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PostPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2005 3:17 pm 
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Joined: Sun Dec 05, 2004 2:20 pm
Posts: 83
Location: Michigan, USA
I recently got a Seasonic Super Tornado for my system. I can't even hear it unless I turn everything in my house off and I put my head next to it. It has a 120mm fan, which is the only fan running in my box.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2005 6:27 pm 
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Location: Mechanicsburg, PA
Hello! I just wanted to let people know that we're now selling the hd-3000 card at the MythTV Store at http://mythic.tv (we should have the Air2PC back in stock by mid-April).

Is anyone interested in us carrying the FusionHDTV card as well? I've seen that people have gotten it to work with MythTV using a 2.6.x kernel, but for some reason it doesn't seem to have been as widely adopted as the hd-3000 or Air2PC cards. Thoughts?

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2005 6:35 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 10, 2004 8:08 pm
Posts: 1891
Location: Adelaide, Australia
If you are talking about the DVICO FusionHDTV card, yes. I have it working with KnoppMyth R4V5 (with a lot of tweaks like kernel upgrade recompile lirc, recompile mythtv etc etc the list goes on). It is compatible with the DVB transmissions in Australia. Not sure about it's use in the US (which I assume is what your store is catering for). I have not used it for hdtv (since I only have a sdtv and my processor/graphics probably wont cut it). I am led to believe that it has a good quality tuner (can receive well in low signal areas).


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2005 6:52 pm 
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Location: Fontana, Ca
While there is a US version of that card, the drivers only work with the Australian model (last I read).

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 Post subject: Items and stuff
PostPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2005 7:53 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jul 30, 2004 8:07 pm
Posts: 31
Location: West Chester PA
So here are some things I am looking into and have looked at.

Hauppauge MediaMVP. There are actually several companies that have Windows Media Center Products. Including linksys WMCE54AG and other ones too. These boxes when hacked can make great front ends I think. I don't own one yet so I am talking "theory".

I like the EPIA Mini-ITX and nano platform. They are more expensive as a front end then a MediaMVP and that is why I am looking at the MediaMVP. As backends I have not set the EPIA up so I don't know how they would be. I have looked at www.SolarPC.com for a case but don't own one. They have noiseless solutions for their PC's. The other advantage is that they use less power than a standard PC does.
The main limitation is that the EPIA only has 2 PCI slots. I don't have a multiple backend set up so I don't know if 100BT Ethernet is good for HDTV or not. Hell I don't even have HDTV yet. Or if 100BT is good for SD for that matter. Also if two PVR250's in a single box would be too hot.
Do the HDTV cards also do MPEG-2 SD? Or do they only do HDTV?

MythTV's mainstream competition is the Windows Media Center PC as well as Tivo's and ReplayTV's. Panasonics DVD recorder with HD would also be competition if those systems had brains(schedules) or could be upgraded. I have a DMR-HS2 with a 40GB HD and it will never get any larger because it is Hard wired as 40GB no matter what drive is inside, or at least last time I checked. It might be hackable now. But that is it Hackable.

Have you looked at using a dedicated Ethernet HD solution?
http://www.buffalotech.com/products/pro ... egoryid=19
They also have their Kuro Box
http://www.revogear.com/products.html

Having a quiet recorder that has no drives in it to save on Heat using a SolarPC or similar fanless box and fanless processor heat displacement. Then recording the information on a quite HD box over ethernet. Lastly linking the ethernet HD box to frontends that are small dedicated boxes.

Yes this is complicated multi piece solution instead of a simple single box. I am looking in this direction to save money as well as reduce noise. Oh I forgot the other thing I am trying to increase my headaches. The more pieces the more headaches.
The most expensive pieces for me are the tuner cards. 2 PVR250's which are the most compatible cards that have MPEG-2 encoding are $120.00 each retail nonMCE versions.
my .02

-you are what you do so i am a typer

Rich Shumaker
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Rich At Contact Juggling Dot Com
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 Post subject: thanks for the replies!
PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2005 11:52 am 
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Posts: 2419
Location: Mechanicsburg, PA
Thanks, everyone, for the replies! I'll give a summary response.

Re: The FusionHDTV card. Yes, we're focusing on the US market at the moment, and upon closer inspection I agree that it looks as if only the Australian version works with Linux/MythTV. For now, we'll focus on selling the Air2PC and HD-3000 cards.

Re: Hauppage MediaMVP - We're actually interested in carrying several Hauppage products, but they seem to be uninterested in providing them to us at real-world prices. For now, you're better off checking PriceWatch.com for the cheapest pricing on Hauppage products. I'll let you all know if that changes, of course :)

Re: mini-ITX and nano-ITX - We're interested in these form factors, too, as front-ends, but since we're focused on HD content, I think the real question is whether or not XvMC or libmpeg2 will really let the VGA card do all the decoding work on a 1080i signal.

Re: silent cases - I'm on the fence about silent cases. On the one hand, it's a brilliant technical achievement and certainly means you aren't introducing noise into your theater room. On the other hand, using low-heat components, large slow-moving fans, HDD enclosures, and well-ventilated cases can be much cheaper and still nearly silent. It might make sense to put the money you save into getting a bigger hard drive or a more powerful VGA card to do hardware MPEG-2 decoding.

Re: SD on HD cards - The HD-3000 passes the MPEG-2 directly through from the air, and it basically does frame grabbing (someone please correct me if I'm wrong) for SD NTSC signals (meaning it's up to something other than the HD-3000 card to turn it into MPEG-2 or motion jpeg, etc.). The Air2PC only does HDTV.

Re: NAS boxes - We hadn't considered using NAS boxes for MythTV applications, but I can see how that would work under certain conditions. Again it's a question of price. Where would you rather spend the $N you have to spend on a setup...

Re: HDTV over ethernet - I did some quick checking. Looks like the most bandwidth-heavy HDTV format (1080i) uses between 19Mbps and 25Mbps (c.f. http://videosystems.com/mag/video_hdv_sweet_spot/ ). So I suppose if your network could support that, you could indeed stream HDTV from a backend box to a frontend box without much need to buffer. (You may still want to buffer anyway to avoid hiccups, unless you've implemented QOS on your LAN.)

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2005 12:27 pm 
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Location: Fontana, Ca
Human wrote:
Re: mini-ITX and nano-ITX - We're interested in these form factors, too, as front-ends, but since we're focused on HD content, I think the real question is whether or not XvMC or libmpeg2 will really let the VGA card do all the decoding work on a 1080i signal.
I tried, it won't. It wouldn't even open the file (on my backend).

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2005 3:01 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 30, 2004 11:29 am
Posts: 2419
Location: Mechanicsburg, PA
cesman wrote:
I tried, it won't. It wouldn't even open the file (on my backend).

Hmm. I know that online petitions have a bad rap, but maybe we should get one together to send to VIA and tell them that they're missing out on a huge market. If they made a mini-ITX or nano-ITX board with Linux support that did smooth HD MPEG-2 decoding, they'd be tapping into the growing DIY HTPC market.

What do you guys think?

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2005 3:12 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 06, 2003 10:38 am
Posts: 4978
Location: Nashville, TN
actually they have a decent fully open source driver with xvmc support. Not sure what more they can do. I just don't think those boards have the horsepower to decode full hdtv resolution. And from everything I've read, and many people don't agree with me, XVMC becomes less and less useful the more you need it.

Though it's beyond me why sd mpeg2 would work fine, but hdtv mpeg2 wouldn't even start.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2005 3:23 pm 
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Location: Mechanicsburg, PA
Xsecrets wrote:
actually they have a decent fully open source driver with xvmc support. Not sure what more they can do. I just don't think those boards have the horsepower to decode full hdtv resolution.

But is that a technical limitation or a marketing decision? If a board that could do 1080i MPEG-2 decoding would retail for $50 more than one that didn't, they may need to know there's a market out there before making such a board.

Xsecrets wrote:
And from everything I've read, and many people don't agree with me, XVMC becomes less and less useful the more you need it.

Are you saying that when it comes to decoding video, XvMC is not a replacement for a weak CPU?

Xsecrets wrote:
Though it's beyond me why sd mpeg2 would work fine, but hdtv mpeg2 wouldn't even start.

I've been toying with the idea of feeding an HD MPEG-2 file to the decoder on my PVR-350, but I don't want to blow it up :) I suppose a hardware decoder could have some built-in limitation on the bandwidth and/or resolution of its MPEG-2 source. It's speculation, but maybe that's what's happening with the built-in decoder on Cesman's MB.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2005 4:37 pm 
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Location: Nashville, TN
Human wrote:
But is that a technical limitation or a marketing decision? If a board that could do 1080i MPEG-2 decoding would retail for $50 more than one that didn't, they may need to know there's a market out there before making such a board.

both sure you could make a board for a little more that had enough power, but then it draws more power and produces more heat, which are both qualities that draw people to the epia boards in the first place.

Human wrote:
Are you saying that when it comes to decoding video, XvMC is not a replacement for a weak CPU?

here's my experience. I have no problem using xvmc to decode sdtv, but my box doesn't really need xvmc to do that anyways. However, I had many problems using xvmc to decode hdtv, where software decoding used up 90+% of my processing power. when it worked it dropped it down to 60% or so, but crashed alot. (all this on my old 1700+) likewise I've heard almost everyone who tries to use xvmc to allow them to use a 300-400Mhz cpu to do sdtv having the same problems, and the same cpu ratios would basically apply. So my deduction is that it works fine when you don't really need it, but if you'll still be using over 50% cpu even when using xvmc it's worthless. People dissagree with this and say it's plain broke, but I never did have any problems with sdtv and this is just my observation. (I haven't looked at the code or anything advanced like that)

Human wrote:
I've been toying with the idea of feeding an HD MPEG-2 file to the decoder on my PVR-350, but I don't want to blow it up :) I suppose a hardware decoder could have some built-in limitation on the bandwidth and/or resolution of its MPEG-2 source. It's speculation, but maybe that's what's happening with the built-in decoder on Cesman's MB.

this is a possibility I know nothing of the specs on the card, however I know that the nvidia xvmc implementation will decode hdtv with xvmc (above problems apply)

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 Post subject: wish list item
PostPosted: Sun May 01, 2005 10:49 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jul 04, 2004 8:57 am
Posts: 36
some wish list thoughts:

1. I'd like to see a ceritifed spec for a silent frontend box. Such a box would require a separate myth backend. It could sit in a stereo cabinet (open faced I assume for the air flow) and be as close to totally silent as possible (a-la hauppage mvp). It would also need a remote control. It should support 5.1surround audio (either/and/or digital or analog). Maybe it doesn't even need a hard drive and could run knoppmyth from cd....but that might be noisey.

2. A cheap, noisey spec for a backend box. ;) This box could be hot and loud as it needs to be. No remote control needed.

3. Ideally, both boxes above could handle HDTV over 100 or 1000 mb ethernet.

4. Finally, apologies if this is off topic, but I've had trouble finding a good "swithcing" solution for my mythtv living room setup. By that I mean, I still need a surround reciever/amplifier for speakers, and I still prefer to use a dedicated dvd player. I expect someday I'll have other audio/video sources that don't originate from my mythtv box as well. I haven't been able to find a reciever that could handle switching between a pc, dvd, etc. Is hdmi the answer for this? Will pc's have video cards with hdmi outs? Will reciever/amplifiers have DVI inputs? OK, so this last item is more a question that a wish... ;)

Dan

(I'm writing this after I just cooked a hard drive in my myth box because I didn't have adequate ventilation in the cabinet I stuffed it in. When I rebuild, I'm hoping to use a frontend/backend solution, and I'm not finding much info on proven, silent, frontend setups. I have used the mvpmc hack - it's way cool - but I'm kinda spoiled by the fully featured frontend, and really miss comm skipping.)


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 Post subject: Re: wish list item
PostPosted: Mon May 02, 2005 1:34 am 
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Joined: Wed Mar 03, 2004 7:43 pm
Posts: 743
Location: Sydney, Australia
bhamail wrote:
I just cooked a hard drive in my myth box because I didn't have adequate ventilation in the cabinet I stuffed it in.


I feel your pain - I dread to think what will happen when my current hard disks die. I suspect my wife will chop something off!

I currently have a Ahanix DVine 6 case with some of that self-adhesive foam on the inside of the top cover. The case's PSU had its fan replaced with an 80mm SilentX one, and I put a 60mm SilentX on the back panel. It is quiet enough (certainly quieter than my projector), but the PSU fan's airflow is lower, and the two 7200rpm disks do run hot. I think I will have to bolt a big heatsink onto them to improve the amount of heat they can shift into the case's minimal airflow.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu May 05, 2005 4:54 pm 
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Posts: 36
I feel that for what I'm doing and for those of us that will be doing a lot of HDTV recording that storage is a big PITA and costs $$$. I would like to see a nicely priced, expandable 1TB solution, with gigabit and 54g wireless.

I would use this as a place to copy all my dvd's to so they're accessable via network and and some HD content.

It would also need to be Raid 5 and if the drives were in a hotswappable case that would be even better.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu May 05, 2005 10:29 pm 
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Joined: Tue Dec 07, 2004 12:04 pm
Posts: 369
coreyt wrote:
It would also need to be Raid 5 and if the drives were in a hotswappable case that would be even better.


Here ya go:

http://mysettopbox.tv/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=4437

-brendan


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