Thread: First Time HTPC
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Old January 23, 2010, 10:27 AM
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kingnubian kingnubian is offline
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Very interesting i3 option.

I just built me 4th HTPC.

E5200 CPU
Gigabyte G41M-ES2H Motherboard
Silverstone Grandia GD04B HTPC Case
2gb (1x2GB) Kingston PC2-6400 ValueRam
Corsaiw VX450 Power Supply
Seagate 7200.12 1TB Hard Drive
Video Card T.B.A.

Cost <$450

Modern HTPC's are all about the GPU and it's hardware acceleration support. One of the most popular HTPC platforms these days is the Intel Atom paired with the Nvidia Ion chipset. These "underpowered" motherboards are capable of smooth 1080p playback due to the Ion hardware decoding support for may video formats.

I preferred to go the route of a more powerful cpu, for occasional dvd ripping & converting chores, but still remain within a low budget. Since my build will be a Linux based one an Nvidia GT220 based video card may be added in the near future to take advantage of VDPAU. My cpu/motherboard combo cost $109.

My stance is keep the budget low and the presentation high. An i3 is a very interesting route but less expensive, and from a Linux standpoint better supported, alternatives exist.
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