Your Very First HTPC? But Where do You Start?

  Thread Rating:
  • 34 Votes - 4.47 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Post Reply
adang Offline
Junior Member
Posts: 3
Joined: Aug 2014
Reputation: 0
Post: #1141
I am looking at buying Zotac Zbox ID-18U for $130. Already have 5200 rpm Harddisk. Just need to buy USB driver and RAM. The box has

SPDIF: Yes (Required. Have non-HDMI receiver)
GigE: Yes (Required. Have wired connection)
DVI/VGA: Yes (Required. Have VGA Projector for now)
USB 3: Yes (Nice to have)
SATA III: Yes (Nice to have)
Card Reader: Yes (Nice to have)
eSata: Yes (Nice to have)
FULL HD 3D: No (The only bummer)
IR receiver: No (I have Win MCE receiver)
BT: No (No big deal)
Wifi: No (No big deal. Using wired connection)
Display Port: No (I don't know if I ever need this.)

My question is,
1) Can it run Netflix HD in Windows 8.1 and Youtube HD.
2) If Yes, does 2 GB RAM enough or I need 4 GB or more.
2) Is there any other latest box in similar $130~200 range that has (DVI/VGA, SPDIF, USB 3, GigE, SATA III) that can do Full HD 3D.

If this box can run Netflix HD in Windows 8.1 and sound is no issue thru SPDIF, it would be great. I can always purchase Blue ray player for Full HD 3D once I upgrade my projector. I am planning to setup dual boot to Windows 8.1 (HDD) and Openelec (USB) if possible.

Thanks!!!
find quote
ctrx32 Offline
Junior Member
Posts: 1
Joined: Aug 2014
Reputation: 0
Post: #1142
Hi guys,

I'm looking for help with a build.

** Cost is not much of a consideration.
** I would like everything to run off of one box. (includeing mythTV backend, etc)
** PVR is key, I need a cable card tuner card suggestion.
** I have a strong preference for linux. (what is this about some things only working on windows?)

I like fractal-design cases and if everything fits would like to use
http://www.fractal-design.com/home/produ...s/node-804

What high end build do you suggest?
find quote
loki05 Offline
Junior Member
Posts: 22
Joined: Jun 2014
Reputation: 0
Post: #1143
my current setup....Asus Chromebox running Openelec v4.07 using Matt Devo script/build!!



find quote
bamaster Offline
Junior Member
Posts: 1
Joined: Aug 2014
Reputation: 0
Post: #1144
Hello all. New guy here. I'm moving to Saudi in a few weeks and I want to burn my DVD/BR collection to a portable HTPC. I found a guide that suggested these components but I can't find it at the moment. Here's what I have.

CPU: Intel I3-4130T
Mobo: Gigabyte GA-H97M-HD3 LGA 1150 Micro ATX DDR3 1600
RAM: Kingston HyperX FURY 4GB 1600MHz DDR3 CL10 DIMM - Blue
PSU: Seasonic 360W 80PLUS Gold ATX12V SSR-360GP
Drive 1: Samsung Electronics 840 EVO-Series 120GB SSD
Drive 2: Western Digital Caviar Green 3 TB SATA III - WD30EZRX
Drive: LG Electronics 14x Internal BDXL WH14NS40
Case: SilverStone Grandia Series HTPC Case
Other: Windows 8.1, FLIRC dongle, Logitech keyboard K400R, Harmony remote, Netgear AC3200 Nighthawk X6 R8000 router


My Goals:
1. To simply watch the movies I already have
2. Stream Netflix
3. Maybe record some live TV
4. Stay anonymous (have PIA for VPN on the router)


I'm no stranger to IT, but it's still my first PC build. I just want a place to store my movies so I'll be doing a lot of ripping.

Anything missing or anything you'd add? Feedback is appreciated. TIA!
find quote
JasonMcK Offline
Junior Member
Posts: 4
Joined: Jan 2009
Reputation: 0
Post: #1145
(2014-08-28 20:46)loki05 Wrote:  my current setup....Asus Chromebox running Openelec v4.07 using Matt Devo script/build!!

Hey loki05, How is the Chrome Box with 1080p streaming?
I am finding my current Win 7 Asus Aspire not able to handle 1080.
find quote
ak.pp Offline
Junior Member
Posts: 1
Joined: Sep 2014
Reputation: 0
Post: #1146
Hi guys,

Looking to build my first HTPC and just wanted to run the setup here and get your guys' thoughts Smile

CPU: AMD A4-6300 Richland Dual-Core 3.7GHz
Mobo: ASRock FM2A88X-ITX+ FM2+ / FM2 AMD A88X
RAM: CORSAIR XMS3 4GB DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600
Drive 1: ADATA SP600 128GB (for OS- Windows 8.1)
Drive 2: WD Green 4TB
Case: Wesena, ITX6-S (with IR receiver/remote)

How does the setup look? I'm looking for a fast, snappy system that can handle 1080p movies and streaming, won't really be using it for heavy gaming.

Would appreciate any feedback (add, remove, change!)
(This post was last modified: 2014-09-04 03:37 by ak.pp.)
find quote
ant_thomas Offline
Fan
Posts: 424
Joined: May 2008
Reputation: 0
Location: Manchester, UK
Post: #1147
(2014-09-02 02:52)JasonMcK Wrote:  
(2014-08-28 20:46)loki05 Wrote:  my current setup....Asus Chromebox running Openelec v4.07 using Matt Devo script/build!!

Hey loki05, How is the Chrome Box with 1080p streaming?
I am finding my current Win 7 Asus Aspire not able to handle 1080.

The Chromebox handles 1080p absolutely fine.
find quote
JasonMcK Offline
Junior Member
Posts: 4
Joined: Jan 2009
Reputation: 0
Post: #1148
(2014-09-03 15:24)ant_thomas Wrote:  
(2014-09-02 02:52)JasonMcK Wrote:  
(2014-08-28 20:46)loki05 Wrote:  my current setup....Asus Chromebox running Openelec v4.07 using Matt Devo script/build!!

Hey loki05, How is the Chrome Box with 1080p streaming?
I am finding my current Win 7 Asus Aspire not able to handle 1080.

The Chromebox handles 1080p absolutely fine.

Cool thank you. There are several models of Chrome box what one is recommended?
find quote
sivaptw Offline
Junior Member
Posts: 4
Joined: Feb 2014
Reputation: 0
Post: #1149
Which Intel NUCs are best for Openelec ? The NUC will be connected to an UNRAID via 100mbps LAN.
find quote
MadMike125 Offline
Junior Member
Posts: 1
Joined: Oct 2014
Reputation: 0
Location: Wichita, Ks
Post: #1150
Hi all,
I am a noobie, So I have decided to ditch cable and build and HTPC for my family, We watch most of our TV Streaming anyways. So I have done some research and decided to build a value/performance HTPC. So Here is my build.

SilverStone Milo Series ML07B
SILVERSTONE ST45SF 450W SFX12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified
AMD A6-6400K Richland Dual-Core 3.9GHz Socket FM2 65W
GIGABYTE GA-F2A88XN-WIFI FM2+ / FM2 AMD A88X (Bolton D4)
CORSAIR Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3
SAMSUNG 840 EVO MZ-7TE120BW 2.5" 120GB SATA III TLC
Western Digital WD Green WD20EZRX 2TB IntelliPower 64MB

The parts will be here this week, I will post some pics when its built. Thanks to this forum for all the help.
find quote
gotcha640 Offline
Junior Member
Posts: 8
Joined: Sep 2014
Reputation: 0
Post: #1151
(2014-08-28 23:14)bamaster Wrote:  Hello all. New guy here. I'm moving to Saudi in a few weeks...

My Goals:
1. To simply watch the movies I already have
2. Stream Netflix
3. Maybe record some live TV
4. Stay anonymous (have PIA for VPN on the router)


I'm no stranger to IT, but it's still my first PC build. I just want a place to store my movies so I'll be doing a lot of ripping.

Anything missing or anything you'd add? Feedback is appreciated. TIA!

I assume you're already gone, but when I lived in Morocco, I had all kinds of trouble getting Netflix to work properly (geolocked). We used various VPNs with varying degrees of success. Some people took advantage of weak Moroccan copyright laws, some people bought the latest DVDs for pennies in the market, and some people had 4 satellite dishes on their roof.
find quote
MediaGuy Offline
Junior Member
Posts: 4
Joined: Oct 2014
Reputation: 0
Post: #1152
Theoretical question.

Assume all configurations are 100% identical (Including CPU architecture) except for the number of cores and price.

Is there any benefit in buying a dual or quad core system instead of a single core system?

Does XBMC make (efficient) use of additional cores?
I think dual core may have its benefits of single core because very simply put one core could run Windows and the other core XBMC.
But I'm not so sure about quad core or even more cores.


I only use my HTPC for watching videos. No gaming. No wireless connections. Content is on a local hard disk.
Possible future use: Netflix and recording from satellite.

I don't have a big problem with paying more if it increases performance, but wasting $ on idle cores that just cause heat problems and with that often noisy cooling. I prefer not to go with the "as much power as possible" strategy as I do with my regular PC.
find quote
Post Reply