My desktop computer is currently the fastest in my house, naturally =D; It is the result of quite a few builds before it.
Since I bought a case and motherboard 6 or so years ago my desktop machine has been rotating parts in and out, upgrading as I went.
I haven’t made a completely new machine for myself since that first case, everything in between then and now has been upgrades, admittedly some were rather large, but never all at once.
From what I can remember, here is the rotations of the last few years:
I’ll highlight my current setup in Green
- SuperFlower Black “Xion” Mid Tower
- Thermaltake V9 Mid Tower (this was the worst case I’ve ever had)
- CoolerMaster HAF 922 Mid Tower
- Abit AV8-Third Eye | Socket 939
- Gigabyte GA-M56-S3 | Socket AM2
- ASUS M2N SLi Deluxe | Socket AM2
- ASUS M4N82 Deluxe | Socket AM2+
- Gigabyte 890FXA-UD5 | Socket AM3
- Gigabyte 990FXA-UD3 | Socket AM3+
- AMD Athlon 3000+ 2GHz Single Core 64bit | Socket 939
- AMD Athlon X2 6000+ 3GHz Dual Core | Socket AM2+
- AMD Phenom II X4 955 3.2GHz Quad Core | Socket AM3
- AMD Phenom II X6 1090T Black Edition 3.2GHz 6-Core | Socket AM3
- Maxtor 80GB IDE HDD
- Western Digital Caviar SE 160GB WD1600JB | IDE
- Western Digital Caviar SE 160GB WD1600AAJS | SATAII
- Western Digital Caviar SE 160GB WD1600JS | SATAII (RAID0 with first drive)
- Western Digital Caviar Green 750GB WD7500AACS | SATAII
- Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB WD1002FAEX | SATA3
- Seagate Momentus XT 500GB with 64MB SSD Caching (2.5″) | SATAII
- 1GB (2x512MB) OCZ Premier PC-3200 DDR-400 Dual Channel 200MHz Effective Clock
- 2GB (2x1GB) Corsair XMS2-6400C5 DDR2-800 400MHz Effective Clock
- 4GB (4x1GB) Corsair XMS2-6400C5 DDR2-800 400MHz Effective Clock
- 4GB (2x2GB) Corsair Dominator TW3X4G1600C9D DDR3-1600 800MHz Effective Clock
- Thermaltake TR2 430W
- CoolerMaster eXtreme Power Plus 550W
- Thermaltake ToughPower 850W Cable Management
- ATI Radeon 9600 XT 256MB | AGP
- ATI Radeon 9800 Pro 128MB | AGP
- ATI 7600GT 512MB | AGP
- NVIDIA 8800GTS 320MB | PCIe
- NVIDIA 8800GTS 320MB (SLI) | PCIe
- NVIDIA GTX275 898MB | PCIe 2.0
- Creative Sound Blaster Live | PCI
- Creative Sound Blaster Audigy 2 ZS | PCI
- Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty Pro | PCIe 1x
- Sony E200 Multiscan Trinitron Flat Screen 4:3 CRT Monitor
- ASUS VW222U 22″ 16:10 LCD 2ms response time
- ASUS VH242H 23.6″ 16:9 LCD 5ms response time
- Leadtek TV2000XP Expert Analogue | PCI
- Twinhan DVB-T 878 Digital Tuner | PCI
- Leadtek Winfast DTV1000T | PCI
- Leadtek Winfast DTV1000S | PCI
- 2 x Leadtek Px2300H | PCIe 1x
- 1 x AVerMedia AVerTV TwinStar Dual Digital Tuner | PCIe 1x
- 1 x DViCo FusionHDTV Express2 Dual
- AVerMedia AVerTV Volar HD Nano (A867) Digital Tuner | USB 2.0
- Pioneer DVR-107BK CD/DVD Burner | IDE
- 2 x Pioneer DVR-109BK CD/DVD Burner | IDE
- Pioneer DVR-110BK CD/DVD Burner | IDE
- Pioneer DVR-212BK CD/DVD Burner | SATA
- Pioneer BDR-206BK CD/DVD/Blu-Ray Burner | SATA
- Generic Stereo Speakers
- Harmon Kardon 2.0
- Logitech X-620 6.1
- Logitech X-530 5.1
- Logitech Z5500 THX Digital 5.1
- Logitech Cordless Desktop Optical (Y-RK49)
- Microsoft Wireless Desktop 6000v1 (left key broke on keyboard)
- Microsoft Wireless Desktop 6000v1
- Logitech G510 Gaming Keyboard
- Logitech Performance Mouse MX (M950)
- Logitech G27 Steering Wheel, Pedals and Gearbox (Currently on RMA)
This was a project I started late last year. The idea was to build a PC specifically for the purpose of watching TV and Movies in our new lounge room (on a 42″ LCD Screen).
Basically it was built to replace a PVR, CD player, DVD player, Blu-ray player (eventually) and a Media Center box.
So, here’s the specs:
- Silverstone LC20B ATX/microATX HTCP Case
- ASUS M4A88T-M | Socket AM3
- AMD Athlon II X4 640 3.0GHz 2MB Cache | Socket AM3
- eVGA GT220 1GB | PCIe v2.0
- Kingston DDR3 4GB PC10600/1333
- DViCO FusionHDTV DualExpess4 Dual Digital Tuner | PCI-e
- AVerMedia AVerTV Volar HD Nano | USB 2.0
- Western Digital Green 1TB WD10EARS | SATAII
- Western Digital Green 2TB WD20EARS | SATAII
- Logitech Z5500THX 5.1 Digital
- Sony Media Card Reader + USB Port
- 2 x Antec 80mm TriCool Case Fans (for some reason the case didn’t come with fans)
So that’s the insides, here’s the
So im running Windows 7 Ultimate primarily for it’s Windows Media Center Application (7MC).
Normally I would shut a computer down when I’m done, but being a TV I need it to come on in a few seconds, thus requiring S3 Standby mode aka Suspend-to-RAM.
Ended up also needing a tool called MST (Media Center Standby Tool) which takes care of all the complicated power settings that seem to be required to make it work in Windows 7.
Now tweaking the system was the fun part, and there’s plenty of addons and extensions to polish things off a little.
First I used BSE (Big Screen EPG) to get a more reliable EPG set from the internet (I’ve got it updating 3 times a day). This neat little app also adds a better synopsis for most shows/movies and also adds inline pictures (usually the title poster) to the EPG Guide.
To finish off the EPG guide I got MyChannelLogos to add icons to all of the channels in the guide.
So I realised after that, I realised I needed a way to index and play back my vast collection of DVD and Bluray Rips and also my TV series.
Media Browser accomplishes this very well. Its very themeable, has a nice interface, and even supports auto mounting of ISOs. In addition it also gives detailed info about each show, and it even properly figures out TV Series.
Finally, I used Media Center Studio (not maintained anymore) to rearrange the icons in the 7MC and rearrange them.
Only updated this a while ago, being a router I didn’t need much in the way of power, just reliability. So its mainly made of old parts.
Generic Desktop ATX (horizontal) ‘modified’ to *erhem* fit the power supply =D.
ASUS M2N SLI Deluxe
AMD Sempron 140 2.8GHz (underclocked to 1GHz) 45w Single Core, unlocked to Dual Core with NVIDIA Unleashed mode. Shows as AMD Athlon(tm) II X2 4400e.
Western Digital Caviar SE 160GB | SATAII
Western Digital Green 2TB | SATAII
2x 1GB Corsair XMS2 DDR2-800
Vantec ION2 CAN460-C 460W
ExpertColor S3 Trio64 86C764X 8MB | PCI
Its running IPFire, which is actually software based on the first Linux router/firewall distro I ran (IPCop) which was really nice, except it only ran Linux kernel 1.4, which is rather old and lacks many features.