Author Topic: ERU’s ‘cheap’ Home Theatre PC (HTPC) build  (Read 2611 times)

  • Offline ERU

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ERU’s ‘cheap’ Home Theatre PC (HTPC) build
on: September 02, 2013, 21:52:01 PM
With the demise of Blockbuster and advent of Netflix, it seems I need to move into the 21st century. I currently have an old CRT TV, a DVD player and donated Freeview box. I have started to use BlinkBox on my laptop and I like what I see. So, I’ve decided to buy a HTPC (possibly to use as a NAS/backup) and look at getting a better TV in the not so distant future.
I’m aware HTPCs can be a bit of a minefield and I’ll need to pay particular attention to heat/airflow and noise. Hence this post …

Ok, here is where I'm at - this time with realtime links to online retailers:

Case: Silverstone Milo ML04B USB 3.0 HPTC Black Case without PSU £67.82

PSU: Corsair CP-9020058-UK CXM Builder series 430W Power Supply £41.32

CPU: AMD A-Series A4 4000 Trinity Socket FM2 3GHz 1MB L2 Cache Retail Boxed Processor £29.49

Mobo: Asus F2A55-M LK Socket FM2 VGA DVI 8 Channel Audio mATX Motherboard £45.99

GFX: Integrated AMD Radeon HD 7000 Series Graphics in A-series APU

TV tuner card: tbc (may not be needed)

SFX: Integrated Realtek ALC887 8-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC

Speakers: I plan to use some old creative 5:1’s - if I can find stands for them ... I'd love to move onto an AMP/speaker setup at some point. 

HDD: I got a green 2 gig one already, but might add a SSD.

DDR: Corsair Memory Desktop 8GB DDR3 1600 MHz CAS 11 Dual Channel Desktop £53.76

  TOTAL: £238.38


I'd like to get this under the £200 mark. What components can I swap in/out, or shave off, comfortably? Or get cheaper else where?

Re: ERU’s ‘cheap’ Home Theatre PC (HTPC) build
Reply #1 on: September 02, 2013, 22:32:10 PM
Maybe not the answer you are looking for, but what TV are you looking at?

Most smart TVs support streaming film services, and any films you want to stream from the laptop will play over DLNA, using something like servio..

My media center computer rarely gets turned on anymore, my TV will play everything from the server including HD content and it's not a current Gen smart TV, and I have a server stored away out of sight (noise isn't an issue then) and any computer would do for that, I'm running an N36L HP micro server for this purpose without issue...

It's much easier than having a separate computer, mouse/keyboard etc..

..Just a thought and then you could spend your cash on a nicer TV then :)

Edit: other option to look on eBay or here for some second hand kit to reduce your budget, or look at the option of a HP microserver £110 after cashback, but you'll need to get a graphics card on top of that.
Last Edit: September 02, 2013, 22:33:46 PM by XEntity #187;

  • Offline ERU

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Re: ERU’s ‘cheap’ Home Theatre PC (HTPC) build
Reply #2 on: September 02, 2013, 23:14:36 PM
Yeah, I was looking at the HP microserver option. I've also been thinking my options out and considered what you are saying. I guess I like the idea of having everything in one place and complete control over it.

Re: ERU’s ‘cheap’ Home Theatre PC (HTPC) build
Reply #3 on: September 03, 2013, 07:56:30 AM
microserver, plex & a sky now box for £9.99 with a hack for plex client installed on it.
done for £109.98 after cashback

Re: ERU’s ‘cheap’ Home Theatre PC (HTPC) build
Reply #4 on: September 03, 2013, 20:56:39 PM
I have a media case (with built in receiver and remote), semptron 2800 (?), motherboard and 4gb DDR of ram that I put together last year and I've never got around to using. PSU stopped on the 2nd use so its got a temporary one that doesn't screw into the case mount properly.

Happy to provide more info and accept low offers if you'd be interested. Been meaning to get rid for a while.
Formerly sexytw

Re: ERU’s ‘cheap’ Home Theatre PC (HTPC) build
Reply #5 on: September 03, 2013, 21:36:58 PM
microserver, plex & a sky now box for £9.99 with a hack for plex client installed on it.
done for £109.98 after cashback

You can also run plex on Samsung smart tvs, not sure about others, and to be honest you'd probably be less limited getting a graphics card for the hp and run plex on that

  • Offline ERU

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Re: ERU’s ‘cheap’ Home Theatre PC (HTPC) build
Reply #6 on: September 03, 2013, 21:37:51 PM
I have a media case (with built in receiver and remote), semptron 2800 (?), motherboard and 4gb DDR of ram that I put together last year and I've never got around to using. PSU stopped on the 2nd use so its got a temporary one that doesn't screw into the case mount properly.

Happy to provide more info and accept low offers if you'd be interested. Been meaning to get rid for a while.
That sounds good. Do you have any idea what case it is?

  • Offline Dave

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Re: ERU’s ‘cheap’ Home Theatre PC (HTPC) build
Reply #7 on: September 04, 2013, 13:58:06 PM
deffo get some decent speakers when you can afford to - despite the various myths audiophiles like to put about you don't need to go crazy on budget - the emperor has no clothes as far as most of the things those muppets worry about* are concerned but a decent set of speakers will generally give you a noticeable difference

*speaker cables, interconnects, uber expensive amps/other separates, gold plated HDMI cables, kettle leads....

Re: ERU’s ‘cheap’ Home Theatre PC (HTPC) build
Reply #8 on: September 04, 2013, 21:36:31 PM
Just seen this on HUKD:

http://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/lg-39ln575v-39-inch-widescreen-1080p-full-hd-smart-led-tv-with-built-wi-fi-freeview-1648051

LG 39LN575V 39-inch Widescreen 1080p Full HD Smart LED TV with Built-In Wi-Fi/Freeview HD (New for 2013)

£360.87

Good deal by the looks of it, in case you are looking for TVs :) My personal preference is Samsung, but LG are supposed to be good too!

Re: ERU’s ‘cheap’ Home Theatre PC (HTPC) build
Reply #9 on: September 09, 2013, 17:01:05 PM
As per my previous post, but build I have lying around is the following:

Novatech Vision Media Centre Case

ASRock N68-S3 FX nForce 630a (Socket AM3+) Motherboard

AMD SEMPRON 145 AM3 OEM CPU PROCESSOR
A quiet CPU fan that I cant remember (can look if required) and 4Gb of DDR3.

Like I said, all working but has a PSU that doesnt fit the case at the moment. I've also removed the 60gb SSD and put it in my laptop to give it more use.
Last Edit: September 09, 2013, 17:02:43 PM by addictweb #187;
Formerly sexytw

  • Offline ERU

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Re: ERU’s ‘cheap’ Home Theatre PC (HTPC) build
Reply #10 on: September 21, 2013, 10:15:44 AM
Thanks for all the advice and offers. Here's what I went for in the end - just in case anyone is trying a similar investment. I bought the following:

HP Microserver N54L £97.94 (after cashback)

Toshiba 40L1333 40" Full HD 1080P LED TV (Argos eBay refurb. with 12mth warranty) £229.99

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