Discussion in 'Computer Components' started by vulkan75, Mar 26, 2003.
Building my hcpc this week.
anybody got any suggestions for full atx motherboards?
I am thinking of getting an ABIT IT7-MAX2 P4 motherboard for my second attempt at a HTPC.
My first attempt was based around a Shuttle SFF P4 box but it just gets too hot running DScaler.
The ABIT has onboard sound with an optical SP/DIF out which will suffice until I decide if I need a bteer standalone card.
It also has most of the other bells'n'whistles you might require such as RAID, Serial ATA, DDR 333 support etc.
I favour Intel over AMD for this application due to the P4 being easier to keep cool.
what do they retail at?
I was thinking of gettin amd cos there cheaper,have you had probs with cooling?
What graphics card are you using?
ATi Radeon 9000 64MB DDR TV DVI AGP are going for £49on e-bay(ANY GOOD).
The ABIT board is not cheap - I think it's around the £120 mark.
If you are looking at AMD's then the only choice in my mind would be the ASUS nForce2 board - model A7N8X Deluxe which costs around £115. It too has good onboard sound with coax SP/DIF.
I have used AMD's in my desktop PC's in the past and have allways found that they run much hotter than the P4's and generally require a larger heatsink and nosier fan.
I plan to run the new Zalman HSF on the P4 I get which is supposed to be near silent along with the Zalman passive heatpipe heatsink on my video card. The aim being to have a silent system from about 7-8 feet distance.
I will be using a Hercules Radeon 9700 128MB as I would like to be able to play the odd game of Unreal and Grand Prix. If you are looking for playing DVD's etc then the Radeon 9000 should prove more than enough - I think they have passive colling as standard but I could be wrong.
I will be using the hcpc mainly for movies,and the radeon just so as to unlock the resoultion on my hs10.
I have spent a fortune the past couple of weeks so i dont want to go crazy on components.Just a half decent board with some silencing is all i want.
I'm also intrested in the optical/coax out to connect to my amp,if i go for a board without this option,any sound cards you can recomend?
thought you may be intrested in a pic of my case.
You lucky sod...where did you get that case from...I have just been emailing a guy called Eric Lang from Projection Systems in the States about this case and he quoted me $325 for the case and $70 shipping.
I too have a HS10 and when I had my Shuttle hooked up using the DVI connection it looked absolutly fantastic. I was very sceptical at first about this whole HTPC business but I sure have changed my mind now.
I have not really looked into sound cards at the moment - I was kinda hoping that the onboard sound would be enough as it's not really doing anything except passing the data stream to the amp via the optical output. I was using the Shuttle in this way and it sounded just as good as the output from my Sony DVD player.
hey lee this is the site i used.they have cheaper ones but i went for the quality one.$359(£227) delivered to my front door.
you can upgrade the feet and all sorts hope it helps.
still undecided on the board,i'll research some silencing methods for amd first.
For a half decent board use the Asus A7V8XL with onboard Lan and SPDIF which can be had for about £65 inc from Scan, that and a XP2100+ about £70 and a decent cooler like the Thermalright SLK800 £50 combined with a Panasonic 92mm Fan £10 and you'll have a quiet solution with enough power for Dscaler and a few future enhancements.
Take John's advice on this combination, or spend the extra few quid on the ASUS A7N8X Deluxe for the nForce 2 chipset and the extra features (well worth it IMHO) with the same HSF solution.
I got the standard version of A7N8X and it is fine. You can save around £20 that way.
I've been using an Asus P4PE-L and have nothing but praise for it.
The case you've mentioned Alex. I have the Vision mkI. What a pile of poo . When i complained to Digtalise (CRT Cinema) i was completly ignored. They read my emails, just refused to answer.
I later found out that the mkII was in production at the time mine was shipped. To cut a long story short i feel i was treated poorly by these people. Use caution when dealing with them.
I'm now making my own case. 4, 10mm thick aluminium front panels are being waterjet cut this week for me to play with.
Asus - good
CRT - bad
I would suggest that the heatsink is overkill for that config. I'm running a Zalman 6000Cu flower cooler at its lowest speed (1400rpm) and that keeps my 2100+ nice and chilly. Cost less than £35 inc VAT, IIRC.
But i can run this and a single fan psu with "no" case fans and get good temps, plus it leaves some headroom for a processor update at a later time without needing to change anything else.
and just noticed your specification and if you move for example to a 9500/9700 the case temps will go up by about 3-5C and the flower will begin to struggle because its pulling warmer air into the processor.
Selexus, please read the rules, especially those regarding what you can and cannot say about retailers etc.
Please edit your post accordingly.
Sorry Mr Nutcase, apologies for the over exuberance of my initial post.
Sinzer I just got this mobo and it did not come with the SPDIF connector, it says it's optional, did yours come with it?
Hey guys good to see a little debate developing on this thread.
All these suggestions are quite helpful realy.
John seeing as you mentioned it can you explain to me the use of a descaler.
I thought my card would do the descaling,am i right?
sorry bit of a novice at hcpc!
Dscaler is for grabbing external sources from Sky etc for resampling by the PC to produce a progressive scan output, use the Packard Bell TV100 from PCWorld for £39 its the best value for money solution at the moment.
Once in the PC, Dscaler outputs to your graphics card, the 9000 non pro (fanless) is fine at entry level or for more performance the 9500. You only need a 9700 if your into serious gaming, it wont improve the picture for HTPC.
Thanks for responding john.
sorry you have to mash things up for me.
i've gone for the radeon 9000 it has tv.
will this card with this software found at this site http://deinterlace.sourceforge.net/
do the same thing
again apologies for my naivety.
Do you mean tv output or a 9000 all in wonder which has a tv tuner?
Is it to feed a pj or tv? Which one?
ok.I think its the one with the tv out(i havent had it yet)
I'm building a hcpc to feed my projector(hs10)for dvds and occasional sky.
my picture is pretty poor at the mo cos i'm running a s-video 10m from a cheap dvd player.
so i want good quality pictures from dvd unlocking the high res of the projector and dscale sky and get better pic from that.
makin the both progressive
vulkan please give me your case right now!!! .....its absolutely stunning,green with envy
Thanks stormy it is pretty nice huh!
problem is what to put in the poxy thing
Most of the Radeons have a tv out but you really want to use the DVI to make the most of the HS10 so make sure the card has that.
You then need a Packard Bell TV100 from PCWorld for £39 to combine with the Dscaler software that you've already found. This is what will improve your Sky picture.
You'll also need Powerstrip to set the custom 1368*768 resolution to get the most out of the HS10 but thats shareware.
Thanks for that john.
yes the card does have dvi,i also already have power strip.
I decided to go with your advice of m/board asus a7v8x,handy to have the digital out to connect to my amp.I also found some nice silencing preferals.
Just 1 last question please.
Will the sky digital cable fit straight into the dscaler from pc world?
The sky, svideo ideally or composite out (maybe from a scart) will fit into the PB-TV100.
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