The Best $1,000 High-End Home Theater PC Build – November 2021

By Ari Altman | Published October 24, 2021 | Updated October 24, 2021

SilverStone GD09A True Home Theater Powerhouse!

If you want to build the best home theater PC (HTPC) for $1,000, this is the system for you! The $1,000 High-End 4K Home Theater PC Build may be sleek and compact, but it packs in plenty of impressive gear. It features a stylish design that will blend in perfectly with the rest of your AV components, which is great for keeping other members of your household happy. Behind that unimposing façade, however, lies the power of a seriously tricked-out PC!

This Month’s Build, Featuring AMD’s Zen 3 and Vega!

For November 2021, the $1,000 High-End 4K HTPC Build features the awesome new AMD Ryzen 7 5700G, an eight-core, 16-thread CPU that offers fantastic processing power, thanks to the Zen 3 architecture, and more importantly, Vega onboard graphics, which is twice as fast as Intel graphics, and means you can avoid the mad rush for add-in video cards. The best part: HDMI 2.1 is provided on the motherboard we recommend, which is a huge benefit to HTPC users, as it allows beyond full 4K/60Hz output to a TV. To keep the Ryzen 5 processor cool and quiet, we recommend an excellent low-profile CPU cooler from Scythe, and for power, we go with an ultra-quiet 550W Gold-rated power supply.

On the storage side, the $1,000 High-End 4K HTPC Build goes with a 512GB PCIe-based solid-state drive, which offers amazing responsiveness for your operating system and applications. Need more space? No problem – you can always add up to three high capacity hard drives for media storage. You can also add an optional Blu-Ray burner for optical media access. In terms of RAM, we recommend a full 16GB of DDR4-3600, which will provide plenty of breathing room for any high-end task, including video production. The $1,000 High-End 4K HTPC Build is powered by a quiet and ultra-efficient power supply and runs in the stylish SilverStone GD09 case, the most compact ATX-class HTPC chassis on the market, which we reviewed right here. Also included in the price is next-gen 802.11ax wireless networking, built into the motherboard. Simply put, the $1,000 High-End 4K Home Theater PC Build is a dream HTPC at an affordable price!

Parting Thoughts

By the way, the $1,000 High-End 4K HTPC Build has plenty of expansion potential, so be sure to check out the optional components we recommend at the end of this guide, as well as our favorite accessories! Throughout this guide, we list product links to Amazon, Newegg, or B&H for our US readers, and our Amazon links will auto-convert for readers in Canada, the UK, and parts of the EU. As always, we’d appreciate if you’d use our product links, which helps support continued development of this and all of our buyer’s guides.

Required Components

  • CPU

    AMD Ryzen 7 5700G w/ Vega Graphics

    $325

    AMD’s Ryzen 7 5700G combines the best of all worlds, with its speedy 8-core/16-thread CPU powered by AMD’s Zen 3 architecture, along with the incredibly-fast integrated graphics powered by AMD’s Vega design.  It’s the ultimate one-stop-shop if you want extreme CPU performance and don’t want or need a separate video card!

    The Guru’s Tip

    This CPU includes a cooler, but for lower noise levels, we suggest you pick up the one we recommend later in this guide.

  • Motherboard

    MSI B550 Gaming Edge WiFi

    $185
    This feature-packed board gives you everything you need for a PC build at a great price. Dual M.2 PCIe slots for high-speed SSDs (the top slot being Gen 4), six USB ports (including a Type-C port), and built-in WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5. It also has the ample power delivery system required to support any Zen 3 processor.
    The Guru’s Tip

    This board has both HDMI 2.1 and Displayport 1.4, meaning you can easily run any monitor or TV using the CPU we recommend without a video card in your system!

  • Memory

    Crucial 2x8GB Ballistix DDR4-3600 C16 Black

    $85
    To get the most out of your PC Build, you want 16GB of RAM, and this kit comes in at a great price. But more importantly, with a combination of serious speed (3600MHz) and serious timings (16-18-18), this isn’t just a slow 3200 kit rebranded to sell at a higher price, it’s the real deal!
    The Guru’s Tip

    The high speed of this RAM will help not only the CPU, but the built-in graphics too, as it borrows system RAM for its image processing. Just make sure to enable the faster speed in the motherboard's UEFI to take advantage of it!

  • Solid-State Drive

    XPG SX8200 Pro 512GB

    $55
    There’s lots of competition in the SSD market, and right now, you simply can’t do better than this awesome deal from XPG on its SX8200 Pro 512GB NVMe drive, which uses the speedy PCIe 3.0 interface and TLC NAND to vastly outperform not just hard drives, but SATA-based SSDs as well! To install this drive, affix it in the motherboard’s M.2 slot using a jeweler’s-type screwdriver.
    The Guru’s Tip

    500GB-class SSDs are large enough to hold the OS and apps in a system that will mostly stream content. For serious media collectors, we recommend a hard drive, which you can see in the optional parts section.

  • Case

    SilverStone GD09B-C ATX Case

    $115
    This case is the perfect choice for a high-end HTPC. At just under 27 liters, it’s the smallest ATX-class HTPC case on the market, and allows you to use powerful video cards or other expansion cards, plus up to two 3.5″ hard drives and an optical drive. For cooling, it includes one pre-installed 120mm low-noise fan, with room for two more. One more note: this is the newest version, which includes both a USB Type-A port and a USB Type-C port on the front panel, and we’ve made sure to select a motherboard that has the necessary Type-C header.
    The Guru’s Tip

    At 17.32" wide, this case is designed to blend in perfectly with an AV system.

  • Power Supply

    EVGA SuperNOVA 550 G3

    $60

    EVGA’s SuperNOVA series offers exceptional performance at a great price, and has set the standard for high-end PSUs for years. The 550 G3 is a perfect example of that, offering up 550W of Gold-rated power, fully-modular cables, and a hybrid fan design that shuts off at low loads for silent operation. It’s also backed by an exceptional 7-year warranty.

    The Guru’s Tip

    While you don't need 550W for this build, that's really the starting point for a quality PSU, and this one offers all the full range of premium features that you can actually take advantage of in an HTPC!

  • CPU Cooler

    Scythe Big Shuriken 3

    $45
    The excellent low-profile cooler will fit easily in this system while providing a huge upgrade in terms of noise and temperatures versus most other low-profile coolers. It’s also one of the very few high-performance low-profile coolers that does not obstruct the RAM slots.
    The Guru’s Tip

    The CPU in this system includes a cooler, but HTPC users will appreciate the much lower noise levels of this upgraded model.

  • Operating System

    Windows 10 Home USB Flash Drive

    $130
    Windows 10 was a big step up from Windows 8.1, and Microsoft continues to support Windows 10 users not only with regular security updates, but with major content releases every six months. And the USB version installs in under 5 minutes, meaning you can get right into using your system!
    The Guru’s Tip

    Windows 11 is coming in late-2021, and will be a free upgrade to all owners of W10!

Optional Products

  • Hard Drive

    WD Blue 4TB

    $70

    Need a lot of storage at a great price? Then head straight for WD’s Blue series of hard drives. WD Blue drives run cool, quiet, and consume very little energy, making them great for long-term storage of media and other files.

    The Guru’s Tip

    While this drive spins at just 5400RPM, that's a benefit for HTPC use, because it's much quieter than a standard 7200RPM drive, and frankly, that extra "speed" doesn't do anything for reading media files.

  • Optical Drive

    LG 14x Blu-Ray Burner

    $60
    If you want access to both DVD and Blu-Ray physical media in your system, you can’t go wrong adding this well-priced Blu-Ray burner from LG. To watch Blu-Ray movies, you’ll actually need dedicated playback software. We recommend Cyberlink’s PowerDVD 20 Ultra.
    The Guru’s Tip

    The SATA cable required to connect this drive is included with the motherboard.

  • Video Capture Card

    Elgato 4K60 Pro MK.2-4K60 HDR10

    $227
    As the uses of PCs evolve, so do the components that go in them. While we used to recommend TV tuner cards and DVR cards, we think these products are now almost entirely obsolete. Rather than ripping content, most high-end PC users are now creating their own! And there’s no better add-in card than the Elgato 4K60 Pro to record 4K video directly to your PC, whether from a game console, a 4K video camera, or the PC itself!
    The Guru’s Tip

    Note that you'll need to use the motherboard's lower PCIe x8 slot for this card, rather than one of the short PCIe x1 slots.

  • Sound Card

    Creative Sound Blaster AE-7

    $225
    If you’re serious about audio, you’ll want to add a dedicated sound card to your system. The AE-7 from Sound Blaster features an astounding 127db signal-to-noise ratio, an ESS SABRE-class 9018 DAC, along with an Audio Control Module (ACM) that incorporates a built-in microphone array and mic/headphone I/O connections, plus a control knob to adjust the headphone levels.
    The Guru’s Tip

    You also get a digital audio output on this card, perfect for outputting to an AV receiver.

  • The Deluxe Home Theater Keyboard

    Logitech K600 TV Keyboard

    $58
    Want a great HTPC keyboard to go with your new PC? Then go for Logitech’s K600. It has two modes of navigation (touchpad and joystick), and uses Logitech’s proven wireless connection system. It’s even compatible with most Smart TVs, allowing you to search for content with an actual keyboard rather than just a remote!
    The Guru’s Tip

    This combo device will be a lifesaver if you're using your system from the couch!

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