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Repurposing old machine to HTPC - what to change?

cboath

Senior member
Nov 19, 2007
368
0
71
My sig has the machine i'm looking to repurpose. Compared to my new machine, this one is noisy as @#$5 :)

Seems a bit overkill for an HTPC, but the only other thing i have laying around is an early core2 duo.

The specs should be good enough for 4k shouldn't they? Though i'm likely replacing the video card (hopefully fanless).

Should i just replace all the fans with silent ones? and maybe reduce PSU?

Just looking for some thoughts on what i should do HW wise.

Thanks
 

Kartajan

Golden Member
Feb 26, 2001
1,264
38
91
1) replace noisy components with quiet ones.
2) Determine desired end state.
3) Investigate SW requirements for #2.
4) Execute.

Note that that CPU is hot and noisy, you may want to UNDER clock it for HTPC use. Alternatively it could be hidden away as a Plex/ Emby/ NextPVR server for more lightweight/ aesthetically pleasing/ QUIETER hardware to take the "HTPC front and center" position.
 

JeffMD

Platinum Member
Feb 15, 2002
2,026
19
81
You didn't list your motherboard, so have no idea what PWM capabilities you have, but moving your cpu and case fans to PWM is key. Your cpu is toasty but you've got a good cooler on it and as long as that fan is on PWM it was run quiet as well. And if you got more than 2 case fans, ditch them. You won't need them.

Your video card, I strongly suggest replacing it (or if your cpu/motherboard is capable of onboard video, bonus!). You won't need anything that powerful for anything on an HTPC. Quite some time ago my backup PC which I then converted to a plex server is using a q6600, simular style heat sink and it always runs lows. Also since I don't have onboard video I went with a fanless AMD card. It ran an SSD for a little while and was silent, but moved it back to a mechanical HD and that's the only thing you hear from it.
 

cboath

Senior member
Nov 19, 2007
368
0
71
I swore the MB was in there...It's an Asus P6 deluxe v2.

Was looking at the fanless stuff from nvidia and the latest i saw as a 730 IIRC...no fanless 900's?

As an HTPC i figured i'd take it back down to 2.6, replace all the fans 'cept the 250mm, and get a new video card.
 

Kartajan

Golden Member
Feb 26, 2001
1,264
38
91
Was looking at the fanless stuff from nvidia and the latest i saw as a 730 IIRC...no fanless 900's?

As an HTPC i figured i'd take it back down to 2.6, replace all the fans 'cept the 250mm, and get a new video card.
Fanless cards don't feel as sexy to Marketing. They think it has to sound like a 747 at takeoff to sell. If you are going with a new GPU, I'd just make sure it meets your needs for performance/ connectivity (HDCP/ HDMI2.0a/ etc).

If you really want to go nuts you could switch the (VIDEO CARD) fans for Noctuas, or watercool it...
 
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DesiPower

Lifer
Nov 22, 2008
15,368
740
126
Isn't the video card more torque than horsepower? Maybe a newer 4k capable if you need?

What's the purpose of htpc? what software will you be running?
 

bigboxes

Lifer
Apr 6, 2002
31,945
11,131
146
I did exactly this in January. Repurposed my retired i7 920/P6T Deluxe v2, 6GB of Super Talent ram and a Seasonic 850 Silver. Bought a low profile Thermalright HSF, Samsung 850 EVO and an MSI GTX 950 Gaming 2G. The gpu fans never spin up unless under load and since I rarely (if ever) game it's fairly silent. The GTX 950 has HDMI 2.0 and hardware decoding for HEVC (H265).

I bought a Lian Li PC-C60, Silverstone SATA III PCI-E and a USB 3.0 card to bring it up to date. I use Kodi, Flirc USB and Yatse app on my Nexus 6P to control it all. Friggin' sweet.
 
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cboath

Senior member
Nov 19, 2007
368
0
71
Isn't the video card more torque than horsepower? Maybe a newer 4k capable if you need?

What's the purpose of htpc? what software will you be running?
Not sure yet. I want to use to be able to stream things in-house. Not much us for standard TV reception because i have DTV. I do have an OTA card but i can't pull in everything without having to move the thing. Kind of annoying. So, machine to machine, netflix, hulu, movies, etc.

I'd love to move main TV to it, but not with DTV. I had an older setup 7ish years ago with WMC and SD DTV. Worked great. Loved the thing, but a lightning strike hosed that setup and HD made it all but impossible to go back.

I did exactly this in January. Repurposed my retired i7 920/P6T Deluxe v2, 6GB of Super Talent ram and a Seasonic 850 Silver. Bought a low profile Thermalright HSF, Samsung 850 EVO and an MSI GTX 950 Gaming 2G. The gpu fans never spin up unless under load and since I rarely (if ever) game it's fairly silent. The GTX 950 has HDMI 2.0 and hardware decoding for HEVC (H265).



I bought a Lian Li PC-C60, Silverstone SATA III PCI-E and a USB 3.0 card to bring it up to date. I use Kodi, Flirc USB and Yatse app on my Nexus 6P to control it all. Friggin' sweet.
Thanks for that - makes the calls much easier knowing it can all be quiet on no-loads.
 

bigboxes

Lifer
Apr 6, 2002
31,945
11,131
146
Thanks for that - makes the calls much easier knowing it can all be quiet on no-loads.
When it's dead silent you can hear the CPU HSF and the case fans, but still very quiet. You'll never really hear it when you are playing a file with the sound turned up. When not in use I just hibernate where it's ready for use the next time I power it on with the remote.





 

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