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Messages - purps

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1351
Users / Re: Quality of TV tuners?
« on: September 05, 2008, 02:37:37 pm »
I have the Hauppauge Nova-T-500, and generally, I have to say that it is very good. However, I have noticed some slight blurring, namely when credits are scrolling across the screen at the end of a program, and you can't quite read them. With a bog-standard £15 digibox, this doesn't happen - is there any reason why the Hauppauge card might be doing this? I'm using an Nvidia 7100GS graphics card.

Its probably the Nova T... There are so many options, it can be hard to troubleshoot this, but it not uncommon! Are you using deinterlacing? If so, what settings as I found that the suggested tvtime ones cause this, and changing one setting can get rid of a lot of the stutter.

Also, be aware of you refresh rates - display vs the TV standard. Guessing you are in the UK, so 50Hz for your TV, if your display is set to 60Hz, then there is the potential for strobing effects that would appear like this as well.

Thanks for your reply.

I had really bad jerkiness to begin with, using the "Bob" deinterlacing, but after disabling deinterlacing completely, it looked much better (I'm using PAL-I with a CRT TV via S-Video). Maybe it would be worth experimenting with other deinterlacing options.

The blurring that I mentioned really isn't THAT bad, but it can be quite noticeable when the credits are scrolling across or up the screen. I never thought of changing the refresh rate, I will try this. I understand PAL-I (which is what I chose in the LinuxMCE setup screen) gives rise to a 50Hz refresh rate - am I changing the TV setup itself to match this, or should I be changing the refresh rate in LinuxMCE to match the TV?

1352
Users / Re: Controlling TV via orbiter (not with IR remote control)
« on: September 04, 2008, 04:56:26 pm »
Lol, I should have been more specific. I'm fully aware that the IR signal will not penetrate the sides of my cupboard  (I'm not that THAT silly :) ) - my intention would have been to put it on TOP of the cupboard, opposite the TV to be controlled. Sorry for the confusion there. But back to my original question - is there any advantage to connecting it to the core?

tschak909, I have neither seen nor heard of the Xantech 286, so this is the first time for me! I'm not sure I entirely understand the idea of it though. It for all intents and purposes "extends" the USB-UIRT, right? Does this not mean that there would be cables running everywhere? I'm assuming that because they need a power supply, they boost the signal as well - is there any other advantage to it? I fail to see why they would be any better than having just the USB-UIRT on its own.

1353
Users / Re: Controlling TV via orbiter (not with IR remote control)
« on: September 04, 2008, 01:57:34 pm »
Thanks for the reply.

My core is in the same room as the MD/TV, although it is in a cupboard - is there any advantage to having the USB-UIRT connected to the core? Or will it ONLY work attached to the MD?

1354
Users / Re: Quality of TV tuners?
« on: September 04, 2008, 01:52:43 pm »
I have the Hauppauge Nova-T-500, and generally, I have to say that it is very good. However, I have noticed some slight blurring, namely when credits are scrolling across the screen at the end of a program, and you can't quite read them. With a bog-standard £15 digibox, this doesn't happen - is there any reason why the Hauppauge card might be doing this? I'm using an Nvidia 7100GS graphics card.

1355
Users / Re: Controlling TV via orbiter (not with IR remote control)
« on: September 04, 2008, 01:39:19 pm »
I've just come back to this thread for reference, and I have a few more questions.

Regarding the USB-UIRT device, should this be connected to the media director (to which the TV that I want to control is attached to), or should it be connected to the core? I may also add a VCR to the system as well at a later date, which I would also like to control.

I would also like to ask about toggle and discreet codes - how do I know if my TV supports discreet codes, and where do I get them from? It's a big old Toshiba thing (CRT). My Toshiba TV remote only has one power button, and it only has one button for cycling through inputs - however, I read on the wiki that this doesn't necessarily mean that I will have to use toggle.

1356
Users / Re: DIY slim client for use as media director (1.75") - Graphics
« on: August 19, 2008, 04:05:09 pm »
Sorry for the lack of replies guys, have been moving house all this week.

Look at HFX chassis if you want a completely silent machine.
http://www.mcubed-tech.com/english/index.htm

I had a little look at these, but my main concern is the cost, not to mention the dimensions.

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Has anyone considered the eeePCs as alternative?

My main issue with this is the lack of DVI and TV out, as you mentioned. The lack of processing power is also a slight concern.

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The MythTV guys have been using MacMini's for slim clients.

I don't think that I'd get on very well with these due to the problems with PXE booting. I also don't believe $700 to be THAT cheap! Furthermore, I'm assuming that with that much power, it won't be fanless either.

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According to THG tests (http://tinyurl.com/69aczv) the newest AMD Athlon  64 2000+ is much better then Intel Atom 230:

Now THAT is what I'm talking about! Will definitely look into this further. Gives you the freedom to choose your own motherboard, and therefore graphics, video ports, sound, etc. The only downside that I can see is the larger foot print, but I don't think that will effect the thickness of the design TOO much, which is the main thing. I would definitely be up for giving this a go. What about the PSU though? With the idea of keeping the whole thing fanless, could you use something like this? - http://www.icp-epia.co.uk/index.php?act=viewProd&productId=15 - Could you get away with a 60 W one perhaps?

The only other option that I can see at the moment, is to use the mini-ITX board that I mentioned previously (http://www.icp-epia.co.uk/index.php?act=viewProd&productId=186), but in conjunction with a 90 degree riser card and a cheep and cheerful nVidia card. It would keep the thickness and the cost down, and when (or if) the VIA drivers catch up, simply do away with the riser and graphics card. Would this work?

1357
Users / Re: DIY slim client for use as media director (1.75") - Graphics
« on: August 14, 2008, 01:12:29 pm »
Ok, I'm beginning to get the picture with the VIA graphics - don't bother with it for now.

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Hmmm.... well I would not recommend a Celeron @ 1 Ghz at all. Also it seems very bad value for money at 159 UKP!!!

I'm almost glad you have said this - I have never had a high opinion of these Celeron processors either, and as you say, it's quite a lot of money for what it is.

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This Gigabyte ATOM board looks to almost fit your spec; http://www.gigabyte.com.tw/Products/Motherboard/Products_Spec.aspx?ClassValue=Motherboard&ProductID=2850&ProductName=GA-GC230D(Atom)

But you'd have to remove the small processor fan and replace it with a heat-pipe cooler

Whilst I appreciate the suggestion, this doesn't really fulfil my requirements - namely the lack of gigabit ethernet and required video outputs (ideally I would like something that will work with both my ancient PAL TVs, either S-video or composite, and also be ready to use with a flat screen for when I eventually invest in one, either DVI or component).

However, I am really quite interested in what you have said about replacing the fan with a heat-pipe cooler, as this suddenly makes a huge number of other motherboards available to me. Could you do this with ANY mini-ITX motherboard, or do you just happen to know that it is possible with this particular one? Could anybody possibly recommend a site that I could start looking at for these heat-pipe coolers please? The only ones that I can find either have a fan attached to them, or are intended for the northbridge. Do they use a standard fitting?

1358
Users / Re: DIY slim client for use as media director (1.75") - Graphics
« on: August 13, 2008, 03:01:44 pm »
Think I may have found a possibility - http://www.icp-epia.co.uk/index.php?act=viewProd&productId=361

Your thoughts on this one would be very welcome! Doesn't have optical S/PDIF or 5.1 channel audio, but you can't have it all. It DOES have an RS232 port though.

Does anybody know how Intel® 915GM graphics would cope with UI2?

1359
Users / Re: DIY slim client for use as media director (1.75") - Graphics
« on: August 13, 2008, 01:35:45 pm »
Thanks for your various replies, even if it wasn't exactly what I wanted to hear!

So whilst the VIA UniChrome graphics aren't supported now at this moment in time, does that mean that they DEFINITELY will be when the new LinuxMCE comes out? If it's just a matter of time, then that's fine, but if there's any chance that these plans won't go ahead to allow mere mortals to use VIA UniChrome graphics without too much fuss, then I don't want to invest in the hardware.

This is the motherboard that I am currently most intested in - http://www.icp-epia.co.uk/index.php?act=viewProd&productId=186

I haven't found anything else that has the features I am after. They are:

-Fanless CPU (my girlfriend won't sleep with any fan whirring away, no matter how quiet)
-Gigabit LAN
-S-video port (for use with my old CRT TVs)
-DVI port (so that I am "future-proofed" for when I eventually upgrade to flat screen TVs)
-Optical S/PDIF or 5.1 surround sound
-RS232 port (this motherboard doesn't actually have one, but would it be possible to use a USB to RS232 converter for controlling a TV?)

If anybody knows of a mini-ITX board with all of these features, and with onboard graphics that allow UI2 to be used without too much hassle, I would really appreciate it if you could point me in the right direction please.

1360
Users / Re: Mobile Phone
« on: August 13, 2008, 12:03:45 pm »
"no dice" = "no luck" - it didn't work, in other words. You'll see that expression a lot on these forums :)

1361
Users / DIY slim client for use as media director (1.75") - Graphics
« on: August 12, 2008, 06:04:31 pm »
Hello All,

I am currently looking at building my own slim client using off-the-self components enclosed in a homemade metal case. Having produced a CAD model of the proposed design, I believe I can get it below 1.75" in thickness (allowing it to be fixed to the wall behind a flat screen TV, completely out of view).

My questions relate to the graphics options of my short-listed motherboards (all from www.icp-epia.co.uk). Could anybody please tell me what is the difference between "VIA UniChromeTM Pro II 3D/2D AGP" graphics, and "VIA UniChrome Pro AGP" graphics? Obviously(?) the latter precedes the former, but what is the difference regarding their support in LinuxMCE, and the quality of playback? I've been looking at these onboard VIA graphics as I read that they were relatively well supported, in much the same way as nVidia graphics; however, I also read that there may be problems due to drivers not being licensed, or something like this? Could anybody please clarify the situation?

Ideally I would want my media directors to work with UI2 alpha blending, but it's not the end of the world if alpha blending has to be turned off to improve playback quality (I have to do this with my nVidia card in my hybrid anyway, due to the dreaded horizontal tearing), although I would not be happy if I had to use the most basic graphics option (UI1).

Any thoughts would be very much appreciated, cheers.

1362
Users / Re: Is LinuxMCE for me?
« on: August 08, 2008, 02:16:03 pm »
Why not give it a go? You have a fully functional Kubuntu desktop at your disposal as well as everything mentioned by jondecker76, so you could always do your music stuff in this with whatever program you wish. Don't forget to check out the rest of it though :-)

1363
Users / Re: bittorrent - no incoming connections (forwarded properly)
« on: August 06, 2008, 01:32:24 pm »
Yes, under "network" and then "firewall rules" off the top of my head - sorry if this isn't exactly correct.

1364
Users / Re: Controlling TV via orbiter (not with IR remote control)
« on: August 05, 2008, 05:03:47 pm »
freymann & jondecker76,

Thanks for the sound advice guys. It's good to know these little workaround solutions for known problems as well.

Thanks again.

1365
Users / Re: Voip/Thin Clients
« on: August 05, 2008, 01:54:44 pm »
1. I'm going to have a stab at using Vonage with LinuxMCE over the next few weeks, so I'll let you know how I get on if you're still interested.

2. Thin clients, yes, pretty much anything, provided it can do a network (PXE) boot. Another hurdle is the graphics - if you're wanting to use the high end UI, then you'll need nVidia, or VIA UniChrome I believe, not sure about drivers for that though.

I've been looking at building my own thin clients using a mini-ITX motherboard. Having sourced the motherboard that I want to use (1 Ghz fanless processor, VIA Unichrome grpahics, S-video, DVI, gigbit LAN), along with the power supply etc, I intend on building my own case for it (due to the high cost/unavailablity/large dimensions of other thin mini-ITX cases that I have seen) which should end up around 1.5 - 1.75 inches thick. Not quite as good as the 1" Fiire ones, but remember this - I intend on mounting my computer to the wall, behind the TV, not on the VESA mount itself. This means that with a swing arm-type TV mount, I will actually be able to get the TV closer to the wall than would be possible with the 1" client. And for a much lower price.

For smaller TVs (where it really IS necessary to have the PC sandwiched between the TV and the VESA mount), I intend on building a custom all-in-one TV bracket and mini-ITX computer case. Ideally I want the PC and/or case to be removeable, but this may mean sacrificing how close you can get the TV to the wall. Not sure what I am going to do yet, but that's the fun of design. I'm working on the CAD for this now.

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