New to HTPCs - is this a good start?

BlueWeasel

Limp Gawd
Joined
Feb 27, 2006
Messages
458
I'm new to HTPC's. We currently use a Roku 3 to stream everything and we love it. Cut the cord recently and couldn't be happier.

There is someone selling a HTPC for $140 with the following specs:
  • Gigabyte GA-H61N-USB3 MB
  • i3-3225 3.3 GHz (Ivy Bridge)
  • 8GB DDR3
  • 64GB SSD boot drive
  • Silverstone GD05 case
  • No OS
Was thinking about getting it and adding a large drive for media storage. Primary uses would be for streaming, Kodi, etc. I'm not about to start ripping DVDs or BRs to this thing. Was kinda thinking it would be serve both as a HTPC and NAS.

I know the CPU is fairly old but I don't think I need anything faster. Is this a decent setup for a first time, fairly simple HTPC?
 
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Vengance_01

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Dec 23, 2001
Messages
6,269
Looks to be a decent find. Will need to add a vid card for 4k content. Imo I would just build a dedicated nas/plex server and use streaming devices for consumption
 

1911Shootist

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Nov 15, 2012
Messages
1,803
That will work just fine for 1080 content (same CPU I'm currently using). You will need a video card for 4k though.
 

yowen

Gawd
Joined
May 20, 2011
Messages
643
That Silverstone case has been awesome for me! All those parts for $140 seems fair.

As 1911 said, great for 1080, will need a video card for 4k and I recently found out for netflix at 4k you'll need 4gb video memory, so for nvidia that means at least a GTX 1050 TI.

edit: I think I misspoke, the number is 3gb, but still the 4gb GTX 1050 TI is the cheapest card that meets that requirement.
 

Charlie_D

Gawd
Joined
Mar 7, 2007
Messages
872
Especially if you're using x265 encodes or > 1080 files, grab a 1050 as stated above. The CPU will thank you, and you'll thank yourself with smooth, consistent playback.
 

Lunar

Limp Gawd
Joined
Jul 26, 2007
Messages
419
It looks fine, but I agree with Vengance. I would shove that thing full of drives, install OpenMediaVault or FreeNAS on it, load it up with my media, and use AndroidTV's or FireTV's with Kodi as viewing devices. That way you'll have the convenience of a regular remote + dedicated apps for streaming services without having to open a web browser.
 

defaultluser

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Jan 14, 2006
Messages
13,894
I use that CPU (with a discrete GTX 750 Ti GPU) just fine for running Dolphin to play Gamecube games. It's overpowered for streaming, but considering it's low power consumption that's okay :D

The decode engine can also handle 4k h.264 video. But the outputs can't handle that high a resolution, so it's kinda just a check-box that waited for Haswell.

But you can get native 4k if you buy a discrete GPU.
 
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