This is an amazing amount of information you have compiled. Many thanks for the efforts! As a long time lurker, and years ago poster to the forums (lost my login name) it's one of the best information threads I've ever seen here.
Some of the info here is very eye opening. This chart in particular....
(chart deleted due to a newbie attempting links! - it was a CPU recommendations/power consumption/framerates under certain conditions chart provided by Renethx)
... convinced me that it's not really even worth looking at AMD options for much other than single streams. Even then, the power consumption and resulting heat/noise control factors make them a bad choice it seems.
So here is my situation. I'm in need of an upgrade to an older PC, and also got the bug to at least partially cut the cable cord. This got me thinking HTPC and getting rid of the DVR.
Using Plex, could I simply kill two birds with one stone and build my existing case to act as a both a Plex Media Server and my "home" PC for browsing/paying bills/usual PC stuff? With the newer processors it would seem to me that I could build with enough processor reserve to handle mild PC use while the media server remains stable. It would also keep noise/heat in the other room, as we could use the Roku front end and remote at the TV end of things.
Understood that doing so will require more processor horsepower, but in the long run still much more cost effective than upgrading the current box and then putting together another for the HTPC. It would also remove a box from the viewing room. We already have the Roku for the primary monitor, and if needed buying another or two would still be cost saving over building a second system.
Is still a viable alternative or I am out of my mind with this thinking?