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Old 03-21-2012, 11:52 AM - Thread Starter
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Well I've been lurking in this forum for a little while now and tried to answer as many questions without having to bothering anyone but I have a few specific questions I can't find answers too. So now I'm just about to buy and want to make sure I'm not missing anything or screwed something up.

This is for my dedicated theater it will be sitting in a media cabinet with a meshed front door, open back and open right side. I've already measured the dimensions and they will all fit with a few inches to spare. The cabinet is about 18ft from the seating so sound shouldn't be a huge issue (hopefully). We will be connecting to a Denon AVR-A100 which is connected to a Sony VPL-VW85 projector. So we are not concerned with 3D because it makes my wife motion sick and sometimes I feel slightly nauseous as well.

I know some of this is overkill but for the few bucks more I figured what the hell. Can't think of anything else pertinent so here is the list of what I'm looking to buy/bought:

HTPC/Media Server
For the storage I was looking at: Mediasonic H82-SU3S2 ProBox 8 Bay External Hard Drive Enclosure. Was wondering if anyone has this and how well it works? Also would like to know about HD's I've heard that the green drive (assuming environmental crap) aren't good. The cheapest drives I've seen are: Western Digital Caviar Green WD30EZRSDTL 3 TB Internal Hard Drive - $183 per. Should I spend more to get a non-green drive?

Also I understand Intel is coming out with a new chipset - Intel® Z77 Chipset - and also there is the new PCI Express Gen 3 for video cards. Will it be worth it to wait for the motherboards and worth the extra $$$? I did not include a video card in this but I'm not will to compromise on the video/sound quality so if I should get one please let me know. I normally would buy Nvidia for gaming but doesn't really matter much either way. Whatever will work the best. Thank you for your time.

-RobNY
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Old 03-21-2012, 05:18 PM - Thread Starter
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Is it my cologne because I don't wear any and I even showered today. 135 views and no options?

-RobNY
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Old 03-21-2012, 06:13 PM
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i use 2 of the 4 disc probox enclosures and they work well as long as I use them with e-sata - USB3 was flakey
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Old 03-21-2012, 06:17 PM
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Originally Posted by RobNY View Post

Well I've been lurking in this forum for a little while now and tried to answer as many questions without having to bothering anyone but I have a few specific questions I can't find answers too. So now I'm just about to buy and want to make sure I'm not missing anything or screwed something up.

This is for my dedicated theater it will be sitting in a media cabinet with a meshed front door, open back and open right side. I've already measured the dimensions and they will all fit with a few inches to spare. The cabinet is about 18ft from the seating so sound shouldn't be a huge issue (hopefully). We will be connecting to a Denon AVR-A100 which is connected to a Sony VPL-VW85 projector. So we are not concerned with 3D because it makes my wife motion sick and sometimes I feel slightly nauseous as well.

I know some of this is overkill but for the few bucks more I figured what the hell. Can't think of anything else pertinent so here is the list of what I'm looking to buy/bought:

HTPC/Media Server
For the storage I was looking at: Mediasonic H82-SU3S2 ProBox 8 Bay External Hard Drive Enclosure. Was wondering if anyone has this and how well it works? Also would like to know about HD's I've heard that the green drive (assuming environmental crap) aren't good. The cheapest drives I've seen are: Western Digital Caviar Green WD30EZRSDTL 3 TB Internal Hard Drive - $183 per. Should I spend more to get a non-green drive?

Also I understand Intel is coming out with a new chipset - Intel® Z77 Chipset - and also there is the new PCI Express Gen 3 for video cards. Will it be worth it to wait for the motherboards and worth the extra $$$? I did not include a video card in this but I'm not will to compromise on the video/sound quality so if I should get one please let me know. I normally would buy Nvidia for gaming but doesn't really matter much either way. Whatever will work the best. Thank you for your time.

-RobNY

If this is for a simple HTPC, the processor and motherboard are way overkill.

Instead of that mediasonic enclosure, why not just buy a case that can house more drives?
You don't need a separate cpu cooler unless you're planning to overclock, which is very unnecessary for a HTPC.

Nothing in the new chipset will be of any real benefit to a HTPC. Green drives are fine for media storage, but you get a better cost per gigabyte ratio on 2TB drives.
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Old 03-21-2012, 06:21 PM
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Thoughts:

Why do you need another storage enclosure? That case has plenty of storage and you can even turn some of the 5.25" bays into 3.5" bays if you need more. I wouldn't waste my money on another storage enclosure unless you want/need it for some reason.

You received absolutely horrible advice on the Green drives. I prefer them over 7200 RPM drives for storage in the HTPC environment. They are ideal and PLENTY fast enough. I now have six 2TB drives --- all Green (WD and Samsung) and have absolutely no complaints.

For HTPC the i3 and Pentium Ivy Bridge CPUs aren't going to be out for many months. So if you want to build now get a Sandy Bridge. I always say to start with the Intel integrated GPU and add a card only if you aren't 100% happy with it. Many people on AVS think that there is no difference between Intel iGPU and the NVidia/ATI discrete graphics cards for 1080p. Personally I use a i3 2100 with iGPU and I am extremely happy.
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Old 03-21-2012, 06:31 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lars99 View Post

If this is for a simple HTPC, the processor and motherboard are way overkill.

Instead of that mediasonic enclosure, why not just buy a case that can house more drives?
You don't need a separate cpu cooler unless you're planning to overclock, which is very unnecessary for a HTPC.

Nothing in the new chipset will be of any real benefit to a HTPC. Green drives are fine for media storage, but you get a better cost per gigabyte ratio on 2TB drives.

Was going to be a htpc and media server combo for the entire house. The case I choose is about as large as I can go but I am planning on filling the case with hd's before I get the mediasonic. Will get rid of the cooler but what about a video card? Is it better than the built-in?

-RobNY
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Old 03-21-2012, 06:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RobNY View Post

Was going to be a htpc and media server combo for the entire house. The case I choose is about as large as I can go but I am planning on filling the case with hd's before I get the mediasonic. Will get rid of the cooler but what about a video card? Is it better than the built-in?

-RobNY

Why don't you try out the integrated first?

Very little downside to this approach.

You are going to get opinions from people like me that I have tried all 3 options and not seen a bit of difference ranging all the way to people who think that ATI/NVidia is much better.

Putting in a discrete card later (especially in that case) takes about 30 seconds max.

In the end trust your eyes. Use the integrated and if for any reason you aren't satisfied get a discrete card. Otherwise you are wasting time, money, adding excess heat and adding excess noise when you might not need it.
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Old 03-21-2012, 06:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RobNY View Post

Was going to be a htpc and media server combo for the entire house. The case I choose is about as large as I can go but I am planning on filling the case with hd's before I get the mediasonic. Will get rid of the cooler but what about a video card? Is it better than the built-in?

-RobNY

Still overkill for a media server and htpc.
Number of drives a case can hold and size of the case aren't necessarily related. There are plenty of mITX cases that hold 7 drives and plenty mid tower ATX that can hold 13 drives...
Like Assassin is telling you, a video card is rarely needed for a HTPC. Try it without it and I doubt you'll notice it.
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Old 03-21-2012, 06:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RobNY View Post


Was going to be a htpc and media server combo for the entire house. The case I choose is about as large as I can go but I am planning on filling the case with hd's before I get the mediasonic. Will get rid of the cooler but what about a video card? Is it better than the built-in?

-RobNY

Do you have another PC that can dish out your files to other HTPC's in the house or is this the one? You'll need an extender of some sort and there's actually many options to do that if you get creative. You can have other low power HTPC'S playback video files using their own player and stream live TV with an HD Homerun Prime tuner to each of them; or use an xBox360 to extend live TV; or you can use a media streamer if you aren't wanting to play live TV on the extenders.

If you are going to use this machine to download or rip your content then the i5 and 8GB of RAM is what you want/need.

So give us more information as to what you plan to do so we can give you better options and opinions.

Make sure you put some deoderant on next time though.

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Old 03-21-2012, 06:48 PM
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If you are going to use this machine to download or rip your content then the i5 and 8GB of RAM is what you want/need.

Certainly not.

What in the world does processor/ram have to do with downloading?
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Old 03-21-2012, 06:59 PM
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Certainly not.

What in the world does processor/ram have to do with downloading?

Not the downloading so much as the repairing of the files while processing other files to create mkv's. Downloading and repairing a 50gb file while creating an mkv from another and streaming to another computer (or few as it seems this is a whole house soution?) takes a little bit of power and the extra cores also help.

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Old 03-21-2012, 07:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Sammy2 View Post

Not the downloading so much as the repairing of the files while processing other files to create mkv's. Downloading and repairing a 50gb file while creating an mkv from another and streaming to another computer takes a little bit of power and the extra cores also help.

I think his point might have been that you don't NEED it. A quad core is a nice luxury to have and certainly if you are going to do a lot of converting/transcoding then it makes sense. But if you are only doing this a few times a month then the extra power will only save you a little bit of time.
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Old 03-21-2012, 07:06 PM
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And that is why I asked what the goal was..

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Old 03-21-2012, 07:09 PM
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Just want to be clear to the OP: For straight ripping like ripping to a uncompressed HD file (MKV or ISO) a more powerful CPU and more RAM offer no speed advantage. The limiting factor in that scenario is the speed of the Bluray drive and not the CPU/RAM/Chipset/Motherboard.
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Old 03-21-2012, 07:09 PM - Thread Starter
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Will defiantly try the video and hold off on buying anything. I know the processor is overkill but what are we really talking about 50 bucks? It's $219 and comes with a blu-ray burner. My wife does the ripping on here desktop in the office.

-RobNY
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Old 03-21-2012, 07:13 PM
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Originally Posted by RobNY View Post

Will defiantly try the video and hold off on buying anything. I know the processor is overkill but what are we really talking about 50 bucks? It's $219 and comes with a blu-ray burner. My wife does the ripping on here desktop in the office.

-RobNY

There's nothing wrong with the i5. Its a monster wrapped inside of an even bigger monster.

Its a beast is what I am trying to say.
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Old 03-21-2012, 07:14 PM
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True. My HTPC is an i3 clarkdale but I do a lot of processing on my i5 clarkdale with most files are fed from it. Somerimes it slows down.

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Old 03-21-2012, 07:18 PM
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True. My HTPC is an i3 clarkdale but I do a lot of processing on my i5 clarkdale with most files are fed from it. Somerimes it slows down.

And an i3 2100 has roughly the same computing power as your i5 Clarkdale.

Its by no means an "entry level" CPU.
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Old 03-21-2012, 07:18 PM - Thread Starter
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There's nothing wrong with the i5. Its a monster wrapped inside of an even bigger monster.

Its a beast is what I am trying to say.

Oh I do understand completely we do plan on running on the htpc cinemar software. http://www.cinemarsolutions.com/

-RobNY
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Old 03-21-2012, 07:20 PM
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And an i3 2100 has roughly the same computing power as your i5 Clarkdale.

Its by no means an "entry level" CPU.

Except the cores and hyperthreading.

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Old 03-21-2012, 07:23 PM - Thread Starter
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Should probably also mention we have around 700 DVD's and over 100 Blu-Rays that all need to be ripped. Anyone got any idea how much space that will take up?

-RobNY
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Old 03-21-2012, 07:27 PM
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Should probably also mention we have around 700 DVD's and over 100 Blu-Rays that all need to be ripped. Anyone got any idea how much space that will take up?

-RobNY

Just the movie?

Rougly 30GB for bluray and 5GB for DVD.

Three 3TB drives should hold you for now and you can add more later when prices are cheaper.
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Old 03-21-2012, 07:28 PM
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Oh I do understand completely we do plan on running on the htpc cinemar software. http://www.cinemarsolutions.com/

-RobNY

Why? Consider getting my guides instead for $25 as I show you how to do almost all of that (plus much much more) with better software for free.
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Old 03-21-2012, 07:45 PM
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Originally Posted by assassin View Post

Thoughts:

Why do you need another storage enclosure? That case has plenty of storage and you can even turn some of the 5.25" bays into 3.5" bays if you need more. I wouldn't waste my money on another storage enclosure unless you want/need it for some reason.

You received absolutely horrible advice on the Green drives. I prefer them over 7200 RPM drives for storage in the HTPC environment. They are ideal and PLENTY fast enough. I now have six 2TB drives --- all Green (WD and Samsung) and have absolutely no complaints.

For HTPC the i3 and Pentium Ivy Bridge CPUs aren't going to be out for many months. So if you want to build now get a Sandy Bridge. I always say to start with the Intel integrated GPU and add a card only if you aren't 100% happy with it. Many people on AVS think that there is no difference between Intel iGPU and the NVidia/ATI discrete graphics cards for 1080p. Personally I use a i3 2100 with iGPU and I am extremely happy.

+1 here.

Read this again. It's worth it.

-

"Too much is almost enough. Anything in life worth doing is worth overdoing. Moderation is for cowards."
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Old 03-21-2012, 08:16 PM - Thread Starter
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Why? Consider getting my guides instead for $25 as I show you how to do almost all of that (plus much much more) with better software for free.

Yeah already told the wife to put your guides on top of her to-do-list. Your guides will work as a simple user interface to all of it? I have a ton of people/family that come over and spend all weekend in the theater. So whatever it is it will need to be simple for others to use.

-RobNY
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Old 03-21-2012, 08:24 PM
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Originally Posted by RobNY View Post

Yeah already told the wife to put your guides on top of her to-do-list. Your guides will work as a simple user interface to all of it? I have a ton of people/family that come over and spend all weekend in the theater. So whatever it is it will need to be simple for others to use.

-RobNY

Yes. My wife use the HTPC everyday (we have 2 young kids so its used with them a lot).

I am convinced she is the most un-tech person on the planet and even she can use. I don't think she has ever called me that something wasn't working correctly.
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Old 03-21-2012, 08:28 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by assassin View Post

Yes. My wife use the HTPC everyday (we have 2 young kids so its used with them a lot).

I am convinced she is the most un-tech person on the planet and even she can use. I don't think she has ever called me that something wasn't working correctly.

Good deal she is pretty savy when it comes to things for the most part. It's just we'll have family and friends and do "Scary Movie Weekend" and things like that so people that aren't familiar with it need to be able to use it because my butts in bed early lol.
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Old 03-21-2012, 09:12 PM - Thread Starter
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Question how do I connect all the internal HD's? Assuming I get 10 drives.

Quote:


On-Board SATA

• SATAII controller integrated in Intel® Z68 (B3) chipset
- Up to 3Gb/s transfer speed.
- Supports four SATAII ports (SATA3~6) by Z68 (B3) PCH
- SATA3~6 ports support Intel Rapid Storage Technology (AHCI / RAID 0/1/5/10) by Intel Z68 (B3)

• SATAIII controller integrated in Intel® Z68 (B3) chipset
- Up to 6Gb/s transfer speed.
- Supports two SATAIII ports (SATA1~2) by Z68 (B3) PCH
- SATA1~2 ports support Intel Rapid Storage Technology (AHCI / RAID 0/1) by Intel Z68 (B3)

-RobNY
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Old 03-21-2012, 09:29 PM
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Question how do I connect all the internal HD's? Assuming I get 10 drives.



-RobNY

Sata controller card which will expand the number you can connect.
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Old 03-21-2012, 09:30 PM
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You use one of these.
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