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nekrosoft13
07-29-08, 08:25 AM
Ok, I asked a similar question few months ago, but it was PS3 vs. 360 for media playback.

Well I decided to ignore the 360 all together. I'm looking for something to replace my original xbox with XBMC for media playback.

Xbox still does great with DIVX, XVID etc... But simply can't handle any sort of High-Definition content, When fails with some High-Res pictures. Poor xbox is just to old.

My choices are either PS3 (also does blu-ray playback) or a cheap HTPC.

I have some junk in the closet, would have to just buy few components and HTPC is good to go.

I have
AMD Athlon X2 4400+ 939
ECS nForce 4 Ultra board
2GB OCZ DDR500
few SATA HDD
Pioneer DVD-RW

Would have to just buy:
Case, not decided which one
Video Card, something that can do full VC1, H264 acceleration
maybe a blu-ray rom
PSU

Any suggestions?

Tr1cK
07-29-08, 08:33 AM
I have had great results with my Radeon x550 in my HTPC. It is PCI-E, fanless, and plays back MKVs across my 100 base network flawlessly. It was $20 when I got it a year ago and blew the 7800GT I was using away in image quality during playback and in noise level. It's paired with a 3800x2 and 1gb DDR400 single channel.

nekrosoft13
07-29-08, 08:37 AM
can x550 do hardware acceleration?

so your recomendation would be HTPC?

Tr1cK
07-29-08, 08:53 AM
I'm pretty sure it does hardware acceleration for me. I've never really tested it. I just seen that the IQ and playback was greatly improved over the 7800 and was completely satisfied.

This is the exact card I have.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102626

The only bad thing about my HTPC is that I'm using a regular version of XP. I'm using a bluetooth mouse and keyboard instead of a remote, which can be tedious.

nekrosoft13
07-29-08, 09:03 AM
have you tried any high-def TS, M2TS files? or HDCP encrypted Blu-ray Disc?

I noticed that 8800GTX causes artifacts while playing those files in PowerDVD 7/8 Ultra. While GTX 280 doesn't

Tr1cK
07-29-08, 09:08 AM
I've ran MKVs that were H264 with no issue. I've used VLC player for everything so far. I don't have a HD drive on it yet to comment on HDCP. I'm only using VGA right now since that's the only port I have left on my TV too.

edit:

This page claims it is HDCP ready.
http://ati.amd.com/products/radeonx550/specs.html

nekrosoft13
07-29-08, 01:28 PM
This page claims it is HDCP ready.
http://ati.amd.com/products/radeonx550/specs.html

it also says that it also depends on OEM

AMD’s ATI Radeon™ X and Radeon™ 9550 series of GPUs are capable of processing HDCP signals ("HDCP ready"), however not all ATI Radeon graphics cards are HDCP ready.

will look around which cards do have HDCP.

Thanks Tr1cK

anyone else?

Tr1cK
07-29-08, 01:35 PM
Sapphire's website says mine has it, but I can't verify.

On another note, I'd love to have a PS3 for BR-Disc alone.

Win-win either way.

Bman212121
07-29-08, 01:39 PM
Both. :D

I use the PS3 to play BR movies and DVDs, and use the PC to play files. A computer will be a little easier to manage files than the PS3 will, but the PS3 is very convenient when it comes to discs.

If you have any significant amount of files to play I could see it becoming a pain to use the PS3 because you would need to copy files all of the time to some type of removable device. The other issue is that it doesn't play as many file types as the pc would. If all you want a PS3 for is the BR player, I'm sure you could buy a BR drive for the pc and be happy with that.

The nice thing with the PS3 when it comes to playing movies is that you just stick the disc in and it will play, so you don't have to worry about setting everything up and making it work.

nekrosoft13
07-29-08, 01:50 PM
since you said it is hard to manage files on PS3, not sure if it is wise to spend 400 just to play BD movies.

a BD-ROM for a PC would cost me about 100-120.

npras42
07-29-08, 02:40 PM
A PC is much more of an all-rounder and will handle everything you throw at it. A PS3 is great too, it runs quiet and easy to setup/use but just doesn't have the versatility.

Bman212121
07-29-08, 03:34 PM
since you said it is hard to manage files on PS3, not sure if it is wise to spend 400 just to play BD movies.

a BD-ROM for a PC would cost me about 100-120.

Yea IMO I think that would be a better deal. On the pc you just throw up a windows share and pull files from where ever on your network. You can't do that on a PS3 so you have to copy it to some type of removable device. Plug in a device with a lot of files on it and you have to scroll through the list trying to find what you want. It works okay with only a couple of files but even 50 files and you'll be searching trying to find what you what to view.

CaptNKILL
07-29-08, 04:15 PM
HTPC.

crainger
07-29-08, 05:55 PM
You want HTPC nekro. The PS3 is great for BD, ok for playing files over a network, great for media from the PSN, but it's no good for hosting the files you want to play. It also plays games somehow too.

Once 'Play' comes out it will be good for recording TV.

stevemedes
07-30-08, 03:12 PM
htpcs are fun, i love mine

nekrosoft13
07-30-08, 04:07 PM
what excactly do you guys use on your HTPCs?

Zapablast05
07-30-08, 04:19 PM
htpcs are fun, i love mine

What OS do you use for it? I want to make an HTPC also, but I don't know of any media OS/program. People say that XPMC sucks.

CaptNKILL
07-30-08, 04:19 PM
what excactly do you guys use on your HTPCs?

My "HTPC" is just that Atari ITX system I built last year. It just has XP Pro on it with lots of codecs, media player classic and firefox. I can watch shows streaming off the net or watch shows\movies downloaded onto other PCs over the network (via a USB wireless NIC).

Its also good for playing old games on emulators.

If I had a more powerful HTPC I'd probably play some other games on it too.

I'm also just using an old standard definition TV.

If you have NetFlix, an HTPC is a no brainer. You'll be able to watch movies and shows right off the website on your TV.

bacon12
07-30-08, 05:56 PM
Not what you asked for but will be out soon..

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?p=14326709

CaptNKILL
07-30-08, 06:02 PM
Not what you asked for but will be out soon..

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?p=14326709

Oh wow... that's freaking awesome.

There are verrrrry few ITX boards that can take standard desktop CPUs. If you can get one that doesn't have an integrated CPU, it most likely is only compatible with laptop chips that cost at least twice as much as the desktop version.

Hopefully the GMA x4500 HD is actually reasonably powerful. Intel's integrated graphics chips are so far behind AMD and Nvidia, its pathetic.

Hopefully this prompts AMD and nvidia to start doing some ITX boards to compete.

breathemetal
07-30-08, 06:28 PM
My next rig i build will probably be a HTPC, with touchscreen and whatnot. Itll be after college, and once I get a house or something. So woot!

Ive always wanted to build one

nekrosoft13
07-30-08, 06:43 PM
Not what you asked for but will be out soon..

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?p=14326709

that is great, but i think i will stick to cheaper options for now.

bacon12
07-30-08, 07:19 PM
Don't blame you there, but I am saving for one and hopefully will have one in 6 months.

I love how small that mini is, and you really get an idea with the stock intel heatsink on it. I hope that others will be making these boards.

CaptNKILL
07-30-08, 07:34 PM
Don't blame you there, but I am saving for one and hopefully will have one in 6 months.

I love how small that mini is, and you really get an idea with the stock intel heatsink on it. I hope that others will be making these boards.

Jetway has a Geforce 8200 board but apparently the interesting products only get released in Europe.

Not only is it pretty much the ideal board for a tiny HTPC, but its fairly cheap as well.

If they released that thing over here I'd probably start building my tiny, low power HTPC\fileserver right now.

EDIT: Holy crap they are finally out here!
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813153114

MeFAIL. :p

A little more expensive than I thought it'd be. Still, I doubt you could build a faster ITX system using any other board.

CaptNKILL
07-30-08, 08:08 PM
Bah... I was thinking of getting that Jetway board to upgrade my ITX system from a P4 with 512Mb ram and Intel Extreme Graphics (blegh) but the Jetway doesn't have any kind of TV out. :|

Why you wouldn't put TV out on an HTPC focused ITX board is beyond me. I know lots of people have HDTVs these days, but it seems like they're cutting out a rather large market by having no composite.

It has 2 freaking serial ports for god's sake. :headexplode: