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hi guys,


i'm in the planning stage of building me a second HTPC.

my first one i build 11 months ago. it's working very well but i think i did some serious overkill at the time (spend a lot of money on it and it is way too noisy).


thats were i need your help for the second one.

what do i want to reach for my second HTPC?:

-no noise at all (passively cooled)

-no overkill

-as cheap as possible

-the case i will design and build myself

-must be able to playback full HD blu ray without any problems or delays

-must be very fast (i don't want to wait a minute to load)

what parts have i chosen so far?:

-INTEL DG45FC mini ITX motherboard (€125)

-INTEL core 2 duo E7400 processor (€105)

-asus triton 75 processor cooling (passively) (€25)

-GEIL 2GB DDR 2-800 Retail, GX22GB6400LX memory (€29)

-LG CH08LS10 blu ray drive (€99)

-SILVERSTONE nightjar ST30NF,fanless 300W PSU (€129)

-SEAGATE 250GB ST3250410AS HDD (for OS and software only) (€49)

-samsung 1TB HD103UJ HDD (2X with option of a 3th and 4th one) (€75)


remarks:

i will take the harddrives from my other HTPC for cutting costs and to test this new HTPC first. that will be 1 seagate 250GB and 2 samsung 1TB drives.

i do want to add another 2 1TB drives in the future as my current data drives are already almost full.

now that i think of it, i might as well take the memory and bluray drive from the old one just for testing the new one. that saves me another few €.

in the old one i have the famous LG bluray and 4GB memory. i've also been thinking of buying a slim bluray but it costs more and it reads only at 2X and i don't know if that is good enough for playback.


questions:

- can the PSU handle all this?

- can the CPU handle all this, or is it overkill?

-what about the integrated video (hdmi) on the MB, is it any good, can it playback bluray HD without any problem or stutter (i want a really good picture quality for DVD and bluray)

- the optical audio output, is the sound quality good and powerfull (i don't want to cranck the amp all the way up to hear something)? can i play besides dolby also DTS and other (HD) audio tracks?



if any remarks or sugesstions please let me know.

i want to start this as soon as possible. i'm out of the country in a few weeks and won't be back somewhere in november.

i don't wanna wait that long to get started.





yours,


montecristo
 

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Sorry bud, but your goal of totally passive cooling isn't going to work. That CPU cooler needs airflow to work - if not a fan on the cooler itself, then a lot of airflow through the case. You'll fry your CPU in less than an hour without a fan.


There are totally passive cooling options out there, but they are complicated and expensive. They all involve massive aluminum heatsinks on the outside of the case with heatpipes to transfer heat to them. There is no such thing as in internal passive heatsink for a modern desktop processor.


You don't need to go fanless to go silent. Good, large fans at low RPM make less noise than the hard drives or the BD drive. A cooler like this can be run so slow that you couldn't hear it 3 feet away. I don't know what your plans are for your custom case, but it really needs to include a few good fans.


Your choice of motherboards is a bit odd. Intel makes terrible GPUs. If you really need the mini-itx form factor, this is a much better choice for a HTPC. If you can step up to micro-ATX, this is better still.


I'm also a bit concerned with your PSU being a bit on the weak side. 300W might cut it for a simple HTPC setup, but if you're going to start adding lots of hard drives, you should probably go bigger.
 

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Disagree on power supply. If you are using onboard graphics, 300W should be plenty. There's a tendency to go overboard on PSUs. Unless you plan on getting a modern video card and playing Crysis, I think you'll be okay.
 
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