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Low budget HTPC build

Chris

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 11, 2008
Messages
605
Location
Toronto
My single core old pc has died due to faulty caps, and I do not want to revive it. It is mainly used for video streaming from internet sites. I am now using my Sony Vaio TT laptop for streaming (dual core 1.2 GHz), but it is dying also. So I need to build a new htpc for streaming and for running Openvpn server, both tasks at the same time and openvpn runs 24/7. There are likely 4 clients using openvpn.

Parts I already have:
Corsair TX750W or TX650 W psu
3 sticks of OCZ PC3 12800 3x2GB sticks
Bluetooth keyboard and mouse (I have a bluetooth dongle for both)
GeForce 7600 GT vid card
AMD HD 4850 Vid card
OCZ 50GB SSD and WD 320GB HDD
A few 120mm cooling fans and an older cpu heat sink.
Windows 8, hope I can catch the update to 10 in time.

Here is what I have picked for your comments and advice:

Case:
Silverstone Milo ML03B Black mATX HTPC Case 1X5.25 2X3.5INT USB3 Supports 4 80MM Case Fan $80
Silverstone Milo ML03B Black mATX HTPC Case 1X5.25 2X3.5INT USB3 Supports 4 80MM Case Fan - ML03B - NCIX.com
Mobo:
ASUS H81I-PLUS/CSM LGA1150 Mini ITX 2XSATA 6GB/S 2XSATA 3GB/S 1xPCIe16 Dual Channel Motherboard $109

ASUS H81I-PLUS/CSM LGA1150 Mini ITX 2XSATA 6GB/S 2XSATA 3GB/S 1xPCIe16 Dual Channel Motherboard - H81I-PLUS/CSM - NCIX.com
This is mini ITX. I picked this for 2 reasons. The case is very small and tight, so this smaller mobo may help. Also, it can do 4K Ultra HD video which is good when I buy new tv in the future. It has hdmi connector, HDMI with max. resolution 4096 x 2304 @ 24 Hz / 2560 x 1600 @ 60 Hz
Looks like 4K at 24 Hz only, does it affect picture quality on a 4K TV, ie. flicker video?

CPU:
Intel Pentium G3258 Anniversary Unlocked Dual Core 3.2GHZ Processor LGA1150 Haswell 3MB Cache Retail $85
Intel Pentium G3258 Anniversary Unlocked Dual Core 3.2GHZ Processor LGA1150 Haswell 3MB Cache Retail - BX80646G3258 - NCIX.com

My questions: can this Pentium work on the mobo (they are LGA1150), and can the cpus's HD graphics handle 4k output (future proof).

This brings my budget to $280 before tax. But I prefer to spend about $200. So, here is an AMD build:

Mobo
GIGABYTE 78LMT-USB3 AMD760G AM3+ 1PCI-E16 1PCI-E1 1PCI DDR3 SATA2 DVI HDMI GBLAN mATX Motherboard $75
GIGABYTE 78LMT-USB3 AMD760G AM3+ 1PCI-E16 1PCI-E1 1PCI DDR3 SATA2 DVI HDMI GBLAN mATX Motherboard - GA-78LMT-USB3 - NCIX.com

CPU
AMD A6 7400K Black Edition Dual Core APU 3.9/3.5GHZ Processor FM2+ 1MB Cache 65W Retail Box $70
AMD A6 7400K Black Edition Dual Core APU 3.9/3.5GHZ Processor FM2+ 1MB Cache 65W Retail Box - AD740KYBJABOX - NCIX.com
But this AMD build does not do 4K video?

Total $230 before tax.

Please comment and advice of suitability of these 2 builds or suggest others. Thanks.
 
Last edited:

Mastabutts

Member
Joined
Sep 26, 2015
Messages
13
The g3258 does not support 4k, going by this.

Comparing the space limitations of the Silverstone case, the TX750W and TX650W PSU's are too long to fit.

So far as I can tell, there are no 120mm slots on that case. Better/more flexible option can be found on newegg. Some even come with PSU at a lower price point than the Silverstone listed here.

As far as 4k at 24hz, that's perfectly acceptable for video (there are probably some people that can tell the difference between 24 vs 60hz for video playback, but not many, and even fewer who would be bothered by it), though most people can't tolerate it for general computer use e.g. web browsing, gaming etc. This has been my experience as well.

If cost is the overriding concern here, I'd suggest going with the cheapest socket 1150 you can find, sticking with the g3258 as its a solid processor while buying a used one to shave off a few dollars (intel's warranties are transferable, so you don't have to worry so much about getting left out in the cold with a used junker) and buying some used low profile nvidia gpu 6xx, which will do 4k at 24hz, as the gpus you have on hand are useless for your HTPC needs outside of selling them to fund your build. Hope that helps.
 

Chris

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 11, 2008
Messages
605
Location
Toronto
Thanks for your comments. Here my next proposal for your comment:

Case $54

Thermaltake Core V1 Extreme Mini ITX Cube Chassis, Compatible with air and Liquid Cooling Builds (CA-1B8-00S1WN-00)

Thermaltake Core V1 Extreme Mini ITX Cube Chassis, Compatible with air and Liquid Cooling Builds (CA-1B8-00S1WN-00) - Newegg.ca

Mobo $99
ASRock A68M-ITX AMD FM2+/FM2 DDR3 1 PCIe 3.0 x16 HDMI/DVI/D-SUB 4 SATA3 4XUSB3.0 Motherboard -

ASRock A68M-ITX AMD FM2+/FM2 DDR3 1 PCIe 3.0 x16 HDMI/DVI/D-SUB 4 SATA3 4XUSB3.0 Motherboard - NCIX.com



CPU
AMD A6 7400K Black Edition Dual Core APU 3.9/3.5GHZ Processor FM2+ 1MB Cache 65W Retail Box $70
AMD A6 7400K Black Edition Dual Core APU 3.9/3.5GHZ Processor FM2+ 1MB Cache 65W Retail Box - AD740KYBJABOX - NCIX.com

Total cost $223

The case is much more flexible, and can use my PSU. The size fits into my AV equipment shelf units.
The A6 7400k graphics can do 4K resolution, altho it did not say at what frequency (24Hz or 60 Hz)

As my main use is video steaming, and running openvpn server, and I am not concerned about gaming. Please comment. Thanks.
 
Last edited:

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