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privoxy
26-09-2009, 01:46 PM
Hello

So i am starting to build my first media center,

I just have a few small questions,

How do i get the best sound and video quality to my TV?

I have spent many hours googling and seem to only find help if i want to record TV,

I have no desire to record live TV, just want to work out how i can get the best possible picture and sound from downloaded blu-rays and HD content.

I will need a new sound and graphics card, but stumped on what ones and how best to connect them to my TV? I have a Samsung X7 40" along with a DVD player/thingy that my 5.1 sound system connects to.

Any help?

gary67
26-09-2009, 02:08 PM
look for a card with HDMI then if you want to watch HD

privoxy
26-09-2009, 02:14 PM
So do i want a card with HDMI port? or a card that supports HDMI?

From what i have been reading, it seems that DVI and HDMI are identical apart from the fact HDMI carries audio?

Speedy Gonzales
26-09-2009, 03:30 PM
Whats the diff, it needs to have an HDMI connection on it. You may as well get a monittor that supports HDMI as well. If youre talking about getting pirated movies, (if thats what downloaded blu-ray and HD content means), read the forum rules. We cant help you, if you are.

nofam
26-09-2009, 04:18 PM
Your best and cheapest option would be an E8400 or similar platform with an nVidia 9400 (or better) GPU running the Linux-based XBMC; this is the only version of XBMC that currently supports hardware offloading to the GPU.

Bear in mind however, that Linux (or any version of XMBC) is incapable of natively playing blu-ray. As long as they're (legal!) rips, you should be good to go.

If price isn't such an issue there are other options.

Blam
26-09-2009, 05:19 PM
From what i have been reading, it seems that DVI and HDMI are identical apart from the fact HDMI carries audio?

Correct.

That is only the cable in between. You should maybe be thinking about what media you'll be playing that will be 1080p?

Is a PS3 or such an option?

Blam

Jen
26-09-2009, 07:53 PM
I have no desire to record live TV, just want to work out how i can get the best possible picture and sound from downloaded blu-rays and HD content.Are these pirated movies? Please be aware that asking for help with pirating or pirated software is against the forum rules.

whellington
26-09-2009, 08:34 PM
*Comments removed*

privoxy
26-09-2009, 11:13 PM
Blu-ray trailers are available for download from most respected legal websites, I believe even itunes offers them?

The matter of where the content is sourced from should not dictate the ability to help someone with hardware issues, I am not interested in any help what so ever with obtaining said content from members of this board.

Perhaps a better way to word my original question would to have been "a setup that will flawlessly play blu-ray .iso files with the menu intact, at 1080p, while also being able to support .mkv containers with the majority of files found within.

Thank you to those with answers regarding the hardware to buy, And no price is not really a problem.

davidmmac
27-09-2009, 10:40 AM
Vuze offers various high defenition movie traliers in their online site :thumbs:.

Not too sure about playing "blue ray .iso files" but VLC, smplayer and MPC will happily play .mkv's.

Chilling_Silence
28-09-2009, 09:33 AM
https://help.ubuntu.com/community/RestrictedFormats/BluRayAndHDDVD

There's nothing wrong with both playing AND mounting .iso files in linux, nothing really special about Bluray.

XBMC / VLC ought to play them fine, in windows or linux.

You want a graphics card that supports HDMI, most TV's don't have DVI, but only VGA / HDMI.
If your TV has options for audio over HDMI then all the better, otherwise you can go for Optical, or a myriad of other ways of setting up your audio. It's probably worth investigating a 5.1 Channel card for your PC.

nofam
28-09-2009, 10:43 AM
https://help.ubuntu.com/community/RestrictedFormats/BluRayAndHDDVD

There's nothing wrong with both playing AND mounting .iso files in linux, nothing really special about Bluray.

XBMC / VLC ought to play them fine, in windows or linux.

You want a graphics card that supports HDMI, most TV's don't have DVI, but only VGA / HDMI.
If your TV has options for audio over HDMI then all the better, otherwise you can go for Optical, or a myriad of other ways of setting up your audio. It's probably worth investigating a 5.1 Channel card for your PC.

Good clarification Chill - I should've said unable to play blu-ray natively; tbh, I doubt I could be bothered going through such a malarky to watch a blu-ray disc - would be easier to just buy a PS3 :D

Chilling_Silence
28-09-2009, 12:04 PM
Mmmmm ... It's not just a problem for Linux, but even in Windows, unless you fork out $$$ to get the likes of PowerDVD 9 for USD$49+

sroby
29-09-2009, 09:35 AM
HTPC isnt really simple plug & play..you gotta do the time

from memory
get a ATI 4670 based vid card
install PowerDVD demo, it will install the codecs needed for H264 hardware acceleration which will work after demo expires.
load up media portal, put up with occasional crashes, or maybe XBMC or GBPVR. Or just use VLC or MPC-HT if you dont need the fancy interface.
Use dvi to hdmi adaptor or get a Vid card with native HDMI connector
Struggle trying to get audio passthrough into HDMI to work (you need a recent model vid card). I gave up here, simply couldnt get any HDMI audio so I used VGA output(1080) to TV with separate audio cable.

If you are having trouble now, Linux based HTPC is NOT an option
SVGA will output 1080 , some TV's & projectors have the connector
HDMI audio passthrough may be more trouble than its worth.
Its a PC, you gotta expect it to run like a PC-ie not be perfect

Chilling_Silence
29-09-2009, 09:51 AM
Struggle trying to get audio passthrough into HDMI to work (you need a recent model vid card). I gave up here, simply couldnt get any HDMI audio so I used VGA output(1080) to TV with separate audio cable.

This works much better in Win7 - Grab the public beta and give it a try! :)

Speedy Gonzales
29-09-2009, 09:58 AM
Or get a vidcard thats got it on it. Then you wont have to connect anything to it. One reason why I got this card. its built in. Saves me connecting it to whatever on the mobo..Altho it still wasnt easy getting hdmi audio to work.

I had to update the driver in device manager, to get it to install first. But everytime I update the ATI drivers, it gives you the option to update it (if its an earlier version). Wouldnt say mine is the latest version (HD3450). Only got it because its got DVI, HDMI and VGA on it

nedkelly
29-09-2009, 10:00 AM
thought you could no longer legally get the beta or rc?

Chilling_Silence
29-09-2009, 10:08 AM
Ah well, still works here for now :)

Blam
29-09-2009, 03:56 PM
thought you could no longer legally get the beta or rc?

You can't get it-but if you have the iso from before M$ stopped the download it still works until march next year(RC)

Beta expired a while back..

Phil B
29-09-2009, 05:08 PM
I've just built one. Nothing flash, but it does the job with no problem
Asus P5QL-EM M/B with HDMi Out
E7500 CPU
2Gig Ram
500Gig Samsung H/D
Pioneer IDE DVD Drive
$120 Micro ATX Case inc 300 watt P/S
PVR3000 TV Card with Component In
All networked.
I haven't got HDMi switching on my home theatre ( I got it for Christmas 2 years ago & feel I shouldn't just dump it) So I just watch the movies etc in stereo, or I can burn them to disc & get 5.1 in the HT system

I've got the sky digital component out connected to a component splitter via a decent scart to component cable. 1 way to the back of the TV the other to the TV card via RCA cables bought from Repco. Running windows 7. Windows media centre is useless. I think the widescreen TV's in America must be a funny shape, because you can't get it to display full screen, unless it's zoomed that much, half the picture has disappeared. Media Portal I find average. Leadtek PVR2 software is easy to set up & record TV etc, hopeless for playback. Use VLC for playback, excellent sound & video quality (40" Sony)
Now I''ve got that going I'm going to wipe it all & try Mythbuntu. I'd prefer to use it as it's not going to thrash my wallet like an MS product will