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is there an easy way ?

Discussion in 'Desktop & Laptop Computers Forum' started by richardhsm, Jul 10, 2003.

  1. richardhsm

    richardhsm
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    Hi Folks

    Is there a beginners guide anywhere to HCPC, this networked server lies idle in the corner upstairs and from memory I built it last Xmas as......


    Intel - Pentium 4 Northwood 2.533Ghz B OEM 533Mhz
    Asus - P4PE mobo
    Seagate - Cheetah - SCSI 15Gb @15K
    Seagate - Cheetah - SCSI 73Gb @10K
    OCZ - PC3500 512 MB CL2 DDR Memory
    Pretty Blue Case & Fans x 5
    Antec - True 430W ATX PSU
    Sapphire / ATi - Radeon 9000Pro 128Mb
    SONY DRU - 500A DVD Recorder
    PANASONIC DVD Player ( Compaq DVD ROM 117 )

    It was to prove to myself that I could master SCSI but was not smart enough to decrypt & re-encode DVDs

    And it might now save me some money over an Arcam 88+.

    Where do I find an idiots guide to using this box as a DVD Player/Transport for the 36 inch Toshiba ?

    Does using a HCPC impact my choice of AV amplifier ?

    Given that I do not want the sound effects of Jumbo Jet on takeoff in the living room ( divorce ) I wish to transmit the signal some 20m to the TV downstairs. How ? Cat 5 ? Please God not 802.11x again.



    Thank you in advance


    Richard

    PS

    I would also like to avoid a repeat of the two weekends I lost trying to master the black art of DVD replication ( life is too short )or Arcam will definitely be getting some of my money.
     
  2. Caveat

    Caveat
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    I would spend the money - well ok, I'd spend YOUR money. If youre only after DVD playback then I think a dedicated player definitely has the edge in ease of use: Silent; Works out of the box; Better ergonomics; Less depreciation; Looks pretty, and is easy to buy.

    Sending video over Cat 5 is possible, but needs baluns at either end e.g.. There are video senders that work over RF, but I dont know what quality you can expect. If the TV does component you might even get away with a good quality cable - I use a 10m VGA cable with very little noticable loss - but I think its unlikely. Of course either way you still need to send control signals back up to the pc, and get to the PC to insert the disk - not ideal ergonomics and still a lot of work.

    Another alternative might be to silence the PC and put it with the TV - cheaper than the arcam, but still a fair bit of effort.
     
  3. MikeTV

    MikeTV
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    You have yourself a nice machine there - a good candidate for an HCPC. But if all you want is DVD playback (and you are in Europe and will be using scart RGB) I think you want to get the Arcam and a decent scart cable. Far and away the simplest solution - with probably best picture.

    If, on the other hand, you really like the idea of an HCPC and the flexibility it provides (surfing the web on the big screen, timeshifting video rentals, TV captures, music jukebox, etc.), go for the HCPC, but remember, that it should be a hobby and will take some time and effort to get all the pieces in place optimized (not to mention some financial outlay). As an HCPC user, I have a list as long as your arm of things I would like to do with my HCPC, if only I had the time and money.

    The HCPC/DVD decision probably doesn't affect your choice of AV amplifier/receiver. Get the best you can afford and do the homework first, and you should be set either way. If you choose an analog solution, you may have to be prepared to invest in a more expensive sound card. But I wouldn't recommend an analog solution for DVD playback, unless you really knew what you really doing with respect to the audio performance. If you can afford it, go for a receiver with digital inputs. Unless you are an audiophile with cash to burn, in which case perhaps look at analog solutions. Budget is a really big factor in any audio setup.

    Your display itself is a big factor on whether an HCPC is best too. The issue here is usually progressive versus interlaced video. If your display only accepts interlaced signals (like almost all displays in the UK, for example), then you may have a hard time getting a picture quality that will beat the arcam player (especially over a long cable run).
     
  4. Steve1138

    Steve1138
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    and DVD copying also got much easier with

    - DVDdecrytpor
    and
    - DVDshrink

    both allow you to select which parts (streams, extras) you want, and DVDshrink also makes a real time re-encoding to a lower bit rate straight off the DVD so you can select which parts you want and select an appropriate "squishing" level so it fits onto 4.7 GB

    Steve
     

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