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The other benefits of the Phenom (L3 cache, faster hypertransport) have no real world benefits for HTPC applications.
But that is not what is being reported right now. The few reviews that are available are reporting higher HQV scores when a Phenom is used.

What's not clear to me is if some of the new X2 CPUs (I'm thinking 4850e specifically) will let you increase the HT speed and if they do will that give a corresponding boost in HQV performance.
 

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The benefits of the Phenom probably come from it's higher IPC count. DOn't get me wrong, I love my 9500. But I think it's a CPU better suited for a desktop computer than an HTPC. Remember that Phenom's are 95W TDP, although each core now has separate voltage and speed control, as well as NB speed control.

And no, the a64 x2s can't benefit from the higher HT bus. AMD will release Phenoms with defective dies as triple and dual cores eventually, and those will be able to benefit from the new 780/790 chipset features. The revised Stepping of Phenoms is due this spring, minus the TLB error.
 

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Trying to get this clear in my head. The purpose is primarily video playback. A lot of TV in .avi format (DivX or XVid) as well as Blu-ray and HD DVD (might allow for me to reduce the number of standalone boxes I have).

So, if I upgrade my HTPC (going 780G) and want to go with a CPU that will give flawless HD playback through a front end (either MS or MediaPortal) ... which is a better solution: a Phenom or or an X2?

If X2, the 4850e is seemingly not yet available in Canada. Would a BE-2350 not be underpowered for the application?
 

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The TV stuff will be easy no matter what solution.

For flawless HD I would have to say that a Phenom is a better choice right now. Keep in mind though that it is still very early days and the driver situation is very fluid.

If you knew you could unload the BE-2350 at not too much of a loss you could always be the guinea pig for us and if it doesn't work go to a Phenom. :)

Myself I'm probably waiting for the 9550 (aka B3 stepping) to become available. That should also mean two driver updates as well.
 

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I'm back and forth on this and now thinking that I might wait for the next batch of CPU's before taking the plunge. Then again, have my annual bonus eating a hole through my wallet ;)
 

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This thread turns out to be very informative.

Anyway, I have a question for you guys. Can it play spiderman3 which requires Shader Model 3 and 250 MB on the graphics card? Can it play the game without an additional graphics card?

The reason I asked is that I bought spiderman3 recently for my grandson to play when he visits, but my single core desktop cannot play it, and I did not read the system requirements when I bought the game. So, I had to buy a new graphics card to make it play.

TIA
 

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Hard to say for sure.

The embedded GPU supports DX10 so it should be compatible. The question will be what framerate you can get.

Most of the reviews have summaries for some popular games so I would suggest checking those out. The review at Anandtech is the most recent I believe.
 

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Spiderman 3 Test

I'll run it this evening when I get home!

Remote HTPC power on update: I had to remove front panel, then remove the display from the panel, then disassemble the display by removing the LCD from it's housing. Then remove the powerS/W wires from the motherboard and connect it to the display (slight mod required) Then reattach alternate power wires to M/B. I don't get it. The altered case works well with or without the remote, so why doesn't it already come wired properly?

Has anyone else seen any posts from other people that had this problem? I can't be the only one!
 

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jv: how do I check framerate?
Honestly, I'm not 100% sure since I'm not a gamer. I believe some of the games have a way to display it builtin or there is an application you run.

The real test is that if it the motion is jerky while you are playing the game then your frame rate is too low.
 

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I picked up the GA-MA69GM-S2H 4 or 5 months ago and I have to say I'm surprised that people have found the onboard video working well with HD/Blu-Ray playback. Its running with 2 Gigs of RAM and a LG SuperBLU drive with HD-DVD/Blu-Ray playback. Playback is with PowerDVD Ultra

I purchased this board with high expectations on the onboard video. In my personal experience is that I could not get smooth HD/Blu-Ray playback with the onboard video with a X2 4800. CPU usage was always high at 80-90% and the playback would have hicups. It seemed as if the hardware decoding on the video wasn't working. I tried reinstalling Vista as well as installing XP MCE. Nothing worked for me. I ended up picking up a 8600GT for about $100 and all of my playback issues were solved. Smooth playback and about 20% CPU usuage.

It seems as if most have posted sucess stories with the onboard video. Has there been significant driver upgrades in the past few months? I'd love to get the onboard video working with proper HW decoding as it would be a little quieter than the 8600GT. Does anyone have any suggestions?
 

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I think the only success that people have had with a 690G based board would have been using S/W decoding for HD-DVD/BluRay playback. For OTA HD, which is MPEG2 based the 690G would probably work.

I haven't followed it that closely but I suspect that would require more CPU power than you have for the new formats.
 

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Discussion Starter #54
The problem with EVERYTHING from AMD is that there is always something that is not turned on in the driver that should be by default.

Also, you need to make sure that the hardware accelleration in PowerDVD is turned on (I believe it is by default).

I have had sucess with the 690G but that was only with the HD HQV disc. I have not played with an actual movie. My CPU util on the 690G was about 70% with an X2 4000.

This new 780G is a very tempting one piece upgrade for many of us that have the 690G boards. The 780G is scoring a solid 80 points in the HD HQV benchmark and is showing super low CPU utilization on all content.
 

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Thanks Mr Raider. Using Fraps, I got a max frame rate of 30. Played a little while and average was 26. Don't know what it means, but the game was quite smooth while playing it. This is on a single core AMD64 mobile 4000+ overclocked to 3 GHz, and a EVGA 7600 video card. I think I'll need to upgrade soon. This 780G board sounds great.
 

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Too bad they don't make Intel 775 mobos with this integrated graphics. I would prefer having an E8000 series as my CPU and still be able to use onboard video like the 780G.
 

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Too bad they don't make Intel 775 mobos with this integrated graphics. I would prefer having an E8000 series as my CPU and still be able to use onboard video like the 780G.
If you're in no rush the Intel version of the Nvidia 8200/8300 chipset would be a pretty good fit. Or the Intel G45.
 

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If you're in no rush the Intel version of the Nvidia 8200/8300 chipset would be a pretty good fit. Or the Intel G45.
Are there any mobos out yet which have these video chips? I have generally used Asus mobos in the past and have been pretty happy with them.
 

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The Nvidia cards are out in Europe but are waiting for a driver update before they are going to be released in the NA market.

Since I am waiting for the B3 Phenoms, probably a 9150, to be available before I make my upgrade they might be available by then.

According to the guys at Anandtech the driver update is due at the end of April. They are working on a major shootout between the various 780G boards and are planning on covering the 8200 as well.

Should be interesting.
 
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