent in a biostar board and they got me a replacement in only nine days.