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Thread: HTPC using older parts

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    HTPC using older parts

    Going to swap my X2 4200 and asus motherboard with my brother and get his asrock 939 Dual-VSTA board and AMD XP 3000 chip, it runs nicely at 2.5GHZ will this be enough to run a HTPC?

    It will have 2GB RAM and i still have my old power supply.

    What graphics card and cheap case do you recommend?

    I will want to use it to watch HD content from the net mostly.

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    Re: HTPC using older parts

    Yep, that will be fine for watching HD. If you plan on doing encoding an x2 CPU is better, but not mandatory (it will just take a bit longer that's all).

    As for a GFX card, I'm not really an expert but I believe you will need one with the proper HD gubbins (proper name escapes me) to allow you to watch HD-DVD and/or Blu-ray discs. I believe that most of the ATi 2000 series cards all come with this, so something like a 2400 or 2600 should be sufficient.

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    Re: HTPC using older parts

    Quote Originally Posted by scrandman View Post
    Yep, that will be fine for watching HD
    No it won't. Not even close. It's generally accepted that no single-core CPU can handle HD, let alone an old XP... (unless you get a graphics card which can decode HD, such as the HD2x00, HD38x0 or 8x00s (for the latter you need to buy PureVideo too I believe)).

    So yeah, basically that rig's only going to work for HD if you buy one of those graphics cards above.

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    Re: HTPC using older parts

    Its an S939 board, so I'm assuming the XP 3000 is a typo. It's obviously an A64 and it's overclocked to 2.5GHz.

    Besides my single core Opty 146 o/c'd to 2400 seems to handle any HD stuff I downloaded over the net, but I'm not an enthusiast for movie stuff.

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    Re: HTPC using older parts

    1080p cannot be decoded by a single core processor. I had a 146 at work and it just couldn't do it.

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    Re: HTPC using older parts

    it will be ok for a HTPC though (without HD support) put a tv card ( with romote ) and mediaportal / MythTV and it should run tv / avi / DVD ok

    one of my HTPC's is only a XP2400 with 1GB ram and a GF6200 ( i think )
    Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.

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    Re: HTPC using older parts

    Quote Originally Posted by scrandman View Post
    Its an S939 board, so I'm assuming the XP 3000 is a typo. It's obviously an A64 and it's overclocked to 2.5GHz.

    Besides my single core Opty 146 o/c'd to 2400 seems to handle any HD stuff I downloaded over the net, but I'm not an enthusiast for movie stuff.
    And what graphics card are you using?
    Quote Originally Posted by Agent View Post
    ...every time Creative bring out a new card range their advertising makes it sound like they have discovered a way to insert a thousand Chuck Norris super dwarfs in your ears...

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    Re: HTPC using older parts

    Previously a 7900GT and now an 8600GT. Like I said, I'm not an enthusiast, but it ran all of the HD trailers I downloaded and I think they were 1080 of some description, but I wasn't anal enough to view the file properties.

    Heck, if you really want to be sure go get a quad core extreme edition Intel CPU and a top of the range GFX card to watch movies.

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    Re: HTPC using older parts

    Quote Originally Posted by scrandman View Post
    Heck, if you really want to be sure go get a quad core extreme edition Intel CPU and a top of the range GFX card to watch movies.
    Don't be an ass. We're doing this for the benefit of the OP in case he buys a component expecting it to do something only to find out it can't, not to satisfy your ignorance.

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    Re: HTPC using older parts

    Hi thanks for the replys, yes it is a AMD 64.

    I was thinking of only using the PC to watch downloaded hi def stuff like heroes as well as normal avi files and listening to mp3's. So i really don't want to spend to much on it.

    I was under the impression that the newer video cards will do most of the work taking the load of off the CPU when it came to hi def content.

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    Re: HTPC using older parts

    You can check out the minimum spec details over here:

    WMV HD Content Showcase

    BTW: The 3GHz requirement is probably in relation to the old P4 CPUs, so an equivalent AMD 64 would be the 3000.

    Any of the ATI cards with HD capability from the 2000 series should lessen the load on the CPU somewhat.

    Edit: This one appears to come with the necessary DVI-HDMI adaptor:

    Sapphire HD 2400XT 256MB GDDR3 VGA DVI TVO PCI-E Graphics Card - Ebuyer
    Last edited by scrandman; 18-11-2007 at 01:21 PM.

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    Re: HTPC using older parts

    Cheers, i'll check that stuff out.

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    Re: HTPC using older parts

    I thought 2400pro's/XT's were enough for full 1080p HD output but apparently they tend to struggle with it, so if you're interested in that side of things or think you will be (blu ray/ HD DVD etc..) the 2600pro/XT is the better option i'm told doesn't cost too much more I don't think.

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    Re: HTPC using older parts

    Cheers, does it only struggle at 1080p as my samsung telly only does 1080i anyway, so if it's just 1080p i'll try and go for the cheapest solution.

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    Re: HTPC using older parts

    Quote Originally Posted by spiral out View Post
    Cheers, does it only struggle at 1080p as my samsung telly only does 1080i anyway, so if it's just 1080p i'll try and go for the cheapest solution.
    The 2400s are fine for 720p/1080i, but when it comes to 1080p some people say its fine, others say it cant cope. If you only doing 720p/1080i then I would just stick with the 2400 series seeing as you're on a tight budget.

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    Re: HTPC using older parts

    Quote Originally Posted by s_kinton View Post
    The 2400s are fine for 720p/1080i, but when it comes to 1080p some people say its fine, others say it cant cope. If you only doing 720p/1080i then I would just stick with the 2400 series seeing as you're on a tight budget.
    I disagree its worth the extra £5-10 to get a 2600 pro - if you ever want to play bluray or HD DVD you will need the 2600pro

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