Build HTPC for my new TV...

Nakata_NBHD

Standard Member
Hi all,

I have recently purchased the Sony D3000 32" TV, at the moment it's connected to PS3 and Sky in my bedroom.

I'm deciding what sort of spec's I'd need, since I'm not going to play much HD files with it, main usage will be movies/drama's, and normal online surfing.

Looking to buy Antec NSK2480 case, but its in MATX...would this be a problem to fit in with some lower range graphics cards i.e. 2400xt? (but would I need one?)

£250-300 will be my budget, Intel will be my preference...can you guys kindly give me some specs(case included would be better)?

Here's my TV by the way, I have got a computer hooked up at the moment but it's very slow(AMD 2200+)..since it's free so I'm gonna use it till I get a replacement.

IMG_0140-1.jpg
 

Zarch

Well-known Member
The ATI 2400XT will fit in the Antec case no probs, i have the 2600Pro in my Fusion. (check out my build link for pictures etc, early doors, page 3, 4 or 5, something like that): http://www.avforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=586977

Whether you need one is another question. What exactly are you going to be playing on the box? HD files? HD-DVD/Blu-Ray originals? Standard Def DVDs?

As you only get hardware relief from the ATi card when playing back HD-DVD and Blu-Ray original material through PowerDVD. Otherwise, any DVI graphics card (and DVI to HDMI cable) will suffice if you don't plan playing HD-DVD or Blu-Ray just yet.

There are a few "all in one" motherboard solutions out there too , but not too many.

Obviously as the case is mATX, this will limit your motherboard choices.

I have a 2600Pro and a Core2Duo E4400 and there is no HD file or format that i can't play. So thats a decent spec to aim at for starters.

Check out this thread for peformance guidlines: http://www.avforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=666171

Also, are you outputting your audio to a Amp? There is that to bear in mind too. If not, then we might need the ATI graphics card as some versions provide audio over HDMI.


Ideally tell us what you intend playing on it and what other connections you've got (audio etc) and we can have a better stab at it.
 

Nakata_NBHD

Standard Member
The ATI 2400XT will fit in the Antec case no probs, i have the 2600Pro in my Fusion. (check out my build link for pictures etc, early doors, page 3, 4 or 5, something like that): http://www.avforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=586977

Whether you need one is another question. What exactly are you going to be playing on the box? HD files? HD-DVD/Blu-Ray originals? Standard Def DVDs?

As you only get hardware relief from the ATi card when playing back HD-DVD and Blu-Ray original material through PowerDVD. Otherwise, any DVI graphics card (and DVI to HDMI cable) will suffice if you don't plan playing HD-DVD or Blu-Ray just yet.

There are a few "all in one" motherboard solutions out there too , but not too many.

Obviously as the case is mATX, this will limit your motherboard choices.

I have a 2600Pro and a Core2Duo E4400 and there is no file that i can't play. So thats a decent spec to aim at for starters.

Check out this thread for peformance guidlines: http://www.avforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=666171

Also, are you outputting your audio to a Amp? There is that to bear in mind too. If not, then we might need the ATI graphics card as some versions provide audio over HDMI.

Thanks for the response.

I will mainly be playing RMVB/AVI files in the box, maybe some 720p/1080i files too. I won't be playing any blueray/hd dvd discs as I already got a PS3 for that.

Whats difference between DVI-->HDMI and HDMI-->HDMI?

Do motherboards have this output anyway without the graphics card?

My audio will be outputing to my TV for now.

Thanks
 

Zarch

Well-known Member
Thanks for the response.

I will mainly be playing RMVB/AVI files in the box, maybe some 720p/1080i files too. I won't be playing any blueray/hd dvd discs as I already got a PS3 for that.

Whats difference between DVI-->HDMI and HDMI-->HDMI?

Do motherboards have this output anyway without the graphics card?

My audio will be outputing to my TV for now.

Thanks

So you definatley need a graphics card that sends audio over HDMI. (the ATI cards have a DVI connection on the back, not may graphics cards have HDMI outputs on them), the ATI cards with the audio capabaility come with a special DVI to HDMI dongle i believe. A standard DVI to HDMI cable isn't good enough. You might want to research that a bit more. Maybe head over the graphics card section and take a look in there. I can't help on it much more as i don't send audio over HDMI. Mine goes to my AMP.

CPU-wise the E4400 or even the E2180 should be fine for your uses.

My Foxconn motherboard was only about 30 quid, but its hard to get hold of now, but its been great for me. (check out my thread for details)

I'd recommend 2gb ram. Granted, HD files don't take anywhere near that much up and you'd get away with 1gb, but with RAM prices so cheap, you might as well.

Hard Disk - entirely dependant on your requirements. But with 250gb only £36, its not going to break the bank.
 

Zarch

Well-known Member
You might want to look at some of the all-in-one motherbaord solutions as some of these have HDMI output on them and "maybe" do audio over hdmi.
 

Nakata_NBHD

Standard Member
Thanks for the info.

Just want to know do I have to output audio through HDMI? I wouldnt mind coz I'm not that fussed with the audio quality tbh.
 

Zarch

Well-known Member
Thanks for the info.

Just want to know do I have to output audio through HDMI? I wouldnt mind coz I'm not that fussed with the audio quality tbh.

Well unless your set has some audio inputs, like some L & R phonos??

If it has you might be able to send the audio out of the standard sound card headphone jack and get a headphone jack to phono cable from maplins??

Can't see why that wouldn't work.
 

Nakata_NBHD

Standard Member
Well unless your set has some audio inputs, like some L & R phonos??

If it has you might be able to send the audio out of the standard sound card headphone jack and get a headphone jack to phono cable from maplins??

Can't see why that wouldn't work.

Cheers.

I will check it out.

but would I still need a graphic card? Since most boards come with HDMI output anyway. I guess a cheap 2400XT (£40) wouldnt hurt much...
 

Zarch

Well-known Member
A cheap motherboard and ati card might end up cheaper than a all-in-one solution.

When you say "most" motherboards come with HDMI, i take you mean the all-in-one HD solutions? Because most motherboards onboard graphics are usually standard VGA connections.
 

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