After my FreeNAS Server runs reliably and provides data via DLNA (in the form of the minidlna plugin), there is still one missing player in the living room - an HTPC (Home Theater PC). In the bedroom I use an AppleTV 2, but in the living room with beamer it should be a more powerful solution, i.e. an HTPC is needed. Most important requirement: it must be silent, preferably no moving parts. As a surf and work PC I use a Core i3 in an Impactics caseI have a similar solution in mind for the living room.
However, the Impactics C3LH-B has a disadvantage: it is not expandable and limited to mini-ITX mainboards. The Streacom ST-FC95 is an alternative. Based on a similar technology as Impactics, heatpipes provide heat dissipation to cooling fins, but the case is more spacious: it fits Micro ATX mainboards and there is room for low-profile plug-in cards, which is practical for an additional soundcard.
Based on the choice of housing, you can build a system with the following components, all available at Amazon or Caseking (as of 02.01.2013, prices may be cheaper at other dealers (Miser. de)):
- Streacom ST-FC95 fanless aluminium housing (249,- Euro for Caseking)
- Streacom ST-NANO150 power supply unit (89,- EURO with Caseking)
- Asrock H77 PRO4-M Micro ATX mainboard socket 1155 (72,- Euro at Amazon)
- Transcend 8 GB DDR3 memory (35,- Euro at Amazon)
- Intel Core i3-3220T, 2x 2.8 GHz (112.- Euro with Caseking)
- PowerColor Radeon HD 5450 Go! Green Low-Profile, passive (30,- Euro at Amazon)
- Sony Optiarc Slim Blu-Ray drive, Slot-In (82,- Euro at Amazon)
- Samsung 840 Basic SSD, 120 GB (89,- Euro at Amazon)
This gives you all the parts needed for a solid and above all (except for the Blu-Ray drive) silent home cinema system. Total costs of the compilation: 760,- Euro plus shipping. On the software side, my choice will probably be Windows 7 to ensure smooth Blu-Ray and HDCP support. Linux would also be an option, which Solutions for Blu-Ray playback however, all of them do not make a 100% mature impression or seem more complicated than under Windows. Additional software is necessary in any case. As a media center with DLNA support XMBC which runs on both Windows and Linux.
In the near future I will present 1 - 2 more compilations which are possible for such a system - even if some compromises have to be made, it will be cheaper.