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post #16 of 28 (permalink) Old 2008-01-20, 07:57 PM
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... and the DVI-D cable (which is what you need) will plug into the DVD-I connector on the video card.

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post #17 of 28 (permalink) Old 2008-01-20, 07:57 PM
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Marvin G

IF that system is a 1 GHz P3, it is likely sporting a 4x AGP slot. If it is, your best bet for a video card will be to grab a Radeom X1300 or X1600 in AGP or a GeForce 7600 GS or GT in AGP.
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post #18 of 28 (permalink) Old 2008-01-20, 08:01 PM Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
IF that system is a 1 GHz P3, it is likely sporting a 4x AGP slot. If it is, your best bet for a video card will be to grab a Radeom X1300 or X1600 in AGP or a GeForce 7600 GS or GT in AGP.
Unfortunately it's just a 500 Mhz P3 with an AGP 1.0 compliant slot ( which I think means 1x and 2X AGP).
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post #19 of 28 (permalink) Old 2008-01-20, 08:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin G
Unfortunately it's just a 500 Mhz P3 with an AGP 1.0 compliant slot ( which I think means 1x and 2X AGP).


You are correct...
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post #20 of 28 (permalink) Old 2008-01-20, 08:17 PM Thread Starter
 
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As my options are narrowing, I'm currenty thinking about a card , about $60, like this: GeCube Radeon 9250 / 128MB DDR / PCI / DVI / VGA / TV Out / Video Card

It avoids the AGP issues I might have, doesnt require a 300W power supply (I have 200W), has the three outputs ( DVI-I, VGA S-Vid).

And its gotta be better than the AGP 32MB ATI Rage 128 Ultra thats there now.

Last edited by Marvin G; 2008-01-20 at 08:24 PM.
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post #21 of 28 (permalink) Old 2008-01-20, 09:40 PM Thread Starter
 
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Question

If

- AGP1.0 means the motherboard can accept 1x or 2x, and
- AGP 4x cards can run in AGP 2x mode if 4x is not supported by the motherboard.

...does the mean I can use a 4x AGP card on a AGP 1.0 motherboard ????

I got excited there for a moment, but I assume the answer is no, because of the card voltage, which I assume works like this:

1x : 3.3V
2x : 3.3v and 1.5V
4x: 1.5 V

....meaning that:

- 1x and 2x can each run on 1.0 board , but only for 3.3V boards
- 4x can run in 2x mode but only for 1.5V boards

...and thus a 4x card, @ 1.5V , could never work in a AGP1.0 3.3V board

Correct???????? !!
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post #22 of 28 (permalink) Old 2008-01-20, 10:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin G View Post
Is this the same as a 480p display... or 480i??

When it is said that S-Video supports up to 480...does that mean it can carry a 480p signal?
You're right... 640x480 over DVI is closer to 480p (official 480p is actually 720x480), where as s-video would be 480i.

As for your DVI-D vs DVI-I, jvincent has it perfect. DVI-D is digital only, where as DVI-I is digital or analog. When DVI-I is running in digital mode, it is equal to DVI-D. What the manual is trying to say is that you cannot feed the TV an analog VGA signal over DVI. A video card could potentially have just DVI-D, but most have DVI-I and come with a small dongle to adapt DVI-I to VGA.

Hope this helps,
Joey
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post #23 of 28 (permalink) Old 2008-01-20, 11:01 PM Thread Starter
 
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Okay, good explanations.

In terms of cables tene:

a) I assume that if I were buying a new cable (for computer to CRT) , I would need either a:
-DVD-I to DVD-D cable, or a
-DVD-D to DVD-D cable.

b) And I assume that for the spare cable I currently have ( http://ca.geocities.com/[email protected]/docs/dvi.pdf), I would simple buy the adapter shown.

Have I got it right?
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post #24 of 28 (permalink) Old 2008-01-20, 11:21 PM
 
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I'd be a little worried about software support problems with an ATI card that old. They no longer support Multi Media Centre (MMC). And Catalyst Media Centre will not work with cards prior to the x1000 series. In an HTPC as old as yours, you'll want to offload as much video processing as you can to hardware acceleration. That may not be possible with a PCI graphics card.

I know an eVGA 7600GT 8x AGP will work in a 4x slot. But a 2x...?

Its always a tough call to either upgrade using old technology or biting the bullet and getting a new system.
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post #25 of 28 (permalink) Old 2008-01-21, 06:06 AM Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael DeAbreu View Post
I'd be a little worried about software support problems with an ATI card that old. They no longer support Multi Media Centre (MMC). And Catalyst Media Centre will not work with cards prior to the x1000 series. In an HTPC as old as yours, you'll want to offload as much video processing as you can to hardware acceleration. That may not be possible with a PCI graphics card. I know an eVGA 7600GT 8x AGP will work in a 4x slot. But a 2x...?
The performance demands here are modest - no MMC, no CMC, mo MCE . just photo slide shows, so I think the PCI card will be fine.

Thst said I would prefer AGP ( frees up a slot, and in theory a faster card). But 1x and 2x cards are hard to find. And 8x cards are a non-starter and 4x cards, well, might or might not work.

Here is a twist - per a post I found on google, on upgrades for the sme computer (Dell T500). a user claims writes:
-just look at a photo of whichever card you're going to get before buying it.
-as long as the edge connector has three segments, it WILL work on a 2X motherboard (given that your power supply is adequate), even if the box says "4X/8X."
-However, if the card's edge connector only has two segments, then it WON'T work on a 2X board
-I've run many "4X/8X" cards on old 2X boards without any problems, including the Radeon 9800 Pro, FX 5700Ultra, and GF4 Ti4800SE.


Hmmmm....

-Here is a pic of the ATI radeon 9800 Pro....I assume this is the 3 segments the user is referring to: http://www.ixbt.com/video2/images/r9...scan-front.jpg (If you cant load the pic, jsut hit enter at the end of the URL after the pic tries to load)

-Similsrly, here is FX 5700 Ultra , again, I assume this is 3 segments : http://www.guru3d.com/admin/imageview.php?image=1642. Also seems to be a hint of 2X here: http://www.guru3d.com/article/content/88/5/ and here: http://www.guru3d.com/article/content/88/6/

So is this guy right??? I wonder is he is confusing 2x boards with 2.0 boards. Sure he may have run 4x/8x on a 2.0 boards...but did he run it them on a 1.0 board (certified to 1x/2x). Then again he was referring to the same machine. I sent him a PM, but his post way back in May.

Interesting - one sn suction site, they advertise a ATI Radeon 9250 128MB DDR AGP Video Card as AGP 8X / 4X / 2X compatible

Last edited by Marvin G; 2008-01-21 at 06:30 AM.
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post #26 of 28 (permalink) Old 2008-01-22, 11:33 PM Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaw View Post
You're right... 640x480 over DVI is closer to 480p (official 480p is actually 720x480), where as s-video would be 480i
1) S-video: Even with a average 480i picture sent from a PC's s-video out to a larger screen display via s-video inputs, I thought most TVs would upconvert SD content to the native resolution of the TV - so wouldn't the picture quality be up to 720p???...or is that only true over the component inputs?

2) DVI : Even with an average 480p picture seny from a PC's DVIs out to a large screen display via DVI, again, wouldn't the image upconvert?

3) If the above are mediocre images, under what scenario are HTPC sourced videos more stellar - is it only when running MCE??
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post #27 of 28 (permalink) Old 2008-01-23, 10:13 AM
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1) The one thing you have to keep in mind is that composite (The yellow jack) and s-video are interlaced 480 formats and there is nothing your TV can really do with them to make them look much better.

2) If you are able to use a VGA or DVI connection, you should be using the very highest resolution that the TV can handle. From there, the PC will upscale as best as there is except to spend $5000 on an external video processor. Very seldom to you find TVs that have unquestionably stellar upscaling abilities. They are out there but they are not the majority.

3) The presentation software (MCE, SageTV, etc...) has little to nothing to do with the quality of the video. It is pretty much the domain of the video card and the drivers. This is why when people ask about a PC/HTPCs ability to produce better output than say a dedicated BluRay player, the only real answer is "That depends".

Every month ATI puts out newer drivers that usually make things better and faster. NVidia is close behind at every other month or so. Beyond that, there is a new generation of graphics card out every 12 months. And to top it off, there is still a 6 month later refresh that fixes mistakes or makes up for a lack of features until the next full new generation of card comes out.



The shortest answer (And it ain't short ) is that the best possible situation is that you have teh very newest video card series that you can put in your PC, you use the input on your TV that is the most "compatable" with the video card (For some this will be DVI/HDMI and others it could be component). From there, make sure you are using the latest drivers for the card and that the resolution that the card is set to output is as close to the native resolution of the TV as is possible. If all of this is done, your HTPC should be doing all or the lions share of the upscaling/downscaling of non-native formatted video content. This should deliver the very best image possible without breaking the bank or ending up divorced.
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post #28 of 28 (permalink) Old 2008-01-23, 10:36 AM Thread Starter
 
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Great response...thanks!
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