It's been a long time since I'd built my own computer and it was time for a new HTPC so I took the opportunity to try my hand at putting something together that was more than powerful enough for HTPC use to include format conversions / transcoding as well as some possible gaming in the future. Everything fit in the case really well with the SSD mounted below the Blu-Ray RW drive and cable management was not too bad with the semi-modular power supply.
Processor: A10-7850K - I went with the 7850K because of the headroom provided and the ability to run the chip at 45w when I'm not going to be making use of the system's full abilities.
CPU Cooler: GeminII M4 - I ran across a build either here on pcpartpicker or on Reddit that used this cooler with the 7850K and they seemed to have good results so I followed suit. I'm really happy with it despite my first order missing one of the rubber grommets needed for mounting it to the motherboard. Amazon was quick with a replacement though - overnight Saturday delivery. I initially had some concern about it's cooling ability so I tried both the stock cooler and this cooler and it seemed to reduce temps by about 10 degrees C at least. Stock cooler showed about 62C in bios while the M4 was about 51C. I didn't run the stock cooler in Windows. There does seem to be enough room with this motherboard to make use of all of the RAM slots - some MB layouts prevent that with this cooler, FYI. It runs very quiet and there isn't any clicking noises as I've seen referenced with the PWM feature some people have reported.
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-F2A88XM-D3H - Again, I followed suit by using this motherboard after reading about the success of another builder. It fit perfectly in the case and accepted the 7850 and the memory without any problems. I've not yet used any of the OC features or other control features of the board, so I can't comment on that. Very happy to not need to flash the bios to work with the Kaveri chip.
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-2133 - I wanted to go with quality memory that was higher speed to support the 7850 and it's abilities so I went ahead with this set. I've been really happy with it thus far - though I haven't pushed it's limits at all since I just completed the build. I expect it will be more than enough for my limited gaming use in the future and should handle transcoding / format conversions just fine.
Storage: PNY XLR8 120GB - I purchased two of these drives - one for my HP server and for this build. Both work great and I expect them to be more than quick enough for my uses. I didn't put any other drives in the HTPC because everything is stored on the HP NAS.
Case: Silverstone ML04B - I wanted something that would blend with my entertainment center that still provided enough room for some upgrades in the future. I needed something in this form-factor versus and ITX build so this case seemed to be the best option for me between cost and features. I considered the ML03B at first, but really liked the flip-down door on the ML04B so I went with it. It looks great and feels really solid. I'm happy with the case and wouldn't change a thing. I don't see any reason to have spend any more money in this area.
Power Supply: Corsair 430W Semi Modular - I went with the semi-modular power supply to help with cable management in this system and I'm glad I did. I had to verify it would work by comparing specs between the case and PS as the part picker said they were incompatible but that was an error. Everything fits fine and I don't expect to tax the PS so this builder series should be OK for me.
Optical Drive: LG WH14NS40 Blu-Ray Writer - I needed a Blu-ray drive and wanted the ability to write Blu-ray as well. This drive had pretty decent reviews with users reporting the least amount of problems. I could have spent less here, but those drives seemed to be giving people fits with drivers / firmware, etc. I didn't want any headaches so I went with this. It's not as loud as I'd expected either, so that a plus. It fits well in the case too - another concern with the PS being directly behind it.
Case Fan: Noctua NF-R8 PWM - I went with something quiet and still capable of moving a decent amount of air as the case was going to be in a somewhat tight spot in my entertainment system. I mounted it on the side of the case, pulling air into and across the RAM and the CPU Cooler. It works great and the PWM doesn't cause any clicking as I've seen reported by some users with that feature. Very happy with it and it's amazingly quiet.
Overall, I'm really happy with this build. Everything went together perfectly and Windows 8.1 is running on the system with no issues. I expect the computer to last me quite a long time as an HTPC and still provide some gaming ability in the meantime. A video card upgrade is possible should I begin to really tax the 7850, but I don't expect to game that much. I found a lot of info from previous builds / posts here and on Reddit and I just wanted to post this in hopes that it would help others looking to build something similar. Thanks for looking.
|CPU||AMD A10-7850K 3.7GHz Quad-Core||$169.99||(Purchased)|
|CPU Cooler||Cooler Master GeminII M4 58.4 CFM Sleeve Bearing||$34.99||(Purchased)|
|Motherboard||Gigabyte GA-F2A88XM-D3H Micro ATX FM2+||$64.99||(Purchased)|
|Memory||G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-2133||$82.99||(Purchased)|
|Storage||PNY XLR8 120GB 2.5" SSD||$59.99||(Purchased)|
|Case||Silverstone ML04B HTPC||$62.00||(Purchased)|
|Power Supply||Corsair 430W ATX12V||$24.99||(Purchased)|
|Optical Drive||LG WH14NS40 Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer||$66.68||(Purchased)|
|Case Fan||Noctua NF-R8 PWM 31.4 CFM 80mm||$15.33|
|Date Published||May 22, 2014|
|Date Built||May 8, 2014|