Guide to Building a HTPC, Workstation and Server - Page 116 - AVS Forum
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post #3451 of 19307 Old 09-20-2008, 08:14 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AbMagFab View Post

For a custom built system (I just want to add this to an existing PC), can I connect my RcketRaid 2224 card to this chassis in some way? Would it just look like multiple 5TB drives to the RocketRaid?

Its SATA controller is Marvell 88SX6081 (the same as Supermicro 8-port PCI-X card in my recommendations in page 85) and this does not support PM. It is restricted to direct connect SATA interfaces. So you can connect up to 8 SATA drives (8TB if you use 1TB drives) to your controller card.

But as I wrote before, a 2-port PM-aware SATA control card is only $16. If you use two of this card, you should be able to connect 20 HDDs (20TB) (not tested )

- 2 x this card (SiI3132) (to be installed in the main system). (Or use HighPoint RocketRAID 2314 4-port eSATA PM-aware RAID controller PCIe x4 card ~$170.)
- NORCO PRC-4020
- 650W-750W PSU
- 4 x Addonics AD5SAPM 5X1 Internal SATA Port Multiplier (SiI3726)
- 4 x eSATA cable
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post #3452 of 19307 Old 09-20-2008, 08:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by renethx View Post

Its SATA controller is Marvell 88SX6081 (the same as Supermicro 8-port PCI-X card in my recommendations in page 85) and this does not support PM. It is restricted to direct connect SATA interfaces. So you can connect up to 8 SATA drives (8TB if you use 1TB drives) to your controller card.

But as I wrote before, a 2-port PM-aware SATA control card is only $16. If you use two of this card, you should be able to connect 20 HDDs (20TB) (not tested )

- 2 x this card (SiI3132) (to be installed in the main system). (Or use HighPoint RocketRAID 2314 4-port eSATA PM-aware RAID controller PCIe x4 card ~$170.)
- NORCO PRC-4020
- 650W-750W PSU
- 4 x Addonics AD5SAPM 5X1 Internal SATA Port Multiplier (SiI3726)
- 4 x eSATA cable

Gotcha... so do the PM aware cards know that there are multiple drives on the other side, or do they see it as one bi drive?

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post #3453 of 19307 Old 09-20-2008, 08:58 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AbMagFab View Post

Gotcha... so do the PM aware cards know that there are multiple drives on the other side, or do they see it as one bi drive?

If 5 drives are connected to a PM which is connected to a PM-aware SATA controller, then OS recoginzes 5 drives. If the SATA controller is non PM-aware, OS recoginzes only one drive, the rest four drives are not recognized.
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post #3454 of 19307 Old 09-20-2008, 08:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by renethx View Post

If 5 drives are connected to a PM which is connected to a PM-aware SATA controller, then OS recoginzes 5 drives. If the SATA controller is non PM-aware, OS recoginzes only one drive, the rest four drives are not recognized.

Thanks Ren!

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post #3455 of 19307 Old 09-20-2008, 09:23 AM
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renethx,

First of all, thanks for putting up the recommended list. I pretty much followed what you have to build a WHS and so far so good...sort of.

Everything was put together with no issues. I've gone and made a bootable USB Flash Drive to install via USB. Well, I can't boot off of it. I've gone into the settings, followed the guides on how to do it (including the USB setup) and the Gigabyte GA-MA78G-DS3H simply WILL NOT boot from the USB stick. It won't even show up in the BIOS to select it as a hard disk bootable priority. The screwed up thing of it all is that if I go into the QBIOS, I can see the USB stick as a floppy disk. I've even been able to update the BIOS to the latest of the USB memory stick to see if that works. The BIOS updated succesfully, but still won't let me boot off the USB. I did change "first/second/thrid" boot device to have USB-HDD as the lead. Even tried Floppy as QBIOS showed it like that. Any suggestions?

This is what I did to set up the stick in Vista...

diskpart
list disk
select disk 2
clean
create partition primary
select partition 1
active
format fs=fat32
assign
exit

I then copied all of the WHS DVD info to it.

When I boot the system up, it says "Remove disks or any other media. Press any key to restart." I have nothing else installed. No DVD/CD ROM drive. Only the HDD and the Corsair Flash Drive. I can even see it in post, however, trying to change priorities in the BIOS, it doesn't show up. If I take the stick out, it then will get past that message, but then stop and say that the hard drive (unformatted) isn't a system drive.

I even have Onchip USB Controller, USB EHCI Controller and Legacy USB storage detect all on.

Any ideas?
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post #3456 of 19307 Old 09-20-2008, 10:46 AM
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I need some storage advice. In my media server I had a slew of HDDs that fed media to the rest of the PC's on the network. However, yesterday all the media on one of the drives quit playing. I went to the PC they were stored on and tried opening files directly from the HDD. I got "I/O Errors". I reset the computer which froze after POST (where it recognizes all the SATA HDDs) but would boot up from a complete poweroff.

I reset the BIOS to optimized defaults and when I reset the computer again the S.M.A.R.T. on the bad HDD reported "HARD DRIVE FAILURE IMMANENT BACKUP ALL DATA IMMEDIATELY" So luckily I had free space to copy all the data from the bad HDD to another one. Once copied (which copied at full speed) all of my files open and play correctly from the new HDD. So I went to explore this hard drive problem some more and tried using window's built in error checking program which just wouldn't run for that particular hard drive. I also tried reformatting, but after 24 hours it has only gotten to 2%

Anyone got any advice for me? Is the HDD shot? Or was it just a simple error that can be fixed with a reformat? I'm assuming there is no physical damage to the drive since I was able to copy all the data on it to a new source.
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post #3457 of 19307 Old 09-20-2008, 10:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smitty2k1 View Post

I need some storage advice. In my media server I had a slew of HDDs that fed media to the rest of the PC's on the network. However, yesterday all the media on one of the drives quit playing. I went to the PC they were stored on and tried opening files directly from the HDD. I got "I/O Errors". I reset the computer which froze after POST (where it recognizes all the SATA HDDs) but would boot up from a complete poweroff.

I reset the BIOS to optimized defaults and when I reset the computer again the S.M.A.R.T. on the bad HDD reported "HARD DRIVE FAILURE IMMANENT BACKUP ALL DATA IMMEDIATELY" So luckily I had free space to copy all the data from the bad HDD to another one. Once copied (which copied at full speed) all of my files open and play correctly from the new HDD. So I went to explore this hard drive problem some more and tried using window's built in error checking program which just wouldn't run for that particular hard drive. I also tried reformatting, but after 24 hours it has only gotten to 2%

Anyone got any advice for me? Is the HDD shot? Or was it just a simple error that can be fixed with a reformat? I'm assuming there is no physical damage to the drive since I was able to copy all the data on it to a new source.

Hard drive is shot. Suggest Windows Home Server or RAID for fault-tolerant storage of your media.

Hard drives will all eventually fail.

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post #3458 of 19307 Old 09-20-2008, 01:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smitty2k1 View Post

I need some storage advice. In my media server I had a slew of HDDs that fed media to the rest of the PC's on the network. However, yesterday all the media on one of the drives quit playing. I went to the PC they were stored on and tried opening files directly from the HDD. I got "I/O Errors". I reset the computer which froze after POST (where it recognizes all the SATA HDDs) but would boot up from a complete poweroff.

I reset the BIOS to optimized defaults and when I reset the computer again the S.M.A.R.T. on the bad HDD reported "HARD DRIVE FAILURE IMMANENT BACKUP ALL DATA IMMEDIATELY" So luckily I had free space to copy all the data from the bad HDD to another one. Once copied (which copied at full speed) all of my files open and play correctly from the new HDD. So I went to explore this hard drive problem some more and tried using window's built in error checking program which just wouldn't run for that particular hard drive. I also tried reformatting, but after 24 hours it has only gotten to 2%

Anyone got any advice for me? Is the HDD shot? Or was it just a simple error that can be fixed with a reformat? I'm assuming there is no physical damage to the drive since I was able to copy all the data on it to a new source.

I would agree that HD is "most likely" on it's last legs. The OS has a number of spare sectors it can transfer data to when it discovers a problem. If the problem area is small enough, it can copy all the details but even those sectors will probably start experiencing an error. If you ever get to the point in a recovery where you can get most (but not all) the bad data and/or can't get ANYTHING off a failed HD, you can put that failing HD in a freezer overnight. Pop it in the system (quickly) and run it for about 5 minutes before it will fail again (which hopefully gives you enough time to get in and get the data before the head start bouncing off the platter again).

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post #3459 of 19307 Old 09-20-2008, 01:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AbMagFab View Post

The 24p issue is mostly about the video card, not the player. PDVD and TMT behave the same on everything I've seen so far, as it relates to 24p.

You don't see it either because your monitor is just too small, or you don't really care about it (which is okay).


AbMag - I am sorry but I don't understand your reply. What are you referring to when you say "You don't see "IT"? In the reference post, the "IT" was the "studder/judder" that I did not see in my system (but you had seen it in yours). I DO see the correct 24p settings in PowerDVD and my original question was "Is there a 3rd-party application capable of VERIFYING that 24p is being delivered to the screen" as my system is VERY basic (single-core AMD and 3650).

Others on this forum have now directed me to a 3rd-party application that provides the verification I was seeking so I am good now...
http://www.entechtaiwan.com/util/ps.shtm

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post #3460 of 19307 Old 09-20-2008, 04:12 PM
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Quote:
put that failing HD in a freezer overnight

I can say the freezer method has worked for me once or twice, but not always. You do need to be sure to use a good freezer bag that does not let any moisture in. Get all of the air you can out of the bag before putting it in there.
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post #3461 of 19307 Old 09-20-2008, 05:54 PM
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Well, I give up. I've tried every single combo I can think of to try and boot off the USB Flash Drive and nothing. I even went out and bought another new, different brand, USB Flash drive and no dice. Keep getting the same media message BS as I outlined above. You can see the "floppy" as it says in the QFlash, and can flash from it, but you can't boot from it.

renethx, I would recommend taking the Gigabyte GA-MA78G-DS3H off the server list as it will not boot from USB flash drive and is a big deal killer for those wanting a headless unit without having to have a DVD drive.

Unless you have some other suggestions? I'll have to make up some excuse for Newegg to take it back without me taking the hit on the restock fee.
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post #3462 of 19307 Old 09-20-2008, 07:44 PM
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renethx,
Have you seen this card? It is a passive 4850.
Think it will fit in an Antec 2480?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814125237
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post #3463 of 19307 Old 09-20-2008, 09:39 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Rein View Post

Well, I give up. I've tried every single combo I can think of to try and boot off the USB Flash Drive and nothing. I even went out and bought another new, different brand, USB Flash drive and no dice. Keep getting the same media message BS as I outlined above. You can see the "floppy" as it says in the QFlash, and can flash from it, but you can't boot from it.

renethx, I would recommend taking the Gigabyte GA-MA78G-DS3H off the server list as it will not boot from USB flash drive and is a big deal killer for those wanting a headless unit without having to have a DVD drive.

Unless you have some other suggestions? I'll have to make up some excuse for Newegg to take it back without me taking the hit on the restock fee.

Looks like the mb has a boot problem from a USB flash drive.

Edited

I tested two USB flash drives. BIOS didn't recognize one drive in BIOS (Windows recognizes it fine). BIOS recognized the other drive (A-DATA PD14 4GB) and the system booted from the drive fine. See the picture below:



It seems that the mb does not like some USB flash drives.
LL
LL
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post #3464 of 19307 Old 09-20-2008, 10:04 PM
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I'm considering Gigabyte's 780g/790gx motherboard selection. Is there a reason why the Gigabyte didn't include DTS Connect or Dolby Home Theater support in the GA-MA78G-S3H ?
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post #3465 of 19307 Old 09-20-2008, 10:56 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmasterman View Post

renethx,
Have you seen this card? It is a passive 4850.
Think it will fit in an Antec 2480?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814125237

Yes. A possible problem of this card is heat. HD 4850 emits 50W-100W at BD playback and gaming. So I am not sure a passive cooling is enough in a HTPC case.
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post #3466 of 19307 Old 09-20-2008, 11:22 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AVMonk View Post

I'm considering Gigabyte's 780g/790gx motherboard selection. Is there a reason why the Gigabyte didn't include DTS Connect or Dolby Home Theater support in the GA-MA78G-S3H ?

Perhaps to save money. As PowerDVD includes DD and DTS encoders and Dolby Pro Logic IIx and TMT includes a DTS encoder (and DTS NEO:6), and more and more people will use multichannel LPCM with cheaper HDMI AVR, I think these features are becoming less important.
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post #3467 of 19307 Old 09-21-2008, 05:51 AM
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Perhaps in my first post, I did not impress upon the fact that I need help.

My HVR-2250 is in my GA-MA78GPM-DS2H running Vista Ultimate 32 bit version. Last night I was able to record a TV show in HD, I watched it this morning, but I have been unable to watch live TV without my computer restarting. Help, I need somebody, help, not just anybody, help, you know I need someone, help.
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post #3468 of 19307 Old 09-21-2008, 06:40 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmrexhau View Post

My HVR-2250 is in my GA-MA78GPM-DS2H running Vista Ultimate 32 bit version. Last night I was able to record a TV show in HD, I watched it this morning, but I have been unable to watch live TV without my computer restarting. Help, I need somebody, help, not just anybody, help, you know I need someone, help.

Did you post the question at The Official Gigabyte GA-MA78GM-S2H RS780 mATX Thread? The two mbs are basically identical except for SidePort memory and somebody there could help you.
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post #3469 of 19307 Old 09-21-2008, 09:40 AM
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I am looking at Page 85
20TB (21 HDD) System

The second system is a 21 HDD system in a server chassis.

System
Case: NORCO PRC-4020 4U Rackmount Chassis (20 x 3.25″ hot-swappable bay and 1 x 3.5″ internal bay), $290.
PSU: Antec Quattro 850 TPQ-850 850W, $140.
CPU: Athlon 64 X2 5000+ ADO5000DOBOX 2.6GHz Socket AM2, $60.
CPU Cooler: Stock Cooler, $0.
Memory: A-DATA ADQVE1A16K DDR2-800 2 x 1GB Kit, $44.
Motherboard: GIGABYTE GA-MA78G-DS3H AMD 780G chipset ATX (6 SATA), $86 (this mb has a boot problem from a USB flash drive). An alternative is BIOSTAR TA790GX A2+, $100. Another alternative is Foxconn A7DA-S, $125 (supports IEEE 1394).
Graphics: Radeon HD 3200 (integrated in the motherboard chipset), $0.
HBA I: Supermicro AOC-SAT2-MV8 8-port SATA Controller PCI-X Card, $95.
HBA II: Supermicro AOC-SAT2-MV8 8-port SATA Controller PCI-X Card, $95.
HDD: Western Digital WD800JD 80GB SATA, $30.
Total Cost: $850 (storage drives are not included)



Quote:
Originally Posted by renethx View Post

Which DAS are you referring to, page 1 or page 85?

Building a 20TB DAS costs nearly the same as building a 20TB server (16-port RAID card = $430; 4-port card+4xPM=$370-$510 vs. CPU+mb+RAM+controller=$400). Then I would build a server (as I can place it at a different place).

WHS works with an AMD system. (Do you find any problem with AMD processor or something else?)

I am trying to replace some off existing parts from my HTPC and use it for this WHS Server, that is the reason i was looking for Intel Platform. I have Asus P5E-VM HDMI MB, wanna replace with G45 or P45. Also the processor. Rest stays same in the HTPC and will buy new items for Server.

Please suggest all the required components once again for WHS platform with Intel. I am going to use WHS RAID, and no hardware RAID for this server.

Appreciated
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post #3470 of 19307 Old 09-21-2008, 02:13 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by honeybrain View Post

I am trying to replace some off existing parts from my HTPC and use it for this WHS Server, that is the reason i was looking for Intel Platform. I have Asus P5E-VM HDMI MB, wanna replace with G45 or P45. Also the processor. Rest stays same in the HTPC and will buy new items for Server.

Please suggest all the required components once again for WHS platform with Intel. I am going to use WHS RAID, and no hardware RAID for this server.

The basic requirements of mb for my 20TB server configuration are:

- onboard video (or add a cheap graphics card)
- 6 SATA ports
- two PCI slots (for 16 SATA ports by two Supermicro cards)

Unfortunately P5E-VM HDMI does not meet the last condition. There is no 8-port SATA PCIe x1 controller as cheap as the Supermicro. For example, HightPoint RocketRAID 2320 is a 8-port SATA controller, but its interface is PCIe x4 (if you insert it in the PCIe x16, you can't use the onboard video because of Intel IGD's restriction) and it's pricey ($245).

Just sell your P5E-VM HDMI (the current average sold price at eBay is ~$80) and buy a new mb. It's hard to find a mb for the Intel platform satisfying all three conditions. The two year old model Intel DG965OT is a good one. You have to use an older processor of FSB 1066/800MHz, however. You'd better go with the AMD platform as in my recommendation. It's much easier to find a good mb and AMD processor is cheap.
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post #3471 of 19307 Old 09-21-2008, 10:15 PM
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I'm waiting for the Nvidia MCP7A (Geforce 9300/9400) based motherboards for Intel which sound like they will have all the features of the G45, and a faster IGP. Also hoping it will solve the issues with G45 and there will be cheaper boards and more options.

From the articles I've read the chipset is supposed to come out any day now, if anyone has any information please do post here. Thanks!
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post #3472 of 19307 Old 09-21-2008, 11:15 PM
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Would it be possible to add to the first post (Sound Card Section) whether the recommended sound cards have bit perfect output or not? Also, is there a way to check if an existing sound card has bit perfect output?

I am trying to purchase a DAC for my 2 channel setup to work with foobar2000. If I cannot get a sound card that has bit perfect output (in order to make full use of a toslink optical/spdif DAC), I will need to get a good USB Dac instead.

Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
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post #3473 of 19307 Old 09-22-2008, 05:24 AM
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Hi renethx,

I've been battling with a couple of HTPC options. Either a system using a (soon to be available) E6400 or should I go the 780G/AMD route?
The system will ONLY be used for media playback (no gaming, transcoding etc) using Vista MCE, powerdvd 8 and other possible players such as MPC HC, and KMPlayer.
To me the video playback quality would be most important with audio 2nd most.
If I use a 780G based system (where I intend to employ a discrete graphics card, say HD 4550), should I also then use a Phenom X3/X4, or just stick to a higher clocked X2 to help with non-dGPU accelerated files.
If I try to employ the E6400, what would be a good system to use this with (also using a discrete graphics card)?

Thanks.
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post #3474 of 19307 Old 09-22-2008, 06:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by renethx View Post

The basic requirements of mb for my 20TB server configuration are:

- onboard video (or add a cheap graphics card)
- 6 SATA ports
- two PCI slots (for 16 SATA ports by two Supermicro cards)

Unfortunately P5E-VM HDMI does not meet the last condition. There is no 8-port SATA PCIe x1 controller as cheap as the Supermicro. For example, HightPoint RocketRAID 2320 is a 8-port SATA controller, but its interface is PCIe x4 (if you insert it in the PCIe x16, you can't use the onboard video because of Intel IGD's restriction) and it's pricey ($245).

Just sell your P5E-VM HDMI (the current average sold price at eBay is ~$80) and buy a new mb. It's hard to find a mb for the Intel platform satisfying all three conditions. The two year old model Intel DG965OT is a good one. You have to use an older processor of FSB 1066/800MHz, however. You'd better go with the AMD platform as in my recommendation. It's much easier to find a good mb and AMD processor is cheap.

What i have P5E-V HDMI, full ATX MB. Sorry for the typo. Let me know if this works.
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post #3475 of 19307 Old 09-22-2008, 08:47 AM
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This pre-built Gateway looks like it's a pretty good starting point for an HTPC http://www.buy.com/retail/product.asp?sku=209337553
I'd like to add a recommended video card, BD reader/writer and another tuner and use it as an OTA HD PVR, from which I can record to BD or hard drive.
Is this pre-built likely to meet my expectations with the add-ons?

Thank for any advice,

HTCoveter
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post #3476 of 19307 Old 09-22-2008, 11:59 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by honeybrain View Post

What i have P5E-V HDMI, full ATX MB. Sorry for the typo. Let me know if this works.

It works. Just replace the CPU and the mb in my recommendation with yours.
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post #3477 of 19307 Old 09-22-2008, 01:39 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by mudwiggle View Post

I've been battling with a couple of HTPC options. Either a system using a (soon to be available) E6400 or should I go the 780G/AMD route?
The system will ONLY be used for media playback (no gaming, transcoding etc) using Vista MCE, powerdvd 8 and other possible players such as MPC HC, and KMPlayer.
To me the video playback quality would be most important with audio 2nd most.
If I use a 780G based system (where I intend to employ a discrete graphics card, say HD 4550), should I also then use a Phenom X3/X4, or just stick to a higher clocked X2 to help with non-dGPU accelerated files.
If I try to employ the E6400, what would be a good system to use this with (also using a discrete graphics card)?

If you use a discrete card, Athlon X2 is enough. What is E6400?
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post #3478 of 19307 Old 09-22-2008, 01:44 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by HTcoveter View Post

This pre-built Gateway looks like it's a pretty good starting point for an HTPC http://www.buy.com/retail/product.asp?sku=209337553
I'd like to add a recommended video card, BD reader/writer and another tuner and use it as an OTA HD PVR, from which I can record to BD or hard drive.
Is this pre-built likely to meet my expectations with the add-ons?

Looks good, possibly except for 10/100Mbps LAN.
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post #3479 of 19307 Old 09-22-2008, 02:01 PM
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Does anyone here know if the Asus P5B-Plus mobo has any SATA ports that support PMs (port multipliers)?

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post #3480 of 19307 Old 09-22-2008, 02:22 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ddgtr View Post

Would it be possible to add to the first post (Sound Card Section) whether the recommended sound cards have bit perfect output or not? Also, is there a way to check if an existing sound card has bit perfect output?

I am trying to purchase a DAC for my 2 channel setup to work with foobar2000. If I cannot get a sound card that has bit perfect output (in order to make full use of a toslink optical/spdif DAC), I will need to get a good USB Dac instead.

Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

I think many onboard audio codecs are capable of bit-perfect output. A well-known method of verifiying it is play a 44.1kHz encoded DTS WAV file and see if your receiver plays fine (bit-perfect supported) or plays only noise (bit-perfect unsupported). Further information: Bit Perfect Solutions For Vista
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