Hello everyone, I've been absent from the board for many months after a very active period in early 2012, and I hope this finds all of you well.
I did an i5 build in Feb 2012 and all in all am quite pleased with it. In the long run I opted out of much of the fancy stuff, but did have MB, Buddy etc. running (may go back to The Guides and do some tweaking).
I have now retired my original HTPC (Dell XPS/Vista 32 purchased in 2008) - damn thing has basically died, it works fine for 20-40 minuets (normal computing, no HTPC) then hangs, I've wasted a few hours googling/troubleshooting, but, I just don't think it is worth the time as all the low hanging fruit has been eliminated... I've always had problems with the AMD graphics card... the CPU cooler has been making an hideous noise for quite some time and I've harvested the keyboard/mouse and monitor for my wife's new mac mini (great little $600 machine for her).
Anyway, I'm thinking of harvesting the XPS case and the drives and building the kids a new machine as they are currently without a 'play machine'. I also have a 13 year old Gateway from which I may harvest some cables etc. But, I'd be buying a mobo/cpu/8GB of stix and probably an SSD and an OS.... Wondering if I'm not better off going to one of the OEM sites and just buying one off the shelf - (I can't stand the pre-installed software).
The XPS casing is huge, full blown ATX. Can I put an mATX in that box?
Should I even attempt to harvest the power supply?
I'm in the very early stages (probably wouldn't order/go to Micro Center before April) so jury is totally out on the hardware.... would like the option of 'converting' to HTPC if so inclined (probably an i3 Sandy build, perhaps i5). Don't have a display (13 year old 1:1 Gateway).... So think a basic, but 1080p w/o graphics card (hence the Sandy i3) - but I've been away long enough that any suggestions are not only welcome but....
As always, any insight is greatly appreciated.
Here is the build I did last year (I had a 500GB drive and subsequently purchased a WD 3TB and popped it in - and added a $20 Harmony 200 for the BR extender set up):
CPU i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz 180
Mobo ASRock Z68 PRO3-M 104
SSD Crucial m4 2.5" 64GB SATA III 80
Mem Kingston HyperX (2 x 4GB) @1600 35
Keyboard Mouse Logitech Wireless Combo MK260 30
CPU/MboBundle discount -40
Micro Center Total (all in) 420.12
Case SilverStone GD04B 98
Tuner Ceton InfiniIV 208 (how often are there better deals on these, or, the HD HomeRun?)
Remote Media Center MCE PC Remote 14
Optical Asus 24xDVD±RW 23
Order Total w/tax 39
AMZN Total (all in) 345
PS PC Power & Cooling Silencer MK II 70
Cables 2xSATA III Cables 8 (bought these too short, pulled a SATAIII off mobo)
OS Win 7 x 64 Home SP1 100
NewEgg Total (all in) 178
Total Total 943.12
MIR + Promo 50