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what graphic/sound cards

Discussion in 'Computer Components' started by cussycod, Apr 26, 2001.

  1. cussycod

    cussycod
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    thinking of upgrading my pc so i can use it as my dvd player.

    a couple of questions

    1. what is the best graphics card to use and could you give the exact model name(they seem to be so many types for each name).

    2. best sound card that gives out dts/dolby digital.(not the decoding)

    3 . which dvd player to get either power/windvd and where could i get these from.

    4. will upping my ram make much differance.

    my pc is 1ghz and has 128mb ram.
    would you please give a rough price for each of these.

    any advice would be greatly appreciated

    thanks cod
     
  2. HT Dude

    HT Dude
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    Easy.
    1) Any GeForce MX. I got the Hercules for £100 but PC Pro says there are better ones. The MX cards actually have better DVD decoding abilities than the full-on GeForce cards apparently. Looks great at 1280x720 into my CRT projector. Don't know whether WinDVD or Pwer DVD are bundled, but if they are, they *may* be older versions, and you definately want to keep right up to date with the versions.
    2) Guillemot MAxi Sound Fortissimo. £29 for a decent sound card with optical S/PDIF output. Works fine into my AVC-A1SE.
    3) Well I got a Pioneer 105s slot loader for about £100. Can be made multi-region. Reasonable happy with it. It *could* be quieter, but the slot loading is convenient.
    4) Probably not. But at £56 + VAT for a 256 meg PC133 DIMM, why not splash out? I got 4 :)

    Oh and use Windows ME since Windows 2000 doesn't have a digital signature for the GeForce cards meaning Power DVD won't use hardware acceleration. Win2k is ok for a lot of things, but crap in this respect.

    [ 26-04-2001: Message edited by: HC Dude ]
     
  3. Spacecat

    Spacecat
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    your basic set up is fine , add a geforce2 mx card as suggested i personally use the soundblaster player 5:1 live card.
    Get WIN DVD 2000 best picture then download and use DVD genie which brings out the hidden features in WIN DVD such as Nvidia hardware support(motion compensation) also
    DD/DTS support.I get a superb experience using this set up.
    You can also use a programme called YXY with Win DVD which allows you to alter the aspect ratio of films
     
  4. cussycod

    cussycod
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    thanks.

    so im looking at,
    geForce2 mx
    sound blaster 5:1 live
    i'll up my ram another 128meg

    im running windows 98 will this be ok

    win dvd 2000,will i be able to download this of the internet,if so where and how much is it?

    whats dvd genie and where can i get this from.

    any one else changed from a tower case to a desk top case?

    once again thanks
    cod

    :)
     
  5. Spacecat

    Spacecat
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    i use win dvd 2000 ( from www.intervideo.com)
    $49.95 , though some people crack it.
    Win 98 is fine , you dont need more than 128 ram.
     
  6. Spacecat

    Spacecat
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    ps i hide my computer and use an infrared keyboard so no need to worry about what it looks like.WinDVD allows an infrared keyboard to be used like a remote control
     
  7. Jeff

    Jeff
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    Or like in my case a remote control as an IR keyboard.
     
  8. HT Dude

    HT Dude
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    Just want to say that I had a SB live with live drive for s/pdif out. I'm fairly sure it it the sblive which was at the source of stuttering problems in my old HCPC setup which prevented any use out of Win DVD or Power DVD.
    After reformatting and using the Maxi Sound Fortissimo, I have had no problems at all. The expensive SB live and live drive are sat in a drawer collecting dust.
     
  9. cussycod

    cussycod
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    spinball,
    where can i get the Guillemot MAxi Sound Fortissimo card from,looked in pc world today the sb 5:1 live was £170.dont fancy paying that much.
    got the graphics card today i went for geForce 2 mx hercules,ill fit it over the weekend.

    thanks cod
     
  10. Jeff

    Jeff
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    The SB Live! 5.1 player costs about £55 incl VAT at PCWorld. The £170 is for the Platinum player which has a load of stuff you probably don't need.
     
  11. Spacecat

    Spacecat
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    you can get a 5.1 live player for £56 from Simply computers.
    I have a 900 Athlon, geforce 2 mx and 5.1 live, creative dvd player and have absolutley no stuttering whatsoever.
    remember the fortissimo 1 does optical out for £35
     
  12. cussycod

    cussycod
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    thanks guys,

    just fitted the geforce excellent picture,still need to play with it.(only using s/vid into my sony 41"rp tv).it is the colour and depth of the picture that has impressed me so far.well chuffed.

    the main reason for doing this upgrade is because my old player is the sony dvp-s7000(region 1 only) has no dts output not multi-region and not progressive scan.so buy upgrading my pc its only going to cost me around £250 mark rather than £1000+.and im getting all of this.

    with an upgrade to a projecter within the next year i thought this would be my best bet.

    my only concern is the dts output will i have any problems (i need to hear this :p ).

    thanks

    cod
     
  13. Paul D

    Paul D
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    just a hint:-
    On panning shots if you get a slight studder, check your monitor refresh rate is set at 72Hz for NTSC or 75Hz for PAL.....Paul ;)
     
  14. cussycod

    cussycod
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    thanks spinball,

    just ordered the Guillemot MAxi Sound Fortissimo card cost £31 withh delivery.

    is your dts ok on your denon,im at the moment using the yamaha a1.

    also ive gone for power dvd.
    thanks all
    cod
     
  15. HT Dude

    HT Dude
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    DTS is great. Gladiator, Jurassic Park, Chicken Run, Saving Private Ryan, Titan AE etc etc all sound fab.
    The Optical lead was £15 from a large local hifi dealer. It's flexible optical fibre and not as good, apparently, as rigid ones.
    But I'd only bust a rigid one and I'm 99% sure I couldnt' tell the difference, anyhow.
    The only problem I have is a regular judder only visible on pans. Check out chapter 12 - Woody's Roundup of Toy Story 2 - a slow pan from right to left shows it up. I'm running at 72Hz, so I think it must be a processor or DVD ROM data movement issue. The processor is a PIII 700 and I have 196 meg of RAM. I'd like to try a more powerful processor, but I don't have one handy :)
    If I were buyng a system from scratch I'd get an athlon system with the clock speed of 266(?) Expensive RAM, but it's currently the fastest system available and doesn't cost the earth.

    [ 28-04-2001: Message edited by: HC Dude ]
     
  16. HT Dude

    HT Dude
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  17. Branxx

    Branxx
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    cussycod,

    If you haven't got a new sound card consider M-Audio Audiophile 2496. This is a professional quality peace of hardware with very good driver support. This card offer significant improvement over SB Live 5.1.

    I just saw one at TurnKey in London for around £180.
     
  18. Jeff

    Jeff
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    Branxx,

    The M-audio card is a waste of money if only used for digital out. I know that many people like Cliff at avscience argue that the M-audio is far superior to lets say an SB 5.1 even for digital out, but their arguments go against current expert understanding. It's probably got more to do with the fact that his company sells the cards.
     
  19. dUnKle

    dUnKle
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    rather than start a new topic I will ask my question here. Im in no way after a HC PC but want a top notch graphics card for my PC which is mainly used for gaming.

    I had a PROPHET GeFORCE MXII but that broke and to be honset I was not that impressed with it, im now temporarly using my old VOODOO 3 3000.

    So which card do you reccomend ( pref no more than £150 ) and also were do you recommend I purchase it from ?

    I have a 1GHz PC with 512MB or RAM
     
  20. Jeff

    Jeff
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    They are a bit hard to find now, but for about £150 you should go a Geforce2 GTS card. The pro and geforce3 cards are still too expensive. Dabs sell the Asustek GeForce 2 GTS Pure 32MB DDR AGP card for £142 + vat

    Jeff
     
  21. cussycod

    cussycod
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    hi all,

    just fitted the MAxi Sound Fortissimo card
    what can i say dts sounded awsome only managed to listen for about 5 mins to the begining of jurassic park.
    sorted, now all i need is the projector.

    fulabeer,
    did i read in another post that your projector is the toshiba if so whats it like with progressive scan(i may be wrong?) :rolleyes:

    i think crt is now out of the question(m2n price rise)so im looking at either the sony &the tosh.

    thanks to everyone for all your help

    cod
     
  22. cussycod

    cussycod
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    help!

    ive got a problem with drop outs when playing dolby digital discs,on yamaha amp the ac3 keeps going on and off in time with the drop outs.
    at fist i thought it was my optical lead but DTS works fine. :confused:

    any ideas

    sick cod!
     
  23. Spacecat

    Spacecat
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    hi i also have the tosh mt1z it runs superbly with my htpc
     
  24. GarryF

    GarryF
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  25. Paul D

    Paul D
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    A HTPC is almost a must for the Tosh MT1z as its makes the picture look stunning!. It somehow manages to make the blacks look blacker!. I never got round to trying it with a progressive DVD player (via component connection) but suspect it would have been stunning. I now have the Sony10ht and have a new set of probs!, ie running windows in 1366x768 for example. Mind you i feel "fortunate" to be in this "awful" (LOL) situation!!!. Paul...
     
  26. GarryF

    GarryF
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    Cussy, you mentioned changing from tower to desktop case further up the post. You should be aware that I have experienced problems in the past with hard disks.

    Basically the bearings bed in for working in one plane, so if you then rotate it after a year or 2 it can sometimes lead to a failure in a short time.

    This is going back 5-10 years, dunno if modern hard disks will be ok, I wouldnt try it personally though.
     

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