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Looking to build a cheap HTPC.

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System Name Free Rig/Compaq Laptop
Processor E6750/Turion X2 1.9ghz
Motherboard EVGA 680i SLI/Quanta EA30
Cooling Random big fans!
Memory 8GB Geil Black Dragon/2GB G-Skill 4-4-4-12
Video Card(s) Nvidia 8800GTS/Nvidia 7000M - Hauppage PCIX TV Tuner
Storage 250gb SATA WD/120gb internal Samsung SATA
Display(s) ASUS 21.5" 1080P monitor
Case Raidmax Smilodon/Regular
Audio Device(s) Stock into 2.1 Altec Lansing Rig
Power Supply Cooler Master 650W/12 cell HP battery
Software Vista Ult. 64 Bit, Ubuntu 64 Bit 8.10/Vista Ult. 32 Bit, Ubuntu 8.04 32
#1
I keep having to push ordering parts back due to more and more books and stuff, but basically I have a 600$ budget to build an HTPC that is good for recording/encoding and stuff, does anyone here have a build that works well and costs about that much already set up? Anyone have any ideas on ways to save money/what to buy? What do I really need?

Edit: I already have a 650W PSU (Cooler Master) and an ASUS DVD burner
 
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Processor Intel Core 2 Duo E8500 @ 4.0GHZ 24/7
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Cooling Rosewill RX24, Dual Slot Vid, Fan control
Memory 2x1gb 1066mhz@850MHZ DDR2
Video Card(s) 9800GX2 @ 690/1040
Storage 750/250/250/200 all WD 7200
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Case Apevia
Audio Device(s) 7.1 Digital on-board, 5.1 digital hooked up
Power Supply 700W RAIDMAXXX SLI
Software winXP Pro
Benchmark Scores 17749 3DM06
#2
this is an easy one: go for outdated core2duo. let me give you an example:
First, the expensive part, the HDD:
1TB superHDD $150
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822152102
BLU-RAY drive (you need one, i have one, it is beautiful) $130
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827106227

now, for the deals:
CPU 2180 ALLENDALE $70
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819116052
MOBO LGA775: $60
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128078
Wireless Desktop (mouse+keyboard)$50
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16823126180
2GB G-Skill RAM: $40
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231119
GeForce 9600GT: $110
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814133216
SilverATX HTPC Case:$100
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811128021
$710, can play crysis, although you wont be doing that.
plus $90 for my comission :p
anyway, get a less flashy case and video card to keep it at $600 if you want to be a panzy about it.
GL on your build, TPU is always here for u.

Edit: This is pretty high performing for an HTPC, almost all parts are performance oriented.
Also, check on the FS thread, you can get all this or equivalent for under $500 here at TPU.
 
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#3
I would personally go towards a am2 board with the nvidia 8200 chipset (has built in video capable of doing any HD content, and the HDMI can do 8ch uncompressed audio), and probably a AMD Athlon X2 4850e (for low wattage and low heat).
 
Joined
Oct 7, 2007
Messages
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System Name Free Rig/Compaq Laptop
Processor E6750/Turion X2 1.9ghz
Motherboard EVGA 680i SLI/Quanta EA30
Cooling Random big fans!
Memory 8GB Geil Black Dragon/2GB G-Skill 4-4-4-12
Video Card(s) Nvidia 8800GTS/Nvidia 7000M - Hauppage PCIX TV Tuner
Storage 250gb SATA WD/120gb internal Samsung SATA
Display(s) ASUS 21.5" 1080P monitor
Case Raidmax Smilodon/Regular
Audio Device(s) Stock into 2.1 Altec Lansing Rig
Power Supply Cooler Master 650W/12 cell HP battery
Software Vista Ult. 64 Bit, Ubuntu 64 Bit 8.10/Vista Ult. 32 Bit, Ubuntu 8.04 32
#4
this is an easy one: go for outdated core2duo. let me give you an example:
First, the expensive part, the HDD:
1TB superHDD $150
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822152102
BLU-RAY drive (you need one, i have one, it is beautiful) $130
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827106227

now, for the deals:
CPU 2180 ALLENDALE $70
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819116052
MOBO LGA775: $60
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128078
Wireless Desktop (mouse+keyboard)$50
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16823126180
2GB G-Skill RAM: $40
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231119
GeForce 9600GT: $110
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814133216
SilverATX HTPC Case:$100
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811128021
$710, can play crysis, although you wont be doing that.
plus $90 for my comission :p
anyway, get a less flashy case and video card to keep it at $600 if you want to be a panzy about it.
GL on your build, TPU is always here for u.

Edit: This is pretty high performing for an HTPC, almost all parts are performance oriented.
Also, check on the FS thread, you can get all this or equivalent for under $500 here at TPU.
Most of my movies are downloaded and I don't watch things in a high enough resolution or on a big enough screen to use blue-ray.

Also isn't the Athlon X2 series faster than the E2 series?

One thing for sure is I don't need a wireless keyboard and mouse.

I guess HTPC was a bad word choice, maybe movie download box/makeshift TV (trying to combine everything I can into one box, selling my TV, simply don't have enough room for it.)
 
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Location
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System Name Ultrabeast GX2
Processor Intel Core 2 Duo E8500 @ 4.0GHZ 24/7
Motherboard Gigabit P35-DS3L
Cooling Rosewill RX24, Dual Slot Vid, Fan control
Memory 2x1gb 1066mhz@850MHZ DDR2
Video Card(s) 9800GX2 @ 690/1040
Storage 750/250/250/200 all WD 7200
Display(s) 24" DCLCD 2ms 1200p
Case Apevia
Audio Device(s) 7.1 Digital on-board, 5.1 digital hooked up
Power Supply 700W RAIDMAXXX SLI
Software winXP Pro
Benchmark Scores 17749 3DM06
#5
Most of my movies are downloaded and I don't watch things in a high enough resolution or on a big enough screen to use blue-ray.

Also isn't the Athlon X2 series faster than the E2 series?

One thing for sure is I don't need a wireless keyboard and mouse.

I guess HTPC was a bad word choice, maybe movie download box/makeshift TV (trying to combine everything I can into one box, selling my TV, simply don't have enough room for it.)
no, core2 has pwnt since e1200 or so. Also, look at your second reply, he has a good point.
 
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#6
I suggest you go with the AMD 780G/780GX chipset board and a lowest AMD Athlon X2.
The combo will able to handle blu-ray movie without problems.

There is no better choices for HTPC, I mean you only need it for watching movies.
 
Joined
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Messages
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System Name Free Rig/Compaq Laptop
Processor E6750/Turion X2 1.9ghz
Motherboard EVGA 680i SLI/Quanta EA30
Cooling Random big fans!
Memory 8GB Geil Black Dragon/2GB G-Skill 4-4-4-12
Video Card(s) Nvidia 8800GTS/Nvidia 7000M - Hauppage PCIX TV Tuner
Storage 250gb SATA WD/120gb internal Samsung SATA
Display(s) ASUS 21.5" 1080P monitor
Case Raidmax Smilodon/Regular
Audio Device(s) Stock into 2.1 Altec Lansing Rig
Power Supply Cooler Master 650W/12 cell HP battery
Software Vista Ult. 64 Bit, Ubuntu 64 Bit 8.10/Vista Ult. 32 Bit, Ubuntu 8.04 32
#7
I didn't mean JUST watching movies -_-
 
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#8
I suggest you go with the AMD 780G/780GX chipset board and a lowest AMD Athlon X2.
The combo will able to handle blu-ray movie without problems.

There is no better choices for HTPC, I mean you only need it for watching movies.
You can either go this route, the NVidia 8200 route or get any plain 6100/6150 chipset AM2 mobo and buy The Asus 3450 Video card that has built in HDMI and its plain awesome for everything you want. Go to Frys and pick up one of those combos, either AM2 or E21xx series either one will be fine for you as long as you pick up that Asus 3450 card.

I would say less than $400 you can build a decent setup or you can buy my spare X2 3800 setup with 3450 VC for less(<$200 including case if you want, HDD extra). Pm me if interested.