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 Post subject: New Member First HTPC build - close to finalizing build!
PostPosted: Thu Sep 24, 2009 7:44 am 
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Joined: Thu Sep 24, 2009 7:02 am
Posts: 2
Location: Texas
Hello all. First Post! Just asking for some feedback before I pull the trigger on building my first HTPC.

The new Silverstone GD04 case is now on sale which accompanies my space(depth) limitations perfectly. The only issue with the case is when an optical drive is used, the GD04 has 70mm height limitation for CPU cooler. I will be adding a standard (Lite-On) blu-ray player so I need to keep the CPU cooler under 70mm. I will be purchasing the new Athlon II 620 CPU (95W) and wanted to make sure I had enough cooling for this cpu type due to the <70mm limitations. My first choice is the Scythe SCBSK-1000 120mm CPU Cooler. Although Newegg doesn’t explicitly list AM3 as supported other sites do.

If this CPU cooler would suffice then I’m on my way to building this PC. I also need a little help in the PSU department. I will currently run the on-board graphics card but I want to upgrade to either a ATI 4650/4670 later or 5650/5670 when they are available! As stated below I’m not sure if I need a modular PSU for this smaller case but obviously I want a quiet, low cost PSU. I’m guessing 400-500 watts to accompany a future graphics card.

My list of items is below and any other recommendations on the below products/build is always welcome!

Current List

Mobo: GIGABYTE GA-MA785GM-US2H AM3/AM2+/AM2 AMD 785G HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard – Retail $79.99


CPU: AMD Athlon II X4 620 Propus 2.6GHz 4 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM3 95W Quad-Core Processor – Retail $99.00


Case: SILVERSTONE Black 8.0mm aluminum front panel, 0.8mm SECC body GRANDIA GD04B Micro ATX Media Center / HTPC Case – Retail $99.99


Memory: G.SKILL 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066 (PC2 8500) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model F2-8500CL5D-2GBPK - Retail $38.99


PSU: Not sure if I need a modular for this case but I obviously want a quiet, low cost PSU.

DVD/CD/BD: LITE-ON Black 4X BD-ROM 8X DVD-ROM 32X CD-ROM SATA Internal 4X Blu-ray Reader Model iHOS104-06 - OEM $59.99


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Sep 24, 2009 1:45 pm 
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Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2005 1:53 pm
Posts: 1201
Location: Plymouth, MI
WELCOME TO SPCR!

Any plans for gaming? And what kind of audio demands do you look for regarding Bluray playback?

Anandtech just had a comparison of the integrated chipsets when it comes to HTPC demands, Intel on Nvidia seems the best for right now. Although an AMD on ATI combo is good if your audio demands aren't as important.

So maybe a consideration there for you. 400-500W will be more than enough (and honestly it's hard to find quality conventional psu's rated lower than that nowadays).

You could go with a dual core, although again I'm not sure of your expected demands for the system, and I would go with 2x2GB rather than 2x1GB in the memory department.

Any of the recommended lower power psu's would be fine here: Corsair, Nexus, Seasonic. Modular is nice if you can spare the money for it.

Just for info purposes, my AMD setup with a 45W X2, 4670, HD, fans etc peaks at about 160W from the wall at full bore with Furmark and Orthos running. Just something to remember when you see some of the crazy recommendations on other forums :wink:

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R.I.P. Felger Carbon & cpemma


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Sep 24, 2009 2:18 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 24, 2009 7:02 am
Posts: 2
Location: Texas
Many thanks for the welcome!

I should have posted my needs/wants but didn't want to have a wall of text.

Basically I will be using this as an HTPC for viewing videos (blu-rays, HD, Hulu, Netflix), photos and music. Playing games is not my intention with this build but if I can I will not object (When I have time I play mostly MMOs). My audio demand really isn't important as my receiver is outdated with zero HDMI functionality but will accept digital audio.

I will be running this on WIndows 7 32bit with Windows Media Center!
Off to scan Anand's site for that latest comparison. I'm budgeted so if the AMD is significantly lower I will stick with it!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Sep 24, 2009 7:54 pm 
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Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2005 1:53 pm
Posts: 1201
Location: Plymouth, MI
My understanding of the audio is that Nvidia is better on the AMD platform as well, but if you're limited anyway by the receiver it's not going to affect you I think.

I use our HTPC to record HD and some Hulu watching, it's an AMD 1.9GHz dual core which so far is nice and smooth especially compared to the single core before it. Using Vista Media Center (pre-TV Pack, haven't switched over yet--need to burn all existing recordings before I screw things up :P ). Actually just picked up a copy of Windows Home Server as well *sigh* turning into a MS household.

And using a Silicondust HDHomerun as the tuner...which does mean that potentially every PC in the house a HTPC candidate :D

Maybe the Athlon II X2 240 (rolls right off the tongue there, AMD) would work--about $40 less, nice speed (2.8GHz), lower power draw. I haven't pored over the speed/power/price comparisons with these later chips much though to be honest so if you know you need a quad stick with that.

Good luck, really don't think you can go really wrong with much of it so that's good.

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R.I.P. Felger Carbon & cpemma


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Sep 24, 2009 8:22 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2005 2:29 pm
Posts: 104
Location: Taiwan
For the CPU cooler, I would highly recommend that you try the one that is included with the retail box CPU first. GD04's cooling performance is really good (as good as our FT01 tower chassis in fact) that you most likely will not need to get a third party cooler for it.


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