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Recommendations for a new HTPC
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AnalogRocks
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Joined: 08 Mar 2006
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Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

TV/Projector: Sony 1252Q, AMPRO 4000G


PostLink    Posted: Wed Aug 30, 2006 3:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote


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AnalogRocks wrote:
As for the LCD they have a nice USB external I'll post a link a little later.



http://www.crystalfontz.com/products/634xe/index.html

This unit look very interesting. Maybe have it display title and resolution or whatever you care to program it for.




Edit: fixed quotes


Last edited by AnalogRocks on Sun Feb 11, 2007 7:59 am; edited 1 time in total
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AnalogRocks
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Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

TV/Projector: Sony 1252Q, AMPRO 4000G


PostLink    Posted: Sat Sep 30, 2006 11:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just a quick update. Going insane at work. Means I make more money but I have no time to spend it. Sad

I've ordered an AMD X2 4400 with 2 x 1Mb cache and the 7in1 card reader/floppy drive.

Next week 2 GB ram ( if I have time ).

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WanMan



Joined: 19 Mar 2006
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PostLink    Posted: Sun Oct 01, 2006 12:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

How does one evaluate video cards and processors? For instance, I have an original P4 3GHz CPU and if I wanted to build a new system what would be comparable in a Pentium D series in terms of processing power? Also, what about video cards? How does one shy away from something and steer near a good card?
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AnalogRocks
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Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

TV/Projector: Sony 1252Q, AMPRO 4000G


PostLink    Posted: Fri Oct 06, 2006 2:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

WanMan wrote:
How does one evaluate video cards and processors? For instance, I have an original P4 3GHz CPU and if I wanted to build a new system what would be comparable in a Pentium D series in terms of processing power? Also, what about video cards? How does one shy away from something and steer near a good card?


I read the reviews and the gripes about the hardware. I try to find other people that have built a similar configuration before and posted it somewhere. Video card's easy. Stay away from ATI with there crap tastic software and go with Nvidia.

The new Pentium D's I know very little about as I'm an AMD guy right now. HOWEVER from what I have read the dual core hyperthread is THE processor to own if you're in the intel camp.

Check my post about the Godzilla PVR they used an Intel Extrema Pentium D dual core with hyperthreading. The OS see's 4 processors.

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AnalogRocks
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Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

TV/Projector: Sony 1252Q, AMPRO 4000G


PostLink    Posted: Fri Oct 06, 2006 2:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok 'nother update. I went by the body shop for a price quote on the custom paint.

Seems around the $125 to 150 mark is about what he want's to charge. I'll get that over there sometime soon ( I hope ).

Picking up the CPU and 7in1 floppy drive tomorow.

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AnalogRocks
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PostLink    Posted: Sat Oct 14, 2006 3:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok Got the CPU last friday this week the 7 in 1 floppy /card reader showed up.

Need 2 Hard drives, 2 DVD drives and an OS. Oh yeah and the power supply.

Before that a daub of paint.

Closer.
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GREG1292



Joined: 10 Oct 2006
Posts: 417
Location: indiana


PostLink    Posted: Thu Oct 26, 2006 10:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am trying to follow this thread to see where you are at could you do a recap of what you have bought so far so it would be easier to share advice.
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AnalogRocks
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TV/Projector: Sony 1252Q, AMPRO 4000G


PostLink    Posted: Wed Nov 22, 2006 12:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Greg.
I have been so bussy trying to get a set of wheels to stay under me that I completly forgot about this computer.

I know I should just get to it and finish the dam thing but I can't seem to find the time.
I'll update this ASAP.

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GREG1292



Joined: 10 Oct 2006
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PostLink    Posted: Wed Nov 22, 2006 1:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I look forward to your progress. Thumbs Up
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Mark_A_W



Joined: 15 Mar 2006
Posts: 3068
Location: Sunny Melbourne Australia


PostLink    Posted: Wed Nov 22, 2006 1:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

[quote="AnalogRocks"]
WanMan wrote:
Stay away from ATI with there crap tastic software and go with Nvidia.
.



I'm my experience the reverse is true. Lots of luck with ATi cards for HTPCs, but Nvidia's all tear, and the custom driver controls don't work properly.
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AnalogRocks
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TV/Projector: Sony 1252Q, AMPRO 4000G


PostLink    Posted: Wed Nov 22, 2006 8:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok I stripped the case down to get it painted. I'll post pictures just as soon as my camera charges.
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AnalogRocks
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Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

TV/Projector: Sony 1252Q, AMPRO 4000G


PostLink    Posted: Wed Nov 22, 2006 8:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

[quote="Mark_A_W"]
AnalogRocks wrote:
WanMan wrote:
Stay away from ATI with there crap tastic software and go with Nvidia.
.



I'm my experience the reverse is true. Lots of luck with ATi cards for HTPCs, but Nvidia's all tear, and the custom driver controls don't work properly.


Funny you are the second person to tell me that this week. What is the tearing you are experiancing? Do you mean the horizontal sheering when in 3d mode or while you are applying one of the filters?

I'll have to look for that.

I'm just sick of ATI's software. They have always had good hardware.
For instance I have a Shuttle PC with a 9600 XT AIW card and a HDTV Wonder. In the last couple of days the analog TV has decided to pause and loose lip sync. Then crash and request to send an error report.

I don't have that little PC connected to the internet to avoid viruses and the like. I have not added any software in the last 6 months yet ATI's Multimedia Centre decided it waas time to crash. I wish someone would come out with aftermarket software to run the whole thing and have it intigrated with the ATI remote. It's nice when it works but sucks when it doesn't.

I've been running the HDTV wonder card for months on a program called WatchHDTV. It runs flawlessly. Now with the ATI software there were signal drop outs every 30 seconds to 1 minute. ATI released their lattest software update and promptly crashed my computer. It took me 2 weeks of fartin around with it to finaly get it back to the old version to make it work.

No thanks ATI I've had enough. I hope Nvidia will come through. If not what's left Matrox?

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AnalogRocks
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TV/Projector: Sony 1252Q, AMPRO 4000G


PostLink    Posted: Fri Nov 24, 2006 2:30 am    Post subject: THE FINAL BEFORE PICTURES Reply with quote

Ok I finaly dissasembled the system for painting. Here's a couple of pic's

The inside of the aluminium case and the motherboard tray will be gloss black. The inside face plate will be semi gloss black. The outside face plate will be lemon/lime yellow green color flip.
The outside pannels will be semigloss black with the plexi glass windows.
It'll match my 1984 Supra. Why? Just for the geek factor.



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It's nekid!
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Last edited by AnalogRocks on Fri Nov 24, 2006 2:47 am; edited 1 time in total
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AnalogRocks
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TV/Projector: Sony 1252Q, AMPRO 4000G


PostLink    Posted: Fri Nov 24, 2006 2:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's how the paint job breaks down:
For the Glossy Black parts on aluminium:
3 coats of self etch primer, 2 coats of midnight black base, and 3 coats of clear.

For the Semi Gloss Black:

A sanding with 400 grit sand paper, 3 coats of high build primer, 2 coats of midnight black, 3 coats of clear with flattening agent added.

For the Lemon/Lime:

A sanding with 400 grit sand paper, 3 coats of high build primer, 3 coats of arctic white base, 2 coats of lemon/lime color, and 3 coats of clear. Let stand for a week and wet sand with 1800 -2500 grit to a mirror finish.

I hope this turns out as well as (most) of the Supra did.


Last edited by AnalogRocks on Sun Nov 26, 2006 8:06 am; edited 2 times in total
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AnalogRocks
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PostLink    Posted: Fri Nov 24, 2006 2:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Funny, I must have taken hundreds of pictures of my Supra after the tree fell on it and got it painted. Can't find one now. Here's the before shot in keeping with the situation. Smile

I'll look for an Analog copy I can scan Smile



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AnalogRocks
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PostLink    Posted: Fri Nov 24, 2006 7:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

GREG1292 wrote:
I am trying to follow this thread to see where you are at could you do a recap of what you have bought so far so it would be easier to share advice.

(Wow I started this dam thing last March!! Time to finish already )

OK choose your favorite case. In my case ( no pun intended ) I wanted small and portable.

I was thinking how this HTPC will be used.I plan to watch HDTV, DTV and DVD. I need to edit HD MPEG 2 and probably MPEG4. It will be driving my PJ and timeshifting ATSC HDTV, analog cable, ripping DVD for scaling purposes and recording from my Analog Hi8 and ED-BETA cameras, a little gamming here and at a firends, and of course making DVD's.

I wanted to go AMD, you can go either way. Intel's processors are great too. I just couldn't find a mini ATX board that supported a dual core processor in the price range of the AMD I got. The board has 1 PCIE slot for video and 3 PCI 32bit for expansion. ABIT NF95 model with onboard video GF 6100. I'll see how this built in video is quality wise.

EDIT: different motherboard. Keep reading.

I also opted for 2GB ram. This was the max this board would support.
Got brand name Micron I think.

This case had room for 2 HDD, 2 DVD and one 3.5" floppy/ 7 in one card reader. I've ordered 2 Plextor DVD drives one IDE and one SATA, Also 2 HDD 320GB one IDE and one SATA. This maxes out the on board ports. Any additional storage will be USB2 external.

I wanted a PC Power and Cooling Silencer 610 power supply. I love the build quality of these. Expensive but super stable. I've had one running since Oct '99 with no signs of stopping.( Not a silencer but PC Powers none the less)

Card wise. I have a Hauppauge Win-TV-PVR-500MCE dual analog tuner card with a firefly remote.

For HDTV it's still a toss up but I'll end up with a MyHD-130 card.

Sound is a HDA X-plosion sound card

Or to recap:
MiniATX case Ultra Micro Fly in blue ( no power supply )will be painted.
Pc Power and cooling Silencer 610 power supply with custom length cables
Abit NF95 Mini ATX AMD motherboard with Geforce 6100 chip on board
(upgradable later when necessary)
AMD X2 4400 processor retail box with 2 x 1Mb cache
2GB brand name Ram Micron
1-320GB Seagate IDE HDD
1-320GB Seagate SATA HDD
1-Plextor DVD+-RW drive IDE
1-Plextor DVD+-RW drive SATA
1-Mitsumi 3.5" floppy/ USB2 7 in 1 card reader
Hauppauge WinTV-PVR 500 dual tuner card for Analog Cable
HDA Explosion sound card with dolby Digital live and DTS connect.(may not run this sound card if I decide not to game )
My HD130 HDTV/dtv tuner card, hardware decoder ATSC and clear QUAM reception.
Real Magic X-card for SD-DVD hardware decoder card ( may not run this I'll see what my final config is )
900Mhz keyboard/mouse with "100 foot range"
Firefly USB remote
Windows XP SP2

I may add a USB HDTV tunner and run with BeyondTV 4.5 as they don't support MyHD-130 card.

Will be running a Sony G520P 21" monitor and (hopfully) Ampro 4000G in tandom through an NEC ISS switcher.

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Last edited by AnalogRocks on Fri Jan 19, 2007 7:01 am; edited 1 time in total
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AnalogRocks
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Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

TV/Projector: Sony 1252Q, AMPRO 4000G


PostLink    Posted: Sun Nov 26, 2006 8:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

AnalogRocks wrote:
Here's how the paint job breaks down:
For the Glossy Black parts on aluminium:
3 coats of self etch primer, 2 coats of midnight black base, and 3 coats of clear.

For the Semi Gloss Black:

A sanding with 400 grit sand paper, 3 coats of high build primer, 2 coats of midnight black, 3 coats of clear with flattening agent added.

For the Lemon/Lime:

A sanding with 400 grit sand paper, 3 coats of high build primer, 3 coats of arctic white base, 2 coats of lemon/lime color, and 3 coats of clear. Let stand for a week and wet sand with 1800 -2500 grit to a mirror finish.

I hope this turns out as well as (most) of the Supra did.


Well aparently doing detail work is expensive. When he saw the chassis he quoted me $500(!) for the job.

So...
The front panel will be lemon/lime and the top, and 2 sides will be semi gloss. I'll have a crack at doing the single component gloss black on the inside chassis myself or try the shop that painted my truck black. It turned out nice.

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AnalogRocks
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PostLink    Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 12:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:

Or to recap:
MiniATX case Ultra Micro Fly in blue ( no power supply )will be painted.
Pc Power and cooling Silencer 610 power supply with custom length cables
Abit NF95 Mini ATX AMD motherboard with Geforce 6100 chip on board
(upgradable later when necessary)
AMD X2 4400 processor retail box with 2 x 1Mb cache
2GB brand name Ram Micron
1-320GB Seagate IDE HDD
1-320GB Seagate SATA HDD
1-Plextor DVD+-RW drive IDE
1-Plextor DVD+-RW drive SATA
1-Mitsumi 3.5" floppy/ USB2 7 in 1 card reader
Hauppauge WinTV-PVR 500 dual tuner card for Analog Cable
HDA Explosion sound card with dolby Digital live and DTS connect.(may not run this sound card if I decide not to game )
My HD130 HDTV/dtv tuner card, hardware decoder ATSC and clear QUAM reception.
Real Magic X-card for SD-DVD hardware decoder card ( may not run this I'll see what my final config is )
900Mhz keyboard/mouse with "100 foot range"
Firefly USB remote
Windows XP SP2



And the changes go on. I found a better motherboard today. It has the firewire this Abit lacks as well as the faster SATA II specification. It's the Foxconn WinFast 6150K8MA-8EKRS with onboard Gforce 6150 graphics.
1-16x Pci-E and 3 regualr PCI slots. Bonus it supports 4GB ram where as the ABIT only supported 2GB.

I've ordered 2. Just in case I need a spare. $101.50 each locally. No shipping or customs nonsense to contend with.

Also the Ram is Kingston 2 pieces 1GB with heat sinks. Not Micron.
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Cuda'



Joined: 07 Jun 2006
Posts: 64
Location: USA Archie MO


PostLink    Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 3:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That 6150 chipset is nice, installed an asus motherboard with that chipset in my brothers comp with a 3800 X2, 1GB ram, and a tv card (power color 550pro I think) so he can watch tv at at school, works well from what I hear.
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AnalogRocks
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Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

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PostLink    Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 4:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cuda' wrote:
That 6150 chipset is nice, installed an asus motherboard with that chipset in my brothers comp with a 3800 X2, 1GB ram, and a tv card (power color 550pro I think) so he can watch tv at at school, works well from what I hear.


Yeah my other board only had the 6100 on it and, from what I've read it can't do some of the stuff the 6150 can.

I'm on a mission to finish this before new years. Wow where has this year gone? Shocked

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