Author Topic: MD Hardware Help  (Read 788 times)

gtt023

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MD Hardware Help
« on: October 19, 2009, 06:12:00 pm »
Hey,

I am really new to LinuxMCE, but I am ready to get knee deep into it.  I do have some questions though before I make the final 'Go-Ahead' decision.  I basically know what kind of hardware I will get for my Core, but I am confused about what I need for my MDs.  I want to be able to display 1080p movies on my TV, but according to the wiki, the MD's CPU does the decoding, which requires a lot of processing power.  But I have also read that some media players support GPU processing via VDPAU, and that would allow me to get a really small nettop as an MD.  Which is correct?  Is there one media player that LinuxMCE uses, do I use different media players based on what kind of content (music, movies, TV, etc.), or do I choose one media player that can support VDPAU?  Thanks for the help!

totallymaxed

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Re: MD Hardware Help
« Reply #1 on: October 19, 2009, 06:51:08 pm »
Hey,

I am really new to LinuxMCE, but I am ready to get knee deep into it.  I do have some questions though before I make the final 'Go-Ahead' decision.  I basically know what kind of hardware I will get for my Core, but I am confused about what I need for my MDs.  I want to be able to display 1080p movies on my TV, but according to the wiki, the MD's CPU does the decoding, which requires a lot of processing power.  But I have also read that some media players support GPU processing via VDPAU, and that would allow me to get a really small nettop as an MD.  Which is correct?  Is there one media player that LinuxMCE uses, do I use different media players based on what kind of content (music, movies, TV, etc.), or do I choose one media player that can support VDPAU?  Thanks for the help!

Hi & welcome.

Well it is true that if you build your MD's around nVidia GPU's or Graphics cards then vdpau can do a large amount of the 'heavy lifting' needed to display content smoothly at 1080p. We are using MD's based on ATOM/Ion motherboards and they handle 1080p content with ease and are compact, quiet & only use about 20w of power to do that. Search the forum for other threwads where Atom/Ion based MD's are discussed for more details on how you integrate these. Currently this still requires some manual intervention and is not totally 'plug-n-play' in LinuxMCE. If your looking for a way to add these types of MD's without a lot of technical effort then see the Forum thread mentioned in the footer of my message below for more information about Dianemo/Cascade which support these types of MD's as plug-n-play devices.

All MD's can handle all media types but there are devices like Squeezeboxes that are audio only devices and these can be added to support synchronised multi room audio for example.

All the best

Andrew
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gtt023

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Re: MD Hardware Help
« Reply #2 on: October 19, 2009, 07:21:58 pm »

Hi & welcome.

Well it is true that if you build your MD's around nVidia GPU's or Graphics cards then vdpau can do a large amount of the 'heavy lifting' needed to display content smoothly at 1080p. We are using MD's based on ATOM/Ion motherboards and they handle 1080p content with ease and are compact, quiet & only use about 20w of power to do that. Search the forum for other threwads where Atom/Ion based MD's are discussed for more details on how you integrate these. Currently this still requires some manual intervention and is not totally 'plug-n-play' in LinuxMCE. If your looking for a way to add these types of MD's without a lot of technical effort then see the Forum thread mentioned in the footer of my message below for more information about Dianemo/Cascade which support these types of MD's as plug-n-play devices.

All MD's can handle all media types but there are devices like Squeezeboxes that are audio only devices and these can be added to support synchronised multi room audio for example.

All the best

Andrew

Thanks for the clarification and welcome.  I don't mind putting in the extra effort to get seamless 1080p content, especially since I would learn a lot about how to use Linux and LinuxMCE.  It seems that the Atom/Ion MDs are going to work out perfectly, since they have a great combination of capability and price.  I am looking at Acer nettops, any other recommendations?  Thanks again!

totallymaxed

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Re: MD Hardware Help
« Reply #3 on: October 20, 2009, 11:14:57 am »

Hi & welcome.

Well it is true that if you build your MD's around nVidia GPU's or Graphics cards then vdpau can do a large amount of the 'heavy lifting' needed to display content smoothly at 1080p. We are using MD's based on ATOM/Ion motherboards and they handle 1080p content with ease and are compact, quiet & only use about 20w of power to do that. Search the forum for other threwads where Atom/Ion based MD's are discussed for more details on how you integrate these. Currently this still requires some manual intervention and is not totally 'plug-n-play' in LinuxMCE. If your looking for a way to add these types of MD's without a lot of technical effort then see the Forum thread mentioned in the footer of my message below for more information about Dianemo/Cascade which support these types of MD's as plug-n-play devices.

All MD's can handle all media types but there are devices like Squeezeboxes that are audio only devices and these can be added to support synchronised multi room audio for example.

All the best

Andrew

Thanks for the clarification and welcome.  I don't mind putting in the extra effort to get seamless 1080p content, especially since I would learn a lot about how to use Linux and LinuxMCE.  It seems that the Atom/Ion MDs are going to work out perfectly, since they have a great combination of capability and price.  I am looking at Acer nettops, any other recommendations?  Thanks again!

Well of the 'pre-built' units the Acer Revo is still hard to beat really. ASUS also have a new Asus Eee Box EB1012 Ion based model and this has a dual-core ATOM 330...all in the same enclosure as the B202 model...so this will be a strong contender too.

All of these could be made to work with some effort but will not currently be plug-n-play in LinuxMCE

All the best

Andrew

PS Dianemo/Cascade has plug-n-play support for all of the new ASUS Atom/Ion models already.
Andy Herron,
Convergent Home Technologies Ltd
United Kingdom

Read My Blog; http://ellipticalcurve.com

Contact me for Smart Home consulting advice here;
@herron on Twitter, totallymaxed+consulting@gmail.com via email or PM me here.

Get a Dianemo S License: http://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=8880.0
iOS Orbiter: http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/Dianemo_iOS_Orbiter
Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dianemo-Home-Automation/226019387454465

Sales & Info:
http://www.dianemo.co.uk