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Hello all.


I'm looking for advice on making my gaming PC more of a home theater. I have a pretty decent computer (upgraded last year or so) so I need advice on the display and audio.


I've posted what I'm looking for in a display on the "help me choose an LCD" thread. I'd post a link but I haven't posted enough.

Aside from that, I need advice for the sound system, price range is up to $500, and I've been looking at a 5.1 sound bar (Sony I think).


How important is the refresh rate on the TV, what about the video card?

I'm running an amd quad-core 3.2ghz, rad5870, and 8gb 1600 ram.
 

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That setup will make a nice gaming HTPC. As for the sound, will you be running a receiver?


There really isn't a "conversion" from a gaming PC to a HTPC, the main difference is if you use media software like XBMC, etc..
 

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I went with the Onkyo Jamo package on Tiger Direct. It's cheap and should sound really nice for an entry level system. Just had to add a sub but for the entire setup (including BIC F12 sub) I only have about $640 in it. I know it's out of your budget but it's worth a look.
 

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I would also consider buying the receiver and the speaker package separately as an option. Check accessories4less for great deals on HT receivers . They have factory reconditioned and warrantied Onkyos that you can get into the base models for good prices. I've used them a couple of times to help out relatives with setting up a similar priced system. Good seller.


Once you have priced out your receiver and know how much you have left, I'd recommend researching in the speakers forum on AVS and/or asking there. A good HT speaker setup will be good for gaming, too, so they can help. You can get some good recommendations that way, and they will know all the current specials.
 

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If you're going to get a receiver with HDMI support (which I recommend) any of the newer ATI cards will do as they all support bitstreaming audio or you can go for a Nvidia 560 which also supports it. I have 3 ATI 6950s in Tri-Crossfire and they work quite well.


You really don't have to invest a lot of money anymore to have a decent gaming/HTPC setup.
 
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