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New HTPC/EMULATOR Build need advice

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Alright so I decided to ditch all consoles and media players in my living room and build a powerful htpc for gaming. This is my first HTPC build so I'll probably be here bugging you guys about quite a bit of stuff lol. The following is the parts list I've came up with so far.

Asus Maximus VI Impact 1150
Intel Core i5-4670k
Asus GTX780-DC2OC
Cooler Master Elite 130??? "Unless you guys know a better case I'm up for suggestions"

I'm thinking about running a custom xbmc/steam big picture setup on it. I would like to control the entire system using a xbox 360 controller "xbox one when they come out". So yeah thats pretty much all I know and I'm not really sure what I should do with the emulation part software wise.
Sys0p
(18 items)
 
  
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i7 5820 MSI x99 Gaming 7 GTX 970 FTW ACX 2.0 G.SKILL Sniper Gaming Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) 288... 
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Corsair Force GT 120GB Seagate Barracuda 7200 3TB Asus Blue-Ray Burner Noctua NH-U14S 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Windows 8.1 Pro x64 Acer GD235HZ 23.6" 3D Monitor Dell 2407 WFP 24" Cooler Master CMSTORM 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Cooler Master Silent Pro 1000 Corsair Obsidian 750D Logitech G700 steelseries diablo 3 
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Klipsch 2.1 Creative Fatal1ty Headset 
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Sys0p
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7 5820 MSI x99 Gaming 7 GTX 970 FTW ACX 2.0 G.SKILL Sniper Gaming Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) 288... 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Corsair Force GT 120GB Seagate Barracuda 7200 3TB Asus Blue-Ray Burner Noctua NH-U14S 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Windows 8.1 Pro x64 Acer GD235HZ 23.6" 3D Monitor Dell 2407 WFP 24" Cooler Master CMSTORM 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Cooler Master Silent Pro 1000 Corsair Obsidian 750D Logitech G700 steelseries diablo 3 
AudioAudio
Klipsch 2.1 Creative Fatal1ty Headset 
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post #2 of 6
the thing that makes an HTPC different from a gaming PC is noise and sometimes form factor, because it will be visible in your livingroom. You're going mITX, so I assume this is a concern.

Neither your CPU or GPU are particularly frugal abou heat production, especially when overclocked. You are paying extra to get a quiet air cooled GPU, but I;m not convinced it will necessarily be quiet enough. Also there is very little cooler space in that case. You are going to have to find something very low profile and very large to make it work. And that means pricey

That case definitely limits you a bit. You can always mount a radiator outside the case but it starts to look a bit terrifying


The bitfenix is the obvious choice, because of it's watercooling capability, but it basically looks like a midget powermac, and nothing like stereo equipment.

Luckily there is a whole club devoted to your problem
http://www.overclock.net/t/541767/club-for-those-with-beastly-matx-itx-rigs/4340 4 or 5 different case options there.
New gaming rig
(15 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
4770k some mid range asrock. extreme 4 maybe? 2x gigabyte windforce 7950 2 x 8 corsair balistix sport 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
crucial ct960 LG blu-ray used venamous x win 8.1 pro 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
Crossover 30Q5 PRO 30" 2560X1600  cheapest piece of crud I could find antec HCG 750 some thermaltake microcenter blue-light-special... 
MouseMouse PadAudio
came with the cheapass keyboard who cares? some $30 no name 2+sub speakers I bought at mic... 
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New gaming rig
(15 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
4770k some mid range asrock. extreme 4 maybe? 2x gigabyte windforce 7950 2 x 8 corsair balistix sport 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
crucial ct960 LG blu-ray used venamous x win 8.1 pro 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
Crossover 30Q5 PRO 30" 2560X1600  cheapest piece of crud I could find antec HCG 750 some thermaltake microcenter blue-light-special... 
MouseMouse PadAudio
came with the cheapass keyboard who cares? some $30 no name 2+sub speakers I bought at mic... 
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post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
Appreciate the quick response, So what gpu would you recommend for this?
You're right and I do want a quiet powerful build but I'm wanting to play the latest games on this thing and was recommended that gpu by a friend. I was thinking about going with something like the "cooler master seidon 120m" for cooling.
Sys0p
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7 5820 MSI x99 Gaming 7 GTX 970 FTW ACX 2.0 G.SKILL Sniper Gaming Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) 288... 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Corsair Force GT 120GB Seagate Barracuda 7200 3TB Asus Blue-Ray Burner Noctua NH-U14S 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Windows 8.1 Pro x64 Acer GD235HZ 23.6" 3D Monitor Dell 2407 WFP 24" Cooler Master CMSTORM 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Cooler Master Silent Pro 1000 Corsair Obsidian 750D Logitech G700 steelseries diablo 3 
AudioAudio
Klipsch 2.1 Creative Fatal1ty Headset 
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Sys0p
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7 5820 MSI x99 Gaming 7 GTX 970 FTW ACX 2.0 G.SKILL Sniper Gaming Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) 288... 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Corsair Force GT 120GB Seagate Barracuda 7200 3TB Asus Blue-Ray Burner Noctua NH-U14S 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Windows 8.1 Pro x64 Acer GD235HZ 23.6" 3D Monitor Dell 2407 WFP 24" Cooler Master CMSTORM 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Cooler Master Silent Pro 1000 Corsair Obsidian 750D Logitech G700 steelseries diablo 3 
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Klipsch 2.1 Creative Fatal1ty Headset 
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post #4 of 6
well, if your budget is big enough, I'd water cool both the cpu and GPU. Get the cheapest reference version of whatever GPU you want, and one of those antec glaciers or a swifttech h220 (AIO saves on space) and use it to cool both units. They're both moddable AIO coolers you can add stuff to.

One of the two will be quieter than the other. No idea which is which. The pump noise is what you are worried about here. You can throw another 120mm radiator on it if you want, but you might not need it. Use a generic block on the card, and you should get away with a bit over $200 total for cooling. Less if you don't need all new fans. Add ~65 bucks if you wind up needing the second radiator. It's a question of noise not cooling here. The single radiator will definitely do it, the question is how hard will the fans need to blow to do it. The greater the temperature gradient the more efficiently a water to air radiator works, so don't be afraid to run it a bit warm. It will just work better.

This just leaves finding a case that will take a 2x120mm radiator. there were a bunch listed with pictures and builds in that itx club I linked above.

A second option is to quiet the card by finding a 3 slot GPU card. They tend to be a lot quieter, and since it's itx it's not taking up any extra slots. just make sure you can fit it in the case, or be willing to wield a dremel if it doesn't. An ideal air cooling case will have enough room for a nice big 120mm radiator, which is what those haswells need to stay quiet. They're low voltage, but they don't cool like they are.
Edited by bombastinator - 10/31/13 at 10:15pm
New gaming rig
(15 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
4770k some mid range asrock. extreme 4 maybe? 2x gigabyte windforce 7950 2 x 8 corsair balistix sport 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
crucial ct960 LG blu-ray used venamous x win 8.1 pro 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
Crossover 30Q5 PRO 30" 2560X1600  cheapest piece of crud I could find antec HCG 750 some thermaltake microcenter blue-light-special... 
MouseMouse PadAudio
came with the cheapass keyboard who cares? some $30 no name 2+sub speakers I bought at mic... 
  hide details  
Reply
New gaming rig
(15 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
4770k some mid range asrock. extreme 4 maybe? 2x gigabyte windforce 7950 2 x 8 corsair balistix sport 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
crucial ct960 LG blu-ray used venamous x win 8.1 pro 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
Crossover 30Q5 PRO 30" 2560X1600  cheapest piece of crud I could find antec HCG 750 some thermaltake microcenter blue-light-special... 
MouseMouse PadAudio
came with the cheapass keyboard who cares? some $30 no name 2+sub speakers I bought at mic... 
  hide details  
Reply
post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 
Yeah I've been looking through that thread today while at work some pretty amazing builds in there. I'm really leaning towards the Node 304 now and going with a custom waterloop, the gpu i'm not %100 sure cause I'm able to get the Asus gtx780 dc2oc for $400 right now from a friend so I'm really leaning towards that and just doing what I can to make sure its quiet. Of course it may just be cheaper and easier to go with the 3 slot gpu like you said. Anyways I have to get back to doing work stuff but thanks for the response.
Sys0p
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7 5820 MSI x99 Gaming 7 GTX 970 FTW ACX 2.0 G.SKILL Sniper Gaming Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) 288... 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Corsair Force GT 120GB Seagate Barracuda 7200 3TB Asus Blue-Ray Burner Noctua NH-U14S 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Windows 8.1 Pro x64 Acer GD235HZ 23.6" 3D Monitor Dell 2407 WFP 24" Cooler Master CMSTORM 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Cooler Master Silent Pro 1000 Corsair Obsidian 750D Logitech G700 steelseries diablo 3 
AudioAudio
Klipsch 2.1 Creative Fatal1ty Headset 
  hide details  
Reply
Sys0p
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7 5820 MSI x99 Gaming 7 GTX 970 FTW ACX 2.0 G.SKILL Sniper Gaming Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) 288... 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Corsair Force GT 120GB Seagate Barracuda 7200 3TB Asus Blue-Ray Burner Noctua NH-U14S 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Windows 8.1 Pro x64 Acer GD235HZ 23.6" 3D Monitor Dell 2407 WFP 24" Cooler Master CMSTORM 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Cooler Master Silent Pro 1000 Corsair Obsidian 750D Logitech G700 steelseries diablo 3 
AudioAudio
Klipsch 2.1 Creative Fatal1ty Headset 
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post #6 of 6
for 400 I;d just buy it and live with the noise, but I;m a cheap bastard. It is one of the quieter 2 slot cards out there so it may be fine. Custom water loops are a bit of a pain in small itx boxes because there's so little space. If you think you can do it though go for it. They're a lot easier to fill than AIO loops.

If all you're going to cool with the water is the CPU though, a custom water loop seems like a needless amount of work. just get one of the thicker 120mm AIOs and bolt it on. They come pre filled. Less money, less trouble, less time. it would also allow you to use pretty much any case you wanted.

Maybe set up the machine bog standard with the stock fan and the card on air, then look at the noise levels. Run Prime95 or something on it for a bit just to get it to max noise, get your head in there, and see how bad it is where. You're almost certainly going to need to do something about the CPU, but if you got room for a full sized air cooler you can fix that for $30. Good low profile air cooling is usually spelled nocturnus, and they don't come cheap, but they're doable.

The question is whether or not the GPU needs extra help as well.
Edited by bombastinator - 11/1/13 at 1:01pm
New gaming rig
(15 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
4770k some mid range asrock. extreme 4 maybe? 2x gigabyte windforce 7950 2 x 8 corsair balistix sport 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
crucial ct960 LG blu-ray used venamous x win 8.1 pro 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
Crossover 30Q5 PRO 30" 2560X1600  cheapest piece of crud I could find antec HCG 750 some thermaltake microcenter blue-light-special... 
MouseMouse PadAudio
came with the cheapass keyboard who cares? some $30 no name 2+sub speakers I bought at mic... 
  hide details  
Reply
New gaming rig
(15 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
4770k some mid range asrock. extreme 4 maybe? 2x gigabyte windforce 7950 2 x 8 corsair balistix sport 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
crucial ct960 LG blu-ray used venamous x win 8.1 pro 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
Crossover 30Q5 PRO 30" 2560X1600  cheapest piece of crud I could find antec HCG 750 some thermaltake microcenter blue-light-special... 
MouseMouse PadAudio
came with the cheapass keyboard who cares? some $30 no name 2+sub speakers I bought at mic... 
  hide details  
Reply
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