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Nimma

98 posts

Master Geek


#34335 21-May-2009 13:38
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Hi All

After having browsed through these Freeview/HTPC/Windows 7 forums for a while now and reading all the grief and successes people have had, I’ve decided to upgrade my old HTPC to the following Spec:


-Intel e5200 CPU


-ASUS P5N7A-VM mATX motherboard (nvidia 9300 IGP) to be imported thru computer lounge


-Kingston HyperX 4GB 4-4-4-12 RAM


-Some Hauppage DVB-T card


-Windows 7 RC1 7100


I would intend to use this setup predominantly for playing divx videos, watching freeview HD, burning DVDs, listening to music, web browsing. No times for games anymore… unless Diablo 3 ever comes out.


I’ll use my old Coolermaster Cavalier TA02 case albeit with some new, quieter cooling fans – especially the 60mm ones for the PSU.


I’ve tossed up for ages over this and ATI based systems (7750BE CPU) with either 780G or 8200/8300 IGP. Although it seems people had problems with these in the past, especially interlaced, it sounds like they’re running alright now. However in the end the thermal efficiency of the Intel CPU and at the compatibility of the 9300 IGP made my decision. I also considered a P43 board with a 4350 or 9400GT discrete card but the 9300 IGP solution seems much more elegant, certainly not cheaper.


I see DSE are currently clearing the Hauppauge HVR-1110 card incl. MCE remote for $99 so I’ll probably pick one of them up unless someone recommends otherwise. Alternatively I’ll look at what is the next cheapest with a MCE remote.


Many thanks to the people who have reported success or no with their systems and hopefully I can give some feedback from mine once all up and running.


Luckily this time I will have my trusty Aspire One while the main PC is in pieces!


Cheers


Nimma


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meesham
973 posts

Ultimate Geek


  #216714 21-May-2009 15:55
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I'd go for something with a dual tuner (like the Hauppauge 2200), it's quite a bit more expensive though - but you do then get the ability to record and watch something at the same time.

If you want a cheap remote go for one of these: http://www.elive.co.nz/philips-srm5100-mediacentre-remote-p1656.php

I have one, it does the job and is supported by Vista natively (so the same should hopefully be true for W7)

For quiet fans go for the Scythes, they're excellent.

openmedia
2763 posts

Uber Geek

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  #216733 21-May-2009 16:48
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Interesting that Computer Lounge agreed to bring in the P5N7A-VM board. I don't understand why Asus aren't bringing this into NZ.




Generally known online as OpenMedia, now working for Red Hat APAC as a Technology Evangelist and Portfolio Architect. Still playing with MythTV and digital media on the side.


Nimma

98 posts

Master Geek


  #216867 22-May-2009 07:37
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Thanks for the feedback meesham, all I really need is the IR receiver as I intend to use my harmony remote.

Yeah, pretty stoked to be getting the board especially through a good NZ retailer - just a bit more peace of mind. BTW it is NZ$269 if anyone else is interested.

Does anyone have thoughts on the HVR-1110 for $99 with MCE remote?



bigbob
38 posts

Geek

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  #216950 22-May-2009 12:35
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I am using this same board with an E8200 cpu, a 64GB SSD, Pioneer Blu-ray with Win7RC.

I imported it direct from the US a few months ago and it has been performing very well. I did a bios update, so check this on the asus web site. All other drivers etc were either included in Win7 RC or very easy to locate.

Rob


tanivula
908 posts

Ultimate Geek

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  #221950 5-Jun-2009 11:14
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Nima, how is your build going?

I bought the same board (through computer lounge) & cpu and recieved the lot today. Will start putting it together slowly next week.

Nimma

98 posts

Master Geek


  #221998 5-Jun-2009 14:05
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I think my board is being delivered today, they must be stocking it now. I'm picking up the RAM today too and hopefully the CPU this weekend. I probably won't start the build till next weekend. What CPU did you go with?

Let me know how you get on with yours!

tanivula
908 posts

Ultimate Geek

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  #222011 5-Jun-2009 14:29
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I made the same choice as you - the E5200, I'll take some pics of the build and put them up. Rest of the gear is:

Antec NSK2480B case with 380W psu (might need to change the fan on this)
Corsair TWIN2X4096-6400C5 2x2GB
WD 640Gb HD
Samsung DVD writer
Scythe Ninja Mini CPU Cooler (perfectly designed for the Antec)

Planning on running 64bit Win7 RC. Will look into TV tuners further down the track.



meesham
973 posts

Ultimate Geek


  #222012 5-Jun-2009 14:36
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tanivula: I made the same choice as you - the E5200, I'll take some pics of the build and put them up. Rest of the gear is:



Antec NSK2480B case with 380W psu (might need to change the fan on this)

Corsair TWIN2X4096-6400C5 2x2GB

WD 640Gb HD

Samsung DVD writer

Scythe Ninja Mini CPU Cooler (perfectly designed for the Antec)



Planning on running 64bit Win7 RC. Will look into TV tuners further down the track.


I have that same case and CPU cooler :)

I ended up taking the 80mm fan off the cooler and putting it in the PSU, I rely on the 2x120mm fans next to it to the CPU to keep it cool (that Scythe heatsink is freak'n awesome). The hottest my Athlon64 X2 runs at 25C but it's only 45W, I'm not sure what sort of heat your e5200 will generate.

Nimma

98 posts

Master Geek


  #222013 5-Jun-2009 14:42
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That sounds like a well though out set of components, all of them are pretty popular at the moment. I really like what I hear about the scythe mini but I'm going to stick with the stock one for now and maybe change later. Our motherboard has support for the power supply fan as well so try that specific connector out first to get the volume you're after.

Win7 RC1 is great and Media centre is a great all in one solution especially with h.264 codecs standard. If you're after a card I'm going to be trying out the $100 HVR-1200. I'm currently using the HVR-1110 but am giving this to my bro in law and using the half height 1200.

tanivula
908 posts

Ultimate Geek

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  #222563 7-Jun-2009 23:29
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Greetings via Win7 :)

Just a quick post before bed, I came home from a weekend away but couldnt wait till tomorrow to start the build... So chucked everything together and here I am! Prime95 has been going for the last 30 mins and speedfan is reporting (the AUX reading = CPU according to SPCR) 36degrees (go the fanless ninja mini!).

Nimma

98 posts

Master Geek


  #223384 9-Jun-2009 21:46
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Hey, are you going to have a crack at underclocking or overclocking the CPU? Seems to be pretty easy gains on the e5200 - even up to 3.2GHz on the stock cooler.

I have all the parts now but my aspire one is with Acer being repaired... can't start until I get it back. Pretty frustrating with all the toys sitting in their boxes and battling away on the atlhon64 3000.

tanivula
908 posts

Ultimate Geek

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  #223960 11-Jun-2009 14:01
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Nimma: Hey, are you going to have a crack at underclocking or overclocking the CPU? Seems to be pretty easy gains on the e5200 - even up to 3.2GHz on the stock cooler.

I have all the parts now but my aspire one is with Acer being repaired... can't start until I get it back. Pretty frustrating with all the toys sitting in their boxes and battling away on the atlhon64 3000.


Mmmm yeah, I'd give overclocking a crack, but the computer feels fast for me!  Please note that the other computer I'm using is an ageing P4 2.4c running at 3Ghz (socket 478 baby!).  Heat isn't an issue for me at the moment so I doubt I'd underclock (I've noticed when at idle or low use times it does it by itself anyway).

I borrowed my friends USB pinacle DVB-T tuner and had a play with media center.  I was pleasantly suprised how good it was with the supplied mini antenna!  Recording was good too, but 6GB for an hour of TV3 HD, I'll need a bigger HD soon!

Nimma

98 posts

Master Geek


  #226994 20-Jun-2009 13:28
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Just a quick update

I started and finished putting the new PC together last night. It's the first time in 5 or so builds I've ever done it went so flawlessly. Everything was immediately recognised by bios, win7 64 installed like a dream and got all the latest drivers and all funtions of media centre worked perfectly. Even the old coolermaster cavalier HTPC case is up to the task and much more quiet than before. Even my girlfriend is able to use it.

Now I just have to get rid of my DVD player freeview box and old PC parts.

tanivula
908 posts

Ultimate Geek

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  #227033 20-Jun-2009 17:58
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Great news. Once you've got some time, can I please get you to check your chipset temp? Speedfan has started showing up GPU temp now (not 100% sure when this happened but temps for HD and GPU poped up - I think after updaring drivers from nVidia). Something that may save you a bit of time is that the drivers are under nForce 7 series not 9, stumped me for a bit! Readings are high 40s - mid 50s depending on usage for me. The cooler is very hot to the touch too - is this the same for you?

I looked on other forums and seems like the majority think the heatsink is rubbish (I agree) so am thinking about investing in a replacement. Currently I don't have any fans nearby apart from the 2 120's pulling air out so might try sticking the fan that came with the CPU cooler and aiming it at the chipset to see if that will make a big difference if any.

Nimma

98 posts

Master Geek


  #227242 22-Jun-2009 07:25
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Thanks for the tips on the drivers, got them all last night. I'm glad nvidia didn't add the bonus software (which is the asus disc never got near my computer).

I'm going to download speedfan tonight but I found some handy tips here for northbridge cooling:

http://mytv.senseitweb.com/forums/t/5391.aspx

Oh yeah, how important is it to 'burn in' with prime95 or whatever?

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