1. Join Now

    AVForums.com uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Help me build a HTPC . . . . . . . .

Discussion in 'Desktop & Laptop Computers Forum' started by Gizmo 76, Jan 16, 2005.

  1. Gizmo 76

    Gizmo 76
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2003
    Messages:
    2,233
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    116
    Location:
    The Apps are Calling :-S
    Ratings:
    +522
    OK, it is a couple of months off at the moment, but at easter time (week off work :clap: ), I want to build a PC that will be suitable as a media centre, and capable of playing the latest games at a good level.

    I would also like to have a graphics card capable of displaying on my plasma (PW6) and a LCD screen without having to disconnect cables etc...

    Now I've done a bit of searching over the last week or so, and set a budget of £600 for the PC, I could go a little higher if I had too, but I think i'll be able to squeeze it in at around this mark quite comfortably.

    I'll go though the components that i think i'll need, and then if you have any opinions or better ideas, please let me know :smashin:


    .........................................................................................................

    The Processor

    I've built a couple of PCs before and have always gone with 'Intel', but the AMD Athlon64 Processors seem to get a very good write up, especially for game performance. What would be the best way to go?? I need at least an equivalent of 3Ghz to be able to play high-def material without experiencing judder I believe.

    The Motherboard

    Now am at a bit of a crossroads, from a brief search around there seems to be a transitional stage going on with new more powerful boards about to hit the market. SLi Graphics, PCI-Express etc..... I'm not sure i'll be really needing these, and buying a motherboard that supports them will just up my budget in the long run. So do you think i'm better off keeping with a AGPx8 motherboard for my uses??, if so what make is at the top at the moment. ASUS??

    The computer I built at the moment is based on a Gigabyte motherboard, and i've been extremely happy with the way it has run, and the whole package that came with it.

    Memory

    Ok, basically I want 1 Gig of memory, not overly bothered about overclocking etc.... but I just want stable, reasonably well respect brand of memory.

    Hard Drive

    I was looking at a 300gig HD, but the prices seem to rocket after the 200 mark, so I may go with just a single 200 for now.

    But what I would like is my PC to be on the quiet side, so what would you recommend.

    Graphics Card

    Always been a NiVida man, but I feel that it might be time for me to venture into the ATI side of things. I need a suitable graphics card, that would be able to display Hi-Def video to my plasma. I may also try out using the PC as a DVD player if I can get it to better the picture and sound performance of my 'Denon 2900', do you think this will be possible within my budget?

    Also games must run at a reasonable to good level, good enough to be displayed on the plasma, with is just a SD definition model.

    Oh and as I mentioned, are there graphics cards that come with dual outputs, maybe I should pick up a DVI card for my plasma?? Anyone else has the same situation LCD screen and Plasma connected in the same setup??

    CD/DVD

    Fairly straight forward this I think, i'll go for a combined CD/DVD writer of the new dual layer variety.

    Soundcard

    Do you think i'll need one?? No doubt the motherboard will have onboard 5.1/7.1 sound, with hopefully an optical output. But would it be beneficial getting a £50 soundcard to go to my amp?? I may rip all my CD in a lossless format, and take my CD player out of my setup at a later date . . . .

    The Case

    This final option could have a major impact on the answers to the questions that have gone before. I would like to build a PC that isn't in a conventional case, so maybe a small form factor PC. But I am concerned about the heat build up in these, and the lack of PCI slots for expansion etc..... I also found this which I think I could live with as I it would be able to go above my amp on a separate shelf. But I did like the idea of a little SFF PC . . . . . . :suicide: :D

    Any advice on this part?

    LCD Monitor

    This is not included in my £600ish budget, I would have about £200 to spend on a 17-inch LCD, which would be suitable for displaying all that i've said before. So games and video, and a nice screen to actually look at.

    Software

    Not really sure of the best software that is around for the Media Centre stuff, other than Microsofts. So is there anything better?? and how about improving the picture with scaling software??

    .........................................................................................................


    Sorry for the long post, but I think that is about it, so anybody out there who has gone though this, or is going though the same kinda of dilemmas feel free to join in, as after the next 2 months I have to be certain i'm getting the best for my money and performance.

    Cheers in advance for the help received :thumbsup:

    Giz.
     
  2. watersa@ntlworl

    watersa@ntlworl
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    Biostar IDEQ SFF SKT 754 nVidia nForce3 250gb £124.41
    Athlon 64 3400 £131.82
    Diamond MAX 10 200gb HD SATA £ 63.72
    Corsair TWINX 2x512MB matched pair £122.80
    NEC DVDRWDL 3520 £ 39.09
    128mb ATI Radeon 9800 pro £120.12
    Pinnacle Media center £ 40.78
    DVI cable £ 6.63

    Total after Vat added = £763

    I could have saved money with an OEM processor as the IDEC comes with it's own cooler.
    By tuning spec down a bit a big difference can be made to the price.
    I love mine more & more as I succesfully integrate it into my system, I think it will do just about anything by the time I've learnt how to :D

    http://www.biostar.com.tw/products/barebone/ideq/210p/index.php3
     
  3. KraGorn

    KraGorn
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2003
    Messages:
    4,740
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    68
    Location:
    Warrington
    Ratings:
    +27
    My two penn'orth :)

    1) CPU ... IMHO it's 6 of one and 2 threes of the other, I've had both in the past, I like P4s for the HT feature as it makes the machine more responsive with a CPU-intensive program running .. not a great deal of concern for an HTPC though really.

    2) Mobo ... even though at present there's little real benefit I think new machines are better to be PCI-e purely looking to the future.

    3) Memory ... 512Mb is perfeclty okay for an HTPC, more won't get used much.

    4) Hard Drive ... generally Seagate Barracudas are the quest ones, Samsungs used to be but their reputation was built on the motors in their old drives, they changed last summer and are not as quiet as they used to be.

    5) Graphics ... 6600 with dual DVI would be your ideal given your comments about liking nVidia, the 6600 is also generally better than the current ATIs for video processing and DVD decoding.

    6) Sound ... I always use on-board S/PDIFs and don't notice any problems, though a good few HTPC owners think that a decent board like an M-Audio is to be preferred, I can't tell the difference personally.

    7) Case ... beware SFFs, they can be noisy and reduce the choice of graphics card, especially latest models needing large coolers.

    8) Software ... I don't use a 'user-friendly' front-end so can't comment, I use TheaterTek for a DVD player with FFDSHOW post-procsessing for scaling and slight sharpening. This is a common combination. MCE2005 is getting quite popular too with several threads on here mentioning it on recent times.


    Those are my may thoughts. Personally I'm going away from HTPCs, I'm fed up fighting graphics drivers, MPEG decoders, 50hz/60hz issues (the latest nVidia drivers won't give me 50hz, previous ones give me 50hz but now won't give me 60hz), tearing/juddering and other video glitches on playback.

    There's no doubt the PQ a PC can give is as good as spending £1000+ on just a scaler but IMHO ease-of-use is leading me away from the PC solution .. most others are going in the opposite direction though. ;)

    HTH
     
  4. watersa@ntlworl

    watersa@ntlworl
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    While I got yer KraGorn! this aint a Hijack onest :laugh: I connected the spdif today & the sound difference is absolutely staggering! but quickly goes out of sync :rolleyes: Can you help?
    :lease:
     
  5. zAndy1

    zAndy1
    Distinguished Member

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2002
    Messages:
    19,384
    Products Owned:
    2
    Products Wanted:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    163
    Ratings:
    +6,494
    I'd go for

    AMD Athlon 64 3000+ Winchester 90nm (£105). It's cooler and therefore quieter and a steal at that price!

    Nvidia 6600GT as it's got onboard acceleration for WMVHD and TS files and VPU processing , in combination with the Nvidia dvd codecs I think this is pretty much state of the art for HTPC at the mo (£145 ish)

    I'd also save a bit of money on the motherboard. You can get a good one for £70 to be honest. Don't think it's necessary to go for a PCI express board for HTPC use, an Asus AGP board will do a fine job and won't cost the earth.

    If you're after a quiet hard drive you can't go far wrong with a Seagate Barracuda drive to be honest, go for an 8MB cache 200MB seagate

    If you're on a £600 budget I wouldn't bother with the soundcard to start off with, you can always add one later if need be.

    Cheers,
    Andy.
     
  6. KraGorn

    KraGorn
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2003
    Messages:
    4,740
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    68
    Location:
    Warrington
    Ratings:
    +27
    By out of sync what do you mean, is the audio leading or lagging the video? I've never experienced that at all and I've had several different motherboards with on-board audio. Does it get worse or does it simply lose sync? By how much is it out of sync, milliseconds or seconds?

    I've also no idea about the Pinnacle Media Center, I take it that's a DVD player?
     
  7. watersa@ntlworl

    watersa@ntlworl
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0

    I'm talking about spdif off the motherboard direct to my integrated Yamaha amp the sound lags by as much as 5 seconds but only when I select spdif from the power DVD configuration, if I select 6 speaker output it stays in sync but far from the DTS quality of the media used.
     
  8. KraGorn

    KraGorn
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2003
    Messages:
    4,740
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    68
    Location:
    Warrington
    Ratings:
    +27
    5 seconds :eek: .. I'm afraid I've no idea, to me that sounds like a problem with the PowerDVD codecs yet I use that myself on my non-HTPC with an external decoder in a Logitech sound system and I've never had such a problem.
     
  9. watersa@ntlworl

    watersa@ntlworl
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    Thanx for your reply m8 I'll persist as usual until I crack it.
    I recently solved my resolution problem on my HTPC to Axium PC in which you helped along the way.
    It was the Powerstrip I needed after all & solved the problem in a matter of minutes after I installed it.......so it's reletively forgiving of numpties. :D
     
  10. Gizmo 76

    Gizmo 76
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2003
    Messages:
    2,233
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    116
    Location:
    The Apps are Calling :-S
    Ratings:
    +522
    Cheers for the replies so far people :thumbsup:

    I had a quick read up on some 6600 reviews earlier, and it is a very highly rated chipset, and like has been said has some very cool HTPC bonuses built-in, so cheers all for the head's up and I think we've got me graphics sorted.

    Also think the hard drive is done and dusted.

    So the AMD 3000+ and up processors will be totally fine for Hi-Def material, it's just that Microsoft always quote intel type speeds of 3Ghz, and I'm pretty sure the AMD don't actually run as these speed, but are their equivalent. Just need confirmation on this . . . .

    3Ghz Intel and AMD64 are actually only about £10 to £20 difference on price, so is AMD really the way to go, or would you keep with Intel?!? Still a bit unsure on this area

    In terms of the mobo, i've actually been comparing boards with and without PCI-Express, and the price difference and the effect it has on other components really isn't as much as I originally imagined. So I may go for the more future proof option here.

    Main reason I said I wanted 1 gig of RAM was because this won't only be a media center type PC, I will use it for graphic software and might have a go at some video editing etc... so the extra memory can only be a good thing for this.

    I'm open to more opinions, so please keep them coming. Hopefully this thread will help other as well.

    Cheers again,

    Giz.
     
  11. zAndy1

    zAndy1
    Distinguished Member

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2002
    Messages:
    19,384
    Products Owned:
    2
    Products Wanted:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    163
    Ratings:
    +6,494
    Don't forget an Nvidia 6600 card has hardware acceleration for hidef decoding anyway so the CPU speed isn't so important. I'm pretty confident the 3000+ Athlon 64 will do hidef just fine anyway, if in doubt go for the 3200. I'd definitely go for the new winchester 90nm ones as they are quite a bit cooler which is nice.

    Cheers,
    Andy.
     
  12. Cool-hand

    Cool-hand
    Member

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2002
    Messages:
    2,105
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    51
    Location:
    Portsmouth / Middle East
    Ratings:
    +77
    Hi

    Three questions please:-

    1, Whats a 'Winchester 90nm' ?
    2, What platform do most people use in HTPC. xp/pro/else??
    3, Do all motherboards have spdif out now then??

    Thanks

    CH
     
  13. zAndy1

    zAndy1
    Distinguished Member

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2002
    Messages:
    19,384
    Products Owned:
    2
    Products Wanted:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    163
    Ratings:
    +6,494
    See here:-

    http://www.overclockers.co.uk/acatalog/Socket_939_cpus.html . The Athlon64 chips used to be newcastle 130nm but now they are being replaced by the new Winchester 90nm chips which require less power and therefore run cooler.

    Windows XP Pro is good, Windows Media Centre 2005 is good as well!

    Most motherboards have spdif out, certainly any newish boards from the big manufactures e.g. Asus/MSI/Gigabyte etc

    Cheers,
    Andy.
     
  14. Cool-hand

    Cool-hand
    Member

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2002
    Messages:
    2,105
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    51
    Location:
    Portsmouth / Middle East
    Ratings:
    +77
    Thanks Andy

    CH
     
  15. Kahless725

    Kahless725
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
  16. Pack Dude

    Pack Dude
    Member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2002
    Messages:
    870
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    31
    Location:
    Lost In Space
    Ratings:
    +98
    One thing you need to know about the 6600GT's is that the onboard fans are very loud. The one on my XFX was by far the loudest thing in my PC.
     
  17. KraGorn

    KraGorn
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2003
    Messages:
    4,740
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    68
    Location:
    Warrington
    Ratings:
    +27
    One more comment about on-board sound .. you may want to look at boards with Dolby ENcoding, this can be useful. In the old days only AMD boards had this, with the nForce2 chipset. Sadly nForce 3 and 4 dropped this but now some Intel boards use Dolby Digital Live for this. Not sure if I'm right in thinking I read nForce 5 will re-introduce this feature.
     
  18. TheCrow

    TheCrow
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2004
    Messages:
    575
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    28
    Location:
    London
    Ratings:
    +36
    For the graphics card I would recommend a Gigabyte GV-NX66T128VP

    It's a NVIDIA GeForce 6600GT chipset with VIVO
    Completely fanless, uses large heatsinks and heatpipes
    Comes with an analogue VIVO breakout box that includes component outputs capable of HD resolutions.
    Has 1 DVI and 1 VGA connector

    About £140 inc VAT.

    I have just built my self a HTPC and looked at the Coolmaster case but was put off by the non-standard PSU which wasn't capable of powering the rest of my kit.

    I went with a Silverstone LC03V. I wanted numerous PCI slots, standard ATX motherboard and PSU, front panel 3.5" and 5.25" bays and a VFD.

    My motherboard is a Gigabyte GA-8I915P Duo Pro. 3 PCI slots, 2 1xPCIe, 1 16xPCIe, Intel HD Audio, Firewire, DDR400 or DDR2 535, SPDIF in and out. The Gigabyte was the only one that had everything I wanted especially SPDIF in.

    CPU 3.4GHz P4 with Themalright XP-120 cooler to silence the noise.

    2x256MB Micron DDR2 535MHz memory

    Akasa PaxPower 2.0 Super Low Noise 460Watt PSU

    Plextor PX-716A DVD± Dual Layer Recorder

    Enermax UC-9FATR2 Multifunction Panel

    Sweetspot component capture card.

    Microsoft Windows MCE 2005

    I guess it depends on your needs but I was after a full spec expandable system and not too concerned over the costs.
     
  19. zAndy1

    zAndy1
    Distinguished Member

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2002
    Messages:
    19,384
    Products Owned:
    2
    Products Wanted:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    163
    Ratings:
    +6,494
    I didn't think Sweetspot was MCE 2005 compatible? Nice Spec btw and thanks for the link on the graphics card, I was wondering if a fanless 6600GT was available!

    Cheers
    Andy.
     
  20. TheCrow

    TheCrow
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2004
    Messages:
    575
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    28
    Location:
    London
    Ratings:
    +36
    Sorry if I gave the wrong impression.
    You are right the Sweetspot is not compatible with MCE.

    My system is still being fine tuned and I haven't yet committed to a software front-end. I like MCE but hardware and software compatibility is a problem.

    If anyone has any recommendations I would be happy to hear about them.
     
  21. Gizmo 76

    Gizmo 76
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2003
    Messages:
    2,233
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    116
    Location:
    The Apps are Calling :-S
    Ratings:
    +522
    Thanks alot for the replies today, and especially the links 'TheCrow' :thumbsup:

    So it was looking good for AMD and now Intel has come right back with the Dolby On-Board sound . . . . . . . :rolleyes:

    But I just had a little browse around and some of the forthcoming PCI-Express boards appear to be capable of Dolby Digital. So by time I buy I may still be able to choose between either processor make.

    Also quite a few boards (the premium ones usually) are coming with a Wireless g network card, this will be beneficial to me. As i'll save the money that would have been required to buy a separate one, and i'll also end up with a higher end board, sound good?

    Basically i've now discounted building a small form factor PC, due to expansion issues more than anything. But in doing this, it will mean my new PC will probably be sited further away from my screens. Now what would be the maximum distance for a DVI lead to send a signal, or would connecting with component be better, presuming the card I buy has this kind of output option, and the same distance question applies to a VGA cable also?!?!

    I would imagine if I could, the PC would be about 8 - 10 metres in distance from the plasma :rolleyes: , and the LCD about 3 metres. I'm pretty sure 10 metre is on the borderline for a DVI cable, but I hope i'm wrong!!

    And one more final question for the night (i'll be back with more tomorrow ;) ). Online suppliers for PC components, recommendations please, from previous good experiences and customer support.

    Many thanks again, this information really is helping me out a great deal :clap:

    Giz.
     
  22. KraGorn

    KraGorn
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2003
    Messages:
    4,740
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    68
    Location:
    Warrington
    Ratings:
    +27
    10m DVI cables can be a problem for some, the common brand is Lindy's and some people have had problems with their 10m ones, other people have had no problems at all. Seems to me it's probably related to the video card and the DVI transmitter, maybe one of the main brands is less powerful than the other.

    I've bought all my bits and pieces for the last 5 PCs I've builts from Overclock, not to be confused with Overclockers with whom I had a row over their acceptance of a second order and refusal to ship where I wanted. Finally, QuietPC for sexy cases and water-cooling. :D
     
  23. Leporello

    Leporello
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    ...but XP Home will meet all your needs at considerably less cost. Frankly, I think most home users using XP Pro do so in the naive belief that the word "Professional" has magical properties. You would be better advised to spend the extra on your hardware.
     
  24. Gizmo 76

    Gizmo 76
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2003
    Messages:
    2,233
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    116
    Location:
    The Apps are Calling :-S
    Ratings:
    +522
    Cheers for links KraGorn, i'll check them out.

    Anyone else recommend retailers from previous experiences? It'd be good to know of a company with good customer support, maybe so I could discuss my purchases with them before placing the order

    And a little bump for more opinions on my other questions :smashin:

    Giz.
     
  25. richgtfc

    richgtfc
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2003
    Messages:
    129
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    19
    Location:
    Edinburgh
    Ratings:
    +0
    Definitely recommend overclock and quietpc. kustompc are good as well, the chap there will answer questions by email and there's a forum page. He'll advise if certain things fit in cases etc, such as the Zalman flower coolers.

    I wouldn't skimp on the case if you're going to have it in view. It's one thing that doesn't drop in price at a frightening rate. I've got an Accent HT-200 which I'm more than happy with.

    Cheers
    Rich
     
  26. Gizmo 76

    Gizmo 76
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2003
    Messages:
    2,233
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    116
    Location:
    The Apps are Calling :-S
    Ratings:
    +522
    Ok, hopefully my project will be going ahead in a few weeks from now, all a bit earlier than planned :thumbsup:

    I've decided to increase my budget to the magic four number mark £1000, but this now including a the 17inch LCD Monitor.

    Ok, here we go:-

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Processor AMD Athlon 64 3200 - Retail including Fan - £120


    Memory 512Mb x 2 DDR400 - £100>£150

    Undecided on whether to go with the value stuff, all pay out a bit more. Not going to be Overclocking, and no side window on my case, so it'll probably be of the Value variety.


    Motherboard Gigabyte/MSI/Asus - £75>£125

    An area i'm not totally sure or definite about for the £75 mark I could get a 'Gigabyte GA-K8NF-9 NF4', or I could jump up to something like 'MSI K8N SLi Platinum NF4'. The advantage of the MSI is the chance of adding an another in graphics card in a SLi setup and the addition of the Creative 24bit SB LIVE built into the board. But saying all this, I probably won't add a second graphics, and how much of an improvement would the Creative sound blaster be over your typical Digital output on a Mobo?? Would I be able to get DTS??


    Graphics Card 6600GT 128Mb PCI-E - £130>£150

    Between the Leadtek, and Gigabyte ones at the moment, probably go with what is in stock at the time.


    Hard Drive 200Gb Seagate Barracuda - £80

    Do I go SATA or IDE?? Never used SATA before, is it all plug and play or would drivers need to be installed for MCE 2005??


    DVD Writer NEC 3520A Black - £40


    Case Thermaltake Dream Tower - Tsunami Black - £80


    Software MCE 2005 + Remote bundle - £100

    Do I assume correct that this is basically XP Home expanded to have the media functions??


    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    All the above comes to around the £750-£800 range, leaving me just to purchase a Power Supply and the LCD.

    What power supply would be suitable and of a resonable price, mainly want a fairly quiet one. And I've asked before about LCDs, but are there any 17inch screens that really stand out in the £200-£250 range??

    I also need a keyboard and mouse, but this will have to wait at first because the Bluetooth Microsoft one is coming in at £90, so a later purchase with this.

    So have I missed anything, any advice on my questions??

    Many Thanks again,

    Giz.
     
  27. KraGorn

    KraGorn
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2003
    Messages:
    4,740
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    68
    Location:
    Warrington
    Ratings:
    +27
    A couple of comments. :)

    MCE is actually XP Pro with some hacked-out features and a user-friendly Media Player application, which AIUI you can exit and see a standard XP desktop.

    IMX a cheapo Soundblaster has no advantage whatsoever over the on-board sound systems these days, I don't know any card with DTS decoding, even top-end M-Audios only provide for DTS pass-through via S/PDIF.

    Go SATA, there's no downside whatsover IMHO and IDE will eventually die, possibly sooner rather than later on some boards so you could start to limit choice. XP understands SATA and in any-case most BIOSes let you map SATA drives on to the IDE controllers for backward compatibility.

    PC Pro like a Samsung 17" LCD.
     
  28. Gizmo 76

    Gizmo 76
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2003
    Messages:
    2,233
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    116
    Location:
    The Apps are Calling :-S
    Ratings:
    +522
    Cheers for the reply KraGorn :smashin:

    Ok, my Case and DVD-RW Drive are ordered and on the way from Overclock :thumbsup:

    My next order will be the big one . . . . . . . . . . :eek:

    But before this happens I need some confirmation from people with more knowledge than me.

    Would this memory be ok in this or this motherboard?? They only list P4 motherboards on their compatibility chart, but I can't see any reason why it wouldn't be suitable for AMD boards?!? can you?

    The above MSI board also recommends 450w or above power supply, so would this be suitable and have all the required connectors for PCI-E etc....??

    Cheers all,

    Giz.
     
  29. homethx

    homethx
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2002
    Messages:
    728
    Products Owned:
    1
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    31
    Ratings:
    +78
    sound blaster audigy 2 zs has on-board DTS and Dolby digital decoding
     
  30. MikeKay1976

    MikeKay1976
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2005
    Messages:
    6,461
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    136
    Ratings:
    +1,303
    agh so much to learn, so much expense if you get it wrong!!!

    ok so i am currently loking at my home cinema options as well, & some questions.....

    the boards with onboard sound, (& excuse my ignorance) but will i be able to hook up the soundcard to a standard home cinema surround amp, so i will get surround sound in all my appliances?

    bear in mind everything will be going through my PC as i am thinking of getting a sweetspot card.

    I am on a budget so the quiet PC solutions shown above are way out of my pricerange (but are nice!) however i am not after a cutting edge pc for games, mid range will do just fine.

    You see i cant get a spanky sound card as i am thinking a shuttle pc is more in my price range, with onboard sound & wifi, but they only have 1 spare PCI slot which will be for the sweetspot card.

    having said that, whats the story with the shuttle psu's? they do seem to be lacking on the old power front
     

Share This Page

Loading...