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View Full Version : DVD writers(?) and whats the story with mpeg cards?



Chris Wilson
21-08-2002, 08:40 PM
Is it possible to get DVD writers yet?
Also what is the story with the mpeg decoder cards that may also be needed?
Does one just plug a DVD drive in and play movies, or is there more to it that that?

feeling ignorant on the subject.
Chris.

Mike
21-08-2002, 08:46 PM
Yeah Dick Smith (bad example, but it is just an example) has a DVD writer for about $1100 or so I think... You need to look at compatibility first though, as there is still no standard :(

Mike.

tweak\'e
21-08-2002, 08:53 PM
yes u can get dvd writers but they are not cheap. do you really need a dvd writer or will a cd writer do ok?

note- dvd writer is a little different than a dvd rom. if all you want to do is play dvd's then you only need a dvd rom. mpeg decoder cards are usefull for pc's that are not powerfull enough to use a software dvd player. ie used on older pc's so you can play dvd's.

Mike
21-08-2002, 08:56 PM
> only need a dvd rom. mpeg decoder cards are usefull
> for pc's that are not powerfull enough to use a
> software dvd player. ie used on older pc's so you can
> play dvd's.

that said, you probably won't need one, as if your system is powerful enough to run a DVD writer it'll probably be powerful enough to handle playing DVDs (this is just an assumption that a DVD writer will need some grunt:))

Mike.

Chris Wilson
21-08-2002, 09:06 PM
i don't NEED a DVD writer as such, i'm just wondering, seeing the roms are so cheap now it seemed the next logical progression, even though i am yet to see one. One would be handy!

ANYWAY, what i was thinking of was a DVD to go in my better s new computer, it will be all new brain (mobo, ram, cpu, case) and seeing the prive of a DVD rom is only slightly more than a CD rom, it seems the logical thing to piut in it for her, then i get confused by the mpeg card thing.

the combo i was thinking of getting (maybe) is the CMB002 seen on This Page (https://www.computerfuture.co.nz/) (go to the first menu, select "combos") would there be enough grunt in that to run a cheap DVD rom?

PeebZ
21-08-2002, 09:29 PM
Evening Chris,

The point that most people miss about the MPEG 2 decoder cards is the simple fact that most Cards have quality picture + Digital sound out.

Now I know that you can get Video cards with TVOut but really this is still seen in my eyes as a bit of a novelty as the quality is still not there.. check out Comparison of current TV chips (http://tvtool.info/english/tvchips_e.htm). for a small glance at where TVout chips are at.

The other benefit being the digital sound out that can plug into your receiver. No need for those small 2W speakers attached to the PC.

So basically the MPEG 2 card performs the work of a standalone DVD player and can be compared therefore on the same level. On a side note the quality on the monitor is while not noticeable is regarded as being very slightly degraded, where as the TVout is meant to be of up most quality.

Jess

Chris Wilson
21-08-2002, 09:37 PM
so correct me if i got this wrong...

with a MPEG card, it will not only reduce the amount that has to be processed by the rest of the computer, but it will enable Dyan to plug directly from a panel on the back of her computer to her TV & stereo for the full appreciation of movies, and this will give far higher quality than her 17" monitor?

tweak\'e
21-08-2002, 09:47 PM
> > only need a dvd rom. mpeg decoder cards are
> usefull
> > for pc's that are not powerfull enough to use a
> > software dvd player. ie used on older pc's so you
> can
> > play dvd's.
>
> that said, you probably won't need one, as if your
> system is powerful enough to run a DVD writer it'll
> probably be powerful enough to handle playing DVDs
> (this is just an assumption that a DVD writer will
> need some grunt:))
>
> Mike.

i can't see anyone forking out $1000+ for a dvd writer and installing it in a sub 300mhz machine.

most decent sound cards have digital out but if you really want to play dvd on the tv is buy a standalone dvd player for the tv.

seeing as there is only a small difference between a dvd rom and a cd rom a dvd rom would be handy.

PeebZ
21-08-2002, 09:55 PM
*Yes with a MPEG2 Card this will greatly reduce CPU processer Power.

*Yes the Card with Have TVout and digital sound out so that you can watch the in comfit on the big screen and utilise the Dobly decoding of the Stereo.

*Now comapiring the quality on the monitor. with no MPEG card, its all down to the CPU processing power, a PC over the specs of a P3 500 with good a software DVD decoder (WinDVD, PowerDVD etc) will produce very high quality DVD playback on the monitor.
But if you want to TV out, then qualtity could be degraded (see above post).
With a MPEG card the play back on the monitor will be high quality while TVOUT will be of very high quality.

Jess

Chris Wilson
21-08-2002, 10:06 PM
1.1 gig is the speed of the machine i am looking at making for her, (see above) which is well above the tweak'e 300meg minamum!
i dont think playing DVD's through the tele would be important, just handy IF it was cheap and easy, Dyans kids might disagree though. The machine will probably get the CD writer form her exsisting set up, and possibly get a DVD later, as getting machine 2 into exsistance is going to eat well into the budget.

For the moment, i'm just looking at the options so i/we can make the best choices. As is obvious, she leaves the tech stuff to me, and simply doesn't want to know.....

There is a need to make a second machine to avoid the constant cue in her house for the one machine. She has a geek son.

Can anyone see any reason why the cheapest DVD we can find could not be used directly on the set up i/we are looking at?

Chris Wilson
21-08-2002, 10:11 PM
Thanks PeebZ,
That answers most of the immediate questions, A lot to learn, but at least i'm not stumbling around in the dark anymore.

Cheers
Chris....

tweak\'e
21-08-2002, 10:16 PM
the MAIN thing to look for with dvd roms is how to make it region free :)
work that out before buying it.

Chris Wilson
21-08-2002, 10:20 PM
tweak'e.......
?:| just when i thought i had a grip on the concept..... ?:|

?:| region free????? say what?? ?:|

tweak\'e
21-08-2002, 10:34 PM
just like normall standalone dvd players, computer dvd players are also region coded. some drives are made region free, others its a jumber setting while others you have to flash the firmware. unless the drive is region free you will have 5 region changes before it locks on the last region used. see previous posts about it. if it locks on the wrong zone you will need to buy new drive to play your dvd's.

opps csi is on....got to go.

PeebZ
21-08-2002, 10:38 PM
Region Free. -
First what is a region ?.
For an complete anwser have a read here (http://www.digital-digest.com/dvd/articles/region.html)
Simple - To control releases around the globe and we'll throw in cause the US still hang onto the NTSC video format the globe was divided into 6 regions.


Most DVD Roms written into their firmware (software that is embedded in your DVD Drive) can change a Region only 5 times before they become locked. ie stay in zone 4 for good. Not really to consumer helpful are they.
This protection is on top of Windows DVD region settings.

Zoning in NZ is not to much of a concern anymore as Video stores can only buy zone 4 (Aus + NZ) DVD's now. In the old days they rented out Zone 1 as well (USA) as they were released alot earyier.

Also the firmware can be flashed (cracked) with new firmware that removes this problem, but also software tools mentioned in the news such as RegionKiller (http://elby.ch/english/fun/software/index.html) made by the people of clone cd. (So it has to be good for ya). Bacically this itercepts the signal from the DVD and modifys the signal to what the DVD player and or Windows wants to hear, so that the movie can be played.

Jess

tweak\'e
21-08-2002, 11:43 PM
one small thing. there are three main region codeding. the dvd drive itself, as already disscused, the dvd software player(plenty of region killer apps, eg region killer, dvd genie) and tho rare windows itself.

Chris Wilson
22-08-2002, 12:17 AM
which leads to the question of what about DVD on linux, or would that have to be a hardware DVD player?

Graham L
22-08-2002, 03:58 PM
Have a look at Linux TV Stuff (http://www.linuxtv.org/). For more, google will give you "a few" ;-) when you prompt it with "linux dvd".