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Old 02-15-2006, 03:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default HDTV Card - System loads

I want to build a Media PC. I like the Dvico Fusion HDTV card but am unsure about the system requirements needed to run it well. I know what it says on the box, but those are the bare minimum needed.

- in general, what components come under the greatest load from a tv tuner? cpu, vpu, ram, vram ????

- let's say I have a monitor that can display HDTV 1080i, 1920x1080 pixels. What kind of hardware requirements will I have for the rest of the system.

- Now let's say I want to run a second tuner to record, and have music network streaming to another computer.

So in the end, this PC will have high media demands. But no gaming, is a crunchy CPU and video card still required???


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Old 02-15-2006, 04:50 PM   #2 (permalink)
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This is what I would recommend.

HD decoding can be quite CPU intensive, but this can be reduced significantly with the right GPU/decoder combination. Nvidia's Purevideo decoder is great. Combine the software with a compatible GPU and it will take a huge amount of load off the CPU. The 6600GT is probably the cheapest GPU with full HD acceleration support. You might also want to look at the 6800GS, 7300GS, and 7800GS and see how they all compare and what you want to spend. I know all of those cards support full HD acceleration with Pure Video. This combination will also allow you to easily enjoy WMV HD movies which look incredible.

I would say 512mb RAM minimum, 1g would be better.

If you get a good GPU and the Pure Video software like I mentioned, you should be able to get away with a moderate CPU. If your putting it in a small form factor, you might want to consider a P-M, or if you can hold off a bit, get a Core Duo when mobo's are available. Going with a mobile CPU will make cooling much easier in a small form factor case.

As far as recording and streaming music, just general multitasking, that is when more RAM and a better CPU become more needed. Something like an X2 CPU might also be a good choice, but they can get a little toasty as well, but still far cooler than the P-D's. If you find yourself getting a P-D, get a 9xx series as they run much cooler than the 8xx series.

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