Why do I keep building over-sized HTPCs?

Rather than discuss a new game, I felt today I will talk about hardware. Mostly, due to the fact that I cannot choose which game I want to do a review on this week. So, today I will be discussing my problem of failing to build an HTPC.


An HTPC is a Home Theater Personal Computer, theoretically. However, mine are aimed more towards Mini Steam Boxes with enough power to avoid having to stream games from my main computer, with the ability to use controllers… Essentially, my desire is to make a console, which is silly I’m aware. Needless to say, I’ve recently purchased the parts to build a new HTPC, and it looks fantastic; unfortunately, it’s also about the size of 4-5 Xbox Ones stacked on top of each other.

Not The First, Nor Second, Nor Last



My Nvidia Surround PC was going to be an HTPC at first, but then I found out the Nvidia 970 GTX Low Profile edition that I purchased was too large to fit in the case. In return, I bought a bigger case, with more space, that eventually became filled with components and in the end, I regretted not buying the Nvidia Titan since I apparently wasn’t going to make an HTPC after all. Though, that is in the past. Onto my new build.

Going Into Uncharted Waters

This time I wanted to limit myself, and my budget. I’m sure my girlfriend was happy about that choice. I started off with a Mini-ITX board that used an AM1 processor, or what’s called the AMD 5350 with the R3 built in. Low power, eh performance but it’ll do the trick. With it, I wanted a low-profile video card that was actually low-profile (no more 970 GTX issues), so I picked up the Nvidia 750 ti. Unfortunately, I had found out the day after purchase that EVGA released a 950 GTX that didn’t require the 6-Pin PSU adapter. Oh well, once again in the past.

I already had a 500 W PSU from my previous HTPC case that didn’t hold my Surround setup, so that saved money. With enough research I was able to find a decent little bundle on Newegg which saved a little coin. In the end, I spent a little under $250 for everything. The only thing missing was the case.

Round 2


There wasn’t a lot of thought that went into this build. I knew I wanted to play some lower graphic games, maybe have 4K to work a little bit with the TV it was plugged in to, and essentially I wanted to play games like Screen Cheat, Age of Empires, etc. Just a spare computer that my friends could play if they came over. Oh, and I wanted it to fit on the shelf in my entertainment console. After some research and reviews, I came across the Thermaltake Core V21. It was sleek, had a good design for hiding cables (if I ever got around to doing that), and it held my Mini-ITX. Luckily I was able to find one on Ebay, slightly used for $10 cash with $20 shipping. Overall a great deal in the end. As I stated before, I didn’t spend much thought making this PC, and by much, I mean I bought everything kinda figuring it would fit okay. Well the components fit amazingly in the case, mostly because it’s the same size as my Full-Size ATX case for my Surround setup…

I’m starting to think I do this on purpose. After the first week of my build I began pricing out bigger specs, mobos, etc. I might have a problem. So, as of right now I have an HTPC, that has a 500 W PSU, extremely large case that takes up two shelves in my entertainment system and isn’t necessarily the strongest contender for gameplay. However, after everything including a Windows 10 License, I was able to secure the build for about $350. No complaints in the end, heck, it’s what I’m writing this post on.

So what about you? That’s right readers, I’m calling you out. Have you made a PC that didn’t quite hit the mark, but still performed? Any interesting PC build stories, etc?



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