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Ditch separates for HCPC?

Discussion in 'Desktop & Laptop Computers Forum' started by Dom H, Jul 30, 2003.

  1. Dom H

    Dom H
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    At the moment I have a separates system for both film and music and a PC for work/net/email etc. (oh and an Xbox for gaming) I'm seriously thinking of selling the dvd player and turing the PC into a do-it-all HCPC. I’m not sure if its worth the hassle or if it would be comparable performance wise to my current separates. Please can you answer my questions about HCPC'ing at the bottom of the thread. Here is some info..


    Current AV Equipment

    Sony 900 SACD/DVD Player (using dig to amp)
    Denon 3802 Reciever
    Pace Digital TV Box
    Panasonic Tau 32"
    B&W Speakers front/rear
    No VCR


    Current PC

    XP2000+
    Radeon (VGA + Svid outputs)
    256MB PC2100 (soon to be 768MB)
    40GB ATA133
    Onboard sound with dig out
    Pioneer 106 Slot DVD
    Lite-On CD-RW
    15" TFT Screen
    Broadband Router


    What I Want in the System

    Play DVD/CD/Mpeg/MP3 etc.etc.

    Video output to TV (for now, svid will do) and to a projector (prog scan) when I can afford one. Desktop must be legible on proj.

    All audio (pcm, DD, DTS etc.) sent as dig stream to reciever

    Digital TV and DAB with recording to HD

    Convert standard PAL Xbox's output to prog scan for display on tv/projector?

    Not decided if I want it to play games yet, surely quiet cooling is difficult with a gaming pc

    Stylish case & infared keyboard


    What I Plan to Do

    Swap the current Radeon 32MB card for one with VGA/DVI/TV out connections, run the TFT monitor from the vga, projector from the dvi and the tv with s-vid.

    Change the case for something more suitable, replace cpu cooler for something quiter and make sure the case cooling is quiet enough.

    Keep the onboard sound and use the digital out for everything. Look at upgrading in the future.

    Fit a digital tv card and add a second large HD for recording, keeping the original for windows/apps etc.

    Install a good software DVD player

    Not sure how I’d go about inputting the Xbox and converting to prog scan



    Questions


    1. Firstly is it worth it, what will the quality be like compared to my excellent Sony 900?

    2. Any suggestions/modifications to my plan above, Im a little unsure what connections to use, particularly re. connecting to a projector.

    3. Is it worth upgrading the sound card as I will always use the amps decoders?

    4. Recommendations for a Digital TV card?

    5. Same for DVD software? Can I use a decoder with Windows Media Player?

    6. What about cooling, I take it standard PC cooling is too noisy, what does everyone else use?

    7. How do I convert external sources (Xbox) to output prog scan?

    8. Any other advice/info for a HCPC newbie would be greatly received.


    Many thanks

    Dom
     
  2. SeeNoWeevil

    SeeNoWeevil
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    anybody?
     
  3. alexs2

    alexs2
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    Hi there...hope some of this may help.....

    1.IMHO it is worth it...I bought an HCPC earluier this year and am very pleased with the quality,both audio and visual,and the general ease of use.

    2.I don't use a projector on my system(an RPTV instead for various reasons)and have an X-Card from Sigma Designs to handle all of the DVD playback duties in my system...this has component and RGb outs,plus digital and analogue sound outs also...very good video quality.

    3.It's certainly worth using a good quality sound card,and also worht bypassing Windows K-mixer(which samples all digital inputs to 48Khz,and doesnt sound great either).....I use an Audiotrak Prodigy 192 in mine simply for CD digital out to an external DAC/Upsampler...the M-Audio Revolution has a very good reputation for sound quality,but worth talking to Branxx here on that.

    6.Mine uses a Zalman Flower cooler and a Silent power supply and isn't audible at any levels in the room.
    You will find that lots of people use other solutions(there are loads available)with similar results.

    You may find it worthwhile looking at www.uvem.com (where I bought mine from) and you will find Phil Hale,also on this forum,and the owner of UVEM to be a very helpful guy on this subject....well worth talking to.

    Good luck!
     

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