HTPC Build

When I built my new PC back in September I also built a HTPC from my old computer parts. I mentioned that I was going to make a post about it, so I guess I should even though its pretty late. I replaced most of the parts in my PC when I upgraded, so I really only needed to buy a new case and power supply. After looking around at various HTPC cases, I ended up settling on the Fractal Designs Node 605. Its a rather large HTPC case, but because I was working with spare parts I had to fit a full ATX sized motherboard. Other then its size though, it looks really nice. I also needed to get a new CPU cooler. I had a H60 laying around but it wouldn’t fit in the case, so I took the opportunity to buy my first Noctua cooler. I ended up getting the Noctua NH-L12. It works well and is extremely quiet. The only minor issue I had was my ram I took from my old PC had clearance issues in the leftmost slot. I ended up only running 8GB, which is more then enough for this build.

Specs:

  • Processor: Intel Core i5-3570K CPU
  • CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-L12
  • 8GB Corsair Vengeance
  • Hard Drive: 120GB OCZ Agility 3 SSD
  • Motherboard: ASUS P8Z68-V PRO/GEN3
  • Power Supply: Corsair CX500M
  • Case: Fractal Designs Node 605
  • Keyboard: Logitech Wireless Touch Keyboard K400 with Built-In Multi-Touch Touchpad

 

So how well does it work? Perfectly! Its running Windows 7 but boots straight into Steam Big Picture Mode. I elected not to go with any graphics cards for this build, so instead I have been using Steam In-Home Streaming. This uses the power of my new PC to run the games, but streams the video over my wired gigabit network to this HTPC. There are a few games that have issues with streaming (probably SLI related, they work when I disable it), but for the most part you really cant tell the games are running remotely. I use a 3rd party wireless receiver and a Xbox 360 controller to play the games on my TV.

I have Emby Theater (Previously Media Browser Theater) installed to stream movies and TV shows from my home server. I control the videos using a basic remote.

I also ended up installing my old HDMI capture card and buying a HDMI switch/splitter. This allows me to record gameplay from my other consoles on the PC. I have to say it is pretty convenient, although I have not used it to make any interesting videos yet.

Overall, I am pretty happy with how this build turned out. Its a great use of my old PC parts.



Planetside 2 Clips #2

planetside

Same deal as last time. A collection of random video clips with zero production value. If you are unfamiliar with Planetside 2, it is a MMO first person shooter that is free to play. You can find more information about it here.



Imagine: Star Citizen

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A brand new trailer and Arena Commander 1.0 is here! Today’s release marks the most significant update to Arena Commander yet, adding both the long-awaited lobby system and more than tripling the number of flyable ships. Every variant of the Aurora, Mustang, 300 and Hornet are now flyable, as are the base models of the Cutlass and the Avenger. If you’ve been waiting to fly one of Star Citizen’s single-seaters, there’s a good chance your ship has come in today!

There was also a $20 Anniversary Starter Pack up today that included the full game and basic starter ship. Unfortunately that has already sold out if you were looking to get in at that price. There is always the $35 pack if you want to buy now and get in on the Arena Commander module and future modules as they become available.

This game is going to make me buy an Oculus Rift once it comes out. Hopefully my PC is ready.



New Web Host Live

The site is now running on the new web host. We had about an hour of downtime but most things should be working properly now. There might be a few small issues such as some images missing, but I will sort these out later this week. Let me know if you notice any big problems.



New Web Host Coming

Earlier this week I started the process of transferring to a new web host. The company I am currently using has fairly poor customer service, often tries to bill me for service I don’t want, and was the target of a fairly long DDoS a few days ago which took the site down for a while. I have transferred all the files and databases over to my new host, and am just waiting for my current host to release the domain names to be transferred. This should happen sometime tomorrow. There should not be much down time, but if there is I apologize in advance.

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