HTPC Computer - Ultimate Silence

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haxer11
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HTPC Computer - Ultimate Silence

Post by haxer11 » Mon Feb 13, 2006 11:55 pm

I am trying to build the Ultimate Silent HTPC. The PC will be used in my entertainment center, mosting play streamed videos (divx,mpg2,HD content) from my PC located on the other side of the house (Wired ethernet). I do not plan on using it for DVR work or recording at the moment.

Given this, I am trying to put together a Passive Cooling solution with 5V case fans that will do the trick.

Here is what I have so far. Let me know if you see any components that I can improve on:

Power Supply SeaSonic S12-430
Video Card eVGA GeForce 6600 256MB PCI-E Passive Heatsink Cooled
DVD Drive PX-716SA DL (Nero to slow this drive down)
Case Fans Nexus 80mm
Hard Drive SAMSUNG Spinpoint M 40GB 2.5 Notebook Drive
Case Silverstone LC17 (170mm tall)
Memory 1Gig (Any vendor)
CPU AMD Athlon64-X2 Dual Core 3800+
CPU Cooler Scythe Ninja (Additional Fan with switch)
Motherboard ASUS A8N-SLi

My biggest hurdle has been finding an HTPC case that will fit the Ninja (150mm??). I have found only the Silverstone LC17 to date which states that it stands 170mm tall.

Suggestions?
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bryzzz
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Post by bryzzz » Tue Feb 14, 2006 6:48 am

i'd love to know too, as i have a cnps9500 and want a htpc case that fits it
Hardware: A64 3000+ | Soltek K8T890 | 2x512 Mb Kingston Hyperx DDR433 | MSI 6600GT | 1x37 Gb WD Raptor | 3x250 Gb WD Sata II
Case & Power Supply: Antec Super Lanboy | Seasonic 430
Cooling: Zalman CNPS 9500, Zalman VF700 Cu LED

Tiamat
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Post by Tiamat » Tue Feb 14, 2006 6:53 am

Let us know if it works out. LC17 look nice, but with only 2cm clearance not including the mobo + socket height, its gona be tight!

stupid
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Post by stupid » Tue Feb 14, 2006 8:21 am

2cm does sound tight, but I think it should fit. The way I figure the MB should sit about 6mm off the bottom of the case due to the mounting holes. Add about 8mm for the thickness of the MB and the socket height. That leaves 6mm of space free, yes it is a bit tight, but I think most cases are about 170mm tall/wide.

The Seasonic S12 430 is an overkill, unless you eventually plan to use a X2 4800+ and a SLI setup. The S12 330 is more than capable of running the X2 4800 and 7800GT along with several drives, sound card, etc.

Unless you plan on playing games, you can get away with integrated video. A good motherboard is the MSI K8NGM2-FID. It uses the GeForce 6150 chipset and has plenty of connections including S-Video out and component video out. The chipset is also passively cooled. Of course this method may cause relatively high CPU usage when playing back HD content.

When you want to do DVR you can always add in a card later on. If you plan on HDTV playback I would get a Radeon X1xxx card as they are generally better for video playback than GeForce. There was a review somewhere that compared the current generation of Radeon & GeForce cards for video playback, the Radeon won nearly all the categories, one category that I know it lost to the nVidia was video sharpness.

The problem with any MB with integrated video is that there are only 2 PCI slots; one of them is probably for the sound card (i.e. they are all m-ATX motherboards). That leaves one free slot for a possible video capture card, unless you opt for the All-In-Wonder Radeon series.
Last edited by stupid on Tue Feb 14, 2006 9:09 am, edited 1 time in total.

Erssa
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Re: HTPC Computer - Ultimate Silence

Post by Erssa » Tue Feb 14, 2006 8:55 am

haxer11 wrote:I am trying to build the Ultimate Silent HTPC. The PC will be used in my entertainment center, mosting play streamed videos (divx,mpg2,HD content) from my PC located on the other side of the house (Wired ethernet). I do not plan on using it for DVR work or recording at the moment.

Given this, I am trying to put together a Passive Cooling solution with 5V case fans that will do the trick.

Here is what I have so far. Let me know if you see any components that I can improve on:

Power Supply SeaSonic S12-430
Video Card eVGA GeForce 6600 256MB PCI-E Passive Heatsink Cooled
DVD Drive PX-716SA DL (Nero to slow this drive down)
Case Fans Nexus 80mm
Hard Drive SAMSUNG Spinpoint M 40GB 2.5 Notebook Drive
Case Silverstone LC17 (170mm tall)
Memory 1Gig (Any vendor)
CPU AMD Athlon64-X2 Dual Core 3800+
CPU Cooler Scythe Ninja (Additional Fan with switch)
Motherboard ASUS A8N-SLi

My biggest hurdle has been finding an HTPC case that will fit the Ninja (150mm??). I have found only the Silverstone LC17 to date which states that it stands 170mm tall.

Suggestions?
I have said this in countless threads and I will say it again. Think about the motherboard choise.
I think more then 90% of the owners of A8N-SLI premium on this forums have bought the motherboard for absolutely wrong reasons. Namely:
1. Great features they never use use, raid-5, 8 sata ports, SLI... they sound good on paper, but how many here have really used /use them. Are they worth the premium price? For most, they aren't.
2. Heatpipe cooling. Again sounds good on theory, but if a chipset needs a heatpipe to be cooled passively, it's too hot in the first place. Besides the heat has to be exhausted from the system even, if it's moved away from the chipsets.
There are plenty of motherboards with Via, Ati and Uli chipsets that are cooler then nf4 chipsets. Or how about nf410/430 motherboards? They are all passively cooled. For example my A8N-vm csm has almost all the same features as A8N-SLI Premium, except that it has fewer expansion slots, doesn't have SLI, but has better audio... And it is just half the price of A8N-SLI premium.
3. Performance. It cannot be the reason to choose A8N-SLI Premium over any other a64 motherboard, since performance differences between different A64 motherboards are really neglible (1-3%) thanks to the integrated memory controller that has been moved to the processor.
4. Reliability. Most owners would base their decision with claims of reliability, even though Asus as a motherboard maker has been just as troubled with AMD boards as any other manufacturer. Actually Asus has been even more troubled then others, Antec Neo HE ring a bell?
Are you gonna game? If not, there is absolutely no reason to get A8N-SLI over A8N-VM CSM or a similar nf430 chipset board.

Pros of Asus A8N-VM CSM vs A8N-SLI
- Integrated gf6150 has the same PureVideo features as rest of the 6x00-family.
- Cooler chipset then NF4
- No GFX to generate heat in case and lesser power consumption.
- 200-300$ cheaper in total price
- mAtx, fits better to HTPC cases
- HD audio

Here's the marketing from nvidia.
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Erssa
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Post by Erssa » Tue Feb 14, 2006 9:09 am

stupid wrote:Of course this method may cause relatively high CPU usage when playing back HD content.
How's so? The gf6150 is supposed to help with the encoding.
When you want to do DVR always add in a card later on. If you plan on HDTV playback I would get a Radeon X1xxx card as they are generally better for video playback than GeForce. There was a review somewhere that compared the current generation of Radeon & GeForce cards for video playback, the Radeon won nearly all the categories, one category that I know it lost to the nVidia was video sharpness.
It was on anandtech and it was there recently, it will be easy to find.
The problem with any MB with integrated video is that there are only 2 PCI slots; one of them is probably for the sound card. That leaves one free slot for a possible video capture card, unless you opt for the All-In-Wonder Radeon series.
The benefit with integrated video is that, it leaves also the 16x pci-e free for add on cards, these boards also have 1x pci-e slot.

"High definition audio brings consumer electronics quality sound to the PC delivering high quality sound from multiple channels. Using HDA, systems can deliver 192 kHz/32-bit quality for eight channels, supporting new audio formats." Unless you are very picky, the integrated audio should be quite good.
[color=blue][size=84]Antec Solo case /w Seasonic S-12 430W, Gigabyte GA-MA78GM-SH2, X2 4850e /w Scythe Ninja, 2x2Gb DDR2800, WD Raptor 150GB, 500GB WD GP in Antec MX-1, BenQ G2400W, Logitech diNovo Laser, Logitech z-680[/color][/size]

stupid
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Post by stupid » Tue Feb 14, 2006 9:19 am

Erssa wrote:
stupid wrote:Of course this method may cause relatively high CPU usage when playing back HD content.
How's so? The gf6150 is supposed to help with the encoding.
I believe you meant decoding. While the 6150 does support PureVideo, I do not recall it being as efficient as the Radeon cards, therefore "this method may cause relatively high CPU usage when playing back HD content."

derekva
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Looking at the photos...

Post by derekva » Tue Feb 14, 2006 11:34 am

You may also want to investigate the OrigenAE X11 case. It says 155mm high, but the dimensions look almost identical to the LC17.

For the motherboard, since you can get away with using a full ATX case, why bother with mATX? The Asus A8R-MVP is a good, cool running board with loads of potential.

What software will you be running? Windows XP? Windows XP Media Center 2005? SageTV? I realize you won't be doing DVR / recording on it at the moment, but you want a good UI if you are using this as a media PC.

Also, while the integrated video option is good from a silence standpoint, if you are ever planning on playing back HD content, the 6150 and its ilk can't handle the bandwidth. You need something beefier (like the 6600). On the other hand, unless you are planning on doing a lot of gaming, the X2 processors are probably overkill and run hotter than the single-core AMD CPUs.

-Derek
[size=75]Desktop: Antec P150|Gigabyte GA-EP45-UD3R|Intel Xeon E3110|2x2048MB PC8500|HR-01|eVGA 8800GT SC|HR-03 GT|Scythe PWM 120mm|Scythe PWM 92mm|WD5000AAKS|Seasonic SS400-HT
HTPC: OrigenAE X11|Intel DG45ID|Intel E8400|2x2048MB PC6400|Scythe Big Shuriken|ATI HD4550|2xATI DCT|80mm Nexus|2TB WD 3.5" SATA + 100GB Seagate 2.5" SATA|NeoHE 430[/size]

Erssa
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Re: Looking at the photos...

Post by Erssa » Tue Feb 14, 2006 12:36 pm

derekva wrote:Also, while the integrated video option is good from a silence standpoint, if you are ever planning on playing back HD content, the 6150 and its ilk can't handle the bandwidth. You need something beefier (like the 6600).
I would like to see you back that claim with some kind of evidence, because it sounds like you pulled it out of your @ss, ehrm hat...
On the other hand, unless you are planning on doing a lot of gaming, the X2 processors are probably overkill and run hotter than the single-core AMD CPUs.
Unless I am completely mistaken this is the stuff where dual core really excels in. It has been common understanding so far that similarly priced single cores outperform dual cores in gaming, except in quake4 and few other SMP supporting games.
[color=blue][size=84]Antec Solo case /w Seasonic S-12 430W, Gigabyte GA-MA78GM-SH2, X2 4850e /w Scythe Ninja, 2x2Gb DDR2800, WD Raptor 150GB, 500GB WD GP in Antec MX-1, BenQ G2400W, Logitech diNovo Laser, Logitech z-680[/color][/size]

haxer11
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Post by haxer11 » Tue Feb 14, 2006 3:09 pm

Couple of thoughts here --

I do want to go dual core as this will serve as a decoding/viewer PC in my entertainment center and as an DIVX encoder. Being that this machine will be the fastest in the house, I figure it is well suited for divx encoding. It is also in the living room (and not the bedroom), which means encoding a movie won't interupt my sleep at night.

Currently I decode/encode (not simultaneously) High Def Divx movies on my Athlon 3000 with a little strain, but not bad. Using a dual core, I figure that one CPU could handle encoding while the other handled decoding.

Thanks for the Mobo tips. I am looking into those right now.

As for integrated Video, I have always disliked them, as I have felt the quality is always lacking. You do bring up a good point about heat though. If I can get the quality video card in an integrated solution, I think that is probably the way to go.
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derekva
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Re: Looking at the photos...

Post by derekva » Tue Feb 14, 2006 3:10 pm

Erssa wrote:
derekva wrote:Also, while the integrated video option is good from a silence standpoint, if you are ever planning on playing back HD content, the 6150 and its ilk can't handle the bandwidth. You need something beefier (like the 6600).
I would like to see you back that claim with some kind of evidence, because it sounds like you pulled it out of your @ss, ehrm hat...
On the other hand, unless you are planning on doing a lot of gaming, the X2 processors are probably overkill and run hotter than the single-core AMD CPUs.
Unless I am completely mistaken this is the stuff where dual core really excels in. It has been common understanding so far that similarly priced single cores outperform dual cores in gaming, except in quake4 and few other SMP supporting games.
No rectal ventriloquism was involved in my comment about video cards. In regards to HD content, I'm speaking strictly in regards to Windows XP Media Center 2005 (the only decent HTPC software I've used, IMHO). A neighbor across the road is a developer for XP Media Center and he has mentioned to me that at the bare minimum to get decent frame rates in HDTV broadcast playback, you probably want an FX5900 / 6600 / Radeon 9800 / x600 level card. Below that and you will have jerky playback. The 6150 is nowhere near as powerful as any of those cards (even given that the FX5900 and Radeon 9800 are previous generation cards). Given that he's been working for MS on XP Media Center since its inception, I'm going to trust his advice in this regard.

If you're talking about SageTV or some other program, YMMV, obviously. :D

I stand corrected on the dual core versus single core. However, going from 89W to 110W or so to go from high-end single core to dual-core or from 67W to 110W for low-to-mid range single core to dual-core is an issue when talking about dual core.

-Derek
[size=75]Desktop: Antec P150|Gigabyte GA-EP45-UD3R|Intel Xeon E3110|2x2048MB PC8500|HR-01|eVGA 8800GT SC|HR-03 GT|Scythe PWM 120mm|Scythe PWM 92mm|WD5000AAKS|Seasonic SS400-HT
HTPC: OrigenAE X11|Intel DG45ID|Intel E8400|2x2048MB PC6400|Scythe Big Shuriken|ATI HD4550|2xATI DCT|80mm Nexus|2TB WD 3.5" SATA + 100GB Seagate 2.5" SATA|NeoHE 430[/size]

jaganath
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Post by jaganath » Tue Feb 14, 2006 3:34 pm

No rectal ventriloquism was involved in my comment about video cards.
:lol:

On a totally nerdy linguistic note, ventriloquism literally means 'speaking from the belly' (Lat. ventri 'stomach' + loquus 'speak'), so rectal ventriloquism would be "speaking from your belly through your ass". I'm sure somewhere out there there is a Classics professor absolutely laughing himself hoarse.... :oops: :?

qviri
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Post by qviri » Tue Feb 14, 2006 3:53 pm

jaganath wrote:"speaking from your belly through your ass"
My generation calls it "farting".
Thinkpad X200 – aging fan, T60p – Core Duo whine :(
Nothing endures but change

Erssa
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Post by Erssa » Tue Feb 14, 2006 4:23 pm

qviri wrote:
jaganath wrote:"speaking from your belly through your ass"
My generation calls it "farting".
:lol:
derekva wrote:A neighbor across the road is a developer for XP Media Center and he has mentioned to me that at the bare minimum to get decent frame rates in HDTV broadcast playback, you probably want an FX5900 / 6600 / Radeon 9800 / x600 level card. Below that and you will have jerky playback. The 6150 is nowhere near as powerful as any of those cards (even given that the FX5900 and Radeon 9800 are previous generation cards)
I think I have to do a little research on that my self, before I swallow it. It's a real shame if it's true.
[color=blue][size=84]Antec Solo case /w Seasonic S-12 430W, Gigabyte GA-MA78GM-SH2, X2 4850e /w Scythe Ninja, 2x2Gb DDR2800, WD Raptor 150GB, 500GB WD GP in Antec MX-1, BenQ G2400W, Logitech diNovo Laser, Logitech z-680[/color][/size]

Erssa
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Post by Erssa » Tue Feb 14, 2006 4:31 pm

I'll snip a quote from this link.
To test PureVideo's HD accelerating capabilities, we decided to play one video through Windows Media Player 10, which was downloaded from Microsoft's WMV HD Content Showcase. The Discoverers (IMAX) video is available in both 720P and 1080P formats and CPU utilization was read through Task Manager.

When the 720P version of the Discoverers high definition video is loaded, there is an immediate spike to 100% CPU usage but that drops within a second to normal operating range. Throughout the whole video CPU usage jumped between 25 and 44%; not bad when you consider an AMD Athlon64 4000+ system without HD acceleration runs at 100% load.

With the 1080P version of the Discoverers video, CPU usage jumps between 40-53%. Higher, but acceptable and the video was very fluid. Both high definition video tests were done with the onboard GeForce 6150 videocard.
Derevka: I think I just proved your friend wrong...
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haxer11
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Post by haxer11 » Tue Feb 14, 2006 5:10 pm

Quesiton Re: Nvidia PureVideo

Does Nvidia's PureVideo require playback via WMP?

I would like to use other software for viewing my HD content.
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Erssa
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Post by Erssa » Tue Feb 14, 2006 5:33 pm

from the same link as previously wrote:nVIDIA PureVideo Decoder Software

Sold separately is nVIDIA's PureVideo Decoder software (retails for between $20-$50 US) which functions with any GeForceFX/6/7 series videocard. The software essentially turns a desktop PC into a home entertainment center with the ability to watch DVD movies or other computer related videos, listen to music or view pictures.

The look and feel of nStant Media is very similar to Microsoft WindowsXP Media Center's media browser. Under the 'Watch Movies' category, users can watch videos stored on the HDD or on disc. 'Listen to Music' has the same options as does 'View Pictures.' The 'Settings' options allow users to change language, when the nVIDIA screen saver kicks in, parental control, closed captioning, display formats (Standard definition or high), etc. Overall the look and feel of nStant Media is nice and the program is extremely easy to use.
Check the previous link, it has screenshots aswell

Here's a link to nVidias site.
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haxer11
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nVIDIA PureVideo Decoder

Post by haxer11 » Tue Feb 14, 2006 8:44 pm

I have installed the nVIDIA PureVideo Decoder under WinXP on my Athlon 3000+ system.

Current CPU usage hovers around 30% when decoding latest HD episode of 24. Without the PureVideo decoder WMP maxes out @ 100%. Here are the CPU specs for all the other software I have tried. It appears the PureVideo Decoder is a WMP ONLY plugin, as it had no effect on the other softare players.

VLC 40 - 65% CPU (Best non PureVideo Decoder)
NeroShow - 100% CPU (Choppy playback)
Media Player Classic - 100% CPU (Smooth Playback)
Winamp - Crashes

I think that WMP defaults to do a lot of Video Post Processing and filters. VLC defaults to almost no video post-procesing. The picture quality in WMP is markedly better, IMHO.
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Pate
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Re: HTPC Computer - Ultimate Silence

Post by Pate » Tue Feb 14, 2006 10:20 pm

haxer11 wrote: Given this, I am trying to put together a Passive Cooling solution with 5V case fans that will do the trick.
Passive cooling solution with fans? :)

If you are going for "ultimate silence" you might want to look into truly passive cases with no fans. I have built two such systems, the components are in my signature and pictures can be found here:

http://forums.silentpcreview.com/viewtopic.php?t=28990

I play mostly HDTV material on my HTPC (the machine with the Pentium M 760 processor), using the integrated Intel GMA900 graphics chip which certainly is no speed monster. 1280x720 XviDs use about 50% CPU, playing 1080p WMV or 1080i MPG2 pushes the CPU up to 100% but the video is quite watchable with no noticeable jerkiness.


Pate
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HTPC: Pentium M 760, Aopen i915GMm-HFS, 2x1GB DDR2 533MHz, 2 x Seagate Momentus 5400.2 SATA RAID0, SST-ST30NF, mCubed HFX case

stupid
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Re: nVIDIA PureVideo Decoder

Post by stupid » Wed Feb 15, 2006 6:33 am

haxer11 wrote: It appears the PureVideo Decoder is a WMP ONLY plugin, as it had no effect on the other softare players.
If that is the case then I'll most likely look at a Radeon X1xxx card whenever I decide to upgrade my HTPC. Of course I will need to do some research at that point on the Radeon series. My current AVI/DivX viewer of choice is MPC. For DVDs I use WinDVD because it allows for time compression.

Erssa
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Re: nVIDIA PureVideo Decoder

Post by Erssa » Wed Feb 15, 2006 9:06 am

stupid wrote:
haxer11 wrote: It appears the PureVideo Decoder is a WMP ONLY plugin, as it had no effect on the other softare players.
If that is the case then I'll most likely look at a Radeon X1xxx card whenever I decide to upgrade my HTPC. Of course I will need to do some research at that point on the Radeon series. My current AVI/DivX viewer of choice is MPC. For DVDs I use WinDVD because it allows for time compression.
Unless I am wrong, Ati uses Windows Media Player just like Nvidia.
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mattbr
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Post by mattbr » Wed Feb 15, 2006 1:21 pm

one thing you want is good deinterlacing, and the price of that is a high-ish end nvidia / ati card - 6600 or 1600xt, as someone already pointed out, the atis have the lead right now (but i've heard ATI's drivers were prone to be, well, problematic).

fwiw, i'm running a csm and a passive-cooled 6600gt, which heats to absurd levels - we're talking 90+ celsius, here. The CSM is underwhelming, including a fairly nasty tendency to overvolt by .05 - so your 1.1 setting is actually 1.15, and there's no way to go below it.

derekva
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Post by derekva » Wed Feb 15, 2006 1:29 pm

Erssa wrote:I'll snip a quote from this link.
To test PureVideo's HD accelerating capabilities, we decided to play one video through Windows Media Player 10, which was downloaded from Microsoft's WMV HD Content Showcase. The Discoverers (IMAX) video is available in both 720P and 1080P formats and CPU utilization was read through Task Manager.

When the 720P version of the Discoverers high definition video is loaded, there is an immediate spike to 100% CPU usage but that drops within a second to normal operating range. Throughout the whole video CPU usage jumped between 25 and 44%; not bad when you consider an AMD Athlon64 4000+ system without HD acceleration runs at 100% load.

With the 1080P version of the Discoverers video, CPU usage jumps between 40-53%. Higher, but acceptable and the video was very fluid. Both high definition video tests were done with the onboard GeForce 6150 videocard.
Derevka: I think I just proved your friend wrong...
Cool! I stand corrected. Or more accurately, he stands corrected. :D

-Derek
[size=75]Desktop: Antec P150|Gigabyte GA-EP45-UD3R|Intel Xeon E3110|2x2048MB PC8500|HR-01|eVGA 8800GT SC|HR-03 GT|Scythe PWM 120mm|Scythe PWM 92mm|WD5000AAKS|Seasonic SS400-HT
HTPC: OrigenAE X11|Intel DG45ID|Intel E8400|2x2048MB PC6400|Scythe Big Shuriken|ATI HD4550|2xATI DCT|80mm Nexus|2TB WD 3.5" SATA + 100GB Seagate 2.5" SATA|NeoHE 430[/size]

Erssa
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Post by Erssa » Wed Feb 15, 2006 2:33 pm

mattbr wrote:one thing you want is good deinterlacing, and the price of that is a high-ish end nvidia / ati card - 6600 or 1600xt, as someone already pointed out, the atis have the lead right now (but i've heard ATI's drivers were prone to be, well, problematic).

fwiw, i'm running a csm and a passive-cooled 6600gt, which heats to absurd levels - we're talking 90+ celsius, here. The CSM is underwhelming, including a fairly nasty tendency to overvolt by .05 - so your 1.1 setting is actually 1.15, and there's no way to go below it.
If I would have to buy a discreet card for HTPC, I'd buy Ati x1300 pro or x1600 pro.

Yeah I am too familiar with the 0.05v overvolting. Well I'm not sure if my x2 3800+ would run at 1.1v, but at least it is dual prime95 stable on 1.15v at stock speed. Idle cpu temp 38c with Zalman 7000b-alcu at 17% fanspeed from Speedfan (probably 1200-1300rpm). Speedfan doesn't recognice speeds lower then 1400rpm (19% in Speedfan).
[color=blue][size=84]Antec Solo case /w Seasonic S-12 430W, Gigabyte GA-MA78GM-SH2, X2 4850e /w Scythe Ninja, 2x2Gb DDR2800, WD Raptor 150GB, 500GB WD GP in Antec MX-1, BenQ G2400W, Logitech diNovo Laser, Logitech z-680[/color][/size]

Woodzzter
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Re: HTPC Computer - Ultimate Silence

Post by Woodzzter » Wed Feb 15, 2006 11:19 pm

I currently have a Silverstone LC17 case and there is no way you will fit a Scythe Ninja in there. If they say it is 170mm tall then they must be including the feet! I am currently looking at replacing the fans and heatsinks in my HTPC and after measuring the available space with a motherboard fitted, you only have about 120mm to play with on top of the CPU.

haxer11
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Post by haxer11 » Thu Feb 16, 2006 12:21 am

Woodzzter -

Thanks for the post. You probably just saved me quite a bit of cash and several hours of frustration.

What do you suggest for a PC cooler? What are you using?

The Zalman 9500 is 125mm tall, so that HSF is out the window.
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All is fun and games until somebody gets an eye poked out.... Then its just fun!

Woodzzter
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Joined: Wed Feb 15, 2006 11:16 pm

Post by Woodzzter » Thu Feb 16, 2006 12:31 am

Erssa wrote:I'll snip a quote from this link.
From that same link however:

"About the only thing to complain about is the lack of the TV/Component output connector. Officially it is sold separately, however trying to find that little module is difficult. That essentially rules the Asus A8N-VM CSM out of being used as the basis for a HTPC system. We would strongly encourage Asus to include the tiny TV Output bracket."

Yes I am new to this whole HTPC and this may point become irrelevant when adding an standalone graphics card. However when adding a standalone graphics card then you may lose the ability to use the first of the PCI slots. I know that with my GeForce 6600 Fanless card the position of the molex power adapter prevents using the adjacent PCI slot

Woodzzter
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Joined: Wed Feb 15, 2006 11:16 pm

Post by Woodzzter » Thu Feb 16, 2006 12:34 am

haxer11 wrote:Woodzzter -

Thanks for the post. You probably just saved me quite a bit of cash and several hours of frustration.

What do you suggest for a PC cooler? What are you using?

The Zalman 9500 is 125mm tall, so that HSF is out the window.
I have been looking at either the XP-90 / XP-120 or SI-120. Not sure how cool they would be able to keep the CPU without an attached fan however. I am assuming that these fans will fit ok after having a look inside the case but I am not sure of exactly how the those Thermalright heatsinks are oriented with relation to the CPU and if they can be mounted in only a single orientation.

Currently I am just using the stock AMD HS and fan and the loudest part of my system is the chipset fan. (The DFI Lanparty board was not a good choice for a HTPC as the chipset fan is pretty noisy once it gets going)

Following Erssa's post I had a look at the Asus A8N-VM board however the fact that I want to use 2 PCI cards + a PCI video card may prevent me from using this particular board in place of the existing DFI board.

(Yes Erssa - my HTPC is occasionally used for gaming but nothing too extreme)

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