For Multi use HTPC, Gaming I would go with a 3850 right now but if thats
too much money then a reasonably cheap 2600 XT not the Pro will run 1080P
on that system just fine and give reasonable gaming for about half the cost of the 3850.
Iam running a 2600pro on pretty much the same setup and it works just fine
but my TV is a 720P set I wouldn't want to try 1080P with it.
Not interested in gaming. Thinking of adding blue ray to computer. Have never tried onboard graphics with setup using 1080 LCD, currently using ATI 1900. Just got Samsung LN52A650 and started using computer as HTPC and although system plays downloaded 1080p content, it uses up to 90% cpu.Was looking for video card to take up some of this load.
Again gaming not important,but either is the $70-whatever it will cost for graphics card.
Have AMD 4000+ single core system, but AGP setup just seems to be a waste of time to try and get to work properly.
Well if gaming is not a priority I think I would still go with the 2600 XT for 1080P
BD playback, there selling here for around $110 & the Lg supe multi BD reader can be had for about $165 or a bit lower with some careful shopping.
I got the Sapphire HD3650 DDR2 512 mb. I haven't looked at prices recently but I got mine a month or so ago for $80 I think. Prices for this stuff goes down every few days so I would assume it can be had cheaper now.
The one thing I didn't like about the sapphire is it did not come with a DVI-HDMI adaptor and I haven't been able to find one. Don't actually need it as bad as I though but it is a PITA if you need one.
Can't comment on the Asus. The HTPC sounds the exact same as it did before so the fan is pretty quiet. I have an Antec2400 case which is pretty silent.
I've looked into that passive 3650 card a bit and from what I've read the passive cooler works great, the only issue you may have is an extra slot of space below your pcie slot. Just don't expect to be overclocking it...