Alternative of processor:
Browse the Intel web site to see what’s present. It’s all the time finest to test to keep away from changing into out of date in a short while. About each 18 months, Intel introduces a brand new era of processors. You all the time get significantly better efficiency at roughly the identical value because the earlier era of processors. You will discover a processor choice instrument and specs about their processors on the Intel web site.
You’ll most certainly not want the top-of-the-line mannequin of the present era for regular family computer systems. For this utility I select the 2nd era Intel Core i5 2500k. This one has built-in Intel HD graphics, so with the best motherboard you do not have to fork out additional money to purchase a discrete graphics card.
Intel’s boxed processors often include an acceptable heatsink to maintain the processor cool, however all the time test the specs to make certain. For cooler and quieter operation, you must go for a commercially out there heatsink, however solely achieve this for those who’re positive you are going to select one.
The important thing specs are additionally out there if you supply the part (on this case from Newegg.com).
When selecting a motherboard, it is advisable to know and match the processor socket (on this case LGA1155) and the supported reminiscence kind (on this case DDR3-1066/1333). These are vital for match and performance.
Selecting a motherboard:
I am a giant fan of Intel’s merchandise due to the excessive reliability through the years. So naturally I select a motherboard made by Intel. The selection fell on the desktop board DH67BL Media Collection. Go to Intel’s web site for extra data. It helps the LGA1155 socket, DDR3-1066/1333 reminiscence and has each HDMI and DVI connectors.
Different vital motherboard specs it is advisable to know:
Variety of reminiscence places: 4×240 pin. You should know this together with the reminiscence commonplace (DDR3) when selecting reminiscence.
Supported storage units: 3x SATA 3 Gb/s and 2x SATA 6 Gb/s. This determines the supported arduous drives and BD-ROMs. SATA 6Gb/s is the brand new commonplace, however backward appropriate with SATA 3Gb/s.
LAN Velocity: 10/100/1000Mbps This determines your most Ethernet connection pace on a wired community.
Kind Issue: Micro-ATX (9.6″ x 9.6″). That is the bodily measurement of the board and is vital when selecting a case. The smaller micro-ATX boards match most media middle circumstances, whereas the bigger ATX type elements may not.
As talked about above, we’d like DDR3-1066 or DDR3-1333 240 pin reminiscence modules to be appropriate with the processor and motherboard. We select 2x of the Kingston 4GB 240-pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600) desktop reminiscence mannequin KVR1333D3N9/4G for a complete of 8GB. Storage costs differ wildly and are low-cost as of this writing, so reap the benefits of the worth. The board can maintain as much as 4 modules, however 2x4GB is ample for our functions.
Collection of arduous disk(s):
Laborious drive costs almost tripled in October and November 2011 resulting from part shortages as a result of climate in Thailand. Costs are anticipated to remain excessive for a few quarters. Since arduous drives was once very low-cost, the system right here was constructed with two arduous drives. The primary is a 320GB drive that’s used to load the working system and another applications for use on the system. The second 2TB drive is for recorded tv and might maintain roughly 300 hours of HDTV.
Usually, the extra learn/write heads you will have, the higher the efficiency.
I’ve not too long ago switched to western digital inexperienced or blue arduous drives as a result of I had one on sale and located it to be a lot quieter than the Seagate I used to be used to.
The primary drive specs that have an effect on match and performance are SATA pace and bodily measurement.
SATA 6Gb/s describes information switch pace and is the brand new commonplace for desktop computing. The chosen motherboard helps two SATA 6Gb/s, so be sure you join these to the 6Gb connectors on the motherboard to get the most effective efficiency.
The bodily measurement of the drive is known as a 3.5 inch inside drive. This data is vital when selecting your laptop case. The chosen case comprises two inside 3.5-inch drives.
Selecting an optical drive (Blu-ray/CD/DVD-ROM):
As we speak’s optical drives sometimes have SATA switch speeds of three Gb/s. The bodily measurement for desktop computer systems is described as a 5.25″ inside drive, and so they match right into a chassis with a 5.25″ exterior drive bay. The case specifies the bay as exterior as a result of it offers you entry to open the drive compartment.
Extra software program equivalent to Energy DVD is required to play Blu-ray discs. Some drives include this software program. I’ve discovered that the majority web outlets are obscure about whether or not the software program is included or not. The Samsung included within the desk above got here with software program.
TV tuner playing cards:
I’ve two “AVerMedia AVerTVHD Duet – PCTV Tuner (A188 – White Field) – OEM” in my system. A very powerful factor it is advisable to know is the interface kind, which is a PCI Specific x1 interface. This was described in Article 2. The chosen Intel mainboard provides house for 2 such growth slots.
This setup supplies 4 out there tuners for recording or watching one channel concurrently whereas recording three others.
Selecting a pc case:
To make your leisure hub appear like one other audio system, it is advisable to choose an enclosure from the HTPC/Media Middle class. To keep away from the effort of getting to pick an acceptable energy provide for the case, I selected a case with a built-in 500 W energy provide. “APEVIA Black SECC Metal / Aluminum X-MASTER-BK/500 ATX Media Middle / HTPC Case”.
It is vital to be sure you have ample wattage. Since we do not use extra graphics playing cards, 350W to 500W is often greater than ample. Be happy to decide on a case you want extra aesthetically.
Additionally it is vital to make sure that your chosen motherboard will match within the case. The Micro-ATX motherboard matches most circumstances.
We’re utilizing two 3.5″ arduous drives and one 5.25″ Blu-ray participant, so the case will need to have not less than two 3.5″ drive bays and one 5.25″ exterior drive bay.
What bothers me when shopping for a case is that the fan kind or fan noise is sort of by no means specified. You do not actually know what you are going to get till you set it collectively. Fortunately, followers are low-cost and you’ll substitute them if the noise degree is simply too excessive for you.
Fan noise will depend on the design, pace and air circulation. The decrease the desired noise degree in dBA, the quieter it needs to be. A variable-speed fan controls pace based mostly on the temperature contained in the case, so it solely spins as quick because it must, maintaining noise to a minimal.
Wi-fi keyboard and wi-fi distant management:
I notably just like the “nMEDIAPC HTPCKB-B Black 2.4GHz RF Wi-fi Streamlined Keyboard with Trackball & Distant Combo Set” as a result of a trackball mouse is constructed into the PC distant management. This allows straightforward operation of the media participant. I not often use the keyboard, however after I do, the built-in trackball mouse is useful too. No floor is required to function the mouse.
Collection of the working system:
Home windows 7 Residence Premium and better comes with Home windows Media Middle, which manages your tuner playing cards and recorded TV.
I selected Home windows 7 Skilled as a result of it lets you use Distant Desktop to go online to the PC remotely. So I log into the media PC with my laptop computer to do extra demanding duties.
Be aware that the chosen Home windows 7 working system is the OEM (Unique Gear Producer) model. This implies, amongst different issues, that there is no such thing as a technical software program assist from Microsoft, however it’s considerably cheaper.
I by no means have the necessity to name Microsoft for tech assist. If there’s an issue, chances are high another person has already discovered it, so do a Google search.
As talked about earlier, this text is principally about selecting parts on your Media PC. Your part guide will stroll you thru the steps required to assemble the assorted parts. Should you want extra assist, you are able to do a easy Google seek for “how one can construct my very own computer”.
Do not forget to attach the switches and jacks on the entrance panel.
As soon as every part is related, you possibly can flip in your new PC.
If every part goes nicely, you will notice a start-up display after switching it on. Seek the advice of the motherboard guide to make any changes to the BIOS settings if essential. The default settings ought to work with no adjustments required, but it surely’s all the time a good suggestion to take a look at this part of the information to see what’s out there.
The subsequent step can be to insert the Home windows DVD and observe the set up directions. Be sure you are related to your community and have an web connection. Home windows set up takes about an hour. If prompted, select to obtain and set up Home windows updates mechanically. Updates will doubtless take one other hour relying on what number of there are.
Firmware and driver updates:
These updates are sometimes offered to repair bugs and enhance system performance. Typically, the system ought to work correctly with out these updates. Nevertheless, for those who’re having performance points, it is all the time a good suggestion to go to the producer’s web site and set up any updates which are out there.
For Intel motherboards, Intel system drivers can be found from Intel’s Community Connections (LAN), Graphics, Chipset, and Audio Units obtain website.
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