socket s1 mini ITX AMD mobo for HTPC? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 3 Old 11-11-2010, 02:27 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm trying to find a good way to make a hard drive-based jukebox for a few hundred .iso files so I can watch them on my bedroom TV. It's non-HD (originally from the living room), but was too expensive to throw away, it's too big to put anywhere else in the house, and even the cheapest Black Friday LCD that won't leave me with a smaller picture would cost at least $500... and would still leave me at square one with respect to my DVD-management problem. So the s-video requirement is non-negotiable. On the other hand, I'd like to avoid pointlessly painting myself into a corner, so I'd like any motherboard I get to at least support component video and either HDMI or DVI.

So far, the only board I've found that seems to meet my requirements is the "PC Partner" RS690IKS1-AB5S. Spec-wise, it looks almost ideal:

* mini-ITX

* s-video, component video, hdmi, vga, and spdif (both coaxial and optical; the coaxial jack does double-duty as composite video out if I really needed it and switched the jumper) -- all on the rear i/o panel.

* AMD, so MythTV will actually work properly with it. I considered the Jetway J7F5M1G5D-VDE-LF from Newegg, but scrapped the idea after finding out that for all intents and purposes, nobody has ever gotten MPEG2/4 acceleration to work reliably with it under Linux.

* Relatively cheap (about $100 with shipping)

Of course, it has a few issues as well:

* I've never heard of "PC Partners", they don't appear to have a website, and it's probably a given that the board will never, ever have a newer BIOS or anything that resembles manufacturer support.

* Where in ${deity}'s name do you go to buy a HSF for socket 638/S1?

* I have no idea what I need CPU-wise. I think I could probably get away with the cheapest $25 mobile Sempron since it will only be playing mpeg2 video from ISO files with a chipset that hopefully supports acceleration under Linux

Has anybody ever heard of this company, or have any thoughts about this board's suitability for something like MythTV or XBMC -- as a DVD ISO jukebox for a non-HDTV via s-video today?

Truth be told, I'm not hellbent on mini-ITX... but as a practical matter, microATX motherboards that support s-video, component, and DVI or HDMI are pretty rare too (let alone have connectors for all of them on the rear i/o panel instead of a fake backplane that occupies a card slot). The irony is that my old motherboard (that I gave to a friend last year) actually DID have all the above, but it's too late to try and go take it back now ;-)

Here's kind of a tentative shopping list:

* RS690IKS1-AB5S, about $100

* Turion 64 X2, probably something in the class of a TL-50 or TL-52, about $40-50. Assuming Linux can do MPEG-2/4 acceleration with this board's video chipset, that should be more than good enough as long as I don't have to do realtime video encoding, right?

* HSF... $???

* 2 gigs of DDR2 ram (free, somewhere in my desk drawer)

* 1.5tb hard drive, around $100

* mini-ITX case with power supply. I'm pretty fond of the Thermaltake Element Q from Newegg (~$80).

* old 16x DVD-ROM for ripping (free, in the closet gathering dust)

Am I forgetting anything? (no capture/tuner card, because I have DirecTV and it would be completely useless)
LL
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post #2 of 3 Old 11-11-2010, 11:20 PM
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PC Partner is the major manufacturer of AMD graphics cards and motherboards and supplies products to Sapphire, EQS, Connect3D etc.

GPU is ATI Radeon X1250 (released in February 2007). I don't know how terrible it is under Linux. At least it does not support hardware acceleration for H.264/VC-1 decoding under any OS.

Perhaps you will have less trouble with current hardware components like these:

- Celeron E3400 dual-core 2.6GHz, $54 (much faster than Turion X2)
- Stock cooler, $0 (CPU runs very cool [5W-10W at idle and video playback].)
- ZOTAC G41ITX-A-E, G41 chipset mini-ITX, $80 (a good motherboard as long as you don't use onboard video; you don't use it anyway as it does not support S-video.)
- NVIDIA GeForce 9500 GT (supporting component video/S-video/composite video as well as VGA/DVI/HDMI), $45
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post #3 of 3 Old 11-12-2010, 10:22 AM
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It appears that's a 690 chipset board and those were being phased out back 3 years ago when I was looking for a motherboard. You'll get no HD video decoding so you'll need a decent processor that can do it.

No current onboard video supports S-Video or component video. So, you're looking at either using outdated hardware or using a video card.

Not sure what HDD you're looking at but you should be able to easily find a 2T for $100.

Peter
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