I can't tell the difference between HD and SD - lounge/bedroom HTPC setup


Active Member
Apologies for the poor quality photos. Finally got around to using the media centre for its intended purpose. Shame its only the telly letting it down but it'll do for now. Have BBC HD via DVBViewer, looks nice but can't much, if any, difference for some reason :rotfl: Oh, and after 2 hours of watching it I think i've just sussed out that the reason all the programmes have the same strange voice-over is that audio commentary for blind people is switched on :rolleyes: :D


Sony 28" Widescreen CRT
Fujitsu Siemens Scaleo E HTPC barebones - VFD display etc.
- P4 630 3ghz - silently cooled (runs hot!)
- 2GB DDR 400 RAM
- Samsung 500 Spinpoint (silent)
- Liteon DVD-RW (set to silent using Nero Drivespeed)
- MSI 8500GT 256mb (silently cooled)
- Two Hauppauge USB DVB-T tuners
- Two Hauppauge PCI DVB-S tuners
- Windows Media Centre 2005

Sony PS2 with hard drive plugged in the back
Nintendo Wii

All hard wired (except for the wii) into the router, supposed to be on 10 meg Virgin, but as soon as it hits evening it's down to 1 or 2 Mbps :( :thumbsdow . Will enquire about that, it's definitely not STM as I'm not downloading anything.


Then extended into the bedroom via Cat5 (wireless can't do HDTV bandwidth) to provide a Media Centre Extender.

LG M228WD TV/Monitor
Virgin Media DVB-C box (freeview channels - portable aerial reception was too poor for freeview)
Xbox 360 Arcade with 120GB HDD + official MS remote


Have Windows 7 pre-ordered so eagerly awaiting that for the streaming capabilities/ability to use the DVB-S tuners in Media Centre. Would like to add that although an HTPC is very stressful in comparison to Sky+ it's also a lot more flexible and once you're up and running (and can avoid tinkering!) you're all set. CoreAVC is excellent on MCE 05 for offloading HD to a compatible NVidia card, not sure if it's needed on W7 or not.

Some idiot who had previously occupied the flat had chopped the satellite feeds off flush to the wall. Managed to drag a couple of inches through the wall by myself and stuck some F connectors on, then must say special thanks to the virgin media lads who ran the coax feeds for me :rotfl::smashin: Ignore the state of the walls it's a rented flat and I'm struggling to get the agency to do anything useful, the place is effectively still as I found it last weekend.



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Novice Member
Get a full hd panel if you want to see the difference and maybe a bluray player too. Sky HD programmes are not always of "HD quality".


Distinguished Member
Yep, a 28" CRT won't show any difference on Virgin.


Active Member
I was hoping the smilies would give it away that I was taking the mick but yeah plugged the LCD in to test and the picture quality is much better ;)

The HTPC is feeding freesat to the Sony (so BBC HD is in the mix) whereas the Virgin box is feeding the LG panel (probably should swap the sets around I guess!) When I move to W7 the plan is to stream BBC HD and ITV HD to the flat panel via the 360.

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