Assassin's Simple/Beginner HTPC Buying Guide - Page 398 - AVS Forum
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post #11911 of 15951 Old 03-16-2012, 09:28 PM
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Been studying guides and forums forever Ready to take plunge.

Am thinking:

Core i3-2105 CPU
ASRock Z68 PRO3-M or GIGABYTE GA-Z68MA-D2H-B3
Antec Black Aluminum / Steel Fusion Remote Black Micro ATX
G.Skill Ripjaws memory
ANTEC| NEO ECO 400C 400W RT

Rest of stuff is straightforward

Comments on motherboards?
Any space issues with case?
Other input?
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post #11912 of 15951 Old 03-17-2012, 09:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andysr View Post

Been studying guides and forums forever Ready to take plunge.

Am thinking:

Core i3-2105 CPU
ASRock Z68 PRO3-M or GIGABYTE GA-Z68MA-D2H-B3
Antec Black Aluminum / Steel Fusion Remote Black Micro ATX
G.Skill Ripjaws memory
ANTEC| NEO ECO 400C 400W RT

Rest of stuff is straightforward

Comments on motherboards?
Any space issues with case?
Other input?

Similar build to mine, I used a GD 04 case, but considered the Antec, it definitely got praise on this board and the green button. Are you going with an SSD boot drive? Is the PS modular?.... people on this board convinced me to go with both and in hindsight I am very glad I did... I might regret not going with a larger SSD as the OS itself consumes 23GB, but, I have a bunch of stuff from The Guides installed and have about 25G left.

That CPU is very popular, I went with an i5 because I run extenders and MSFT says, one core per extender. Someone posted test results of an your CPU running 3 extenders plus live TV out and system resources were plentiful. I'm no expert but your build is in line with many other recent builds on this thread, each of those components have been successfully used...

I used the ASRock board, no regrets. The Asus board in that line has an extra SATAIII on the board.

Apparently optical drives aren't so straight forward, I went cheap (Asus $22) and am glad I do have an optical, my kids used it last night to watch a DVD from the library.

Good luck and have fun with the build.
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post #11913 of 15951 Old 03-17-2012, 10:13 AM
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Thanks mattiedread. I do have 65G SSD. I bought Antec NEO ECO 400C PSU for $29. I do not think it is modular, but it was a good deal.
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post #11914 of 15951 Old 03-17-2012, 10:44 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andysr View Post

Been studying guides and forums forever Ready to take plunge.

Am thinking:

Core i3-2105 CPU
ASRock Z68 PRO3-M or GIGABYTE GA-Z68MA-D2H-B3
Antec Black Aluminum / Steel Fusion Remote Black Micro ATX
G.Skill Ripjaws memory
ANTEC| NEO ECO 400C 400W RT

Rest of stuff is straightforward

Comments on motherboards?
Any space issues with case?
Other input?

Parts a look good. I have that PSU in my server and its great.
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post #11915 of 15951 Old 03-17-2012, 11:08 AM
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So I got my build up and running for the most part, still have to set up some of the automation and MCM like I have on my main desktop. Will post pics once I get everything finalized.

My current issue is that my screen flickers black every so often when I watch a .mkv file. Think of a black frame during a movie playback. I'm using the built in HD 3000 graphics on my i3-2105. Assassin, I read in your guides that Intel is having issues with some of their drivers but I'm not getting the BSOD, just this annoying flicker. Could it be a driver issue or maybe a codec one (using LAV filters).
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post #11916 of 15951 Old 03-17-2012, 11:10 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JackDiesel14 View Post

So I got my build up and running for the most part, still have to set up some of the automation and MCM like I have on my main desktop. Will post pics once I get everything finalized.

My current issue is that my screen flickers black every so often when I watch a .mkv file. Think of a black frame during a movie playback. I'm using the built in HD 3000 graphics on my i3-2105. Assassin, I read in your guides that Intel is having issues with some of their drivers but I'm not getting the BSOD, just this annoying flicker. Could it be a driver issue or maybe a codec one (using LAV filters).

I would definitely try a different driver. A screen "flicker" sounds strange. Also double check all your connections.
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post #11917 of 15951 Old 03-17-2012, 11:15 AM
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I am wondering if the reason I don't get surround sound on my AAC audio MP4 files is my AVR and not HTPC. I have a Gigabyte Z68 board in the HTPC that connects via HDMI to my Pioneer VSX-1121k AVR. I have Shark007 set to use ffdshow for the majority of my audio codecs (TrueHD, DTS-HD, AC3, AAC).

When I play a bluray rip with DTS-HD audio, my AVR shows 5.1 speakers and "DTS-HD Master", ffdshow output shows "HDMI bitstream" (picture 1).

When I play a dvd rip with AC3 audio, my AVR shows 5.1 speakers and "DDIGITAL", ffdshow shows "S/PDIF" (picture 2).

When I play a converted mp4 file with AAC audio, my AVR stays in 2 speakers, "PCM" does light up, but still displays "STEREO", ffdshow shows "PCM" (picture 3).

So could my issue be that my AVR is not accepting the PCM output from the HTPC via HDMI? I have the AVR set to "Stream Direct". I've cycled through all of the Surround Sound settings on it (ALC, Auto Surround, Standard Surround, Enhanced Surround, Dolby Pro Logic II) with the same result in each one. Again, it recognizes PCM (the display says "PCM" at the top, but I am still only getting stereo eventhough ffdshow is saying it is sending 5.1 over the PCM. Hmm......
LL
LL
LL

I have to return some video tapes....
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post #11918 of 15951 Old 03-17-2012, 12:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by assassin View Post

I would definitely try a different driver. A screen "flicker" sounds strange. Also double check all your connections.

It gets stranger... Rolled back the drivers and it didn't fix the problem. Here's what is real weird. The .mkv file I was trying to play was part of a TV series, so I tried some of the other episodes and they all had that same issue. So then I tried playing several different TV shows and movies. Most worked fine but one other TV show had the same issue. But the same files that have an issue on this HTPC work fine on my normal PC.

I usually can figure most of this stuff out but this one has me stumped. Thinking on just leaving it be.
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post #11919 of 15951 Old 03-17-2012, 12:53 PM
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Wilky13,

Do you have both "AC3 (S/PDIF encode mode)" and "Encode 5.1 streams only" checked in FFDShow?

Without it, FFDShow will output PCM. When checked, it will output S/PDIF.
LL
LL
LL
LL

My ASUS E35M1-I Deluxe + Antec ISK 310-150 HTPC Project: HTPC Nirvana
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post #11920 of 15951 Old 03-17-2012, 02:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwpritchett View Post

Wilky13,

Do you have both "AC3 (S/PDIF encode mode)" and "Encode 5.1 streams only" checked in FFDShow?

Without it, FFDShow will output PCM. When checked, it will output S/PDIF.

I had them checked. And couldn't get it working, so I unchecked them. When I get home let me re-check em and see if that works.

I have to return some video tapes....
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post #11921 of 15951 Old 03-17-2012, 03:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JackDiesel14 View Post


It gets stranger... Rolled back the drivers and it didn't fix the problem. Here's what is real weird. The .mkv file I was trying to play was part of a TV series, so I tried some of the other episodes and they all had that same issue. So then I tried playing several different TV shows and movies. Most worked fine but one other TV show had the same issue. But the same files that have an issue on this HTPC work fine on my normal PC.

I usually can figure most of this stuff out but this one has me stumped. Thinking on just leaving it be.

How often is the flicker? Every 20 to 40 seconds? Could be the refresh rate. Try different ones like 24, 59.94, 60, etc.

I have to return some video tapes....
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post #11922 of 15951 Old 03-17-2012, 03:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wilky13 View Post

How often is the flicker? Every 20 to 40 seconds? Could be the refresh rate. Try different ones like 24, 59.94, 60, etc.

It could be. Strange that it seems inconsistent though.
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post #11923 of 15951 Old 03-17-2012, 03:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thefever View Post

While on the subject of RDP... I get some very unfriendly comments from the gf if I RDP into the HTPC, and she goes to watch it and has to type in the password. I don't use concurrent RDP, but I do use a little .bat file to "log off" the HTPC when I'm done. I found it somewhere, don't remember where exactly, but it's very useful. It kicks the RDP session off and goes straight to the Desktop.

No more getting yelled at when the gf has to type in the password to log back into the HTPC.

Here's a link to the file if anyone would like to use it.
http://dl.dropbox.com/u/8701329/remotexit.bat

I can't get that file to work, it just brings up a command window and runs the line, but doesn't do anything...am i missing something?
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post #11924 of 15951 Old 03-17-2012, 04:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwpritchett View Post

Wilky13,

Do you have both "AC3 (S/PDIF encode mode)" and "Encode 5.1 streams only" checked in FFDShow?

Without it, FFDShow will output PCM. When checked, it will output S/PDIF.

If I try to play an mp4 file when I have "AC3 (S/PDIF encode mode)" checked and/or "Encode 5.1 streams only," I get an error when I try to play the file in WMC. (I am running Win7 64bit and am makin ghtese changes in Shark007 "Settings Application x64")

However it renders and plays fine in GraphStudio64.
LL
LL

I have to return some video tapes....
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post #11925 of 15951 Old 03-17-2012, 08:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by assassin View Post

It could be. Strange that it seems inconsistent though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wilky13 View Post

How often is the flicker? Every 20 to 40 seconds? Could be the refresh rate. Try different ones like 24, 59.94, 60, etc.

Ok I just figured it out. After messing around with the refresh rates, different cables, different inputs, and trying the videos on my normal PC connected to the same TV I narrowed it down to being something about the onboard HD 3000 graphics. I dug around further went under the Media, Image Enhancement settings and saw that a bunch of features were defaulted on. I went ahead and turned 'Adaptive Contrast Enhancement' off and my problem was solved.
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post #11926 of 15951 Old 03-17-2012, 09:13 PM
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assassin any idea when you will be trying out an Ivy bridge ?
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post #11927 of 15951 Old 03-18-2012, 12:19 AM
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I finally bought my HTPC parts and now after trying all night, I can't get it working. All the fans are running (including CPU fan), but no beeps or anything to the monitor. I moved each RAM to each slot but no change. Jiggled the 12v ATX cable a lot. Verified my HDMI cable and screen work. Where does that leave me? Could I be shorting it somehow?

Parts:
ASRock Z68 PRO3-M LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Micro ATX
Intel Core i3-2120 Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz LGA 1155
Crucial M4 CT064M4SSD2 2.5" 64GB SATA III
G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600
Antec EarthWatts Green EA-430D Green 430W
nMEDIAPC 5000B case



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post #11928 of 15951 Old 03-18-2012, 01:05 AM
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# 1 )Absolutely could be a short.

#2) Try a different psu . Your fans are spinning so this is doubtful but could be a bad rail on the 24 pin supply to the board

# 2 ) Ram needs to be tried one stick at a time in each of the accepted slots that your manual say's to use .

# 3) Try taking the cpu out and inspecting the socket area for bent pins . This takes a real bright light and a mag glass to see them .

#1) Obviously first and foremost you should check all your connections. Not only are they fully inserted but in the correct sockets .

#3 ) It would appear (hard to tell by the photo) that the parts are in the case and just the lid is off ? If so , and you suspect a short , take everything back out and test the unit (pc) on a cardboard box on your kitchen table.

# 4 ) One more thing : Unplug everything you don't absolutely need to boot the computer. Last thing you need is some faulty peripheral to make you rip out your hair . Yes , I had a bad mouse keep me from a p.o.s.t. one time.

You do not need the following to post . Hard drive , mouse , key board , only need one stick of ram , dvd drive . The cpu , cpu fan , one stick ram , and the power supply are all you need to post . Keep in mind that if you do this and it works then you are going to get a ton of error messages if it does post and tries to boot . That's okay , it will not hurt anything . If you have to resort to this testing and it works then just start putting each component back on the board and re test each time to find the offending party.
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post #11929 of 15951 Old 03-18-2012, 02:52 AM
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Start with everything pulled out of the board. No RAM, no Cards. Just Mobo, CPU, PSU, and a monitor.

Try a regular computer monitor.

If it wont try to post this way reseat the CPU and try again.

If still nothing try a different PSU.

If still nothing then one of these parts is bad.

If it trys to post like this start adding parts back till it breaks.
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post #11930 of 15951 Old 03-18-2012, 04:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pakaderm View Post

All,

I have an issue I wonder if anyone else has. Sometimes (not every time) when trying to play a movie after stopping a different movie, the new movie will not play and I just get the WMC spinner in the middle of the screen. Follow these steps:

Open MB.
Select and play movie 'A' (my DVD rip to mkv), plays perfectly.
Press stop. The movie 'A' is currently listed as 'Now Playing' in WMC.
Select a different movie 'B' in MB.
Press play on the new movie 'B' and it doesn't start, just the spinner.
Close MB/WMC.
Reopen MB. There is no 'Now Playing' selection in WMC.
Select new movie 'B'. It opens and plays perfectly.

Again, this happens some of the time. Sometimes movie 'B' will start immediately. Anyone have any ideas?

BTW, I followed the guides exactly to get it set up.

Thanks,
-Pak

This was happening to me and was extremely frustrating. When it occurred i had to restart the pc. I was having lots of trouble with movies with subtitles at the time (Avatar, Brotherhood of the Wolf, etc.) and ended up just disabling the subtitle programs (directvobsub, and one other, though i can't remember the name) and removing those problems fixed the seemingly random spinning circle restarts. However, now i don't have subtitles on ANY of the movies, including the forced ones in Avatar.

I'm not sure what to try now, and Assassin said he didn't use subtitles at all so he didn't have any suggestions.
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post #11931 of 15951 Old 03-18-2012, 05:37 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by cpeisher View Post

This was happening to me and was extremely frustrating. When it occurred i had to restart the pc. I was having lots of trouble with movies with subtitles at the time (Avatar, Brotherhood of the Wolf, etc.) and ended up just disabling the subtitle programs (directvobsub, and one other, though i can't remember the name) and removing those problems fixed the seemingly random spinning circle restarts. However, now i don't have subtitles on ANY of the movies, including the forced ones in Avatar.

I'm not sure what to try now, and Assassin said he didn't use subtitles at all so he didn't have any suggestions.

Subtitle control is subpar in wmc. I show you how to maximize what's available. If you need or want good subtitle control then xbmc is a better option for those movies.
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post #11932 of 15951 Old 03-18-2012, 06:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flocko View Post

# 3) Try taking the cpu out and inspecting the socket area for bent pins . This takes a real bright light and a mag glass to see them .

If I take the cpu out do I need to put new thermal paste on? I was just using what came with it and do not have any, so I hope not.

Thanks for all the advice guys, I will be trying this soon.
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post #11933 of 15951 Old 03-18-2012, 06:47 AM
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Hi, can someone please confirm if the ASRock H67M-ITX will wake from sleep using a remote & usb ir receiver? (can't add url links but if you google 'maplin windows media centre remote control' that's what I'm looking at)

Main reason I ask is because my bluetooth dongle gets powered off at sleep so not sure if it would be the same?
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post #11934 of 15951 Old 03-18-2012, 07:24 AM
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Good morning,

First a big thanks to all who regularly post here & especially assassin!

I just ordered my new HTPC (first time build, although I've built many gaming desktops.)
  • AMD A6-3500 APU with AMD Radeon 6530 HD Graphics 2.1/2.4GHz Socket FM1 65W Triple-Core Processor
  • ASRock A75M FM1 AMD A75 (Hudson D3) SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
  • Crucial M4 CT064M4SSD2 2.5" 64GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
  • G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBRL
  • SilverStone Aluminum/Steel Micro ATX HTPC Computer Case GD05B (Black)
  • Thermaltake TR2 500W ATX Power Supply

To this I will be adding a Avermedia PCI TV Tuner Card, 2 Seagate Barracuda 2TB 7200rpm HDD's and a Lite-On DH-403s BD-ROM Drive.

I plan on running mainly XBMC and possibly playing SW:TOR & WOW on it. I"ll problably also usw WMC for live tv and may play around with Boxee some.

Any thoughts?

Thanks in advance!
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post #11935 of 15951 Old 03-18-2012, 07:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cableguyfl View Post

Good morning,

First a big thanks to all who regularly post here & especially assassin!

I just ordered my new HTPC (first time build, although I've built many gaming desktops.)
  • AMD A6-3500 APU with AMD Radeon 6530 HD Graphics 2.1/2.4GHz Socket FM1 65W Triple-Core Processor
  • ASRock A75M FM1 AMD A75 (Hudson D3) SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
  • Crucial M4 CT064M4SSD2 2.5" 64GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
  • G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBRL
  • SilverStone Aluminum/Steel Micro ATX HTPC Computer Case GD05B (Black)
  • Thermaltake TR2 500W ATX Power Supply

To this I will be adding a Avermedia PCI TV Tuner Card, 2 Seagate Barracuda 2TB 7200rpm HDD's and a Lite-On DH-403s BD-ROM Drive.

I plan on running mainly XBMC and possibly playing SW:TOR & WOW on it. I"ll problably also usw WMC for live tv and may play around with Boxee some.

Any thoughts?

Thanks in advance!

Good luck!

Post some pictures for us.

Assassin's guides should walk you throught the neccesary steps.

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"Too much is almost enough. Anything in life worth doing is worth overdoing. Moderation is for cowards."
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post #11936 of 15951 Old 03-18-2012, 07:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kalt45 View Post

I finally bought my HTPC parts and now after trying all night, I can't get it working. All the fans are running (including CPU fan), but no beeps or anything to the monitor. I moved each RAM to each slot but no change. Jiggled the 12v ATX cable a lot. Verified my HDMI cable and screen work. Where does that leave me? Could I be shorting it somehow?

http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/26...video-problems

Downloadable FREE demo discs:
http://www.avsforum.com/t/1475769/de...ently-authored 

Did you really need to quote that entire post in your reply?
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post #11937 of 15951 Old 03-18-2012, 07:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kalt45 View Post

If I take the cpu out do I need to put new thermal paste on? I was just using what came with it and do not have any, so I hope not.

Thanks for all the advice guys, I will be trying this soon.

Okay I assumed I could reuse the thermal paste and reset the CPU (I saw no issues with the chip). I unplugged all I could and sat the MB on the table. tried the individual rams everywhere. I don't have another non-HDMI monitor to use, or another PSU (or any other parts for that matter)

When I have the MB out on the table and only plugged to the necessary items, the only way I can get the fans blowing (my only indication of power) is if I plug the on/off power cable from the case. I would have assumed that without that I would control power from the PS...? I doubt that indicates my problem, but I'm at least curious about it.

So do I assume my MB or PS are faulty? Which do I tell newegg is rma?

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post #11938 of 15951 Old 03-18-2012, 08:12 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kalt45 View Post

Okay I assumed I could reuse the thermal paste and reset the CPU (I saw no issues with the chip). I unplugged all I could and sat the MB on the table. tried the individual rams everywhere. I don't have another non-HDMI monitor to use, or another PSU (or any other parts for that matter)

When I have the MB out on the table and only plugged to the necessary items, the only way I can get the fans blowing (my only indication of power) is if I plug the on/off power cable from the case. I would have assumed that without that I would control power from the PS...? I doubt that indicates my problem, but I'm at least curious about it.

So do I assume my MB or PS are faulty? Which do I tell newegg is rma?


Probably a silly suggestion but did you flip the power switch on the PSU to the on position?
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post #11939 of 15951 Old 03-18-2012, 08:13 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by cableguyfl View Post

Good morning,

First a big thanks to all who regularly post here & especially assassin!

I just ordered my new HTPC (first time build, although I've built many gaming desktops.)
  • AMD A6-3500 APU with AMD Radeon 6530 HD Graphics 2.1/2.4GHz Socket FM1 65W Triple-Core Processor
  • ASRock A75M FM1 AMD A75 (Hudson D3) SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
  • Crucial M4 CT064M4SSD2 2.5" 64GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
  • G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBRL
  • SilverStone Aluminum/Steel Micro ATX HTPC Computer Case GD05B (Black)
  • Thermaltake TR2 500W ATX Power Supply

To this I will be adding a Avermedia PCI TV Tuner Card, 2 Seagate Barracuda 2TB 7200rpm HDD's and a Lite-On DH-403s BD-ROM Drive.

I plan on running mainly XBMC and possibly playing SW:TOR & WOW on it. I"ll problably also usw WMC for live tv and may play around with Boxee some.

Any thoughts?

Thanks in advance!

Looks like a great build. My guides walk you through most of what you want to do.
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post #11940 of 15951 Old 03-18-2012, 08:25 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by seros View Post

Hi, can someone please confirm if the ASRock H67M-ITX will wake from sleep using a remote & usb ir receiver? (can't add url links but if you google 'maplin windows media centre remote control' that's what I'm looking at)

Main reason I ask is because my bluetooth dongle gets powered off at sleep so not sure if it would be the same?

It does with mine. I am using the ASRock mini-ITX with HP IR receiver and Lenovo RF receiver --- both via USB. Wakes from sleep just fine.

Sometimes with my Harmony One I have to hit "Help" and then have it run through the commands again to get it to wake. But that's only every once in a while.
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