Newbie Hardware Selection Help Wanted (1 Viewer)

SimonDen

Portal Member
December 5, 2005
17
0
UK
Hi,

As you can see I am a newbie to this forum and this is my first post so please be gentle with me :)

I have been looking around the forums and think I have decided what hardware to go for, however I would appreciate any help/comments.

My setup needs to be small and stylish (so the G/F won't moan), and extremely quiet (i.e. not noticable from 1 meter and inaudible from 2 meters, again to keep the G/F happy). I appreciate that everyone wants these :)

I have a 42 Plasma with DVI input, and surround sound (BOSE) speakers.

I would like the HTPC to replace:
  • Cable Box
  • DVD Player (OK a no brainer)
  • Digital Amp

I would like the setup to do the the following:
  • Watch TV (NTL Cable)
  • Record TV (NTL Cable)
  • Digitise my CD collection
  • Have an EPG for NTL that downloads through the internet
  • The ability to do everything through the remote without need for mouse or keyboard (after setup)
  • Possibly digitise my DVDs (future)
  • Send audio/video to a receiver (extender), preferably my xbox
  • Must have wireless LAN

For the case, I am looking at the Silverstone LC11M as it is small and stylish and has a built in VFD. My questions on this are:
  1. Is the PSU quiet or would it benefit from a different PSU
  2. Are the case fans silent or can they be made less noisy if not (by adding a resistor, changing to 5v or replacing with silent fans).
  3. Are there any other better/quieter cases on the market
  4. How well does the remote work with Media Portal
  5. Can I use the PCI riser without the AGP part as I will hopefully be using onboard graphics in a board with PCI-e and don't want to buy the PCI-e riser

For the motherboard I am looking at the A8N-VM CSM, my questions on this are:
  1. Is the onboard graphics good enough for watching TV/DVDs
  2. Is the onboard soundcard good enough to power a decent set of 5:1 speakers without the use of an amp, if not is there a soundcard available to do this.
  3. I intend to use a SATA2 drive are the SATA leads that come with the board SATA2 compatible

For the CPU I am looking at waiting for the Sempron to be released, I assume that this it supports 'Cool and Quiet' technology, is this correct

For the DVB card I am looking at the FireDTV Floppy DVB-C as this is the only one that I can find that supports NTL, my questions are:

  1. are there any others?
  2. Can I just get the OEM version of the FireDTV as I will already have a remote with the LC11M or does it need anything in the non-oem version.
  3. Does the remote with the LC11M change the NTL channels on the firedtv
  4. Does the firedtv fit in the internal bay of the LC11M with a card in it
  5. Will 2 Firedtvs fit in the 3 internal bays with a HDD taking up the 3rd slot

For the HDD I am looking at a western digital 250gb SATA2 drive as it is the only one that I have found so far with quiet technology, are there any others?

Can Media Portal 'talk' with XBMC so that I can play film/video across the network.

For the wireless network I already have a Belkin PCI card that I intend to use, (the xbox has a Netgear WGE111 if this is relevant)

Many thanks in advance for any help/comments/suggestions :D

And sorry for the long post!
 

wortelsoft

Portal Pro
May 13, 2005
374
1
46
Rotterdam, The Netherlands
Home Country
Netherlands Netherlands
For the hard drive most drives can be set through support software from the manufacturer in a litle bit slower but quieter mode.
Sata 1 or 2 you wont see much difference only ncc could give you a little performance gain. The increase in bandwith doesn't do anything because the harddrive is simply to slow.

for an expensive but noiseless solution have a look at this post:


http://nolanparty.com/mediaportal.sourceforge.net/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=9440&highlight=
 

jellybeard999

Portal Pro
October 14, 2005
81
3
For the main hardware...

A64 3000 Venice or Sempron Socket 939
Nforce 4 motherboard
2 x 512mb Corsair Value ram
Samsung SATA2 250gb HDD - fast and quiet (quietest out)
DVD-Rom
nVidia 6200 PCI-E graphics
HDA X-Mystique soundcard
400w+ Quality PSU
Quality Case :) or a cheap and nasty one if u dont care :)
 

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