Tuesday, October 1, 2013

HTPC build - back to life with E350M1 motherboard

Hey folks

After many reading, thinking, forum posts for advices and eBay sneaks, i finally got my hands on a new motherboard: ASRock E350M1:
E350M1 Specs

Why did i choose this one? Well to be honest it was an awesome built-in feature that made my decision: a CIR header.  Here's a note about it:

"It has been said before, but bears repeating because of how useful the included Consumer Infrared (CIR) header is, putting it on the short list of favorite motherboard features alongside user configurable power LED behavior when in standby. Because the feature is not enabled by default in BIOS, it will need to be enabled after installing a CIR. Then after the Nuvoton (Winbond) drivers are installed it acts as a fully functional Microsoft eHome RC6 IR receiver. This not only frees up a USB port and allows for a cleaner install because the receiver can be mounted inside the chassis, but also includes a feature not supported by the standard USB receivers - wake from off (S5) and hibernate (S4) in addition to standby (S3)."

The best feature is bolded :D

The parts that will make the HTPC ver 3.0 project are:

1) Samsung DVD-709 case
2) a small 450W PSU with both SATA and PATA power connectors and ATX pin headers
3) ASRock E350M1 motherboard
  1. AMD Dual-Core 1.6ghz Processor E350/E350
  2. Supports DDR3 1066, 2 DIMM slots, Max. capacity up to 16GB
  3. Integrated AMD Radeon HD 6310 graphics, DX11 class iGPU, Pixel Shader 5.0
  4. 1 x PCI Express 2.0 x16 slot (@ x4)
  5. Multi VGA Output options: D-Sub, DVI-D and HDMI
  6. 4 x SATA3 connectors
  7. 7.1 CH HD Audio with Content Protection (Realtek ALC892 Audio Codec), Premium Blu-ray audio support
4) 4GB DDR3 1333mhz memory
5) TTSCorp TSL633 laptop DVD RW drive with slimline sata to normal sata adaptor cable
6) Sure Electronics 2x16 chars LCD panel
7) multi format card reader with USB 2.0 support
8) 500GB Samsung HDD
9) 4GB Compact flash card with SATA adaptor to serve as main HDD (SSD like speed for fast boot)
10) an old 5 button mouse circuit board (each button directly wired to the DVD player case buttons for prev, play,/pause, stop, next, eject functions)
11) XBMC based OpenElec as OS
12) CIR IR with remote
13) Bluetooth dongle, smal size USB WIFI adaptor

And almost all in, exept number 12 (highlighted in red above), the CIR receiver. Unfortunately my mobo did not came bundled with one, and to buy it separately would cost me way too much (25$ + 18$ postage from USA), so i wanna make one as a DIY part. Unfortunately no diagram and lack of info on internet, so this must wait a bit.

Next step is to install the OS, configure it, enable EWF and clone it to the CF card.

Stay close!

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