[mythtv-users] what do you think?

Stephen Tait tait at digitallaw.co.uk
Tue Sep 7 14:20:24 EDT 2004

At 18:09 07/09/2004, you wrote:
>On Tue, 7 Sep 2004 10:56:54 -0500, Aaron Griffin
><aaronmgriffin at gmail.com> wrote:
> > Antec Aria mATX Cube ($83.19)
> > NVIDIA GeForce4 MX4000 Video Card ($45.11)
> > Crucial 512MB PC2700 DDR DIMM Memory ($76.00)
> > Athlon XP (Barton) 2500+ Processor ($89.00)
> > MSI KM400 Athlon Motherboard ($51.00)
> > Hauppauge WinTV PVR 250MCE ($71.33)
> > Seagate Barracuda ST3200822A 200GB Hard Drive ($104.50)
> > GD-2500 4x DVD-ROM ($34.00)
> >
> > Grand Total of $554.13 before shipping (~$600 after)
> >
> > I chose the PVR-250MCE because I have my own remote setup and it
> > wasn't worth an extra $40-ish for another remote.
>Looks solid.  Looking at that case design though, airflow is going to
>be a real issue with that Barton.   I'm going to go out on a limb and
>say stock heatsink won't cut it.  I personally love the Zalman's
>heatsinks, but size is going to be your issue.  I see it's got a
>blower for the exhaust on the back, the rest of the air looks like
>it's going to have to go up the sides and into the PSU?  I'm not sure
>what the solution is, but I'd say heat may be a big factor in your

I've come across a fair few reviews of the Aria that say heat is definitely 
a problem (IIRC I just googled for antec aria review and read the first 
few). That said, he's picked some of the coolest running components; the 
Barton 2500 is (I think) the lowest grunt-per-watt of the athlon range, and 
the dirt-cheap-but-does-the-job-damned-well nVidia MX4000 (I have one) 
doesn't kick out a huge amount either (well, for a video card anyway). 
However, once you put 'em all together along with the PVR (which does kick 
out a boatload of heat) I think heat might definitely be an issue (but then 
I'm over cautious :).

You might want to look into:

a) a slightly roomier case (myself and a few others on this list will sing 
the praises of the CoolerMaster 620, if you can still find any)
b) modding the aria with a few fans to get a bit more air circulating (a 
slimline 7V'd 80mm in each side perhaps?)
c) underclocking/undervolting the CPU
d) if you install an ACPI system, you can use Athcool to run the athlon in 
power saving mode, although this can have an adverse affect on sound and/or 
HD transfers

Underclocking seems to be catching on quite a bit now. One of the computer 
hardware forums I attempt to post on has a few people who are trying to get 
the most grunt-per-watt out of their A64's, which are apparently very good 

: shrugs : 

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