Completed My Coolermaster CMedia 260 (1 Viewer)

djmarzel

Portal Member
May 4, 2006
20
0
Hello everyone,

After a few weeks of browsing forums, searching for components and building, I finally finished my brand new HTPC...Off course with Mediaportal...

I thought it would be nice to post my configuration and experience with you...

3fd406c94df9b24599b9b5cde12906d8.jpg


At first... the case... Because of the nice design of my Pioneer DTS-system and TV I wanted a htpc-case that just looks like a cd-player.
That's why I choose the Coolermaster CM Media 260.

This is a very small case with build in IrDa-sensor and VFD from Soundgraph (Imon).

Then the mainboard... In needed as many components as possible onboard, because of the lack of space in the Coolermaster HTPC. I am an Intel-freak, so it had to be Intel.
I choose the MSI 945GM2, an Micro-ATX mainboard with onboard ALC880 High Definition Audio (with Toslink/SPDIF connector !!!), Onboard Gbit-LAN, SATA300, Firewire and the whole shit more...

Then I choose for the Intel Dual Core Pentium D 2,66 Ghz CPU, and 1 GB Kingston DDR2 Memory.

Because of the limitations of the onboard Videocard, I bought an Asus PCI-Express VGA-card with Geforce 6600 256 Mb, Passive Cooled.

Note: You have to buy extra Riser-accesory with the Coolermaster-case, It's not delevired with it. This includes Riser for PCI-E and PCI.

Harddisk a Samung Spinpoint SATA300 80Gb...Just this small, because of a server in the office which hosts my MP3/Movies etc...
I choose the Samsung, because It's really silent.

DVD-Rewriter: NEC 4570, Just a good, cheap writer. But......Not quiet at all !!!! I don't care, don't use it at all...

PSU: Zalman ZM360B-APS 360W ATX2.2: This is a must to have!!! It really doesn't make noise at all...

Remote: MCE Keyboard + Remote, and off course the Imon-thing that was delivered with the case but my girlfriend likes the MCE-one...

TV-Card: FloppyDTV, Internal Firewire DVB-C TV-Tuner... In the Coolermaster-case you can pull open a cover, behind the cover is the CAM-module. In my case I Don't need one, because channels are FTA.

Tv-Card 2: KNC-One DVB-C Tuner PCI. Not yet implemented in the case... Friend of mine is testing with it now.

The first problem with the case was the noise! Coolermaster installed 6cm coolers in the case rotating at about 2400rpm....That's sounds not really great. Easy solution for that was 2 FanMates from Zalman. I reduced the speed a bit, and now It's almost silent.

The case-coolers weren't the only problem... I had the Intel-cooler on my CPU. The Dual Core is very fast, but has a small problem....HEAT! It get's very hot and then the cooler will switch to full power (read: full noise).

Did some research again and finally bought an CoolerMaster Hyper L3 cooler, which just fits in the Case. It has a very big passive-cooling unit with heatpipes, and a 9cm silent fan.

Now, the CPU stays cold and the whole HTPC is very, very quiet.
Finally I added an 12cm fan (big=noiseless) outside the case to get rid of the heat out of the cabinet where the HTPC is located in.
This is a little insurance in case it gets hot this summer.

Small extra detail: As cooling-compound, I used Arctic Silver 5 Premium. Just costs a few Euro's, and brings temperature a few degrees down again.

After the whole hardware part was working very great, did some bios-settings including the enabling of S3-standby and USB-Power on. Now I can resume the HTPC with the MCE-remote... It's up and running in about 2 seconds or less...

Did some measuring. In standby-mode the PC needs about 3Watts of power. Almost nothing. Very nice!

Well, the software Installation.... At first I installed the whole system with MCE2005 and Mediaportal. Tip: Don't do this.

I don't know why, but Mediaportal gets very unstable and lots of function work buggy. Took me 1 week to found out that problem.

Now I'm running with XP Pro Service Pack 2, including all updates and Mediaportal 0.2 RC4.

As video-decoder I use Nvidia Purevideo-codecs. That's a really great codec! No more CPU load (it useshardware-decoding from my Geforce 6600), and really, really amazing picture/sound quality.

My Philips-Widescreen TV (100Hz CRT) is connected with a High-Quality SVHS (S-Video)-Cable. This cable costs about 60 Euros, but it's really worth the money !

My Pioneer DTS-receiver is connected with Toslink-cable (SPDIF).

I've personalised my Mediaportal with lot's of great things... What about emulators for Nintendo, Sega, Nintendo64, Playstation etc. etc. Now I can just launch a game direct from Mediaportal, fullscreen.

With the coming of the games to the HTPC, my girlfriend was playing the games the whole day, so I added another feature...
A Logitech Cordless Rumplepad 2.... Now she has a good-looking gamepad, wireless !

The picture-quality when watching TV or DVD with the HTPC is much better than watching direct from the Tunerbox from the Cable-provider or my dvd-player.

Well, at last I have one Note for everyone interested in building this config: Use Intel's Dual Core 2 CPU. This CPU doesn't has the heat-problems. It will save you losts of Headaches. Or use AMD if you want.

mediacenter.jpg
 

Domipheus

New Member
September 16, 2006
2
0
Home Country
Scotland Scotland
Hey, I have been trying to find a supplier of this case in the UK in silver but am having no luck, you wouldnt be from the UK would you?

Great post btw. A nice system you have there:)
 

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