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Advice on an HTPC

Discussion in 'System Builder's Advice' started by Inioch, Sep 9, 2009.

?

Which cpu to get for my HTPC

  1. Athlon II X2 245 for 69€

    33.3%
  2. Phenom II X3 705e for 111€

    66.7%
  3. Phenom II X4 905e for 160€

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  4. Something else, what?

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. Inioch

    Inioch

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    So, I'm going to build a HTPC/NAS AMD machine. I already have the ddr2 memory and psu. I'm already decided on a 1TB drive for starters. No gaming for now, just hd movies, surfing and a file server.

    Now the real question is, which cpu to get?
    I have three options in mind:

    Athlon II X2 245 for 69€
    Phenom II X3 705e for 111€
    Phenom II X4 905e for 160€

    This will need an AM2+ board with Optical SPDIF and HDMI, suggestions for those appreciated too.
     
  2. twilyth Guest

    you can find the boards that meet your needs with neweggs power search

    Here's what i got for your specs

    If you're just going to play HD video and not do any encoding, it probably doesn't matter what you get for the cpu. If you do and want to do several cpu intensive tasks simultaneously, then go with a quad core. I would recommend the 940 with an AM2+ board. I have mine clocked to 3.3ghz with no voltage mods (mobo doesn't have that feature).

    So a good oc mobo is also recommended to get the most performance.

    fast memory will also make a difference. I like the speeds on the DDR3 chips but since there are no 3-channel AMD boards, I'm not sure how that works out in practice over DDR2's. DDR2-1066 is the sweet spot for price/performance. Try to get 8gig. You can get by with 4gig but with 8 you'll limit the amount of paging to disk that goes on.

    I think your biggest problem will be finding an HTPC or desktop style case that will handle a massive heatsink - unless you plan to go stock. You don't get the necessary legroom until you go to the mini-tower cases.

    Take a look at the mini-atx cases. These can pass for a set top box. Just be sure to get some good fans like Scythes than can move a lot of air quietly.

    I don't know if the onboard chipsets will all handle hd video. I've had problems with stuttering when i was running xp since my memory was over taxed and I didn't have an ssd or readyboost flash drive. You'll have to get one of the video experts to comment on that.
     
  3. Inioch

    Inioch

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    Some clarification is probably in order too. I want a low power consumption, that's why I've chosen those as my main candidates. This machine would be on 24/7 and I have to pay my own electric bills too.

    I already have the DDR2 memory, so that makes it an AM2+ board. I also want to keep this quite cheap, so the Athlon II gets the nod there.

    This is going to be built in a desk/drawer so I don't need a case.
     
  4. twilyth Guest

    how will you handle ventilation?
     
  5. Inioch

    Inioch

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    With fans :) I've got it planned. I going to build some ventilation and an air duct in there.
     

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