Greetings everyone, been scouring the threads in the HTPC section and am in need of some specific advice concerning my first HTPC build.
Earlier today a few members of my family and I were watching a movie (True Grit). We were watching it by means of a Western Digital My Passport USB 3.0 drive connected via HDMI to a Samsung Plasma with its native USB 2.0 ports. Basically if you pause the movie (or any piece of video content for that matter) the audio becomes out of sync with the video. This happens with basically anything we watch. It dawned upon me that my family and I are consuming our media at a post modern rate, WE NEED AN HTPC and I am going to build us one.
Now, as far as my expertise goes I can recommend parts for a basic system all the way to the most uber elite gaming rig. But when it comes to HTPC's I'm not so confident. I understand the purpose of an HTPC, that is to essentially playback almost all media formats, stream content over the internet or ones own network, to "surf the web" from ones own couch, etc.
These are my needs:
*Playback of HD content 720p, 1080p
*Support for as many possible file formats as possible
*HTPC case with decent airflow
*Dedicated GPU of some kind (to run emulated console games)
*Windows OS (at least that's what I think I want)
But where to begin? Like a child who knows not the value of a dollar, I know not what is overkill and what is underkill concerning HTPC specs.
MOBO: Concerning the MOBO I'm at a loss. I'd prefer to go with Intel. With that being said do I go H67, P67 or Z68?
Memory: I'm telling myself at least 4GB of anything right? I like Corsiar and Gskill memory when I make gaming rigs personally.
CPU: Again confused. Would something within Intel's second gen Core i series suffice? If so, then what? i3 (too wimpy?), i5 (just right?) or i7 (overkill?).
GPU: I seen this was recently released. Powerful enough to playback HD content and those emulators I enjoy?
PSU: Anything modular would make my life easier as I am a bit of a neat freak when it comes to cable management. As far as wattage, the EVGA card I suggested above recommends at least 300W. So I figure if I double that I may be in the clear @ around 600W+?
HDD: I just figured something like a Western Digital 2TB Cavier Black would do.
I won't be in need of any fancy home network streaming of any kind either. Just the box as it sits by the televisions side. Part of the reason I want a dedicated GPU is also because I plan on using the HTPC to run the Wii emulator known as "Dolphin". Wii games end up looking surprisingly good in 1080p.