My HTPC built and story. Maybe helpful.

  • Thread starter gamelovers11223
  • Start date
G

gamelovers11223

Enthusiast
Hey everyone. Built my HTPC recently. My situation was, I had a small android box Memohi T96 Pro 4k but did not like the way it handled media and was glitchy. So the decision was made to build an inexpensive, small and possibly silent HTPC.
First thing I did was went through my stash of extra parts lying around unused or almost unused but not really needed.
What was found:
500w atx power supply
Few wd green 1tb hdds
Kingston V300 240gb ssd
I also had 3x2gb of ddr3 ram but was a little skeptical of using this ancient stuff but still considering it if I went over budget.
What I needed.
I have a powerful gaming computer which is a main sourse for all media. I wanted a small computer that would be the middle man between the gaming PC and the receiver+speakers through wired network. 4k video support without any issues and stuttering was a must, that means a somewhat basic, low end cpu; low (relatively) amount of ram; decent motherboard and a dedicated gpu. In my case I also needed a small HTPC chasis that would match with all my other AV components and wanted to have a modern platform.
First order of business was finding a case suitable for my needs. After looking at many cases the choise was made to get a Silverstone Milo ML05 @ $52. Because it was cheap, small and matched my Home Theater.
After that it was time to fill that small chasis with parts, starting with a motherboard.
MSI H110I PRO was chosen because it's cheap, has two usb 3.1 ports, two full ddr4 ram slots, supports a wide range of kaby lake cpus and can be a stable platform for an upgrade in the future. $70
Ram: cheapest stick of ddr4 ram, 4gb is more than enough. $46.
CPU: Intel Celeron G3930 kaby lake was chosen. Because it has plenty of oomph for simple stuff and is cheap @ $59.
Storage: I already had an unused 240gb ssd but if I had to get one, ~$50 for a 120gb ssd from a respectable brand.
PSU: for low end components like that you would need is 200w and eve that is high. I had a 500w atx unit so great I thought, will save on that.......
GPU: the cheapest unit that will play anything and everything is a Nvidia GeForce GT 1030. A low profile one in my case. I got a Gigabyte low profile card with 2gb of memory. One can be found for ~$75.
The ironic thing was, all other components came first except for the case, it came last, so I found out the hard way that the atx psu does not fit into the Silverstone case even though reviews said it does fit. Well, another charge was for a Silverstone Sfx 300w psu @ $50.
So, lets recap all the prices:
Case: $52
Psu: $50
MB: $70
CPU: $59
RAM: $46
GPU: $75
Total: $352
For my build I also bought a FLIRC ir receiver for $22 and a Logitech c920 webcam for $40, getting the total to $414.
If you exclude the last two and add an ssd and a operating system for another $150, which brings the grand total to $502. And if you can live with an onboard (cpu) gpu, watching videos up to 1080p only without stuttering, the price goes down to $427.
In some pictures you will see two 80mm fans. I took them off for the final build because they were very loud! Without them two, there are only three fans in the whole system: cpu, gpu and psu, and it's silent! I mean you can hear it only when you bring your ear right to it. Six feet away, sitting on the couch you cannot hear anything.






 
TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Audioholic Slumlord
Thanks for the story. Very nice build. DIY rules for this sort of project. An HTPC in my view is an essential part of any good AVR system. I have an HTPC and a DAW (Digital audio work station). Both DIY.
 
panteragstk

panteragstk

Audioholic Ninja
Nice, but I'm bothered that your receiver still has the stickers on it...

Also, are you getting full HDR playback without having to manually switch?
 
Bryce_H

Bryce_H

Senior Audioholic
I had HTPCs for years (mostly for OTA TV and DVR), but ditched them about a year ago when Windows Media Center went unsupported. I now have Raspberri Pi 3s and Rokus as my "heads" at the displays (projector and LED TV). I use an HDHomeRun for the TV tuners. Media (including DVR) is stored on my NAS (with Plex) and I use my desktop for transcoding (if needed) and commercial stripping (MCEBuddy).

The Raspberri Pi 3s handle the plex playback from the NAS (since I leave most TV in original format) and live TV (through the HDHomeRun). The Rokus handle all the streaming (Netflix and Amazon Prime).

We cut the cord almost 6 years ago now and have not looked back.
 
AcuDefTechGuy

AcuDefTechGuy

Audioholic Jedi
My latest HTPC build. CPU Overclock (CPU Ratio = 50). XMP Enabled for RAM. Display is JVC NX5 4K Projector.

I used UserBenchmark to benchmark my system.





 
Last edited:
Cos

Cos

Audioholic Field Marshall
My latest HTPC build. CPU Overclock (CPU Ratio = 50). XMP Enabled for RAM. Display is JVC NX5 4K Projector.

I used UserBenchmark to benchmark my system.





Nice build, but complete overkill for a HTPC unless you plan on gaming. Your system is almost like my gaming rig minus the 2080TI and I use 2 1TB 970 M.2s.
 
AcuDefTechGuy

AcuDefTechGuy

Audioholic Jedi
Nice build, but complete overkill for a HTPC unless you plan on gaming. Your system is almost like my gaming rig minus the 2080TI and I use 2 1TB 970 M.2s.
Well, you never know in the future — I mean with possible 8K HEVC movie files and all.

I tried watching some 4K HEVC files on an i3/GeForce-1660Ti PC and Ryzen3/RX560 and the video was kind of choppy.

So why just upgrade to an i5/i7 and wonder if they’re enough for 8K HEVC or another more powerful video codec?

Better safe than sorry.

OTOH I wasn’t ready to spend $1K on the 2080Ti though. $700 was enough. :D
 
Last edited:
N

nefarious

Enthusiast
I don't know how your i3 compares to my Athlon2 640 but comparing it to gamelovers11223 CPU rated it less than his and I'm running this on an anemic gigabyte AM3 board with 8 gb of DDR1333 ram and Windows 10 Pro 64. Also my GPU is a new Gigabyte GeForce GT1030 and my TV is a 2011 Panasonic HD3D plasma. Using this setup for Netflix and later on dual booting Ubuntu and Kodi app which is on Ubuntu which works flawless I experience absolutely no choppiness or problems and perhaps that GT1030 is even overkill for a streamer?? I will see if I can find a lower end/priced GPU with HDMI and free this 1030 up for a spare computer I have with an FX6300. I read a few minutes ago that HDMI 2.0 is highly recomended and will check what mine is and what lower end GPU have. Perhaps others can chime in here and mention what the lowest grade of hardware they have that works. It wouldn't surprise me if my Toledo Athlon 4800+x2 would work very well but my 2004 MSI motherboard is a loser due to having only an AGP slot instead of PCIe and I couldn't find a suitable driver for my AGP video card so I gave up on Win 10 even though this setup rocked on XP and Win 7! Also my AGP only has an AGP, S vid port and my TV has HDMI which this card lacks. I have a questionable BIO Star socket 939 board with PCIe but I need a smaller cheaper GPU for this much older spare computer and also a smaller cheaper GPU will most likely be sufficient?


 

Latest posts


newsletter
  • RBHsound.com
  • BlueJeansCable.com
  • SVS Sound Subwoofers
  • Experience the Martin Logan Montis
Top