2GB of DDR2-667 memory for $86 is very nice!
I upgraded my media center PC this last weekend to a Core 2 Duo E4300. I was going to get 1 GB of RAM but the 2 GB kit was so cheap I thought, "why not?"
My media center used to have a 3GHz Pentium 4 chip in it, and it was a Prescott so it ran really hot and the fan noise was noticable. Now with the E4300 in there not only is it faster, but it's super quiet and doesn't run very hot at all. Plus, the chip was quite cheap, at around $115 on newegg (http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=ENE&DEPA=0&Description=E4300). And if you want it to run faster, just set the bus speed to 1066 and you've got it at 2.4 GHz 🙂 I put a passively cooled eVGA GeForce 7600 GS in the system, which is perfect for the target noise level. And since I cancelled my cable TV (I just get TV shows from iTunes and XBOX Marketplace), I don't need the Hauppauge TV tuner cards anymore! Those things cluttered up the inside of the case and generated their fair share of heat as well.
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