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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi Everyone!!

I've been lurking around this site for about 2 years and figured that it's about time I made a post. I need some quick advice and I know you guys are the ones to ask. This past weekend I hooked my HP Pavillion Media Center PC up to our 42' lcd Sharp Aquos and stumbled upon the conveniance of using Windows Media Center 7. The wife loved it as well. So now I am about to buy a specific pre-built HTPC from someone (I don't feel confident doing it myself) over the net and I wanted to check with you if the specs will meet my needs. The usage will be for:


Playing Movie files that I have downloaded or ripped to my HardDrive

Playing Music
Preferable but not necessary - playing games like Mass Effect 2 and Modern Warfare 2.


Here are the system specs I am looking at:

Motherboard Name- Gigabyte-GA-MA785GM-US2H

Mother board -QuadCore AMD Phenom 9750, 2400 MHz (12x200)

4 gb DDR2-800 SDRAM

Onboard Video Chipset - ATI Radeon HD 4200 (512 MB)

Onboard Audio Chipset - Realtek ALC889A HD Audio Controller (8 Channels)

1 TB Western Digital Hard Drive

Windows 7 64 Bit

Form Factor Micro ATX

Lite Bluray Drive/DVD Rom - This does not matter much to me since I already have a Sony BDP-350

2 Fan with speed controller

Antec 380 Earth Watt (80+) Power Supply


This would be using an HDMI cable connect to the receiver of my 5.1 Surround Sound HD Audio . Would this perform the way I need it to? All input is welcome. They told me it would do what I want but I prefer getting a second unbiased opinion from the experts. The caveat is I need to know today. Thanks everyone!!!
 

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How much do they want for it?

It will do what you want but I would have some reservations about it depending on the price.

The CPU is an older generation Quad-Core and power hungry (125W). The Phenom II line has more cache and performs much better for the same speed.

Does you receiver decode HD audio formats over HDMI?

And will you use this HTPC for HD AV playback?
 

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It would be plenty for 1080p if your decoding codec supports DXVA or multithreading (one or the other). If not, I would opt for a faster dual core. It won't support 'HD audio' bitstreaming to your receiver but what it will do will sound fine. Current-title gaming won't happen due to onboard graphics. Hard drive a bit small for a movie collector, but you can add external drives without having to open it up. Playing music is no problem for even a 10-year-old system, so no worries there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
They want between 360-500, the price is somewhat negotiable it appears. How high is too high do you think?

My reciever decodes everything but Dolby DTS-HD. I have a blu-ray player so I would use that for my main HD playback but there is the chance I may have a 1080p WMV ( or something similar) file that we would want to watch. I hope that helps with your assessment.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
It's sort of an experiment to see if we like doing things this way. Until last weekend its always been "download this, convert to dvd, burn dvd, bring downstairs" I felt like this option would cut out time and would allow me to take my book of over 500 backed up DVDs and have them with the click of a remote. I was not looking to spend much more than 500. My HP was over a $1000 and does everything I am really looking for, however the tower is not the ideal size for our tv cabinet.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by oasis82 /forum/post/18197405


anyone else? I can check back.

No more than $360, you can buy a prebuilt system from a vender with solid htpc specs for less than $500.
 

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Is this system used or BNIB?

Here's the latest prices for the components if purchased new at this time:


Board - $80

BD-ROM - $60

CPU - $92

RAM - $75

Hard Drive - $85


These alone cost $392, if new. These prices fluctuate all the time and you can find deals from different sites for a few $$ lower.

Add in a Case, Power Supply and a Windows License and it crosses $500.

If the system is new, I would offer $425-$450.

If its used, then $325-$350. Are you offered any kind of after-sales support?
 

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looks great except it's going to be crap for playing games


It is one video card away from being a decent game rig.


Add an ATI 5670 or 5750 and it'll do everything you could want flawlessly.
 
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