Spec'ing a new HTPC build.

Gingerbread Man

Active Member
Evening all.

I think this is the right sub forum.

I have current long standing HTPC which has been upgraded slightly over the years from housing the hard drives within, to having a separate NAS setup, more RAM, different GPU, an SSD added....the list goes on.

Anyhow, too long ago the thing stopped booting. I believed it was a dodgy graphics card and bought another, but alas that wasn't the cause. I'm now thinking the motherboard is at fault which is leading me to look down the barrels at a rebuild. It runs DDR3 and a newer motherboard now has DDR4 and well... it's time unfortunately to have a slightly bigger upgrade.

I plan a theatre build in the old studio flat as part of the current house reno, but that's behind lots of other areas, so currently the amp is in storage. Ideally I plan for Atmos and 4K, but currently and for a while it'll be straight connected to the stereo TV. I ran Kodi and had my music and film stored on a NAS as stated, it worked well till it went pete tong.


So I currently have;
  1. a Lian Li PCC37 MUSE desktop slimline micro ATX case -I quite like it, happy to keep it. I use an external Infrared receiver for my Harmony One which works fine.
  2. a 1030 GPU with either a fan or one with a large heatsink, so two to pick from.
  3. a Corsair CX430m PSU - Happy to reuse if possible.
  4. 8gb of DDR3 - this'll have to be swapped out for newer stuff. I believe 8gb to be fine...?
  5. an SSD as the main boot drive and windows, and an traditional HDD for a little bit of storage - happy to keep all of this.
  6. a DVD Blu Ray drive. not 4K but I don;;t know the last time I put a DVD in it - happy to keep it.
  7. I do currently have a Wifi setup on it. It was ethernet but due to a house shift about it's currently in a temporary spot, so I'll reuse this Wifi card for now.
  8. CPU....I can't recall what it is and can't turn it on to find out! - this will need upgrading so that's neither here or there.

Can you guys please point me in the right direction of what I should be looking at buying for the rebuild?

I have since emigrated to Australia but I should be able to buy everything the same I'd imagine.

Thanks.
 

next010

Distinguished Member
You've no need for a HTPC unless you really want it.

Given your content is stored all on a NAS, an Nvidia Shield or OSMC Vero 4K+ will run Kodi, play 4k HDR10 and Atmos content all at a fraction of the cost, even the Raspberry Pi 4 can do 4k HDR with latest version of libreelec.

Due to semi-conductor demand/shortage GPU prices are insane so its not a good time to buy, you need an Nvidia GTX-1650 minimum to do 4K HDR content.

Also the demand has a lot of CPU's out of stock as well.

Just buy a replacement motherboard for what you have, its not worth paying the costs at this time, video decoding is done via hardware built into the GPU so the rest of the system doesn't really matter any more which is why such cheap devices above can do the job.

if you really want to proceed here is something, no idea on Aus prices and if these are good are not but went with cheap options I could find in stock.
AMD Ryzen 5 2600
Gigabyte MATX mobo supports the R5 2600
4GB of DDR4 - buy two for 8GB and dual channel performance.
500GB SSD
 
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next010

Distinguished Member
Thanks for that. Interesting.
Can you use Google Chrome and stream from the Shield?
I use Chrome quite a bit on the current setup.

Yes Google Chrome is present on the Shield though the cheaper model $229 Shield has no USB ports, so you need the $309 Shield Pro if you want to use USB keyboard/mouse but it still costs less than building a new HTPC.

The google play store has Kodi on it so its just a matter of installing it and pointing it at the NAS.
 

zhir

Standard Member
One aspect that I fear these ARM devices don't do is: sleep mode.
My HTPC is rightfully sleeping most of the time, waking up automatically only to record TV shows.
The raspberry cannot do that. It just runs all the time.
 

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