Building a New Media PC


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Hey guys, I'm planning on buying a new PC for media purposes in the next week or so and this is what I've got so far.

Planar - MSI 890GXM-G65 AM3 890GX 4*DDR3 PCI-E16 GBL DVI / VGA /HDMI/RAID/SATA3/USB3 - $130.00
Video Card - Sapphire HD6770 1G GDRR5 PCIE HDMI DP - $126.00
CPU - AMD Phenom II AM3 955 Black Edition (3.2Ghz) 64-Bit Quad-Core CPU - $119.00
Case & PSU - Thermaltake V3 Black Edition Mid Tower Case With 450W PSU - $76.00
OS - Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit OEM - $97.00
RAM - Kingston 4GB(2 X 2GB) DDR3-1333MHZ - $41.00
HDD - Samsung 1TB Spinpoint F3 SATA II 7200RPM 32M - $59.00
ODD - Pioneer BDR-206BK 12X Blu-Ray Writer Drive SATA Black OEM $125.00

Total - $773.00

Prices are in AUD so just ignore how overpriced it looks :p

Anyway what do you guys think, am open to change for better performance however don't really want to spend that much. The only thing that I really want in this PC is a blu-ray drive.
 
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Good build. I think it's even more than fine for your needs. You can even get away with some high-quality gaming with that.
 

Ian

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Do you have a budget in mind? Also, when you say media purposes, do you mean along the lines of watching video or editing it? The reason I ask is that if you're going to be using this as a video editing machine then you may want to add a little extra memory in there - although 4GB will be fine for moderate gaming and other uses :).
 
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Woah, for a media center computer, I think a 6770 is way too much.
 

Digerati

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Woah, for a media center computer, I think a 6770 is way too much.
I agree. Why waste your money on that graphics card when that MSI motherboard already has a very fine graphics solution, fully capable of working as as excellent HTPC and DVR?

I say, drop the graphics card and double your RAM and you will still have money left over.
 
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Digerati

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clifford_cooley said:
Unless the machine is going to be used for games as "LiteGamer" seems to suggest.
Seems to suggest? I am going by what he said the machine will be used for.
Litegamer said:
I'm planning on buying a new PC for media purposes
But even so, what I said is true. Today's modern integrated graphics, with a good CPU and RAM will support good, not the greatest, but good game graphics. Note that similar motherboards and integrated graphics solutions are used routinely in notebooks marketed as "gaming notebooks".

Plus the game makers know that most users cannot afford monster graphics cards. Therefore, they design their games to still have great "game play" with lessor machines, although with fewer animated graphics "effects" or maybe less detailed backgrounds or other options. Just as captivating and challenging - just not as visually awesome!

Understand these motherboards often go in high-end home theaters ($20,000 and much more!!!) because the graphics imagery is superb, as is the surround sound.

Regardless if getting the card or not, I recommend 8Gb of RAM - which will benefit the integrated graphics too - though I still have no reservations recommending doubling the RAM and skipping the graphics card.

If "advanced" gaming is required, then I would recommend a different motherboard! One without integrated graphics, and then get a good graphics card AND a bigger power supply - all of which will cost considerably more than just doubling the RAM - which you will need for good gaming anyway.
 

TrainableMan

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Shadowwalk mentioned the gaming, the original OP, LiteGamer said media. The 6770 is overkill for playing blue-ray DVDs but if you do play any of the newest games it would be nice. If you do go with the HD 6770 realize it will cover either the PCI-e (x1) or the PCI slot depending which PCI-e (x16) you plug the card in.

And the reason I mention it covering the slots is because for a media PC I would also consider adding a TV tuner card in to your PCI-e (x1) slot or the PCI slot.
 
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I strongly recommend an AMD A8-class processor with a Gigabyte mATX motherboard. Its video decode/post-processing performance is on part with a Radeon HD 6670 (most powerful/highest quality HTPC GPU on the market), except the GPU is built right into the chip.

Eliminating the discrete GPU from your build, as well as choosing the new AMD A75 chipset, reduces total platform size, power consumption and heat. It's also cheaper than the build you've selected.

Let me be blunt: what I just suggested is cheaper, more efficient, and better suited to a media PC than what you've picked.

//EDIT: As a bonus, it'll easily play most games at 1080p if you bump the settings down. The quality will be a step above the Xbox 360 or PS3.

//EDIT 2: You'll have a free PCIe slot to play with. 802.11n card? TV Tuner? Sky's the limit, friend.
 
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