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View Full Version : Best TV Out Video Card?



jdrietz
2004-10-06, 04:07 PM
Sorry about the title of my last post - I didn't mean to sugest the Rage Fury Pro was the best card!

I got GB-PVR running with no problems - thanks, sub! It rocks.

Now, I am trying to improve tv out quality. I have a Rage Fury Pro 32MB with hardware dvd/mpeg2 decoding. 2 Questions:

1) Do I have to set up anything in GB-PVR to take advantage of my video cards hardware-based decoding?

2) My machine is an 800mhz AMD Duron w/ 512MB RAM. If I get a different video card, should I stick to one with hardware-based decoding?

3) Based on answer to #2, any card recommendations?

Thanks

Justin

sub
2004-10-06, 05:09 PM
1) GB-PVR wont use the MPEG2 decoding capabilities, unless your video drivers use these capabilities by default (without having to be told to). The only MPEG2 decoders GB-PVR explicitly supports is the PVR350, XCard and MVP - but each of these consumed a huge amount of effort to get going.

2) I dont know. There are pros and cons associated with all the options. Its up to the individual. I not in a typing mood, but this has been discuss many times in the past.

3) Again, I dont know. Its up to the individual.

Steerpike
2004-10-15, 08:26 AM
This site http://www.cask-of-amontillado.com/htpc_hrd.html discusses the Matrox Millenium 550 video card; the author raves about it, but then says it has a drawback in regards to displaying the program interface while playing mpegs.

I too would like to know what video card to buy next - I'd like to build a micro-PC to sit in my living room and act as a PVR, and would like to buy a video card that others have used for this purpose. My only personal criteria would be that it should not have a fan, as I want the system to be 'silent'.

Thanks!

reven
2004-10-15, 10:00 AM
from personal experience i know the matrox cards usually have high quality tv out (expensive and bugger all memory onboard, so probably bad for games good tv out thou). i got a martox millenium g200 (8megs woohoo!, good tv out thou, was good in its day, mjpeg capture). the g450 suppose to be really good, and most pvrs support it, like mythtv supports it straight away.

at moment using a radeon ve (dont recommend it, waiting for my new pvr-350 i got a defective card http://gbpvr.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/mad.gif took like 2 weeks cos it was on backorder and it was defective!! annoying)

can the pvr-350 playback dvds via the video out?(since they're encrypted im not sure), if not can it play ripped iso images (done by dvd decrypter) ?

amontillado
2004-10-15, 12:38 PM
Quote[/b] ]This site http://www.cask-of-amontillado.com/htpc_hrd.html discusses the Matrox Millenium 550 video card; the author raves about it, but then says it has a drawback in regards to displaying the program interface while playing mpegs.
Here a small note from that author.

The main advantage of the 550 (and several other matrox models) is the fact the you can get a properly alligned interlaced picture. This has the big advantage that deinterlacing is not nessecary anymore (which drastically improves the picture quality).

The drawback I mention is true for most applications, but ... NOT for GBPvr, *both the osd and the miniguide are visible while watching livetv/recoding. *I guess Sub mixes the osd/miniguide into the overlay mixer, something that other programs don't *(Great job Sub !!). *Only small downside is that the picture studders a bit while the osd is visible, but it is perfect again assoon as it disappears.

All and all, i highly recommend the matrox cards, the picture quality is perfect.

Ps, if you do decide to go for an ati card, you might want to look at the vga->scart cable mentioned on the link, and somewhere on this forum. Might be a bit difficult to get it working, but the results are supposedly very good.
Edit : forum topic (http://gbpvr.com/cgi-bin/ikonboard.cgi?act=ST;f=2;t=943)


Quote[/b] ]can the pvr-350 playback dvds via the video out?(since they're encrypted im not sure), if not can it play ripped iso images (done by dvd decrypter) ?
No it can not, this has been discussed in many topics on the forum, Sub also mentioned that he isn't planning of adding a workaround either. You can convert the .vob's into normal mpeg files, but you still have the problem that 5.1 sound won't be possible (and you need to convert the ac3 to mpeg1-layer 2).

CaptainVideo
2005-05-13, 07:11 PM
The main advantage of the 550 (and several other matrox models) is the fact the you can get a properly alligned interlaced picture. This has the big advantage that deinterlacing is not nessecary anymore (which drastically improves the picture quality).

BEAUTIFUL! Thank you! I've been hunting for the answer and I think this might be it. My AIW Radeon (original model) S-Video out looks flat to me and I know part of it is the deinterlacing/flicker reduction that has to happen.

I didn't even think about this, but I have a church-supplied editing PC with a G550 in it. I'll swap the AIW and G550 and see if it makes a difference.

Thanks!

CaptainVideo
2005-05-17, 04:25 PM
The drawback I mention is true for most applications, but ... NOT for GBPvr, *both the osd and the miniguide are visible while watching livetv/recoding. *I guess Sub mixes the osd/miniguide into the overlay mixer, something that other programs don't *(Great job Sub !!). *Only small downside is that the picture studders a bit while the osd is visible, but it is perfect again assoon as it disappears.
I'm not seeing this with my G550. I'm using the latest drivers and DirectX 9.0c. When I choose VRM9 I get a blank window. When I choose overlay I get a blank window. The only time I get video is when I choose "DVD Max" in the advanced Matrox settings. That causes the display to switch to a different mode which prevents any on screen display from being seen.

If I had a second display, it would be great. You'd see the desktop in the primary display and full screen video through S-Video out.

The picture quality IS excellent. But I really miss having the on screen display. Can anyone tell me what I'm missing on the G550?

Alternately, could anyone tell me if there's any advantage of an nVidia FX5500 over an FX5200? The specs look the same, but CompUSA offers the FX5200 for $40 while the FX5500 is $60.

Thanks!

capone
2005-05-17, 07:15 PM
I had both nVidia cards. I like the 5500, but I don't think the problems I had w/ the 5200 related to the card itself. Seems like enough people have it over the 5500, so it's probably fine. The price is lower than CCity's was, so I'm assuming it is a different manufacturer (nVidia itself doesn't make the cards, just the tech). What you'll want to see is what they use to cool (fan or sink).

CaptainVideo
2005-05-17, 08:16 PM
Oh crap. I checked out the specs and realized it appears to be AGP 8X only. At least it doesn't claim to be compatible with AGP 2x & 4x like many other cards. My motherboard only goes to 4x so I may be out of luck. I remember reading once that 8x operates at a different voltage. I like going through CompUSA and don't mind paying a bit extra because of their liberal return policy. But it looks like I don't need to bother.

The card is the PNY Verto GeForce FX 5500 128 MB DDR Part number VCFX55APB, Product Number 316018. $59.99 after $20 instant savings and $20 mail-in rebate.

capone
2005-05-17, 09:01 PM
I suppose it's possible, but I didn't think there wasn't backward compatibility by default. I would think it would have to, since you can set it to run only at 2x if you want.

CaptainVideo
2005-05-18, 02:19 AM
I suppose it's possible, but I didn't think there wasn't backward compatibility by default. I would think it would have to, since you can set it to run only at 2x if you want.
I checked my motherboard and the minimum specs on the PNY. All it says is AGP 2.0 and the motherboard has that! Excellent!