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I'm upgrading my computer for a future as a HD HTPC...

1. Which should I get? E4500 $130 or E4600 $20 more?
2. Would I notice much difference going to the above CPU from a 805 D dual core overclocked to 3.2GHz? (I'd be overclocking again ;))
3. How can I tell if my video card is HDCP compliant? It's a PNY 7900GT with 2 DVI outputs.... can't find any info on this... (pny part #VCG7900GXPB)
4. Is my 7900 GT sufficient to play 1080P HD video?
5. Is getting another 2gb of memory (total of 4gb) worthwhile? Not running 64bit OS but it's only $17 so I think WTF... will I notice any advantages?

Thanks for any help!
 

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1. E4500, since your video card will be doing most of the work (and since it sounds like you're overclocking anyway).
2. That depends on what you're using it for. If you regularly tax the cpu, then yes you'll see an improvement. If you don't, then it will be less noticeable.
3. It's not, from what I can find.
4. As long as your monitor is big enough.
5. You won't see as much of an increase as going from, say, 512MB to 2GB, but you'll see an improvement. And for $17, why not?
 

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HTPCs are typically pretty un-demanding of your hardware....there's no need to overclock the cpu or go crazy with 4gb of ram (unless you're running vista, then I'd recommend at least 8........). If you're gonna splurge and spend some more on the hardware, make it either the video card or a bigger HD.
 

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Today's HTPCs can be quite demanding when you start decoding high definition content. Go with either of the Core2 CPUs but skip the Pentium D....that CPU is a POS. Pentium D oc'd to 3.2GHz will get SPANKED by a Core2 Duo that puts out less heat. GHz isn't the whole story....the Pentium D uses the less efficient Netburst architecture and that CPU had to run at insane clock rates to get anything done.

A Core 2 Duo running at 2.0GHz is better than a Pentium D running at 3.0.... no kidding. Did I mention the Core 2 OCs like mad?

Be sure to get a good GPU with video acceleration.....a GeForce 8600 GT or GTS is great in an HTPC. Your 7900GT will work, dunno about HDCP on it though. The 8600 GTS will be better in video though.... PureVideo HD rocks!

2GB of RAM is the minimum..... 4GB is recommended.
 
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