Advice for new case and motherboard

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Hi All,

I am relatively new to building PC's and am on the lookout for a new case
and motherboard- full size ATX or Micro ATX. My motherboard has recently
died and currently have an Antec Aria case. Although everything fit in ok
(with Asus EN5900 PCI-Express video card), the heat build up inside was
quite high and got quite noisy not to mention system lockups.

To keep costs down, I will retain all other components which consist of the
following:

Maxtor 300GBDiamondMax 10 SATA HDD

NEC ND 3520A DVD Writer

Hauppauge WinTV 350 Tuner Card

Asus EN5900 PCI Express (for DVI out unless you can get a Mobo with
integrated DVI Out

Sound Blaster Audigy 2 ZS Sound Card.

AMD Athlon 64 3200+ Socket 939 CPU

2 x 512MB DDR 400 PC3200 RAM Sticks.

Cases i am looking at are Enlight 7473 Media Centre Case
http://tinyurl.com/d5vc5 - although supplied PSU is a bit weedy, Antec
Overture II http://tinyurl.com/7jp69 or Coolermasters ATC 620 SX1
http://tinyurl.com/c2fpc so if anyone has any of these, would appreciate
some feedback unless anyone has suggestions on other cases.

Don't really want to spend any more than 150 UKP if I can help it but could
stretch to 200 UKP. Ideally, I would like a motherboard with integrated
video with DVI out if possible.

What do you guys recommend?

Thanks for any help
Jason.




RE: Advice for new case and motherboard

I just bougth a Silver Stone case - they are very nice.

"Jason Williams" wrote:

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Re: Advice for new case and motherboard

I have no advice about cases, but would emphatically state you shouldn't get
a motherboard with onboard graphics...or if you do, don't plan on using them
for Media Center. I've found that I can get years out of a motherboard, but
there's always some new graphics I have to have long before the motherboard
becomes obsolete. I would suggest going with a brand name such as Asus,
Abit, or MSI. If you have or plan to get a MiniDV camcorder, get a
motherboard with builtin FireWire. Get lots of USB ports. And since you have
an Athlon 64, find a motherboard that claims to support their dual-core CPUs
so you can upgrade to one of those when the price drops some.

Dana Cline - MVP

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the
could




Re: Advice for new case and motherboard

Excellent advice Dana.  However, there are a few boards out there with
integrated graphics that will work for him for a while, and save some money.
You can always turn off the integrated graphics later and add a new card.

Stu


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Re: Advice for new case and motherboard

True, but he already has a video board so why waste the extra bucks if he
doesn't have to? Besides, does any mobo with integrated graphics include DVI
out?

Dana Cline - MVP

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money.
case
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appreciate




Re: Advice for new case and motherboard

Guys,

Thanks for the advice so far.
My thinking for looking for integrated graphics with DVI out is because my
MCE box is housed in a cabinet in my living room and thought it would maybe
be a little quieter than my PCI-Express card with fan. Like you say Dana, do
integrated GPU's exist with DVI - i wasn't aware of one so wondered if
anyone else was running with one. I was under the impression PCI-E cards are
overkill for MCE reading other posts in other groups but if this is not the
case i may as well use my 5900 and save some money on the motherboard.

Thanks again for the valuable info so far.
Jason W.

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Re: Advice for new case and motherboard

As I said - good advice and I should have said I agree with you.

My comment was for others out there who might want an integrated solution
and were reading the thread for research. Obviously there are many boards
out there with integrated graphics good enough for TV out in MCE 2005.  But,
DVI is the catch - none yet offer it onboard.  However, there are ways
around it!

For example, Asus has an add-on DVI card, the DVIADD2:

Provides DVI output for Intel 915G series chipset Motherboards
DVI-D: 24-pin connector for LCD monitor
Slot Interface: PCI-Express X 16
Features: Support DVI output for LCD monitors, flat panel displays and
projectors
with DVI capability. It also supports dual display with an onboard VGA,
if available.

Stu



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Re: Advice for new case and motherboard

wrote:

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The AOpen Pentium M i915GMm-HFS has DVI & component.

--
Nigel Barker
Live from the sunny Cote d'Azur


Re: Advice for new case and motherboard

I have the Lian Li V1000B Case. It is black aluminium with a unique cooling
design. The front and bottom of the case are made of "punched" aluminum with
cooling holes (similar to the new MAC G-5 design) It ha one ultra quiet 120mm
cooling fan on the bottom front and one 120mm cooling fan mid back of case.
The motherboard gets mounted upside down putting the processor at the case.
The power supply mounts in a separate compartment in the bottom rear of the
case. The hard drives mount directly in back of the front fan. The case is
vertical and mounted on wheels. It's a very durable case with a great design
that matches other components in the system as well as being ultra quiet and
cool.

"Dana Cline - MVP" wrote:

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Re: Advice for new case and motherboard

Motherboards with the Intel 915 chipset or higher have integrated video
chipsets that work with MCE2005 as they support DirectX9 features in
hardware.

--
Jason Tsang - Microsoft MVP

Find out about the MS MVP Program -
http://mvp.support.microsoft.com/default.aspx

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Re: Advice for new case and motherboard

Hi Jason,

I have one each of the 2 Coolermaster Cavalier desktop chassis:

http://www.coolermaster-europe.com/index.php?LT=english&Language_s=2&url_place=product_list&p_class=610


I love them.  I bought them because here in Canada, they are far cheaper
than the Silverstone cases or Ahanix cases.  They perform very well and look
great. Highly recommended.

Stu


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Re: Advice for new case and motherboard


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http://www.coolermaster-europe.com/index.php?LT=english&Language_s=2&url_place=product_list&p_class=610

I'll second that recommendation.  The 102 is fairly cheap from newegg (~$85)
and is well built, provides good cooling and has a pretty good power supply.
While space is limited, in this form factor, that is a given.

-Pete




RE: Advice for new case and motherboard

There are many ways to skin this particular cat. No wonder your Antec Aria
temps were so high, you had it stuffed to the gills with stuff. You say that
you had the Aria in a cabinet, assuming it's a standard cabinet, then this is
going to cause temps to go even higher, as it struggles to get cold air from
the front, and push the hot air out of the back. The Aria has poor airflow
characteristics to begin with, impeding the ingress and exhaust of air leads
to increase in temperatures, and that's before you take into consideration
things like your graphics card. On my HTPC (Accent HT-400), I've pushed out
the back of the TV cabinet, and keep the front clear. This might be something
to consider if you get temperature issues again when you rebuild your system.

Reading through the other posts, there's lots of good advice, and if I was
starting from scratch I would be attracted to the Aopen board with it's
integrated DVI solution, and a PentiumM would provide you with a low
temperature solution. However this isn't cheap, and it comes way over your
budget. You can re-use your nVidia card, and purchase an alternative heatsink
to make it quiet (something like Zalman's VF700, or Artic Coolings NV
Silencer (making sure you get the right one for your card) which expels the
heat out of the case). In which case you've then got to choose a motherboard
to match your CPU.

There's little choice for AMD in mATX form factor, you're limited to MSI
RS480M2-I which has an integrated graphics core (ATI Radeon XPRESS 200 -
you'll have to check if this has BDA drivers for MCE). It has all mod-cons as
well as a PCIe slot, and at @ £70, it might be worth investigating. That way
you get to keep your Antec aria case.

Otherwise if your going ATX, and you want a new case have a look at
http://www.quietpc.com/uk/cases.php , in particular Antex SLK3700-BQE. Quiet
PC are doing a pack which includes a PSU and acoustic padding for just under
£100. I've got 2 of these for (one for gaming, the other video editing) and I
think they are great. Won't fit in with your decor, but will provide a good
foundation for making your PC well ventilated/quiet. Motherboard wise, ASUS
are reportedly the best, followed by ABIT, MSI, Gigabyte, Aopen....... the
list goes on and on. How about Abit's AN8 Ultra  or Asus A8N-E, the latter
costs @ £65. If you get a motherboard with a fan on the mobo, make sure you
replace it with a passive heatsink (zalman).


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