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WOW! XP/TT/ATI8500 Questions...

Discussion in 'Desktop & Laptop Computers Forum' started by Paul D, Jun 17, 2002.

  1. Paul D

    Paul D
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    Well i've waited long enough for ATI to finally bring out a "Gamma" fixed driver for my 8500 VGA card. I have more or less used the HTPC for playing games etc.

    So i downloaded the latest driver and installed it on my HTPC.

    Specs:-

    1200 Athlon Thunderbird
    Asus A7V266 DDR Motherboard
    256 DDR Ram
    Sony 16x DVDRom
    Windows XP Pro
    Theatretek Software DVD player

    To say i'm impressed would be the understatement of the year!.
    I'm sure Jeff will jump in and comfirm how good the ATI 8500 now looks.
    But the saturation/clarity/contrast are the best i have ever seen.
    I've been getting a little bored of Home Cinema just lately, but this new driver has me fired up all over again!. Maybe i'm a born tweaker and was getting bored because my room was finished and i had nothing to mess with!.

    But it now leaves me with some niggles i'm not sure how to cure.

    1: When i try to change refresh rates from 60hz etc, XP says it has changed but my Barco PJ still shows 60hz. I believe the PJ as a new refresh rate would need a new setup/calibration on the Barco etc.

    I have tried setting different monitors etc, but since XP reports it's changed to the new refresh rate, i'm lost what to try next.


    2: Now the gamma has been fixed on the 8500, do i set the 8500's contrast/brightness/gamma, or Theatreteks own settings?. Or does altering the settings on theatretek automatically adjust the 8500's driver settings.

    The reason i ask it that you need to be running a overlay to adjust the 8500's gamma, but theatretek doesn't have a "window" mode.(only full screen)

    3: Does anybody know how to step frame by frame on theatretek?.

    If i can sort out these few niggles, i will hardly ever use my stand alone DVD player again!.

    Come on you HTPC experts!, give me what i need....:D
     
  2. Tim Cooper

    Tim Cooper
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    Hi Paul,

    We do both run similar kit... Although by no means an expert i'll try to offer some advice as best i can ;)

    As i understand there is no picture quality difference between the recent Radeons (7200 7500 8500) they all use the same "engine" for dvd playback the advantage the 8500 offers is that it can be used to play games on a multi-function HCPC:D

    This might be the case of the ATI driver refresh rates "not sticking" within the registry....are you using powerstrip? if not use that to issue new custom resolutions

    You are going to have to wait for Cliff Watson's "scoped" settings (from the AVS forum) for TT. Straight out of the box TT is optimised for ATI's 7093 driver.Keep an eye on the forum on what settings people are using. Is the driver officially out now then??? if not you will hear nothing from Cliff until the drivers are officially released (he works closely with ATI)

    Ermmm....don't think it can....don't know

    Cheers

    Tim
     
  3. Paul D

    Paul D
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    Thanks for your reply Tim :)

    Maybe i should edit my post as i wasn't restricting replies to experts only, it's just that most people will have more knowledge than me when it comes to HTPC!.

    And yes the official "fixed" driver went on ATI's website on the 13/06/02.

    I think i might do a fresh install now that the fixed drivers are out, and hope that cures the refresh thing. If not i will give your idea about using powerstrip a go.
     
  4. Tim Cooper

    Tim Cooper
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    Hi Paul,
    Don't forget to clean your machine of all things ATI before you upgrade if you didn't already know here are the instructions for both windoze 9xx & xp.... not my work BTW:D




    For all you 9x/ME users, follow this guide to completely uninstall the drivers. This guide was written and prepared by Genius and it should work for most Radeon users.



    1). Uninstall your current ATI display driver. Do this by going into your control panel and running add/remove programs. ATI Display Driver should be one of the first few on your list. Choose yes when it asks if you would like to uninstall. Choose no when it asks to reboot.

    2). Remove all leftover .inf files. Windows will use these to reinstall drivers (or at least try) without giving you an option for a clean install. To do this, you'll want to do a find all files/search, which can be accessed via the start menu. Windows ME has it labelled as search, and I believe Windows 9x has it labelled as find. In the search window, you'll want to enter ati*.inf as the target file. Don't bother making it search your whole hard disk, instead, under the look in field, type in C:\Windows\Inf, and make sure look in sub-folders is checked. Now your set, click find/search. Delete all files which it reports (make sure the location is c:\windows\inf or c:\windows\inf\other, do not delete ati*.inf files in other directories, just in case you chose to search your entire hard drive). Once you've completed the .inf flush, you're now ready to move on.

    3). Reboot your computer. Windows will load with a default VGA adapter driver, which the ATI uninstall conveniently installs for you. Little do we know, ATI forgot to take out all the registry settings, ack! Here's what you need to do...

    4). Run regedit. To do this, hit Start, click Run, and type regedit in the field and press Enter or hit OK. The windows registry entry will pop up. There are two sections you'll need to delete garbage from, the first one being the key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE. Click the plus next to software and in the directory tree below it you will see a key labelled ATI Technologies, simply highlight this key and hit the delete key on your keyboard. Click yes to confirm removal when Windows prompts you. That will fix all previous tweaks you may have done, so you can ensure a fresh driver install at default settings. Now, on to the next key(s) you'll want to delete. WARNING! The following keys which I recommend you delete automatically assume you are using only one display adapter(video card) in your system. If you are using more than one, I will assume you are literate enough to know which keys can safely be deleted without mucking up your secondary adapter. Go to the registry key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Class\DISPLAY, click the plus next to DISPLAY and you will see at least one sub key, normally labelled 0000. If your registry is dirty, you will likely see multiple keys, such as 0001, 0002, 0003, and so on. If you have only one video card in your system, it is now safe to delete every sub key of DISPLAY, including 0000. To do this highlight each key respectively and hit the delete key on your keyboard, click yes when Windows asks if you wish to remove the entry. Once you have deleted all keys, it is now time to close the regedit program and move on to the next step.

    5). You will now need to go into your system device manager, which can be accessed in two ways. One, by right clicking on My Computer, clicking Properties, and then Device Manager in the following window, or you can access the device manager in your system Control Panel and double clicking on the System icon, and clicking Device Manager in the following window. Under Device Manager click the plus symbol next to Display Adapters, you will now see the Standard PCI adapter listed below. Highlight it and hit the delete key on your keyboard and click yes to confirm when Windows prompts you. It will then ask you to reboot your computer to finish removing the device, click no. Next step.

    6). Extract/Unzip/Decompress your Radeon drivers of choice to a location which you will remember (I use C:\Windows\Desktop\Radeon). Once you have extracted the drivers, you can now reboot your computer to manually install them. I do NOT recommend using the ATI setup program to install drivers. When you reboot your computer, Windows will detect new hardware and ask if you wish for it to search for drivers. I always tell Windows where to search, and do not recommend you let Windows search automatically. Since Windows 9x and Windows ME vary slightly in this driver install process, I will assume you are familiar with basic driver installation and can handle pointing Windows to the directory which you extracted the drivers (i.e. C:\Windows\Desktop\Radeon for 7041 whql or C:\Windows\Desktop\Radeon\ATIDrive for all other driver packages). From here you may proceed to let Windows search the specified directories for the .inf file containing the driver install information, and the rest should be fairly self explanatory.


    ========================================================================================


    Alright...here is my way of deleting and installing ATI drivers running Windows XP (Win200 should be the same too).

    1. Go into the Control Panel and under the ADD/REMOVE SOFTWARE icon uninstall the ATI MultiMedia software and/or the ATI DVD software.

    2. Uninstall the ATI drivers also found in the Add/Remove section. Once removed, it will prompt you to reboot....do so.

    3. When returning to windows, the NEW HARDWARE FOUND wizard will come up and will tell you that it has found a new VGA card and will prompt you for drivers. Hit CANCEL!

    4. Now, go to START - SEARCH - FOR FILES OR FOLDERS and do a search for all files and folders using the filename ati*.*
    This search will normally give you 3 to 4 files found in your c:/windows directory and subdirectories (including the Windows/System directory). Select these files and erase them. Now go to your Recycle Bin and Empty your bin.

    5. Next...time to go to your Registry. Go to START -- RUN -- regedit

    Here go to key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE -- SYSTEM -- ControlSet001 -- Control -- Video . Here there should be 4 entries. 3 of them are default Windows XP entries and the 4th one is put in by the ATI drivers. Expand each one by one until you see ATI entries. Once found, erase the entire key.

    Now repeat the same step above for the ControlSet002 key and the CurrentControlSet Key. Normally, whenever you erase a key in the ControlSet001, XP automatically deletes it in the CurrentControlSet section too. So if the ATI key is not found in the CurrentControlSet section, don't worry about it.
    Once all keys are deleted, proceed to the next step.

    6. While still in the registry, go to the key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE -- SOFTWARE section. Here you should find an ATI Technologies key. Select it and delete it. In that same section, look for an Installed Options key. Expand it and there you should find another ATI Technologies key. Select it and erase it.

    7. Still in the registry, go to HKEY_CURRENT_USER -- Software and there you should find another ATI technologies key. Select it and erase it. Once all this is done, close the registry. the registry is now clean.

    8. Close all windows and reboot.

    9. When in windows after the reboot the NEW HARDWARE FOUND WIZARD will pop up again. Cancel that. Now find the new ATI drivers that you have downloaded and extracted and run the SETUP file. Once complete, reboot and you are done. You may want to reinstall your ATI MMC software and DVD software if you use them. DONE!


    For all those who do not like going into the registry and rather have an easy to use program to do it for you, you can grab a nifty tool called "RegCleaner" here and it will do it for you without getting your hands dirty in the registry. Follow steps 1 through 4 as stated above, then run RegCleaner to do the rest. Once completed, follow steps 8 and 9 and you are DONE!
     
  5. Mark Grant

    Mark Grant
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    Hello Fulabeer,

    Have a look at the attributes tab in the ATI display properties, the monitor is often limited to maximum of 60hz here, even though you set it to more in the monitor tab.

    Check any other PC you use as well, many I have seen are set to 60hz maximum in the ATI attributes tab, when used with older monitors or projectors, something to do with 'DDC' or whatever.

    Worked for me anyway.

    Good luck,

    Mark.
     
  6. Paul D

    Paul D
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    MARK!!! cracked it! :)
    You were absolutely correct about the "60hz maximun" setting.
    Changed that to about 120hz, pressed apply and bingo 75hz(what it should have been).

    TIM, thanks for your help. I'm now ready to start using powerstrip to set some custom resolutions.

    I'm quite stunned at the moment, as i've never managed to get a software DVD player to play smoothly (especially with XP!). But the slow pans are judder free!. Plus no picture tearing that i suffered with my old VW10HT LCD. :D

    Another thing i noticed was zero posturising, which up to now has always been present in all my previous attempts with WinDVD/PowerDVD to some degree. Not sure if it's the new driver or Theatretek.

    I give my thumbs up to ATI, the gamma fault really has been fixed.

    Gordon Fraser may be visiting me soon, and i was reluctant to show him my HTPC. But i now look forward to him casting his expert eye over my entire system. (Boy those beers are going to cost him!)

    I think a new case will be my next purchase.;)
     
  7. Andy.T

    Andy.T
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    Does anyone know if a non 100hz RPTV can be set to accept an s-video signal of more than 60Hz? See my thread "I'm getting there..". I'd like to set my Radeon 7200 to 72 or 75 Hz as appropriate but I don't want to break my TV. Also the 60Hz setting is greyed out in the display properties, if setting it higher is advisable how do I go about it?

    Andy Trump
     
  8. Tim Cooper

    Tim Cooper
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    Hey Mark........big head:D :D :D

    Tim
     
  9. Mark Grant

    Mark Grant
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    :D
    I had just the same problem on a new HTPC build with Win 2000 and Theatertek etc, I thought the projector was faulty because even after reformatting and reinstaling everything twice, still only 60 hZ refresh,

    The attributes tab is a 'feature' of the ATI drivers that catches people out.....


    Mark.
     
  10. RdiA

    RdiA
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    Paul,

    Did you manage to get full display (widescreen) on the vw10ht with your radeon 8500 ?

    All i can manage now is a partial 1024*768 (VGA->RGB) and i would like to use this videocard in a HTPC setup.

    Maybe there is someone else out there who uses a radeon 8500 with a sony vw10ht projector.

    Thnx,Victor
     
  11. Paul D

    Paul D
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    Hi
    I managed to get a widescreen image with my Old VW10ht, but it wasn't pixel perfect. I think i chose one of the 720p resolutions and kidded the PJ into thinking it was getting a hi def signal. It had about 10% overscan etc, but it was the tearing on slow pans that spoiled it.

    I think the tearing (judder across the picture in a diagonal direction) was caused by the fact that LCD panels refresh at a set rate no matter what the "input" refresh rate is. :(

    Ps, i loved my VW10HT as it was such a good machine, i was just the poor black level that made me change.
     
  12. RdiA

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    Do you know of any videocards that might work better then the 8500 ?

    The blacklevels are an issue i agree .. but is my first projector and it sure beats the size of Rear projection TV.

    Only thing is that there is a dust blop and that is annoying..I really need to fix that in the nearby future.

    Victor
     

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