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It would appear that it might make more sense to rate the PSU 12v rail at 2x the CPU TDP, instead of the entire PSU. If a graphics card is added, it would be 2x CPU+GPU TDP. That, of course, doesn't take into account other components. It could be out of range for very high or very low CPU TDPs.
 

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Discussion Starter #282
Where can one even find an ML05 or ML06 to purchase? I think one is discontinued and the other is not yet shipping.
 

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Discussion Starter #284
Initially, the ML03 had some advantages over the ML05/6 for me, as it:
- can accommodate a full size ODD
- can accept mATX
- can accept a miniITX with more clearance ( it's wider,taller deeper) re installs, cable management, fans

After some additional review of the 03 critiques,, and 05 builds, I think now perhaps ML05/06 (with a slim or no ODD), may be a good choice for my smaller den build. I like the better roof ventilation and option for slim ODD.

All things considered, I seem to be landing very close to this:

BASEMENT - LARGER HTPC/PC BUILD
  • mATX HTPC/PC with room to grow; room to build. WIN 8.1 PRO; XBMC; i5-4670T (45W TDP; HD4600) or i5-4670; ASUS H87M-PRO; 8 GB CL9 DDR3 (2 OF 4 SLOTS- EXPAND LATER); SILVERSTONE GD08 CASE; SILVERSTONE ST45SF-G MODULAR 80+ 450W PSU ;SAMSUNG SSD BOOT DRIVE; WD 2TB HDD DATA DRIVE; LG FULL-SIZE ODD. STOCK CPU COOLER AND CASE FANS.
DEN - SMALLER HTPC . one of the following:
  • miniITX HTPC BUILD- WIN 8.1 PRO; XBMC; i5-4670T (45W TDP; HD4600); ASUS H87i-PLUS; 8 GB CL9 DDR3 (2 0F 2 SLOTS); SILVERSTONE MLO6 CASE PLUS CASE FAN; SILVERSTONE ST30SF PSU (OR SMALLER) ;SAMSUNG SSD BOOT DRIVE; ADD 2nd LARGER 2.5" SDD IN FUTURE IF REQD, SLIM OR NO ODD, STOCK CPU COOLER. Build
    or
  • PRE-BUILT NUC - WIN 8.1 PRO; XBMC, INTEL NUC D5420WYKH (i5-4250U, 15W TDP, HD5000);8 GB CL9 DDR3L (2 0F 2 SLOTS); SAMSUNG SSD mSATA BOOT DRIVE, ADD 2nd LARGER 2.5" SDD IN FUTURE IF REQD. NO ODD. INTEL STOCK COOLING/FANS/PSU.
 

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Discussion Starter #286
Thanks. I see newegg also has it... but lots of interesting cons to read first !!!

http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811163242

I think ML06 is the same as ML05 except it has less plastic. Not sure if there are other differences.

And as mentioned, even the 300W PSU is a poor choice for this case: See cons here:
>> http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817256097.

NUC looking good right now :) with its 15W TDP and 65 W PSU !
>> Review: http://www.legitreviews.com/intel-haswell-powered-nuc-kit-d54250wykh-spotted-enclosure-2-5-inch-drives_127098
>> Kit: http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/nuc/nuc-kit-d54250wykh.html
>> Board: http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/nuc/nuc-board-d54250wyb.html
>> Support: http://www.intel.com/p/en_US/support/highlights/dsktpboards/dk-d54250wyk
 

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Discussion Starter #287
Before I place my order for the new basement HTPC/PC , I know the one component I wont be upgrading for years to come, or at all, is the CPU. I am wondering out loud if I should be considering, at time of purchase, an i7 instead of i5-4670T, ie (i7-4765T or i7-4770T or i7-4790). Not sure if this makes sense or is more risky.

Ref:

____________________


PLANNED BASEMENT BUILD- LARGER HTPC/PC BUILD
  • mATX HTPC/PC with room to grow; room to build. WIN 8.1 PRO; XBMC; i5-4670T (45W TDP; HD4600) or i5-4670; ASUS H87M-PRO; 8 GB CL9 DDR3 (2 OF 4 SLOTS- EXPAND LATER); SILVERSTONE GD08 CASE; SILVERSTONE ST45SF-G MODULAR 80+ 450W PSU ;SAMSUNG SSD BOOT DRIVE; WD 2TB HDD DATA DRIVE; LG FULL-SIZE ODD. STOCK CPU COOLER AND CASE FANS.
PLANNED DEN BUILD- SMALLER HTPC
  • PRE-BUILT NUC - WIN 8.1 PRO; XBMC, INTEL NUC D5420WYKH (i5-4250U, 15W TDP, HD5000);8-16 GB CL9 DDR3L (2 0F 2 SLOTS); SAMSUNG SSD mSATA BOOT DRIVE, ADD 2nd LARGER 2.5" SATA SDD IN FUTURE IF REQD. NO ODD. INTEL STOCK COOLING/FANS/PSU.
 

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And as mentioned, even the 300W PSU is a poor choice for this case
I see it as a good choice. This is an SFX PSU which is a lot smaller than a standard ATX PSU but with all the benefits. I have a low profile HTPC with an SFX PSU and it is a great solution. At 300W, it's not oversized for a 65W or 84W TDP CPU.
 

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Discussion Starter #289
I too think the SFX size is great. The complaint by that user was that the average load in that build was so low, that the fan rarely kicked in. Case come with no stock fans and space is already tight with ODD. Would be roomier though with an mini ITX board, but then there the ventilation issues in that case.
 

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I wouldn't get too deep into Intel CPU charts. A lot of CPUs are simply not available at retail when making a purchase. Using Newegg's product finder (which I often use whether purchasing there or not), the Intel Core i5-4570S looks like a good choice for an HTPC using the ASUS H87M-PRO. The i7-4765T looks like an ideal choice but it also appears to be only available through OEM channels. I did find one for sale at an electronics supplier but it was priced at US$436.

Keep in mind that a very powerful CPU is not required. I have an 1.6 GHz Intel Atom system that works fine as a media player. Most prebuilt media players have slower CPUs than that. The best HTPCs that I own have a 2.5GHz quad core (45W) CPU with ATI4250 motherboard video and a 3.0GHz dual core integrated APU (65W.) Both are somewhat dated AMD processors. (They were also very inexpensive at $85 and $55 respectively.) Newer Intel Hasbro processors should deliver significantly better bang per watt.
 

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The rule of thumb I follow when buying CPUs:
The i3 and i7 is bought when I know exactly what the PC will be used for.
Aka i3 is sufficient or i7 is needed. And it will stay that way.
In all other cases I buy an i5. Middle of the road.
 

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Discussion Starter #292
My desktop home pc's to date have been from the i7 family, but I realize that for HTPC that i5 is way more than adequate. Most of chips in that chart are actually available to purchase ; only two were not ( OEM only). For pure HTPC I would buy from the i5 family, an i5-4570s seems like a good value and respectable TDP. Middle of the road option.

But for my basement PC, it may be used for non-HTPC functions, so I was toying with i7 options, eg i7-4770s for $100 premium. Perhaps not worth it as I don't have a defined need at this point.

________________________
i5-4570 /84w / ClockRate:3.2 GHz / L3=6MB $210 TD
i5-4570s /65w / ClockRate:2.9 GHz / L3=6MB $210 ME

i5-4670 /84w / ClockRate:3.4 GHz / L3=6MB $225 TD
i5-4670s /65w / ClockRate:3.1 GHz / L3=6MB $ na
i5-4670t /45w / ClockRate:2.3 GHz / L3=6MB $320 CDW

i7-4770 /84w / ClockRate:3.4 GHz / L3=8MB $320 CC
i7-4770s /65w / ClockRate:3.1 GHz / L3=8MB $319 CC
i7-4770t /45w / ClockRate:2.5 GHz / L3=8MB $ na
 

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Discussion Starter #294

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A fluid one, would technically be the best choice for quietness.. as there is no friction per say :) Never owned one myself.. not sure on the lifespan of them (if the fluid wears out, etc).
Otherwise, a higher end metal bearing one.. plastic bearing ones burn out too quickly.
 

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Discussion Starter #296
Okay, took the first big step and made my purchases!!

I feel pretty good about the choices, having discussed these at nauseum, but hey, its my first attempt at building from scratch. I am sure I will still trip, stumble and fall, but at least I attempted to make informed decisions, with a whack of input from this group.

I ended up with an Silverstone ML03 mATX case as I kept on gravitating to it (and have seen mulitiple videos and read multiple reviews to feel confident I am aware of the challenges are how to best mitage them).

I also know that fun has not even started yet and I will hit some snags, but that' s fine ; all part of the learning process. And I may need to mix and match and swap components and flip-flop on what goes in what room, but I'll eventually get there. I'll be quite relieved when I finally do manage to get my first working system with Windows/XBMC up and running :)

The build is this:

  • CPU: INTEL i5-4570S 2.90GHz //3.6 GHz w/ 6MB Cache (HD4600, 65W TDP)- BX80646I54570S
  • CPU COOLER: Intel stock cooler
  • M/B: ASUS H87M-PRO LGA 1150 Intel H87 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 uATX Intel Motherboard -N82E16813131994
  • CASE: SILVERSTONE Milo SST-ML03B HTPC Black Aluminum SECC mATX 2x USB3.0 port.
  • CASE INTAKE FANS: 2 x SilentX EFX-08-15T Effizio Silent Thermistor Edition Case Fan - 80mm, Fluid Dynamic Bearing, 32 CFM, 15dBA, 1700 RPM Item#: S23-1122 | Model#: EFX-08-15T
  • SFX PSU: SILVERSTONE ST30SF 300W ATX12V / EPS12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply N82E16817256097
  • MEMORY: KINGSTON HyperX Genesis 8GB DDR3-1600MHz CL9 Dual Channel Kit (2 x 4GB) w/ Intel XMP KHX1600C9D3K2/8GX
  • OS: MICROSOFT Windows 8.1 Professional 64-Bit English OEM FQC-06950
  • SSD: SAMSUNG 256 GB SATA 840 EVO Series Solid State Drive, 250GB Item#:UAM-101752102 Model#: MZ-TE250BW
  • ODD: LG 16X BURNER Internal, Full Size, 16x Blu-ray Writer LBH16NS40
  • HDD: WD 2TB BLACK 3.5" SATA3 7200RPM 64MB Cache OEM Hard Drive WD2002FAEX
  • WIRELESS K/B: Logitech K400
  • IR REMOTE - TBD, likely FLIRC
More product specifics/links here.








I also took to heart ExDilbert's tips on mistakes to avoid ...

Here are the worst mistake that I made:

1. Using large, full height, steel cases.

>> opted for slimmer low profile ML03​
2. Using a CPU that is too powerful and/or dissipates too much heat.
>> opted for middle of the road i5, and "S"​
3. Using a video card. Integrated CPU/GPU solutions are much more efficient and will outperform most low end video cards.
>> opted for no video card​
4. Using too big a power supply. Right sized power supplies are more efficient and more economical. The power supply should be sized between 2 and 4 times the maximum TDP of the system. In the builds linked to above, that's between 150w and 300w. Make sure it is 80+ certified as well.
>> opted for 300W, 80+certified​
5. Using cases that have proprietary power supplies and/or other components. If they need replacing, there is no source for better quality components. When buying a small case that uses a smaller power supply (such as SFX) make sure that it's dimensions are not outside the industry norm. That goes for OEM built systems as well. Companies like Dell are notorious for using non-standard parts.
>> opted for silverstone SFX power supply 100mm x 125mm seems to be consistent with the SFX standard :http://www.formfactors.org/developer\specs\SFX12V.pdf
6. Not using low noise components. That includes the power supply, CPU cooler, case fans (avoid fans wherever possible), high speed disk drives (avoid 7200 RPM or faster hard drives) and optical drives. Small, high speed fans included on some components are especially obnoxious.
>> opted for SDD for boot drive
>> added WD black for reliability ( which , yup is 7200) ; can easily swap out if problematic;
>> ordered low rpm quiet case fans if needed​
7. Not using low energy and energy efficient components. Energy dissipation creates heat, which requires fans for cooling, which creates noise.
>> i4570 "S" for CPU
>> opted for 15dbA case fans if need. Case has good ventilation​
8. Cramming too many hard drives into an HTPC. These create heat and noise.
>> have only one boot SDD and one data HDD.​
 

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Discussion Starter #297
Here is my stab and how the air flow works in the above ML03 setup:



Plan to have the SSD below the optical drive bay (which leaves room for cable management), and have the HDD in front of the motherboard - close to ventilation/fan(s).

I sent a note to Silverstone to get their take on it.
 

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So, how many fans (in/out only, no CPU) does the case have?
Where are they located and what are their cfm?

BTW, the stock CPU fan sends air downwards...
 

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Looks like a nice build. I would have used a WD Red but the Black should be fine. Since the ML03 case accepts a standard ATX PSU, it is not necessary to go with an SFX PSU. Since they are made for smaller cases, SFX PSUs have different mounting holes so it may pose a problem. Some include an ATX adapter so it could be Ok.

Re case ventilation: Most CPU coolers draw air into the case, not out. How much will depend on how it's positioned relative to the top grill. I have one case similar to the ML03 for ventilation. In a cabinet, warm air leaving the side vents beside the CPU tends to get drawn into the intake vents on that side, causing it to get quite warm. You may need to install 4 intake fans along that side of the case to prevent the recirculation of hot air.
 

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Discussion Starter #300
On SFX, the ST30SF 'does' include the adaptor, so no issue there. I wanted the smaller size to maximize space to accomodate the burner.

Re stock cooler and whether it draws air up or down, ok, got that backwards. I stand corrected. Way too much information and misinformation out there. Read where 'of course' its "up" so that it pulls heat out from the CPU as hot air rises, out thru the top of the case ; otherwise you are blowing hot air down. Also read the opposite, ie "of course" it pulls air down, to cool off the processor. But ok, there is only one correct answer for the stock cooler and thats pulling air in/down, so below is a revised visual.

Re fans, the case comes without fans. So its open season. I thought two intake fans (32cfm ea) would make sense (to bring cool air in from the side). Perhaps four is better as suggested. I also, naturally, heard the reverse, ie " The only time a CPU fan should blow air AWAY from a CPU is if you have another fan blowing air IN to the CPU", so that kindda suggest the down blowing stock cooler plus intake fans is a bad combination. But perhaps that point is simply talking about the 'recirculation issue", for which 4 fans along the side blowing in would address, even with a down blowing CPU cooler.

Four fans does seem like a lot of fans for this build, doesnt it?

 
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