Help with HTPC (video streaming) build - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 16 Old 10-01-2013, 06:22 PM - Thread Starter
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Really considering building a HTPC for HD Video playback (1080P) but I have no idea what are the ideal components I should get. I would be connecting it to a sharp hd TV using HDMI via a Sony sound bar. I currently have Fios Internet so i would be connected via ethernet cable.

My video sources are mkv and mp4 videos from the Internet. I would probably be ripping and encoding my current dvd , blu ray collection but not sure. No plans on using it as a gaming machine at all.

I currently have an external 3T hard drive that I will be using to store all my HD videos. Software for playback I will either be using XBMC or Nero. I also already have a wireless mouse and keyboard for navigation.

Operating system wise it would be WINDOWS 7, unless I can only use WINDOWS 8 by the time I get around to build it.

So any suggestions on processor, motherboard, video card (if necessary), ram, case, ssd drive, dvd/blu ray drive, and power supply.

PS. in regards to power supply are there any that would be 120/240V? Will be moving to the UK and I need to use 240V electronics.

Hope I was specific with my needs to get the best suggestions possible. Thank you in advance.
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post #2 of 16 Old 10-01-2013, 07:04 PM
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First, are you going to be using external drives for storage only? I ask this because HD content takes a lot of space. For example, I built my own UnRaid server which has 15 TB, and I currently have only 5 TB left eek.gif I rip all of my own content to MKV 1:1. I also stream wireless to my iOS devices with Plex Media Server / Client, which is pretty awesome, but this requires transcoding which is CPU intensive. That's why I upgraded my server from Dual Core AMD CPU to an Intel i5 quad core.

The other question, what is your budget? How big do you want an HTPC to be? How quiet?

Media Server: UnRaid Server: 15TB of storage and growing :).

http://www.avsforum.com/lists/display/view/id/8599

 

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post #3 of 16 Old 10-01-2013, 07:23 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GusGus748s View Post

First, are you going to be using external drives for storage only? I ask this because HD content takes a lot of space. For example, I built my own UnRaid server which has 15 TB, and I currently have only 5 TB left eek.gif I rip all of my own content to MKV 1:1. I also stream wireless to my iOS devices with Plex Media Server / Client, which is pretty awesome, but this requires transcoding which is CPU intensive. That's why I upgraded my server from Dual Core AMD CPU to an Intel i5 quad core.

The other question, what is your budget? How big do you want an HTPC to be? How quiet?

Yes at the moment I am only considering to use external drives, but with the right mother board, case and power supply I wouldn't mind adding additional internal drives.

Case size not really sure probably a mini tower or a desktop size case. Something discreet that wouldn't be an eyesore.

Quiet, well I guess this will all depend on my budget but of course the quieter the better.

Ahh yeah forgot to mention budget probably the most important part. Been researching htpc builds and it seem $700 and more are average. I don't want to break the bank but I don't want to go cheap, I want a system that will stream my HD videos with no hiccups or issues but also allow me to upgrade in the future without Having to start fresh.

Hope this helps in suggestions.

Also not looking to overclock Or anything like that. I am not a tech I just want to build it basic setup and configuration.
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post #4 of 16 Old 10-01-2013, 07:59 PM - Thread Starter
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If it helps this is more or less the type of case I'm interested in

http://www.silverstonetek.com/product.php?pid=233&area=en
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post #5 of 16 Old 10-01-2013, 08:05 PM
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You might consider one that has been prebuilt from here http://www.assassinhtpc.com/ or you can pay the $20 or $25 bucks and see the recommended builds with prices and directions one how to do one.

Media Server: UnRaid Server: 15TB of storage and growing :).

http://www.avsforum.com/lists/display/view/id/8599

 

Home Theater Set Up:

http://www.avsforum.com/lists/display/view/id/8597

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post #6 of 16 Old 10-01-2013, 09:13 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GusGus748s View Post

You might consider one that has been prebuilt from here http://www.assassinhtpc.com/ or you can pay the $20 or $25 bucks and see the recommended builds with prices and directions one how to do one.

I remember visiting that site, I went ahead and made mock build and it would run me about $1000. At least I know I need to go with i5 processor, then I would need to pick components based on that . Hopefully I can come up with something a little more affordable.
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post #7 of 16 Old 10-01-2013, 09:21 PM
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There are more affordable means, but i5 processor alone is $200, depending on the motherboard $60 to $300 dollars, RAM $50 to $200, type of OS price $100 to $200, video card $60 to $300 or more, hard drives $99 each 2TB. So, building a HTPC isn't very affordable. On top of that you have to mess around with the settings, software, and tweaking the hardware. So, $1000 for a HTPC already set up isn't that bad of a deal.

Or you can try an Intel NUC with i5 for a little over $300 dollars, but you still have to buy a msata drive, RAM and OS.

Media Server: UnRaid Server: 15TB of storage and growing :).

http://www.avsforum.com/lists/display/view/id/8599

 

Home Theater Set Up:

http://www.avsforum.com/lists/display/view/id/8597

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post #8 of 16 Old 10-01-2013, 09:38 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GusGus748s View Post

There are more affordable means, but i5 processor alone is $200, depending on the motherboard $60 to $300 dollars, RAM $50 to $200, type of OS price $100 to $200, video card $60 to $300 or more, hard drives $99 each 2TB. So, building a HTPC isn't very affordable. On top of that you have to mess around with the settings, software, and tweaking the hardware. So, $1000 for a HTPC already set up isn't that bad of a deal.

Or you can try an Intel NUC with i5 for a little over $300 dollars, but you still have to buy a msata drive, RAM and OS.

In your opinion what would a good motherboard to go along with this processor? The suggested motherboard (assus) for the build on the site has not gotten many good reviews. Would you even recommend a video card? Would the integrated graphics be more than enough to handle 1080p without any hiccups? Memory probably 4gb should suffice or should I get the 8gb if I decide to rip/transcode my current selection? Yeah I figured max $1000 would be enough for a decent htpc. Tweaking hardware I am sure I could get how tos based on what I get as long as it's not too complicated :-D.
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post #9 of 16 Old 10-01-2013, 10:07 PM
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To be honest, I don't know what motherboard to recommend. Since you want to store everything on your HTPC, I would be looking something that has at least 6 or more sata hook ups, and to be able to add an expansion card for future expansion. In my opinion though, it is better to have a NAS / Server as storage rather than having everything stored in a HTPC.

Media Server: UnRaid Server: 15TB of storage and growing :).

http://www.avsforum.com/lists/display/view/id/8599

 

Home Theater Set Up:

http://www.avsforum.com/lists/display/view/id/8597

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post #10 of 16 Old 10-02-2013, 06:02 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GusGus748s View Post

To be honest, I don't know what motherboard to recommend. Since you want to store everything on your HTPC, I would be looking something that has at least 6 or more sata hook ups, and to be able to add an expansion card for future expansion. In my opinion though, it is better to have a NAS / Server as storage rather than having everything stored in a HTPC.

Hmmm, something to consider. Thanks for the helpful info, at least I now have a starting point.
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post #11 of 16 Old 10-03-2013, 07:14 AM - Thread Starter
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So far these are the components I have come up with for my possible htpc build

CPU - $220
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819116504 Microsoft

Motherboard - $65
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157303

SSD - $100
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820147247

RAM - $80
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231428

DVD/BD - $58
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827135247

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit - $100

I already own an external 3T USB 3.0 drive where all my media will be stored.

Cost so far = $623

Budget for case and fan $170

Total possible cost $800

The only difficulty I have is in choosing a case and fan to go along with the components listed, not sure what would be a good fit. I would probably add additional storage in the future so a case that can support it would be nice. I'm leaning towards the Silverstone style cases but it doesn't have to be from them. Any helpful suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Also please feel free to comment on my other possible components.
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post #12 of 16 Old 10-03-2013, 09:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adinis View Post

So far these are the components I have come up with for my possible htpc build

CPU - $220
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819116504 Microsoft

Motherboard - $65
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157303

SSD - $100
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820147247

RAM - $80
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231428

DVD/BD - $58
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827135247

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit - $100

I already own an external 3T USB 3.0 drive where all my media will be stored.

Cost so far = $623

Budget for case and fan $170

Total possible cost $800

The only difficulty I have is in choosing a case and fan to go along with the components listed, not sure what would be a good fit. I would probably add additional storage in the future so a case that can support it would be nice. I'm leaning towards the Silverstone style cases but it doesn't have to be from them. Any helpful suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Also please feel free to comment on my other possible components.

You still need a power supply. I would suggest going with a mid tower case that has a lot of space for hard drives. Fractal Design makes some nice cases, and do not skim down on a power supply get a good one.

Media Server: UnRaid Server: 15TB of storage and growing :).

http://www.avsforum.com/lists/display/view/id/8599

 

Home Theater Set Up:

http://www.avsforum.com/lists/display/view/id/8597

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post #13 of 16 Old 10-03-2013, 11:31 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GusGus748s View Post

You still need a power supply. I would suggest going with a mid tower case that has a lot of space for hard drives. Fractal Design makes some nice cases, and do not skim down on a power supply get a good one.

Yes sorry I meant case and power supply. I will take a look at your suggestion. Thank you again.
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post #14 of 16 Old 10-03-2013, 11:41 AM
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I usually use corsair, Seasonic or Antec PSU. At least 600 or more watts.

Media Server: UnRaid Server: 15TB of storage and growing :).

http://www.avsforum.com/lists/display/view/id/8599

 

Home Theater Set Up:

http://www.avsforum.com/lists/display/view/id/8597

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post #15 of 16 Old 10-03-2013, 12:00 PM
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Antec is a good PSU brand. I have them in 3 systems.
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post #16 of 16 Old 10-03-2013, 03:49 PM - Thread Starter
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OK I tink this should complete my parts list

Case - $60
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129042

PSU - $90
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139040

That brings my possible total to $773 not including tax and shipping. Now all I need is to convince my wife to put this together rolleyes.gif
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