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Old October 7, 2008, 09:06 PM
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Default Possible HTPC build

I have been considering building a HTPC strictly use as a HD PVR/ ATSC Box for HD OTA. As i can't seem to find a standalone STB that will do the same for a decent amount of money. Now i haven't built a HTPC in a couple of years so i want to make sure this will work.

tv tuner - hauppage pvr-1800 atsc tuner x2 (so i can record one show while watching another)
cpu - AMD Athlon 64 X2 5200+
mobo - ASUS M2N68-VM
case - Antec Fusion Black 430
psu - included
hdd - 320gb x2 (striped Array)
os - vista ultimate 32bit (i have a free copy)
ram - g.skill pc2-6400 2gb kit
VC - Cheapest VC that can do 1080p over hdmi (no preference to nvidia or ati)

Please post any suggestions or if you have a source for a stand alone STB that will do what i need it to please point me in that direction as well.
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Old October 7, 2008, 10:23 PM
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Get the Gigabyte 780g motherboard, no video card needed as the integreted graphics plays 1080p HDMI, go read the reviews about it, it's the best HTPC motherboard yet, and its VERY cheap. Newegg.ca - GIGABYTE GA-MA78GM-S2H AM2+/AM2 AMD 780G HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - AMD Motherboards

There are Asus versions of it and other brands but I do believe the Gigabyte one is the best out of them.
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Old October 8, 2008, 04:18 AM
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i'll keep that in mind.
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Old October 8, 2008, 04:59 AM
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i did some quick pricematching. And since i already have the HDD and Software i banged out an estimate of just under $590 with $50 budgeted for shipping. I really don't think i will be able to build a HD DVR for much less than that and still look good :). I am also toying with the idea of 2 hvr-1800 tuners since the pricematched price i found is only $100 :)
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Old October 8, 2008, 06:44 AM
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The Ati cards do at least 5.1 (3800 series) - 7.1 (4800) series sound through hdmi. Also the 4800 series can utilize 2 hd signals giving you picture in picture hd. If you decide on the 780g route gigabyte is considered a good choice. I'm currently using a 3850 and picture quality with BD discs and hd tv look great + I can game a little on the 46" lcd
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Old October 8, 2008, 07:20 AM
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I have that Gigabyte 780g motherboard and a 5000+ black edition. Works fine in Windows, gaming sucks however with the onboard HD3200 as expected. The other catch is that you only get 2 Channel PCM sound over the HDMI. Something I missed in doing my research. I'd look into one of the new 46xx/45xx ATI cards. One of the 4550 is 100% passive so that would be nice and quiet in the living room. Do remember that there's only one PCI-E 1x slot on that board, and your video card will take up the 16x, so all you're left with 2 PCI slots. Just something to keep in mind. Have fun building!
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Old October 8, 2008, 07:25 AM
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1. I won't be playing BD discs on it. Thats what my ps3 is for.

I am strictly using this for video file playback / HD OTA DVR :) I will see about a cheapy 3850 as i had one before and it was pretty decent.
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Old October 8, 2008, 07:31 AM
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i have a 3450 in my htpc. its passive, and works well.. plus it was 50$
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Old October 8, 2008, 07:57 AM
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The 4670 is a great htpc card also. I noticed one version which I can't recall brand has dvi/hdmi/display port and svhs options on card. Check out Sky's review here ATI HD 4670 512MB GDDR3 Video Card Review
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Old October 8, 2008, 09:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lcdguy View Post
1. I won't be playing BD discs on it. Thats what my ps3 is for.

I am strictly using this for video file playback / HD OTA DVR :) I will see about a cheapy 3850 as i had one before and it was pretty decent.
That's why i mentioned the 2 channel PCM over HDMI, playing video files.. it's nice to have the surround sound. Just wanted to make sure you didn't end up in the same boat as me. To get 5.1+ with that Gigabyte 780 board you need either optical/SPDIF or analog.
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