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Need HTPC suggestions

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Well, I have some amazing news: I got accepted to university. This leads to some bad news though, I'm going to need to give up my recently-built gaming rig. I didn't think my marks were good enough to get in to university, so I hadn't planned ahead for this, but I was pleasantly surprised to pull off a 96% average in my grade 12 courses.

So, not only will I not have time to play games anymore, I will also need some money to pay for my tuition. Currently, my gaming rig is the only computer in the house, and I will still need some kind of computer for research, typing, and so on. I also want to keep the freedom of being able to watch movies that I rip to my computer whenever I feel like it.

My plan is to keep whatever I can from my gaming rig (I figure that I can keep the processor, RAM and hard drive, possibly the case and PSU) and sell the rest, and use some of the money to build a HTPC to keep my movie-watching goals alive. This will be hooked up to a 720p television, but my father intends to buy a new TV soon, so whatever purchased needs to be compatible with 1080i/p.

My needs, then, are thus:

Motherboard for my E2140 with HDMI/DVI output. I have heard really good things about the 780g chipset, but of course, the chipset is (from what I have seen) for AMD processors only.

TV tuner card to record from standard cable box inputs, I'm not really a "TV person", so I'm not entirely sure of what the connection is called.

Soundcard (I was thinking the $36 X-Fi from Geeks.com)

Possibly a HTPC case + PSU

Anything else I have forgotten.

Thanks!
Thinkpad L420
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Intel i3-2310M Lenovo i3-2310M 2x4GB Corsair Vengeance 
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Intel 520 Optiarc AD-7710H Mint 14" LG D02EB 
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Thinkpad L420
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Intel i3-2310M Lenovo i3-2310M 2x4GB Corsair Vengeance 
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Intel 520 Optiarc AD-7710H Mint 14" LG D02EB 
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Thinkpad 65w AC adapter Thinkpad UltraNav 
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post #2 of 7
is university really that hard in toronto? I'm in my third year of college and have plenty of time for gaming. I'm not too familiar with Canadian education, but I know ours disappoints me at every turn. If you guys are any similar to us, i think that you'll honestly be better off just keeping your rig. Selling it to pay for tuition isn't necessarily the best move, as that will give you a couple hundred dollars, and most universities cost over 10,000 per year.

Also, as a side note, if you notice that you are doing pretty well in university and want to help offset some of the cost, look into becoming an RA. I know at my university they completely pay for housing, a meal plan, and you get a monthly stipend, so it cuts the costs of going to college by about half for me.
post #3 of 7
Since school won't start till fall... wait for Intel and NVIDIA responses to the 780G. Look for the G45 and NVIDIA's chipset to come out in the next few months.
Once again...
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Intel X25-M 160GB + 3xRAID0 500GB 7200.12 Window 7 Pro 64 Acer H243H + Samsung 226BW XARMOR-U9BL  
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Once again...
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i7 920 [4.28GHz, HT] Asus P6T + Broadcom NetXtreme II VisionTek HD5850 [900/1200] + Galaxy GT240 2x4GB G.Skill Ripjaw X [1632 MHz] 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
Intel X25-M 160GB + 3xRAID0 500GB 7200.12 Window 7 Pro 64 Acer H243H + Samsung 226BW XARMOR-U9BL  
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Antec Truepower New 750W Li Lian PC-V2100 [10x120mm fans] Logitech G9 X-Trac Pro 
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post #4 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lurikrunch View Post
TV tuner card to record from standard cable box inputs, I'm not really a "TV person", so I'm not entirely sure of what the connection is called.
I believe the cable you would need is Coaxial, so be sure to use that term in your product searches.

HTH
Steeveeo's Box
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520GBs total, 2 IDE (200GBs), 1 SATA (320GBs) Windows XP SP2 Big ol' CRT "ZMerc" ZBoard gaming keyboard. 
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Steeveeo's Box
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Intel Core2Duo E8400 (Wolfdale) Biostar GF7050V-M7 nForce Motherboard BFGTech nVidia GeForce 8800GT PCI-E 512mb 2GB (2x1024mb) 675mhz Corsair XMS 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
520GBs total, 2 IDE (200GBs), 1 SATA (320GBs) Windows XP SP2 Big ol' CRT "ZMerc" ZBoard gaming keyboard. 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Black Steel 580w I forgot the company name, but its silver. Wireless Logitech (Cheaper than a corded :P ) Yes 
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post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 
Canadian universities aren't very similar (as far as I know) to American colleges, and University of Toronto is especially cutthroat as far as universities go. My girlfriend is currently attending college, and, I'm sorry to say, the work is a joke; it is easier than the work I'm doing in highschool. To put things in perspective, I was lucky to get in with a 96% average, a friend of mine with a 94% average has been rejected from University of Toronto and McGill University (considered the two best in Canada, the two trade spots in the rankings every year). He did, however, get accepted to York University.

Being an RA is a good idea, but I don't intend to live on residence when I can take the subway right to the campus every day.

And, to be honest, I'm somewhat losing my interest in gaming anyway. I very rarely get to play as-is now, and I don't "miss" the entertainment like I used to. Maybe it was a bad idea to build the rig anyway, then, but I might as well make the best out of the situation I'm in now.
Thinkpad L420
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel i3-2310M Lenovo i3-2310M 2x4GB Corsair Vengeance 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
Intel 520 Optiarc AD-7710H Mint 14" LG D02EB 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Thinkpad 65w AC adapter Thinkpad UltraNav 
  hide details  
Reply
Thinkpad L420
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel i3-2310M Lenovo i3-2310M 2x4GB Corsair Vengeance 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
Intel 520 Optiarc AD-7710H Mint 14" LG D02EB 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Thinkpad 65w AC adapter Thinkpad UltraNav 
  hide details  
Reply
post #6 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lurikrunch View Post
Canadian universities aren't very similar (as far as I know) to American colleges, and University of Toronto is especially cutthroat as far as universities go. My girlfriend is currently attending college, and, I'm sorry to say, the work is a joke; it is easier than the work I'm doing in highschool. To put things in perspective, I was lucky to get in with a 96% average, a friend of mine with a 94% average has been rejected from University of Toronto and McGill University (considered the two best in Canada, the two trade spots in the rankings every year). He did, however, get accepted to York University.

Being an RA is a good idea, but I don't intend to live on residence when I can take the subway right to the campus every day.

And, to be honest, I'm somewhat losing my interest in gaming anyway. I very rarely get to play as-is now, and I don't "miss" the entertainment like I used to. Maybe it was a bad idea to build the rig anyway, then, but I might as well make the best out of the situation I'm in now.
'

cool cool. my whole post was based on not knowing how your universities were down, so thank you for enlightening me. In this case, congratulations to you for your acceptance, it's cool that you've done so well.

I love being an RA, so i thought I'd throw it out there. One of the most fun jobs I've ever had, and it makes college super cheap.

Back to the OT, I agree with the above in waiting until the new low cost Intel boards come out. I've heard very promising things so if you can hold out a bit I'd wait on those.

Again, congratulations, and I hope you get everything squared away before you go off to school.
post #7 of 7
As Ducky said, wait a little while longer for intels response to the AMD 780G because for once AMD has created a monster!

If you need to get the system now, then seriously look at the AMD 780G, who ever thought you could game on an onboard chipset...
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