HCPC, should I build 1, Buy new pc, or get someone to make me 1

Discussion in 'Desktop & Laptop Computers Forum' started by brad123, Jun 28, 2002.

  1. brad123

    brad123
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    I own a Panasonic PT AE100 Projector.

    I suppose I have 3 options. I can build one myself, or get someone to build one for me or buy a new pc from somewhere with a DVD drive.

    Will a £1000 normal family pc be as good as a built specifically for Home Cinema PC.

    Budget oif around £350-£400.

    Missed out on one for sale last week but been paid now so spare cash waiting.

    HELP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
  2. (GTV)Chris

    (GTV)Chris
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    Check out LOOT for cheap systems that you can build on.
    There is no point in getting someone to build it for you...unless you have a good friend that will do it for nowt.
    By the time you have bought the components you'll have no cash left to pay someone!
    Be brave and build it yourself..there are plenty of punters on these pages who will offer good advice and help.
    Check out the thread at the top of this forum to check out what other people have bought for their PC's.

    Good luck

    Chris
     
  3. RichardH

    RichardH
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    The actual putting together of the system is not hard at all - it's the software installation and configuration that will take the time and effort.

    Just rattled a list of bits together - all from ebuyer

    Case + PSU - Antec KS282 > 28646 - £40.64
    Processor - Duron 1.2 > 29954 - £34.91
    CPU Fan - Thermaltake Volcano 7+ > 29873 - £8.26
    Motherboard - ECS K76A > 31608 - £45.61
    Hard disk - Seagate Barracuda 40Gb > 32050 - £55.00
    DVD - Liteon 163 Retail box > 29901 - £28.29
    Floppy - Alps > 22905 - £5.86
    Video card - InnoVision Radeon VE 64Mb > 34791 - £24.40
    Memory - 256Mb 2100 DDR > 20929 - £30.90
    Sound card ?????

    Total £273.87
    Inc VAT £321.80



    The 5 digit code is the ebuyer quickfind code. Haven't included keyboard or mouse - don't know what you preference is, but you might want to have a look at this - has a mouse doofer as well, so reasonably neat, and may be friendly enough to use as a remote.

    Other main thing not included is a sound card - to be honest, I couldn't spot one on ebuyer that has the SPDIF output to run to your amp - I assume you have amp and speakers? If not, I guess you could get a 5.1 card and run the sound off the PC with a 5.1 speaker set.
    I'm prettyy sure that the Creative 4.1 cards have the SPDIF out, but others may be able to advise on this - there are cheap cards around, anyway.

    One other point to make is that I've been a bit generous with the case, as the Antec cases are meant to be pretty good, the PSU is AMD approved and is supposed to be pretty quiet. The case also comes with cooling fans. You can buy cases with 300W PSU for as little as £13 odd, but they'll probably sound like aircraft taking off, and cut your hands to shreds when you're installing everything.
    You could also shave a bit off the price by going for a Duron 1.1, and a cheaper cooling fan - that Thermaltake one has a variable speed temperature sensitive fan, and is menat to be reasonably quiet again - not in the quietPC league, perhaps, but worth the extra £5 over a generic cheapy.
    Hard disc - by all accounts, the Seagate Barracudas are the quietest around - there are hard discs on ebuyer from £40 if you want to save a few £££.
    Video card is a "powered by" radeon - there have been comments re these being a problem, but plenty of people on here are using them successfully, so should be OK.
    Also not included operating system, I'll leave that to you. The DVD comes with a version of PowerDVD (probably v3, but better than nowt).

    Happy tinkering!
     
  4. (GTV)Chris

    (GTV)Chris
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    I have just spent 100 squid on QUIET PC cooling products to keep the noise of my HTPC down to a minimum.

    This, of course, can be done at any time as an upgrade....which is the beauty of HTPC's.
     
  5. Smurfin

    Smurfin
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    Richard how is DVD performance on this set-up? Looks damn good at the price (and my flatmate has offered to build it for free!)

    How loud is it in operation? (ideally want something whisper quiet)
     
  6. RichardH

    RichardH
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    Well, I have an Antec case (630SX), and the PSU is pretty good - quiet as you can expect wiothout paying £80 on a specialist one. An alternative woul dbe buy a generic case, plus a quality Papst fan, and replace the PSU fan with the Papst - a bit scary for you perhaps?
    I got the Volcano 9+ cooler, which is meant to be temperature sensitive, but I have found it to be not completely silent - certainly good for "normal" quiet use. I have a feeling I'll be demoting it to my office PC, and getting something else for the HCPC. I don't fancy the Zalmans, really, so I'm considering going for the Coolermaster HHC-L61 Silent Heat Pipe instead. Rear exhaust fan was, although fairly quiet, adding to the noise, until I dropped the RPM down on it by adding a resistor.
    DVD performance - well, I went for an Athlon 1.6XP processor, which has a bit more grunt, but anything over 900Mhz will be fine with DVD performance.
    Some of the bits have dropped off the radar since that post, but similar ones will be there - I highly recommend an Antec case by the way - a joy to build with. It is a bog standard looking tower, though - nothing fancy - but very well made, and a quality PSU.

    I get a slight hum from mine at 8' away, which isn't silent, but it's not bad. Still considering the next move in the silencing battle, but other things are more important - useability for the rest of the family being the key one!!


    R
     

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