Been reading this forum for awhile. First post.
I'm preparing to build a front end client for my SageTV server (headless, Q8400, 2GB RAM). I'm currently using SageTV-branded extenders (and love them) but as most of you know, SageTV is now a part of Google and is no longer selling its software or extenders. Love SageTV but at some point, may have to consider MythTV or Ubuntu TV (or XBMC if the TV functionality catches up)
I've built 6 intel-based desktop PCs in the past. I have nothing against AMD – just each time I went to build, Fry's Electronics had intel CPU/MB combos that were better values.
For this SageTV client, I was initially leaning towards the Llano platform w/ a small SSD, and in a SFF case but I read that the AMD APUs use more power and thus get hotter than SB i3's. Because of power, heat, and noise, I definitely want IGP and not discrete graphics. This front end client will be connected to my wired network via cat5. I have an unused (and legal) copy of Win7 64 Home Premium laying around here.
I watch HD TV via HDHR and analog TV with Hauppauge tuners. With the help of Handbrake, I watch ripped DVD's from an atom-based Ubuntu NAS box. I don't yet own or watch any BD's but want to in the future. I know very little about video codecs needed or HD audio bitstreaming but will figure it out as I go.
- So if I stick w/ the SB i3's, is the cheapest entry level sufficient (i3-2100?) It has HD2000 graphics but no idea how that IGP compares w/ the HD3000 graphics on the i3-2105.
- Or wait until until the Ivy Bridge i3's come out w/ HD4000? They look to be considerably more pricey, >$200.
- I see that some of the intel i3's have a "T" in the model number. I believe that is an indicator that they consume less power and can thus be used w/ a smaller fan? Am I correct? And I assume an i3 with this "T" designation is desirable in a SFF front end build, correct? Or is a smaller fan a louder fan because its spinning at a higher rpm?
- And what's with a SB Pentium? Is that the same Northwood Pentium I used to build my first PC back in 2002? Seriously, how does the IGP on the G620 compare to HD2000 or HD3000? (That Northwood Pentium is still chugging along very nicely in my Untangle Router)
- 4GB RAM sufficient?
Lastly, I like the idea of a little more horsepower in the CPU in the event that I decide later to repurpose the computer for other tasks (i.e. i3 CPU > Llano CPU).
I saw Assassin's guide on this forum and it is a treasure trove of recommendations. Still not sure yet which case is the best blend of small but with good ventilation (assume ATX PSU is louder than pico?)
Thanks in advance (and apologies for the long post)