Gaming HTPC

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  • Armoured_Bear 9 Sep 2012 20:46:51 10,510 posts
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    After yolks of deliberating I'm going ahead with a gaming HTPC build, the idea is to have a very quiet yet powerful machine that looks good in the living room, which will appeal to many of us.


    My planned build looks like this, any comments are welcome.

    Case

    Silverstone Grandia GD08

    PSU

    Seasonic X-560

    CPU

    i5 3570K

    Motherboard

    ASUS P8Z77-V Pro

    GPU

    Asus Direct CU GTX 660Ti

    RAM
    8GM 1600MHz (Maybe Corsair?)

    CPU Cooler

    SCYTHE Grand Kama Cross

    HDD

    Samsung 830 (256GB)

    Case Fans

    Scythe Slip Stream 140mm or Thermalright X-Silent 140

    XBL : ecosse011172
    PSN : ecosse_011172
    NNID : armoured_bear

  • richardiox 9 Sep 2012 20:52:24 5,571 posts
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    K series processor + CPU cooler means your planning on overclocking right? If not you could save yourself a few quid. Otherwise, get it built!
  • Armoured_Bear 9 Sep 2012 21:08:22 10,510 posts
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    richardiox wrote:
    K series processor + CPU cooler means your planning on overclocking right? If not you could save yourself a few quid. Otherwise, get it built!
    I'm not initially planning
    I was going to get the 3570S but the price difference is small and it gives more flexibility and shouldn't be much (if at all) louder but I'm not 100% sure.

    The cooler has to fit in the case and do a great cooling job as quietly as possible, if there is a better option I'd like to hear about it :-)

    XBL : ecosse011172
    PSN : ecosse_011172
    NNID : armoured_bear

  • bitch_tits_zero_nine 9 Sep 2012 21:29:46 6,654 posts
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    Looks pretty good. The case is kind of Circa 90's hifi. I did have a mini gaming PC before my laptop which was awesome.

    Believe it or not, I managed to cram a 5850 into one of these:

    http://www.silverstonetek.com/product.php?pid=276&area=en
  • Armoured_Bear 9 Sep 2012 22:13:45 10,510 posts
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    bitch_tits_zero_nine wrote:
    Looks pretty good. The case is kind of Circa 90's hifi. I did have a mini gaming PC before my laptop which was awesome.

    Believe it or not, I managed to cram a 5850 into one of these:

    http://www.silverstonetek.com/product.php?pid=276&area=en
    Nice one :-)

    I haven't found any nicer looking cases which can take a decent GPU and be quiet...

    XBL : ecosse011172
    PSN : ecosse_011172
    NNID : armoured_bear

  • mrpon 9 Sep 2012 22:17:45 28,714 posts
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    You haven't found any nice cases.

    Give yourself 5 or gig, you're worth it.

  • Bremenacht 9 Sep 2012 22:33:56 17,696 posts
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    C'mon ecosse - you're fussy about your HiFi stuff. Get a fancy case.

    http://sixrevisions.com/design-showcase-inspiration/30-beautiful-custom-pc-case-designs/
  • Armoured_Bear 9 Sep 2012 22:38:10 10,510 posts
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    Bremenacht wrote:
    C'mon ecosse - you're fussy about your HiFi stuff. Get a fancy case.

    http://sixrevisions.com/design-showcase-inspiration/30-beautiful-custom-pc-case-designs/
    Fuck me, they're fugly!

    XBL : ecosse011172
    PSN : ecosse_011172
    NNID : armoured_bear

  • DodgyPast 10 Sep 2012 05:27:06 8,435 posts
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    a) Why not water cool it?

    b) Solid choice on the drive, but you'll run out of space even if it's only for games.

    c) I assume you have separate storage?
  • Armoured_Bear 10 Sep 2012 08:02:31 10,510 posts
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    DodgyPast wrote:
    a) Why not water cool it?

    b) Solid choice on the drive, but you'll run out of space even if it's only for games.

    c) I assume you have separate storage?
    a) I don't fancy all the space required for pumps, radiators etc.
    Won't it be noisy anyway unless you get the radiators and pump in a different room or cupboard( which isn't an option)?

    b and c) No, I was thinking of just adding SSD drives as I go along as its only for gaming.
    I may stick a 1TB HDD in at the beginning as well though.

    XBL : ecosse011172
    PSN : ecosse_011172
    NNID : armoured_bear

  • Fake_Blood 10 Sep 2012 09:11:32 4,154 posts
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    Hey ecosse, check out the Bitfenix Prodigy case. It's for a mini-ITX motherboard, and has room for even the longest GPUs. You can put a very slow 200mm fan in the front of the case, and there is even room for radiators or those closed loop watercooling thingies.
  • Armoured_Bear 10 Sep 2012 10:42:04 10,510 posts
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    Fake_Blood wrote:
    Hey ecosse, check out the Bitfenix Prodigy case. It's for a mini-ITX motherboard, and has room for even the longest GPUs. You can put a very slow 200mm fan in the front of the case, and there is even room for radiators or those closed loop watercooling thingies.
    Thanks, it looks really nice but I'm pretty sure it'll be too high for my equipment rack.
    I'll check though, cheers.

    XBL : ecosse011172
    PSN : ecosse_011172
    NNID : armoured_bear

  • mikew1985 10 Sep 2012 11:13:33 12,651 posts
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    If you're looking for silence I think the MSI 660Ti is the quietist of the various manfucturers 660ti's.

    mine is certainly nigh on inaudible.
  • roz123 10 Sep 2012 11:30:46 7,112 posts
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    The Gainward Phantom 660ti is probably quieter
  • Bremenacht 10 Sep 2012 12:08:46 17,696 posts
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    Got 5 slots to spare?.
  • Armoured_Bear 10 Sep 2012 21:30:54 10,510 posts
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    mikew1985 wrote:
    If you're looking for silence I think the MSI 660Ti is the quietist of the various manfucturers 660ti's.

    mine is certainly nigh on inaudible.
    Quietest and
    here disagree
    /shrugs

    XBL : ecosse011172
    PSN : ecosse_011172
    NNID : armoured_bear

  • Armoured_Bear 10 Sep 2012 21:45:59 10,510 posts
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    @Fake_Blood
    23cm high is my max.

    That case looks cracking though.

    XBL : ecosse011172
    PSN : ecosse_011172
    NNID : armoured_bear

  • mikew1985 10 Sep 2012 21:46:10 12,651 posts
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    Armoured_Bear wrote:
    mikew1985 wrote:
    If you're looking for silence I think the MSI 660Ti is the quietist of the various manfucturers 660ti's.

    mine is certainly nigh on inaudible.
    Quietest and
    here disagree
    /shrugs
    I did say I think, it was certainly the case in all the reviews I had read pre purchase. Either way, its a great card and in my practical experience it has been totally silent.
  • pinebear 10 Sep 2012 21:48:52 8,565 posts
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    @Fake_Blood
    Fake_Blood wrote:
    Hey ecosse, check out the Bitfenix Prodigy case. It's for a mini-ITX motherboard, and has room for even the longest GPUs. You can put a very slow 200mm fan in the front of the case, and there is even room for radiators or those closed loop watercooling thingies.
    Thanks loads! A pleasant price too.

  • Armoured_Bear 10 Sep 2012 21:50:40 10,510 posts
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    mikew1985 wrote:
    Armoured_Bear wrote:
    mikew1985 wrote:
    If you're looking for silence I think the MSI 660Ti is the quietist of the various manfucturers 660ti's.

    mine is certainly nigh on inaudible.
    Quietest and
    here disagree
    /shrugs
    I did say I think, it was certainly the case in all the reviews I had read pre purchase. Either way, its a great card and in my practical experience it has been totally silent.
    Of course, I'm sure it's a great card and very quiet and there seems very little to choose between them but the Asus seems to be deemed the quietest from my investigation.

    XBL : ecosse011172
    PSN : ecosse_011172
    NNID : armoured_bear

  • Deleted user 10 September 2012 22:18:50
    http://www.asrock.com/nettop/Intel/VisionX%20Series/
  • Armoured_Bear 10 Sep 2012 22:50:28 10,510 posts
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    CrispyXUK wrote:
    http://www.asrock.com/nettop/Intel/VisionX%20Series/
    They look nice.

    /Scouts for benchmarks

    XBL : ecosse011172
    PSN : ecosse_011172
    NNID : armoured_bear

  • Armoured_Bear 11 Sep 2012 01:36:33 10,510 posts
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    Hmm, looks like the Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 might be a great option for the case...

    XBL : ecosse011172
    PSN : ecosse_011172
    NNID : armoured_bear

  • Dougs 11 Sep 2012 06:51:40 67,025 posts
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    Just buy it already!
  • Deleted user 11 September 2012 10:06:44
    @Armoured_Bear

    What type of price is that little lot going to set you back?

    I'm currently in the market to buy a new computer, and toying with the idea of powerful, quiet, reliable and aesthetically pleasing, and am leaning more towards a Dell Precision Workstation T3600 around 1,400(with a Quadro 2000, Xeon 3.6 quad core, 8GB 1600Mhz) and being prepared to stay one GPU generation behind until the power consumption and price of the next Quadro edition card becomes viable within the 660watt PSU it uses.

    Dell T3600

    What tempted me, was getting one of these custom configured for a friend's business, and it was very well built, near silent(even with RAID10) and with memory performance that exceeded Windows 7's index. Also the OEM install of Windows 7 64, and a real OS reinstall disk all included in the price is the touches that a self build always feels amateurish, and Xeon based systems typically have longer upgrade shelf life.
  • TVoJ 11 Sep 2012 14:06:36 1,852 posts
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    Not trying to build a 'Gaming' rig but a mate asked me to go about specing a HTPC for him for around 250 - 300. Anyone have any advice or links they could help with? He's gonna use it for video and music only I think. Probably web browsing too.
  • bitch_tits_zero_nine 11 Sep 2012 14:15:59 6,654 posts
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    vizzini wrote:
    @Armoured_Bear

    What type of price is that little lot going to set you back?

    I'm currently in the market to buy a new computer, and toying with the idea of powerful, quiet, reliable and aesthetically pleasing, and am leaning more towards a Dell Precision Workstation T3600 around 1,400(with a Quadro 2000, Xeon 3.6 quad core, 8GB 1600Mhz) and being prepared to stay one GPU generation behind until the power consumption and price of the next Quadro edition card becomes viable within the 660watt PSU it uses.

    Dell T3600

    What tempted me, was getting one of these custom configured for a friend's business, and it was very well built, near silent(even with RAID10) and with memory performance that exceeded Windows 7's index. Also the OEM install of Windows 7 64, and a real OS reinstall disk all included in the price is the touches that a self build always feels amateurish, and Xeon based systems typically have longer upgrade shelf life.
    I bet that thing will be a dream to use. My only experience with Dell is a server we had where I worked, ten years ago now. Really good.
  • TVoJ 11 Sep 2012 14:51:29 1,852 posts
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    Said mate just emailed me a list. Quick things I've noticed are that the case he's picked won't house the 1TB samsung spinpoint he already has, and it doesn't come with a psu but has a power brick whatever that is? Obviously there's no RAM either.

    [link url=http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B004FA8NXM/?tag=hydra0b-21&hvadid=9556678269&ref=asc_df_B004FA8NXM]Intel Core i3 2120 3.3GHz Socket 1155 3MB L3 Cache Retail Boxed Processor
    BX80623I32120[/link]
    90

    [link url=http://www.ebuyer.com/341236-zotac-h61-itx-wifi-socket-1155-onboard-graphics-cpu-required-8-channel-audio-h61itx-a-e]Zotac H61-ITX WiFi Socket 1155 onboard graphics (CPU required) 8 Channel Audio mITX Motherboard
    H61ITX-A-E[/link]
    75

    [link url=http://www.scan.co.uk/products/akasa-low-profile-low-noise-copper-core-heat-sink-fan-for-micro-mini-itx-htpc-intel-s775-1155-1156]Akasa AK-CCE-7106HP Intel Aluminium/Copper CPU Cooler for S775/1155/1156 Low Profile
    AK-CCE-7106HP[/link]
    10

    [link url=http://www.scan.co.uk/products/akasa-cypher-ak-itx-04bk-ultra-compact-case-for-thin-mini-itx-systems]Cypher AK-ITX-04BK Mini-ITX from Akasa
    AK-ITX-04BK[/link]
    55

    Is this a good starting point? IMO I think he's gone a bit over kill with the cpu for what he wants and a mobo with onboard processor would be a better option.
  • FutileResistor 12 Sep 2012 13:52:35 1,226 posts
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    I wouldn't go for an Atom (onboard CPU) for an HTPC, even with an Nvidia ion GPU doing the grunt-work for video, the CPU is really underpowered and struggles to do anything.

    Good spot, none of those DVD player style cases take a 3.5" hard disk.

    The square ones are fine though.

    The Streacom mini-itx cases can accommodate a 3.5" drive.

    150w to 200w PSU would be fine for either of the intel or AMD based systems below.

    The The i3-2120 is fine for an HTPC. 75 is a lot for a H61 board. The H61 is supposed to be a budget chipset, you can get one for 35-40. There's no point paying more.

    You can get a Z77, which is the latest Ivy Bridge boards for 75.

    Alternatively you can get an AMD A6 3500 for about 53 or an AMD APU A6 - 3670K Black Edition for 65 and pair it with an FM1 motherboard for about 35 to 40.

    Get 4GB of Corsair Vengeance 1600 MHz RAM for about 18 and you should have a decent HTPC for under or around 200.

    Edit. Forgot to mention the stock cooler would be fine for those CPUs.

    Edited by FutileResistor at 13:56:38 12-09-2012
  • FutileResistor 12 Sep 2012 14:11:41 1,226 posts
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    vizzini wrote:
    @Armoured_Bear

    What type of price is that little lot going to set you back?

    I'm currently in the market to buy a new computer, and toying with the idea of powerful, quiet, reliable and aesthetically pleasing, and am leaning more towards a Dell Precision Workstation T3600 around 1,400(with a Quadro 2000, Xeon 3.6 quad core, 8GB 1600Mhz) and being prepared to stay one GPU generation behind until the power consumption and price of the next Quadro edition card becomes viable within the 660watt PSU it uses.

    Dell T3600

    What tempted me, was getting one of these custom configured for a friend's business, and it was very well built, near silent(even with RAID10) and with memory performance that exceeded Windows 7's index. Also the OEM install of Windows 7 64, and a real OS reinstall disk all included in the price is the touches that a self build always feels amateurish, and Xeon based systems typically have longer upgrade shelf life.
    Err... That's a professional graphics workstation.

    Armoured Bear is building a gaming HTPC.

    It would be crazy to spec that build for a gaming HTPC.
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