Building a PC is not that hard... but a HTPC is a challenge! (1 Viewer)

jensnasholm

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  • December 21, 2005
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    Hi All,

    Trying to put together a HTPC at medium budget that is expandable in the future when I have some extra money to “invest†into the project. As this is the first time I am building a HTPC it would be great to get some feedback on the parts I have selected from all of you out there that have done this before. I have built a couple of PCs in the past but noise and heat was never an issue in those projects.

    Main HTPC priorities are
    Silence
    Receive/Play Digital TV
    Receive/Play FM Radio
    Play MP3 music
    Play DVD

    Secondary Priorities are
    Record TV


    Case: Silverstone LC13
    PSU: ZALMAN 300W NOISELESS ATX P4 POWER SUPPLY
    MB: Gigabyte GA-8I915P-DUO S775 915P PCIEx16 DualDDRII+DDR RAID SATA GLan audio
    CPU: Celeron D 351 (3.2 GHz)
    Video card: GeCube ATI Radeon X1300, DDR2, 256MB Edition, RX1300GE2-D3
    HDD: Seagate Barracuda 7200.7 ATA (120Gb) (Supposed to be very silent)
    DVD LG 4167BBS (Supposed to be one of the most silent ones)
    TV Tuner Digital Now DNTV Pro (FM Radio) (For AUS digital reception)
    RAM: 512Mb (DDR2)


    Any feedback is much appreciated!!

    Cheers,
    Jens
     

    Maz78

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    January 6, 2006
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    Hey There!

    I hear you mate. I'm contemplating a first time HTPC build as well!
    I'm lookign at the Silverstone LC10 case,
    The most confusing part for me is picking the right motherboard and tuner options.

    I'm looking at the new mATX boards with onboard 6150geforce gfx.
    These are targeted for HTPC builds and have everything on board. (Can always expand later).

    Your setup sounds rather reasonable. I'm considering one of the Digital Now TV Tuner's as well. Still not sure which one to go with!

    Good luck with it. :)
     

    onkl

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    February 18, 2005
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    Two/three tips:
    -The price/quantity ratio on 120 GB disks is getting rather poor. You may consider a 200/250, remember that recorded TV fills up quite fast.
    -You may want to consider a non-standard/stock CPU cooler. Check the Zalman site for relatively silent solutions.
    -Do consider that AMD64 (without the wish to open a AMD/Intel conflict) have a great cool'n quiet function, which helps a lot in keeping everything silent. (make sure the MB supports it)
     

    SiLenTYL

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    a P4 3.2 is *just enough*

    i would steer clear of Celerons as they are more budget than performance

    the rest is great...

    a zalman cpu cooler would make things cool and the fan noise would be barely noticable (only needed if u decide on a fast P4 and not the celeron, which are quiet)
     

    knutinh

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    September 4, 2005
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    I would like to add that "barely noticable " in terms of noise is very subjective, and the actual noise level will depend on:
    -ambient temperature
    -case ventilation
    -pc use
    etc

    Suffice to say that I have invested quite a bit of time and money in my p4 2.8 system to get it completely silent, but I can still hear it clearly at 4 meters range when the room is completely silent.

    It is not very irritating to me, but it would have been had I not used quiet components.

    regards
    Knut
     

    robomonkey

    Portal Pro
    August 4, 2005
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    I agree with knutinh that "barely noticable" is subjective, you should really compare the dB levels

    Personally I had a Seagate 7200.7 and I thought it was one of the loudest drives I've had in terms of high pitched whine.

    Now I always use Samsung Spinpoints, currently have an 80GB 160GB and 250GB in various machines.

    From a hardware comparison I read the ATI Express 200 mobos, slightly outpace the Nvidia based boards in their class, so take a lookat those as well.

    Noting that recording is secondry, I'd still suggest looking at the dual DVB cards that are now emerging, they aren't loads more expensive, but they will give you oodles more flexibility (Cinergy 2400i & Fusion HDTV)

    Robo
     

    aasmund Nordal

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    June 20, 2005
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    You could move the entire htpc somewhere else and just make the wire for the powerbutton and wireless mouse/keyboard/remote reciver longer.

    You could get other extenal things like usb ports, dvd burner and so on.

    Need some work to make it look good but at least it would solve the power/silent problem.

    Use an old casette player and put usb ports, buttons and the rest in it.
    Should be fun if you like casemoding.
     

    jensnasholm

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  • December 21, 2005
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    G'Day all,

    Thanks for all the feedback...it forced me to spend another night resarching what components to use :D

    So after last nights research this is what i am planning to go with instead, unless someone out there can find some major issues with this setup.

    Case: Silverstone LC13
    PSU: ZALMAN 300W NOISELESS ATX P4 POWER SUPPLY
    MB: Gigabyte GA-K8N51PVMT-9 Athlon 64 S939 nVidia GeForce 6150
    CPU: AMD 64 3500
    Video card: Onboard graphics
    HDD: Samsung Spinpoint 200Gb
    DVD: LG 4167BBS (Supposed to be one of the most silent ones)
    TV Tuner: Digital Now DNTV Pro (FM Radio) (For AUS digital reception)
    RAM: 512Mb (DDR400)

    Cheers,
    Jens
     

    knutinh

    Portal Pro
    September 4, 2005
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    I would have swapped the zalman PSU for a seasonic s12 330W. If for no other reason that it is tested (best in test) by a reputable noise website, and that the manufacturer have a long record in providing low noise, non-nonsense PSUs.

    regards
    Knut
     

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