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post #1 of 128 Old 10-12-2012, 01:06 PM - Thread Starter
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Case: I have a strong preference - H5.S (http://www.hd-plex.com/H5.S.html)

Approximate Purchase Date: Any Time, I am in no rush

Budget Range: $1,000 to $1,500

System Usage from Most to Least Important: 3D/2D Blu-Ray Movies (stored on DASD as ISO files) and Music (stored on DASD as 24BIT/192kHz and 24BIT/352.8kHz FLAC files) playback, Office tasks, some amateurish Photoshop, Browsing the web

Parts Not Required: I need advice on choosing everything but case

Parts Preferences: quality, reliability, support, Intel

Overclocking: No

SLI or Crossfire: No need for it as this wont be used as a gaming rig

Monitor Resolution: As this will be an HTPC it will be hooked up to a Panasonic Viera TC-P65VT50 (http://shop.panasonic.com/shop/model/TC-P65VT50) for movies playback and to HP ZR30w monitor (http://www.anandtech.com/show/3754/a-new-30-contender-hp-zr30w-review) for other tasks

Additional Comments: biggrin.gif

1. Need wireless keyboard and mouse
2. Wi-Fi to connect to the web would be nice to have too
3. At the initial stage of the project would prefer to use good onboard sound like, for example, provided with Intel DH77DF Motherboard (http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/motherboards/desktop-motherboards/desktop-board-dh77df.html)
4. In the future would like to add PCI express USB 3.0 host card (http://sotm-audio.com/english/products/tx-usbexp.php) to connect PC to external asynchronous USB DAC
5. Linear Power Supply upgrade – could you please comment on the need for this?

Please help!smile.gif

Respectfully,
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post #2 of 128 Old 10-12-2012, 01:21 PM
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What I normally recommend as a basic office foundation - core i3 3225 (or 3220 if you can't find it) and a Gigabyte H77M-D3H with 8GB Kingston Value RAM. That is the guts and it all fits in the case.
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post #3 of 128 Old 10-12-2012, 03:57 PM - Thread Starter
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Thank you! smile.gif

Gigabyte H77M-D3H board does not have DisplayPort I need, unfortunately... I also found Intel DH77DF board is not compatible with the case I like. mad.gif

What Micro-ATX board with DisplayPort, mSATA and good onboard sound could you recommend me, please? biggrin.gif Anything really good from ASUS?

Respectfully,
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post #4 of 128 Old 10-12-2012, 07:14 PM
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Only boards I could find with mSATA are ATX and will not fit in that case. This Asus fits all your other criteria:

http://www.asus.com.au/Motherboards/Intel_Socket_1155/P8H77M_PRO/#specifications
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post #5 of 128 Old 10-13-2012, 04:46 AM
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What do you need Displayport for? Just curious.
Do you need it "right now" or just to make your PC "future-proof"? biggrin.gif

Good time to buy computers and computer parts: NEVER
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post #6 of 128 Old 10-13-2012, 05:04 AM
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You can get a fine system with A LOT of HDD's in your budget range!!

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post #7 of 128 Old 10-13-2012, 08:38 AM - Thread Starter
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Thank you! smile.gif

AsRock® Desktop Board Z77E-ITX
http://www.asrock.com/mb/Intel/Z77E-ITX/?cat=Specifications

vs.

Intel® Desktop Board DH77EB
http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/motherboards/desktop-motherboards/desktop-board-dh77eb.html.html

It looks like both boards fit my bill:

1. HDMI to connect to my Panasonic Viera TC-P65VT50
2. DisplayPort to connect to my HP ZR30w monitor
3. mSATA to connect Atlas mSATA 240GB Solid State Drive (http://www.mushkin.com/Digital-Storage/SSDs/MKNSSDAT240GB-DX.aspx)
or something similar, e.g., Crucial m4 mSATA 256GB SSD, directly to the board
4. decent onboard sound solution Realtek ALC892 (Intel) or Realtek ALC898 Audio Codec (AsRock) – in this department I would prefer AsRock
5. Compatible with the case I like (confirmed by the case manufacturer)

But even a newbie can understand there is much more to consider and for this analysis I do need your help badly indeed. For example, just the fact boards are based on different chipsets: Z77 vs. H77... wink.gif

CPUs I am considering:
1. Intel Core i7-3770S Ivy Bridge, 3.1 GHz 65w Quad Core processor
2. Intel Core i7-3770T Ivy Bridge, 2.5 GHz 45w Quad Core processor

Which CPU? Probably “T” due to its lower Max TDP factor... What do you think?

RAM:
8x2 GB Dual Channel DDR3, 1600 MHz memory probably by Kingston or Corsair - I have no idea what to select here... mad.gif

Respectfully,
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post #8 of 128 Old 10-13-2012, 09:14 AM
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Both those boards are good choices . I do however like the Intel better . Why ? RELIABILITY ! You just can't , in my opinion beat an Intel for reliability / support when in comparison to ASrock . The Rock is a good board though and I have used one with great success.

I would go the Intel route .

16 gigs of ramm ? Really ? For what ?

This is really good ramm and has never failed me . Unlesss your doing some crazy memory intense stuff .... 8 gigs is way more than enough and 4 gigs is plenty for a standard htpc . I would do 8 gigs cool.gif

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231314
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post #9 of 128 Old 10-13-2012, 10:31 AM
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Why display port? Your HP monitor has a DVI port too. Also a couple of other notes:

- You're requirements are very basic. The pc you're proposing is very much overkill. If you have cash to burn, go for it but really you're overbuilding this.
- i3 or even G630/G620 would meet the requirements you've posted with ease.
- 8GB RAM is already overkill, 16 is not worth doing.
- Since you won't be overclocking, H77 mobo will do everything you need.
- The best audio quality you can get is bitstreaming uncompressed to a receiver via HDMI.
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post #10 of 128 Old 10-13-2012, 01:15 PM
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Hi,

You could find the updated compatible motherboard list for HDPLEX H5.S here.
Recent H77 and Z77 boards along with many FM1/FM2 AMD mobo have been added to the list.

Also the updated H5.S version has two major improvements comparing to the first batch H5.S.
First, the side groove to bury heatpipe is raw aluminum instead of powder coat. This improve the heat transfer efficiency on top of the mirror polishing copper base plate








Second, the new power plate supported both 5.5/2.5 single PIN DC plug and 4PIN mini DIN connector via adapter cable. This means all PicoPSU and silimlar DC-ATX solution are supported by HDPLEX H5 series. This enable customer use their own PicoPSU solution from mini-box.com without the need to purchase PSU again.

PicoPSU single PIN 5.5/2.5mm DC connector Installation


160XT PicoPSU 4PIN MINI DIN connector Installation using adapter cable








Finally a small improvement for the heatsink installation kit. Four new smaller bottom holders will be included in the heatsink system.Some motherboards have small components around the back of the heatsink installation hole. The original bottom holder will need cutting/trimming to prevent it from damaging the small components. With new additional smaller bottom holder, you don't have to worry about this anymore.


HDPLEX
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post #11 of 128 Old 10-13-2012, 02:28 PM - Thread Starter
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Thank you very kindly for your help guys! smile.gif

I would like to experiment with various Virtual Machines and OS setups, hence 16GB of fast RAM requirement.

Is this 8GBx2 RAM a good choice: http://gskill.com/products.php?index=482&c1=1&c2=3
Any alternatives you could recommend? rolleyes.gif

Along the same line of thoughts is my intension of using mSATA SSD:
1. Atlas mSATA 240GB Solid State Drive
(http://www.mushkin.com/Digital-Storage/SSDs/MKNSSDAT240GB-DX.aspx)
2. Crucial m4 mSATA 256GB SSD
(http://www.crucial.com/store/partspecs.aspx?imodule=CT256M4SSD3)
Which is a better choice? Any alternatives you could recommend? rolleyes.gif

What do you think of PSU, please? I would like to employ something with low ripple.
Is this one a good choice: http://www.mini-box.com/picoPSU-160-XT
or I should employ Linear Power Supply instead (http://www.mojo-audio.com/joule-ii-power-supply/ , for example)? rolleyes.gif

Respectfully,
Sound Sparks
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post #12 of 128 Old 10-15-2012, 02:58 PM - Thread Starter
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Could you please help me to evaluate the following CPU choices? rolleyes.gif

1. Intel Core i7-3770S Ivy Bridge, 3.1 GHz 65w Quad Core processor
2. Intel Core i5-3450S Ivy Bridge, 2.8 GHz 65w Quad Core processor
3. Intel Core i7-3770T Ivy Bridge, 2.5 GHz 45w Quad Core processor

Respectfully,
Sound Sparks
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post #13 of 128 Old 10-15-2012, 03:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoundSparks View Post

Could you please help me to evaluate the following CPU choices? rolleyes.gif
1. Intel Core i7-3770S Ivy Bridge, 3.1 GHz 65w Quad Core processor
2. Intel Core i5-3450S Ivy Bridge, 2.8 GHz 65w Quad Core processor
3. Intel Core i7-3770T Ivy Bridge, 2.5 GHz 45w Quad Core processor

Overkill. You want the i3 3225 or 3220 if you can't find that one.
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post #14 of 128 Old 10-15-2012, 04:55 PM
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I'm an avid supporter of Intel over AMD, but AMD just released their trinity chips and that's what I'm using in my build. Those chips are ideally built for HTPC. Just curious if you heard of the trinity chips and new mobos out designed for them, because they are literally like a week or two old as far as public availability.
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post #15 of 128 Old 10-15-2012, 06:45 PM
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Here's the Trinity board I'm interested in and have been waiting for that has a Display Port:

http://www.biostar-usa.com/app/en-us/mb/introduction.php?S_ID=616
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post #16 of 128 Old 10-15-2012, 06:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bellagiofan View Post

I'm an avid supporter of Intel over AMD, but AMD just released their trinity chips and that's what I'm using in my build. Those chips are ideally built for HTPC. Just curious if you heard of the trinity chips and new mobos out designed for them, because they are literally like a week or two old as far as public availability.

Totally depends on what you consider a "HTPC" and what you do with that "HTPC"
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post #17 of 128 Old 10-15-2012, 07:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bellagiofan View Post

I'm an avid supporter of Intel over AMD, but AMD just released their trinity chips and that's what I'm using in my build. Those chips are ideally built for HTPC. Just curious if you heard of the trinity chips and new mobos out designed for them, because they are literally like a week or two old as far as public availability.

Intel's i3 3220 smashes Trinity on the CPU side and the GPU side is irrelevant unless you want to game on the cheap or use MadVR. Personally I'd take Intel any day over any of AMD's current lineup - I've rebuilt all my systems with Intel and sold off the old AMD parts. AMD simply isn't worth it generally anymore.
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post #18 of 128 Old 10-15-2012, 07:27 PM
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All I've read have stated the new Trinity is about on par with the i3 and smashes the i3 on graphics. What is your definition of "smashes" when referring to the Intel i3 over the new AMD??

Here's a review with some benchmarks. http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/a10-5800k-a8-5600k-trinity-apu,3241-2.html

Here's the sum up of gaming at 1080p that might apply: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/trinity-gaming-performance,3304-11.html
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post #19 of 128 Old 10-15-2012, 07:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Tiddles88 View Post

Overkill. You want the i3 3225 or 3220 if you can't find that one.

He wants to overclock I guess biggrin.gif

Good time to buy computers and computer parts: NEVER
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post #20 of 128 Old 10-15-2012, 07:32 PM
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Originally Posted by H8nXTC View Post

All I've read have stated the new Trinity is about on par with the i3 and smashes the i3 on graphics. What is your definition of "smashes" when referring to the Intel i3 over the new AMD??
Here's a review with some benchmarks. http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/a10-5800k-a8-5600k-trinity-apu,3241-2.html

What "graphics"? 1080p? Won't notice a difference.
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post #21 of 128 Old 10-15-2012, 07:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by assassin View Post

What "graphics"? 1080p? Won't notice a difference.

I've supplied a link (from a professional review) in the previous post to apply to this response.

The sum up quoted from the Tom's Hardware review if you don't want to bother clicking the link:

"Have we grasped the Holy Grail in our quest to achieve playable performance from integrated graphics at 1920x1080? Yes and no.

If you had asked us one year ago whether we thought it was possible to play current-gen games on an HDTV or 24" monitor's native resolution using AMD's Llano or Intel's Sandy Bridge architecture, we would have shot back a decisive "No." In most of the tests we were running, even 1280x720 was a stretch for those designs. Today, Trinity and Ivy Bridge get us a lot closer to 1920x1080, which is where both AMD and Intel need to be if they hope to convince gamers that their on-die graphics engines are actually viable for gaming. And while both companies cautiously steer customers toward fairly mainstream titles, they're both clearly looking to a day when they can count more demanding games amongst those playable on integrated graphics.



This generation, it's fairly safe to say you won't be playing Crysis 2, Witcher 2, or Battlefield 3 at 1920x1080, even at the lowest detail settings those games offer, and that'll almost certainly remain the case until both AMD and Intel introduce the next generation of hardware. But the other seven titles give us something to look forward to. Intel’s Core i3-3225 can get a foot in the door on three or four of them, and AMD can now transcend the lowest detail settings in a few titles with its fastest Trinity-based APU. This is a huge improvement. For the folks trying to build into compact form factors without room for discrete graphics, this may even come as a revelation. And it probably goes a long way in explaining why so many folks wanted to see what an APU could do in Take That, iMac?: Build Your Own All-In-One PC. We can only hope that AMD is exploring the potential of all-in-ones able to cope with its APU's 100 W thermal ceiling.

As we continue moving forward, we expect AMD and Intel to both take advantage of the fact that their respective processors support OpenCL to empower ISVs. There are many more applications supporting OpenCL today than there were when we first looked at AMD's Llano architecture, but OpenCL-enabled games are proving slower to materialize. It remains to be seen if developers utilize the API to improve performance or add visual effects that might have been too expensive to implement in software previously. Depending on the approach that games take, we may see this latest batch of CPUs with on-die graphics make even deeper inroads to mainstream gaming.

AMD is officially lifting the veil on pricing, overclocking headroom, and application performance of its Trinity-based APUs next week. For now, though, we remain encouraged by what we've seen here today (even more so since we published the first preview of Trinity's performance almost four months ago in AMD Trinity On The Desktop: A10, A8, And A6 Get Benchmarked!).

Both companies are making a concerted effort to shift focus from their components to the experience you get from a total solution built using their respective technologies. In a sense, that’s what we’ve tried to assess here. Can you have a satisfying gaming experience with integrated graphics today? Undoubtedly, some folks will find that the titles they enjoy play well enough to get by without discrete graphics. And that's something we discerning enthusiasts have never felt comfortable admitting before. For others, the idea of dialing settings down as low as they go just to avoid a three-dimensional slide show is going to be enough to spring for the cheap add-in graphics card it'd take to get smooth performance at 1920x1080, form factor be damned. We cannot deny, however, that each generation we progress takes us closer and closer to a place where innovation in hardware enables compelling software. And, even as AMD struggles to catch Intel in more general desktop application performance and efficiency, graphics is one segment where Intel plays follow-the-leader."
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post #22 of 128 Old 10-15-2012, 08:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by H8nXTC View Post

I've supplied a link (from a professional review) in the previous post to apply to this response.
The sum up quoted from the Tom's Hardware review if you don't want to bother clicking the link:
"Have we grasped the Holy Grail in our quest to achieve playable performance from integrated graphics at 1920x1080? Yes and no.
If you had asked us one year ago whether we thought it was possible to play current-gen games on an HDTV or 24" monitor's native resolution using AMD's Llano or Intel's Sandy Bridge architecture, we would have shot back a decisive "No." In most of the tests we were running, even 1280x720 was a stretch for those designs. Today, Trinity and Ivy Bridge get us a lot closer to 1920x1080, which is where both AMD and Intel need to be if they hope to convince gamers that their on-die graphics engines are actually viable for gaming. And while both companies cautiously steer customers toward fairly mainstream titles, they're both clearly looking to a day when they can count more demanding games amongst those playable on integrated graphics.
This generation, it's fairly safe to say you won't be playing Crysis 2, Witcher 2, or Battlefield 3 at 1920x1080, even at the lowest detail settings those games offer, and that'll almost certainly remain the case until both AMD and Intel introduce the next generation of hardware. But the other seven titles give us something to look forward to. Intel’s Core i3-3225 can get a foot in the door on three or four of them, and AMD can now transcend the lowest detail settings in a few titles with its fastest Trinity-based APU. This is a huge improvement. For the folks trying to build into compact form factors without room for discrete graphics, this may even come as a revelation. And it probably goes a long way in explaining why so many folks wanted to see what an APU could do in Take That, iMac?: Build Your Own All-In-One PC. We can only hope that AMD is exploring the potential of all-in-ones able to cope with its APU's 100 W thermal ceiling.
As we continue moving forward, we expect AMD and Intel to both take advantage of the fact that their respective processors support OpenCL to empower ISVs. There are many more applications supporting OpenCL today than there were when we first looked at AMD's Llano architecture, but OpenCL-enabled games are proving slower to materialize. It remains to be seen if developers utilize the API to improve performance or add visual effects that might have been too expensive to implement in software previously. Depending on the approach that games take, we may see this latest batch of CPUs with on-die graphics make even deeper inroads to mainstream gaming.
AMD is officially lifting the veil on pricing, overclocking headroom, and application performance of its Trinity-based APUs next week. For now, though, we remain encouraged by what we've seen here today (even more so since we published the first preview of Trinity's performance almost four months ago in AMD Trinity On The Desktop: A10, A8, And A6 Get Benchmarked!).
Both companies are making a concerted effort to shift focus from their components to the experience you get from a total solution built using their respective technologies. In a sense, that’s what we’ve tried to assess here. Can you have a satisfying gaming experience with integrated graphics today? Undoubtedly, some folks will find that the titles they enjoy play well enough to get by without discrete graphics. And that's something we discerning enthusiasts have never felt comfortable admitting before. For others, the idea of dialing settings down as low as they go just to avoid a three-dimensional slide show is going to be enough to spring for the cheap add-in graphics card it'd take to get smooth performance at 1920x1080, form factor be damned. We cannot deny, however, that each generation we progress takes us closer and closer to a place where innovation in hardware enables compelling software. And, even as AMD struggles to catch Intel in more general desktop application performance and efficiency, graphics is one segment where Intel plays follow-the-leader."

Point me to the part that is relevant for 1080p video (non-gaming) playback as I didn't see it.
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post #23 of 128 Old 10-15-2012, 08:03 PM
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I didn't say non-gaming, why add that now? Oh, because I posted a link that states the opposite? "graphics" is referring to what?
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post #24 of 128 Old 10-15-2012, 08:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by H8nXTC View Post

I didn't say non-gaming, why add that now?
Quote:
Originally Posted by SoundSparks View Post

SLI or Crossfire: No need for it as this wont be used as a gaming rig

Well this is a HTPC forum and the OP did specifically say it would NOT be used for gaming.
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post #25 of 128 Old 10-15-2012, 08:06 PM
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I was obviously referring to this post that I responded to and I QUOTED "smashes".
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiddles88 View Post

Intel's i3 3220 smashes Trinity on the CPU side and the GPU side is irrelevant unless you want to game on the cheap or use MadVR. Personally I'd take Intel any day over any of AMD's current lineup - I've rebuilt all my systems with Intel and sold off the old AMD parts. AMD simply isn't worth it generally anymore.

He's stating that the i3 "smashes" the new Trinity, I supplied a link that states it doesn't not. I supplied another link referring to the 1080p gaming also that shows that if anything "smashes" the other, it's the AMD over the Intel on the GPU.
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post #26 of 128 Old 10-15-2012, 08:07 PM
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Originally Posted by H8nXTC View Post

I was obviously referring to this post that I QUOTED.

Even for gaming you can do better with an intel CPU and AMD/NVidia discrete card for about the same amount of money and wattage. And I can't take the AMD Trinity CPU seriously as a "serious" gaming rig.

Unless you need a ITX form factor of course.
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post #27 of 128 Old 10-15-2012, 08:14 PM
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So, for the money and wattage the Intel over the AMD? So what's the wattage of a decent discrete video card going to add to the 65 watts of the i3 (a comparable card would be the HD 6670)? And price over the i3? Now compare that to the $130 for the AMD A10-5800K at 100w (or less if you read the review that stated they kept is stable by lowing the voltage to 1.275-1.280v meaning lowering it a total of 14watts during benchmarking (that means about 86watts at idle)?
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/a10-5800k-trinity-efficiency,3315-2.html
"Undervolting the APU to 1.275 V helps cut consumption by 14.3 W on average..."

A HD 6670 uses ?watts at idle. The price of the cheapest one is $67 shipped at newegg. Even at stock idle settings, that's ?watts total. And for price, which i3 are you referring to to add the $67 to?

I don't think they can compare to price, no matter how cheap the i3 you put in is.
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post #28 of 128 Old 10-15-2012, 08:26 PM
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So, for the money and wattage the Intel over the AMD? So what's the wattage of a decent discrete video card going to add to the 65 watts of the i3 (a comparable card would be the HD 6670)? And price over the i3? Now compare that to the $130 for the AMD A10-5800K at 100w (or less if you read the review that stated they kept is stable by lowing the voltage to 1.275-1.280v meaning lowering it a total of 14watts (that means 86watts)?
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/a10-5800k-trinity-efficiency,3315-2.html
"Undervolting the APU to 1.275 V helps cut consumption by 14.3 W on average..."

You need to educate yourself on TDP.

And comparing one CPU that is undervolted to one that is at stock is not exactly apples and oranges. And even when it was undervolted (in that same review) the AMD went over its "TDP".

AMD continues to embarassingly overshoot its TDP claims even when undervolted which does not bode well for a HTPC build.

power%20chart.png

The 6670 uses about 25-45 watts on average...

gfxpowerchartbybrandgen.png
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post #29 of 128 Old 10-15-2012, 08:43 PM
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OK, so the wattage is similar if a bit in favor for the Intel, now the price point? +$67 (cheapest at newegg with shipping) to which i3? The $130 i3 3220? so a total of $197 vs. $130? That $67 will more than make up for the extra wattage over the life of the CPU, won't it?

I think people will look at this and say if I want to do some gaming, I'd rather save the $67 and get the little higher wattage CPU to be honest.
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post #30 of 128 Old 10-15-2012, 08:57 PM
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OK, so the wattage is similar if a bit in favor for the Intel, now the price point? +$67 (cheapest at newegg with shipping) to which i3?

So you are using the lowest cost A4-5400 as a comparison? Why would you compare against the i3? The i3 compares to AMD's "quad core" Trinity.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819113283

Well Trinity has roughly a 10% boost in CPU performance over Llano so that equates to roughly a 1600 passmark score (A4 Llano at 1467 + 10%) as the passmark for the A4-5400 is not yet available.

So comparing apples to apples to apples a G540 is available at Newegg for $50 or Microcenter everyday for $35. It has a passmark score of 2348 which is about 50% more.

Cheapest 6670 is $60 (or $50 with rebate). So for about $85 (or $110 at full retail) you get a Gaming HTPC that is much more upgradeable, has a 50% stronger CPU, lower energy usage, lower heat and lower noise for about $20-$40 more (which you will probably shave off even lower each year in energy savings)

And we haven't even talked about performance. Even the reviewers complain about gaming on the A4 series APUs. You have to dial down detail, dial down resolution, etc on many games. Not an ideal gaming machine.

Again, for $20-$40 more I know what I would choose. Unless I absolutely needed an ITX --- then the decision isn't as clear.
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