Sep 18, 2007
I have been religiously following the discussions on these boards for the past month or so. I can safely say, some of the contributors are the equivalents of demi-gods in the land of computers. So i figured this would be a good place to get some advice to build a custom PC.

Well, i recently purchased a 23 inch lcd tv which i keep in my room. I was considering on building a fullscale desktop. Then i figured for the purpose of aesthetics and appearence, i would be better off building a HTPC.
Now, my concern is the following:
1) I want to play CRYSIS when it comes out.
2) Upgradability
I have noted the new video card by nVidia, i figure that defenitely will be part of my build.
But other things, i have no idea off. So then, i started researching and came up with the following..
Please crtitically analyse the build and make suggestions on things i can change, replace or just get rid off with regard to optimising performance and costs..

Case: Thermaltake Bach Media Lab VB8000SNS -
PSU: COOLER MASTER eXtreme Power RP-550-PCAR ATX from factor -
Motherboard: GIGABYTE GA-P31-DS3L LGA 775 Intel P31 ATX -
Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo E6750 2.66GHz LGA 775 Processor - Retail -
RAM: Patriot Extreme Performance 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) -
Hard Drive: SAMSUNG SpinPoint P Series SP2504C 250GB -
Cooling - I have no idea what to do here, water cooled or air cooled, dependent on the processor
Video Card: GEFORCE 8800 GT 512MB PCI-E - (Any suggestions on build or make?)
DVD Writer: Standard one i suppose (Not to fussy)

ANy suggestions guys? Much Appreciated.


I haven't really looked at your system components, so I won't speak to them, but I do have issue with your case selection. It is an HTPC case, but you're not going to be using it just for viewing DVDs and such. You're actually going to be gaming with a pretty significant graphics card in there. There doesn't appear to be any source for cool air intake and only two 60mm exhaust fans in the rear. I think you're pressing your luck here. The case you have selected is similar to mine (same cooling setup), and my HTPC case often gets to 100 F after just watching a movie.

I'd really look into just sticking with a standard case.

-Wolf sends

Edit: For reference, my HTPC build:
NMediaPC 200BA case
Gigabyte G965-SM2
Intel Core2Duo
2 Gig (4x512Meg) DDR2-533
ATI HD2600Pro
AVerMedia HDTV Tuner
B-Enspire 7.1 Sound card
Agreed, if your looking for a gaming machine... you must have adequte airflow.

Get a midtower, and get some good quiet fans (yate loon is nice and cheap)
Also look at a corsair PSU, they are very very quiet as well: corsair 520hx
DVD writer: cant go wrong with samsung.. best drive on the market right now: samsung SH-S203B


Mar 2, 2006
Like everyone else said you need to have airflow, especially with a huge video card like you are wanting to use. This can be done but you would have to do some modifications to get there.

I do not have a video card as hot as the video card that you have listed (both literally and figuratively), but I have done some modifications to my desktop HTPC case that might work for you.

My home built HTPC is in a generic desktop ATX case that looks similar internally to what you have listed. To make this all work I have done some custom work to the case with some ducting to help with airflow.

I have used these air venting kits to help me achieve the airflow that I needed to keep everything cool.

I cut two holes in the bottom front of the case, one under the optical drive and one about in the center of the case and then mounted one end of the duct to the bottom of the case. These ducts are then folded and mounted so that they are pointing towards the back of the case and an 80 mm fan is bolted to this end. The fans pull air into the case from the bottom front of the case and direct it back towards the hot areas that you want to help cool. Then the standard rear fans help pull the hot air on out of the case.

It might be a little hard to follow, so hopefully you understood what it was that I did to my case. Doing a little case modding with some creative placement of ducts and fans might be all you need to keep your case cool enough using the hardware you want in a desktop HTPC type case.