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First HTPC build (again), please help

vyruz18

Standard Member
Hi guys,
I hope you can withstand yet another "First HTPC Build" topic :spam:
First of all, I'd like to point out that I'm quite 'at home' in the PC business, I'm a software developer and also know a fair bit about hardware. But since I'm fairly new to the whole HTPC scene, I did some research and would like to verify some things before I set out to buy the parts...

The main intention of this HTPC build is going to be streaming DVD's and perhaps Blu-ray movies (is streaming BD possible at all?) off of my WinXP fileserver.

I current plan on getting the following parts:
- MSI KA780G mobo (with the Radeon 3200HD onboard)
- AMD 5400+ X2 (65W)
- Corsair 2GB TwinX matched pair memory

I want to go out and but the above and use it with an old pc-case I have lying around and a 80GB SATA disk I still have.
If everything works OK i'll be buying a nicer enclosure for it.
The 80GB disk will suffice as it only needs to contain the OS (Win Vista ultimate) and perhaps some extra apps and codecs. All the data (dvd's and blu-rays) will be on my fileserver.

I'll be going via HDMI to my Yamaha RX-V3800 AV-receiver which then goes to my Sony KDL-40X2000 flatscreen.

Currently my main questions are:
- Will the HDMI output of the Radeon 3200HD carry sound as well? Otherwise I'll have to go with TOS-link...
- Will 2GB memory suffice (remember, it's only for streaming DVD/BD, no gaming at all)
- Power consumption is not a real concern, but heat generation may be, should I go for a slower AMD 4850E (45W) CPU instead of the 65W one??
- I think I found out that the Radeon 3200HD has HD acceleration for BD movies, is this correct???
- Any pro's or cons on installing vista x64? I'm planning on using x86...

Many thanks in advance!!!
 
Last edited:

FRS2462

Standard Member
Hi guys,


I current plan on getting the following parts:
- MSI KA780G mobo (with the Radeon 3200HD onboard)
- AMD 5400+ X2 (65W)
- Corsair 2GB TwinX matched pair memory

Currently my main questions are:
- Will the HDMI output of the Radeon 3200HD carry sound as well? Otherwise I'll have to go with TOS-link...
- Will 2GB memory suffice (remember, it's only for streaming DVD/BD, no gaming at all)
- Power consumption is not a real concern, but heat generation may be, should I go for a slower AMD 4850E (45W) CPU instead of the 65W one??
- I think I found out that the Radeon 3200HD has HD acceleration for BD movies, is this correct???
- Any pro's or cons on installing vista x64? I'm planning on using x86...

Many thanks in advance!!!

1. Yes it will carry sound aswell. You need to change the output for sound to SPDIF out which can be done through audio set up.

2. 2GB of RAM is more than enough for what you are using the HTPC for.

3. I have the 4850e in my HTPC running Vista Ultimate x86 and it plays everything including Blu Ray without any problems.

4. The 3200 has Integrated HDMI/ DVI interface with HDCP so will handle anything you can throw at it.

5. No reason to install x64 over x86 when you are only using 2GB of RAM.

One final point I really do hear people having lots of problems with MSI motherboards on various forums I frequent. Have you considered Gigabyte GA-MA78GM-S2H AMD 780G as an alternative?
 

Andy98765

Distinguished Member
I would agree with the Gigabyte GA-MA78GM-S2H AMD 780G it has optical outputs and ALL the necessary Video ouputs on board.
 

vyruz18

Standard Member
I just ordered the Asus M3A78-EM board.
I've always had Asus boards and have confidence in them...

@Andy:
The MSI has the same outputs as the gigabyte board, so no difference there.
The Asus board even has a DisplayPort output (dunno if I'm ever going to use that though :D)
 

Andy98765

Distinguished Member
I just ordered the Asus M3A78-EM board.
I've always had Asus boards and have confidence in them...

@Andy:
The MSI has the same outputs as the gigabyte board, so no difference there.
The Asus board even has a DisplayPort output (dunno if I'm ever going to use that though :D)

Fair point, The last time I looked at Asus boards they only done the VM.
 

vyruz18

Standard Member
Just one last thought:
What about an AMD Athlon 64 LE-1640 CPU?
OK it's single core but it's cheap ass and consumes less power.

AFAIK CPU power is not a real concern with what i'm wanting to do with the VMC...
PVR/DTV is not an option since here in Beglium we've got a lame-ass digital TV provider whose signal you can only decode with their special decoders...
 

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