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Noobs HTPC specs - any advice/comments?

823 Views 15 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  htxb
I finally purchased the rest of my stuff for the HTPC.

Case - FICA Ice Cube VL67

Processor - Intel Pentium 4 2.4GHz 800MHz

Hard Drive - Maxtor 200GB 8MB Cache

Video Card - GeForce FX5600 Ultra 128MB 8X AGP Video Card

RAM - 512MB DDR400 PC3200 Memory

DVD Burner - I/O Magic 16x Dual Layer/Dual Format DVD Burner

PVR Card - Hauppauge WinTV-PVR 150 MCE

I'm gonna use MS Win XP MCE 2005 as the OS but the last place I tried to buy it from insists that you purchase it w/hardware. Does anyone know where I could buy it w/o having to purchase any hardware since I pretty much have all I need?


Any comments or suggestions for eventual replacements are welcome, and greatly appreciated.

Thanks again! :)
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Nope. It's OEM, so you must purchase it with hardware. Do you have a remote for MCE yet?

nope, not yet. would ordering the remote enable me to order the software?
Yep, it's a piece of hardware after all. :) Just make sure you get a remote that includes the IR receiver.

Thanks, Andy!

Does anyone have any comments as to the hardware I'm using. Any words of caution or anything? Does anybody know of any potential issues w/this hardware combination? Did I make some good/bad choices?
Try www.pcalchemy.com they have a bundle where you can buy the remote, the OS, the Nvidia mpeg codecs (you will need a form of mpeg codecs for PVRing)

cool! i saw the bundle on that site and that's what threw up a red flag about the whole "buying the os w/hardware" issue. i called to cancel the pvr card i had ordered (like less than an hour after ordering) but they seem to be dragging their feet with it and i'm not sure if they can cancel the order or not. we'll see. if they do, then i'm all over that bundle on pcalchemy!

Thanks, Josh!
who did u order the tuner card from? If it was from pcalchemy they are really good about things like that. check out resellerratings.com on them they have really great feedback and i've delt with them just over email with questions and they respond very fast.

i ordered it from comp-u-plus

i found them from doing a search on froogle.com

they had a decent price ($64)

the only downside was that the cheapest shipping they offer is 2-day for $15 so it came out to almost $80.

so far w/o any OS, i'm up to around $600. a lil more than I expected, but I guess not too bad for a first. it's kinda easy to forget how much your spending as a whole when its 70 bucks here, 80 bucks there. it all adds up quick, that's for sure! :)
hehe yea i know what you mean I just upgraded my Mobo, CPU, HSF, and some other misc. parts and that was $500

I still dont have any TV tuners or anything like that.


I can't wait to get all this stuff together. This will be the first PC I'm building, as well as the first HTPC. Hopefully things will go smoothly so I won't end up hoping it's the last one I ever build. heheh

I can just imagine myself thinking "Screw it! I'm gonna go get a Tivo!!" lol
Originally posted by htxb
....I can just imagine myself thinking "Screw it! I'm gonna go get a Tivo!!" lol
haha yea I know exactly what you mean there. I havn't been building computers too long maybe 5 years and I still remember building my first one. I was sweating bullets thinking I screwed something up when I first plugged it in, pushed the power button and nothing happened.

just a little tip, never ever used the thermal pads that come with the Heat Sinks, Always get a little vial of artic silver thermal paste.

Other than that take it slow and you should do fine, oh and always RTM :) it will help with setitng the jumpers and setting up the bios.

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My caution is to watch out for noise. I have a small form factor PC in my HT setup (FIC Sabre 1815, put this together 4 years ago), but the whirring noise was really bothersome. The case fan & integrated processor cooling wasn't making the noise, it was the video card I had added.

So I swapped around for a cooler (but slower) video card without a fan. I can't quite tell, but the pictures that come up when I search on "GeForce FX5600 Ultra 128MB 8X AGP Video Card" seem to have a honking big fan on the card.
thanks for the heads up...i'm not expecting much since this is the first pc i'm builidng...i'll be happy if it just works! heheh

you're right, though. it does have a good size fan on it.
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