Building the cheapest Full 3D HTPC!! - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 17 Old 02-07-2011, 10:02 AM - Thread Starter
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Ave,

I've been reading around the many, many 'Build your 3D HTPC' articles & blogs that have been popping out and trying to get the information I need to build my Full 3D HTPC. However, one thing that most of these posts are lacking is an "Economy" Build - so to speak.

My situation is this: I bought the Dune Smart D1 recently and soon after setting it up, I found out that it does not support Full HD 3D (Full 3D Blu-ray ISO Playback). This has led me to the *only* solution that appears to be presently available for full 3D Blu-ray ISO playback - A 3D HTPC.

I don't want to spend too much money on this 3D HTPC build and don't really care for any fancy & frills ... I'm trying to build the "Cheapest" possible Full 3D HTPC.

These are the requirements that I need it to meet:

Full 3D Blu-ray ISO Playback
HD Audio Bitstreaming (DTS-HD, TrueHD)
Playback of all other HD Video/Audio (MKV, M2TS, AVCHD, Blu-ray/DVD ISO, etc).

I would like the HTPC to have HDMI 1.4 support so it can connect directly to my Samsung PN63C8000 via HDMI 1.4

I already have spare hard drives lying around for the OS (Windows 7 x64 Ultimate) and MCE / PDVD10. So the component that I need to buy would be:

Case
PSU
Motherboard
CPU
GPU
Memory
Remote Control

I don't believe I need any other components (Please correct me if I'm wrong); and I don't really care about the Form Factor either. As long as I can get the cheapest possible combination of components to do what I need them to do - I'm Good!!

Any advice or suggestion would be great appreciated.

Thanks!!

7.1: Polk RTi12 Fronts, RTi8 Surrounds, Monitor70 Surround Backs, CSi A6 Center + Outlaw LFM-1 EX Subwoofer.
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post #2 of 17 Old 02-07-2011, 03:14 PM
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3D compatible GPU: $35 after rebate:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...-060-_-Product
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post #3 of 17 Old 02-07-2011, 03:19 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by servicetech571 View Post

3d compatible gpu: $35 after rebate:
http://www.newegg.com/product/produc...-060-_-product

hdmi 1.3

7.1: Polk RTi12 Fronts, RTi8 Surrounds, Monitor70 Surround Backs, CSi A6 Center + Outlaw LFM-1 EX Subwoofer.
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post #4 of 17 Old 02-07-2011, 03:36 PM
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Perhaps a different card, some of the GT240's are 3D compatible.
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post #5 of 17 Old 02-07-2011, 03:52 PM
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GT430 minimum

"The purpose of diplomacy is to prolong a crisis." Spock, Mark of Gideon, TOS
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post #6 of 17 Old 02-07-2011, 03:54 PM
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http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...-067-_-Product

Just find the cheapest GTS 430 you can get.
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post #7 of 17 Old 02-07-2011, 04:16 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whiteboy714 View Post

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...-067-_-Product

Just find the cheapest GTS 430 you can get.

Perfect!! HDMI 1.4a + HD Audio Bitstream for under $70!! Can't beat it. Great Find. This is exactly what I'm looking for.

I can get 4GB DDR3 for $40. Remote Control should not be more then $25 (Saw a Rosewill one at Newegg).

Next important components are going to be Motherboard & CPU. I'm imagining for an HTPC, an i3 should be just fine; unless there's any particular reason I should be looking at an i5.

Not sure what motherboard to go for. And Case/PSU would wrap up the last bit.

Thanks!!

7.1: Polk RTi12 Fronts, RTi8 Surrounds, Monitor70 Surround Backs, CSi A6 Center + Outlaw LFM-1 EX Subwoofer.
Yamaha RX-A2000 AVR
Epson 5010 3D Projector
Intel Sandy Bridge 3D HTPC / Blu-ray Player
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post #8 of 17 Old 02-07-2011, 04:51 PM
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i3's are great for htpc's. Just look for a motherboard with features you need. Microatx is what most use for htpc's.

The H55 chipset will allow you to use the i3's graphics but you won't need that with the 430.

Something like one of these
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813128457

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813131664

You can go cheaper but it will have to be a different brand. At least for whats on newegg right now. You can score an asrock for $65

A psu like this should be fine.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16817371033

Or whatever brand you like. They only recommend a 300w for that card.

As for a case thats all up to personal preference.

My .02 you don't need an i3. You could get a $60 Athlon x2 and a $60 amd board. Imo for budget systems amd is king.
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post #9 of 17 Old 02-07-2011, 06:30 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whiteboy714 View Post

i3's are great for htpc's. Just look for a motherboard with features you need. Microatx is what most use for htpc's.

The H55 chipset will allow you to use the i3's graphics but you won't need that with the 430.

Something like one of these
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813128457

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813131664

You can go cheaper but it will have to be a different brand. At least for whats on newegg right now. You can score an asrock for $65

A psu like this should be fine.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16817371033

Or whatever brand you like. They only recommend a 300w for that card.

As for a case thats all up to personal preference.

My .02 you don't need an i3. You could get a $60 Athlon x2 and a $60 amd board. Imo for budget systems amd is king.

I was looking at the H55 myself - and those motherboards you listed look perfect!! I would stick with Gigabyte or Asus unless I actually got better features in an Asrock.

PSU was a big question mark for me. You cleared that up. Under 400W gives me a lot of options but again - the one you listed looks perfect.

I will check out some MicroATX Cases and list some here.

Still not sure about the CPU. I like the idea of an i3. But the reality is I wont be using the HD features of the CPU. The GPUs HDMI will handle everything.

Let me ask you this - is there anything I would miss out on with a $60 Athlon X2 as opposed to an i3? Will I see any performance issues while playing full 3D blu-ray ISOs streaming HD Audio?

Thanks!!

7.1: Polk RTi12 Fronts, RTi8 Surrounds, Monitor70 Surround Backs, CSi A6 Center + Outlaw LFM-1 EX Subwoofer.
Yamaha RX-A2000 AVR
Epson 5010 3D Projector
Intel Sandy Bridge 3D HTPC / Blu-ray Player
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post #10 of 17 Old 02-07-2011, 06:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mickey79 View Post



Let me ask you this - is there anything I would miss out on with a $60 Athlon X2 as opposed to an i3? Will I see any performance issues while playing full 3D blu-ray ISOs streaming HD Audio?

Thanks!!

I would say that is a no. The gpu should be handling pretty much all of that. The cpu should barely be in use. And the x2 can handle whatever else can't offload to the gpu.

Head to head the i3 is the better cpu, for sure. I have a amd athlon x2 215 and an intel celeron e3300 in my htpc's. Both perform great.

You don't need a whole lot of cpu power with a gpu that can handle the video.
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post #11 of 17 Old 02-07-2011, 10:39 PM
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An intel sandy bridge setup with the H67 chipset would be a good fit here. Since you wont be gaming with it, you dont need a discrete GPU and with a single chip running the show you will get a cooler running setup which means less noise during movies. Also would allow for smaller form factor when building the system.
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post #12 of 17 Old 02-07-2011, 10:44 PM
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Athlon II X3 or Core i3 is recommended should you convert 2D HD video to 3D in PC. Athlon II X3 450 is $80, only +$20 than II X2.
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post #13 of 17 Old 02-08-2011, 06:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by renethx View Post

Athlon II X3 or Core i3 is recommended should you convert 2D HD video to 3D in PC. Athlon II X3 450 is $80, only +$20 than II X2.

And in many cases can be unlocked to an X4
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post #14 of 17 Old 02-08-2011, 08:32 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Av8or1ab View Post

An intel sandy bridge setup with the H67 chipset would be a good fit here. Since you wont be gaming with it, you dont need a discrete GPU and with a single chip running the show you will get a cooler running setup which means less noise during movies. Also would allow for smaller form factor when building the system.

Unfortunately, Sandy Bridge's recall put a cloud over the H67 platform altogether for now. Aside from being quite expensive ... I will probably be able to score an H55 for 1/3rd the cost of an H67. Even with the cost of GPU I would be at around half. It would be a while (with the recall et al) before H67 comes down to that price point. Otherwise I would love to go for Sandy Bridge.

Quote:
Originally Posted by renethx View Post

Athlon II X3 or Core i3 is recommended should you convert 2D HD video to 3D in PC. Athlon II X3 450 is $80, only +$20 than II X2.

Must admit - for $20 extra I wouldn't mind going for the X3. I could probably even step down fro 450 if the difference is worth it.

And again - I would love to go for an i3 but I have to give props to whiteboy714 for bringing Athlon II into this because it's half the cost and really fits the Economy Build bill. I'm really liking the idea of an Athlon II X2/3 (Or X3 unlocked to an X4 as ES_Revenge states can be done!)

I'm gonna draw up a chart with couple different options to compare.

Feel free to give me any MicroATX Case Suggestions for this budget build.

Thanks Guys!!

7.1: Polk RTi12 Fronts, RTi8 Surrounds, Monitor70 Surround Backs, CSi A6 Center + Outlaw LFM-1 EX Subwoofer.
Yamaha RX-A2000 AVR
Epson 5010 3D Projector
Intel Sandy Bridge 3D HTPC / Blu-ray Player
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post #15 of 17 Old 02-08-2011, 10:03 AM - Thread Starter
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Ok, so this is the spreadsheet that I've come up with so far. Obviously components can be mixed 'n matched; I just wanted to do a low, low+ & mid range build.

Any suggestions are welcome:



XLS Spreadsheet is attached as well.

 

3DHTPC.zip 7.888671875k . file

7.1: Polk RTi12 Fronts, RTi8 Surrounds, Monitor70 Surround Backs, CSi A6 Center + Outlaw LFM-1 EX Subwoofer.
Yamaha RX-A2000 AVR
Epson 5010 3D Projector
Intel Sandy Bridge 3D HTPC / Blu-ray Player
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post #16 of 17 Old 06-08-2012, 01:37 PM
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Did you build it? If so, which hardware did you use?
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post #17 of 17 Old 06-08-2012, 02:11 PM
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It would be 18 months old and things have changed quite a bit since then.

Try this thread: http://www.avsforum.com/t/1240499/faq-for-the-3d-htpc

 

 

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