“Till it’s gone”
After literally years of work, I pretty much had my HTPC configured the way I wanted it. I could watch live TV on Windows 7 Media Center (via a Hauppauge 2250 tuner card) and everything else on XBMC (via Sickbeard/Sabanzbd). So, of course, it was time for something to go wrong.
Not surprisingly, what went wrong was the power supply that came in my hec 7K09 computer case. The power supply was often criticized in reviews and is an odd form factor. That means that I would have to buy another one just like it in order to replace it. They no longer sell the case, but the power supply is still available – for the same price as the case.
And so I have embarked in an entirely new direction with an entirely new case and a new power supply. I’ll stick with my old Asus motherboard and AMD triple core processor. The case I’ve ordered is the Silverstone Grandia GD06B. The fans that come with the case are reputed to be effective and quiet. I like the idea of moving the storage drives I now have in a ProBox into the main computer case. So I’m willing to go a little bigger. My hec case only allowed up to two drives but it wasn’t practical cable-wise to fit the second one in there. The place for the optical drive was so low over the mobo that I couldn’t put a normal one in that case either. Having four drives in the Grandia should be a treat.
As a bonus, I’ve ordered a Samsung Blu Ray drive. I’ll let you know whether I can integrate this in with XBMC. I hope so, because I’d really like to put my PS3 back downstairs with the Sony Google TV. (They play so well together.) I’m hoping this case actually does have room for such a drive.
Now, you’re going to think I cheaped out on the new power supply. I ordered the Rosewill Green Series RG530-S12 530W. A lot of you will say that I should have purchased the Silverstone Strider Plus. The case is limited to a 150 mm PS and either of these would fit. The Strider Plus is modular (you can unplug cables you don’t use from the PS). That would have made cable management easier. The Strider Plus would probably last longer as well. In a computer that is on 24/7, that is a big deal. But what sold me on the Rosewill was all of the reviews claiming how quiet it was. In an HTPC, I have to give that precedence over longevity or convenience.
So, after two and a half years, my HTPC stands ready to be refreshed. In the meantime, I’m using TWC’s PVR and I feel like have been asked to gather berries and hunt with a club. I’ve been spoiled by Amazon Prime, but could only get the power supply from Newegg. It takes them about as long to process an order as it takes Amazon to get things here. So, I guess I’ll be tapping my foot anxiously for a few days and leaning on the cable box for entertainment.