Guide to Building a HTPC, Workstation and Server - Page 639 - AVS Forum
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post #19141 of 19153 Old 07-16-2014, 01:16 PM
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As an alternative resource to supplement this excellent thread, check out the mediabrowser3 community. MB3 is a good server platform. Folks there can offer practical experiences.
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Sometimes, I see dead pixels...
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post #19142 of 19153 Old 07-16-2014, 02:29 PM
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As an alternative resource to supplement this excellent thread, check out the mediabrowser3 community. MB3 is a good server platform. Folks there can offer practical experiences.
+1. You can get all your info here you need but MB server and it's clients would be a good solution for you.

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post #19143 of 19153 Old 07-17-2014, 04:41 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Gossamer8 View Post
Hello AVSForum!

First time poster to this forum. I hope I found the right thread.

I am currently building a new Home Media Server to replace my gaming rig which is currently doing both duties. This new server will house my Movie/TV Collection (8TB) and Family Photos mostly.

My needs are to stream to 3 TVs in my house and 2-3 tablets. I currently have new Roku boxes at each TV. Wireless will not be needed on this server, my house is networked with Cat5e.

I have some ideas to what I want but would like input from you pros here. I need to at least stream 3 high quality streams at once to each TV (Just in-case they are all being used at once). I currently use a i7 3820, to just one TV, but I notice that when streaming, say a 50gb LoTR movie, it uses like 50-70% of my processor. I believe because it is trans-coding it and trans-coding is highly CPU intensive?.. (Correct me if I'm wrong please). So, I need to know what Hardware to use for this new Server. Maybe some CPU ideas? Or motherboard? Maybe I should Raid0 my drives for faster read?

Any thoughts would be great, thank you for your help guys.
What server software are you using? Right now Plex Media Server is recommended for the use with Roku. If you select "Direct Play" mode in the Plex channel in Roku, then you can avoid transcoding, at least for AVC=H.264 video codec. If the video codec is MPEG-2 or VC-1, transcoding is unavoidable, but even in such a case Core i7-3820 should be fast enough to transcode three video streams simultaneously. Plex Media Server transcodes the single video stream under full load (or ~50% load when HyperThreading is on), saves the transcoded file(s) in a temporary folder and stays near idle when transcoding finishes, the time required to transcode the entire movie being only a fraction of the movie duration. Transcoding three video streams simultaneously requires a longer time, but it should be still fast enough to send all transcoded streams to Roku without dropped frames.

Another option is Media Browser Server, but it looks like transcoding always occurs whatever the video codec is.

You'd better try yourself to see if Core i7-3820 is fast enough. If you want to upgrade the processor, Core i7-4790K LGA1150 is a good choice, ~1.5 times faster than Core i7-3820.

Last edited by renethx; 07-17-2014 at 09:28 AM.
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post #19144 of 19153 Old 07-17-2014, 08:44 AM
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Originally Posted by renethx View Post
What server software are you using? Right now Plex Media Server is recommended for the use with Roku. If you select "Direct Play" mode in the Plex channel in Roku, then you can avoid transcoding, at least for AVC=H.264 video codec. If the video codec is MPEG-2 or VC-1, transcoding is unavoidable, but even in such a case Core i7-3820 should be fast enough to transcode three video streams simultaneously. Plex Media Server transcodes the single video stream under full load (or ~50% load when HyperThreading is on), save the transcoded file(s) in a temporary folder and stay near idle when transcoding finishes, the time required to transcode the entire movie being only a fraction of the movie duration. Transcoding three video streams simultaneously requires a longer time, but it should be still fast enough to send all transcoded streams to Roku without dropped frames.

Another option is Media Browser Server, but it looks like transcoding always occurs whatever the video codec is.

You'd better try yourself to see if Core i7-3820 is fast enough. If you want to upgrade the processor, Core i7-4790K LGA1150 is a good choice, ~1.5 times faster than Core i7-3820.
I am using Plex media Server. I have it on "Direct Play" but yes, id say about half of my movies are not in the correct format and transcoding is a must.

Oh so your saying that I must have looked at my CPU usage when it was transcoding the movie vs just streaming it? Ahh I see now, thank you. I am still planning on building a media server anyways since my collection is getting to big for my gaming rig and I would like to separate the duties. I will probably go with a 4790k just to make sure I have headroom for future stuff.

Can you recommend any motherboard? I think I want to go with something with at least 6, Sata III (6GB) connections for my HDDs. Also, stick with something very reliable like a server/workstation grade MoBo from ASUS or something similar.

Thank you very much for your help thus far.
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post #19145 of 19153 Old 07-17-2014, 09:24 AM - Thread Starter
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A couple of good mb for Core i7-4790K, released within a month, are

ASRock Z97 Extreme6
ASUS Z97-PRO
ASUS Z97-WS

The last one is for a workstation, but good for a server as well.

CPU cooler: Noctua NH-L12
Memory: F3-1600C9D-8GAB 4GB x 2
PSU: Seasonic S12G-550/650/750 or Platinum-660/760.
Case: Depends on the number of HDDs you would like to have. Norco RPC-4224 has 24 hot-swap bays.
HBA: Supermicro AOC-SAS2LP-MV8 x 1 or 2.

Last edited by renethx; 07-17-2014 at 09:27 AM.
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post #19146 of 19153 Old 07-17-2014, 11:04 AM
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Originally Posted by renethx View Post
A couple of good mb for Core i7-4790K, released within a month, are

ASRock Z97 Extreme6
ASUS Z97-PRO
ASUS Z97-WS

The last one is for a workstation, but good for a server as well.

CPU cooler: Noctua NH-L12
Memory: F3-1600C9D-8GAB 4GB x 2
PSU: Seasonic S12G-550/650/750 or Platinum-660/760.
Case: Depends on the number of HDDs you would like to have. Norco RPC-4224 has 24 hot-swap bays.
HBA: Supermicro AOC-SAS2LP-MV8 x 1 or 2.
Thank you Renethx,

Yes, I have been looking at the ASUS WS boards. I currently have 4, 4TB WD black drives and that will be enough for a while I think for my needs. I was looking at cases like the Node 804, unfortunately, the ASUS WS boards wont fit. I also looked at the Gryphon Z97 one. That seems reliable and could fit a Node 804 or a smaller tower with about 6-8 HDD bays. I don't have a rack in my house yet to hold such a large case as the Norco RPC-4224.

I have a few Noctua fans and coolers and would definitely go with them again, the added cost is nothing when thinking of peace of mind, quality and just performance. I have never owned a Seasonic myself but have heard and read that they are great products and will probably go with a gold or platinum for the power savings when in idle. This machine will probably be running 24/7.

I do have to ask though, what are those Supermicro AOC-SAS2LP-MV8 add-in cards for? Are they faster than the on board Sata ports?
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post #19147 of 19153 Old 07-17-2014, 08:13 PM - Thread Starter
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As for microATX, ASUS Gryphon Z97 comes into my mind first. Gryphon Z97 has only 6 SATA ports, while Node 804 can hold 10 x 3.5" HDD and 2 x 2.5" HDD/SSD. So you would want to add a host bus adapter, like AOC-SAS2LP-MV8. There is no speed difference, both are SATA 6Gbps.
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post #19148 of 19153 Old 07-18-2014, 04:06 PM
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Awesome, great information.

Thank you for your help.
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post #19149 of 19153 Old 07-18-2014, 04:06 PM
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Awesome, great information.

Thank you for your help.
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post #19150 of 19153 Old 07-29-2014, 02:39 PM
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Avoiding any holy war and just talking pure technical details, what are the differentiating factors between amd and nvidia cards for a htpc thinking about playback with powerdvd and madvr?

Like any differentiating factors with regards to:
- 24hz output
- sleep/wake up hdmi stability
- limited vs full black range or rgb vs ycbcr output
- hd audio bitstreaming stability
- edid issues
- and so on

I'd looking at a higher end card most likely. 290x vs 780 ti or possibly just holding out until the next gen comes soon. That'd be an 880 for nvidia. Not sure for amd.

Thanks!
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post #19151 of 19153 Old 07-29-2014, 10:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by JaremyP View Post
Avoiding any holy war and just talking pure technical details, what are the differentiating factors between amd and nvidia cards for a htpc thinking about playback with powerdvd and madvr?

Like any differentiating factors with regards to:
- 24hz output
- sleep/wake up hdmi stability
- limited vs full black range or rgb vs ycbcr output
- hd audio bitstreaming stability
- edid issues
- and so on

I'd looking at a higher end card most likely. 290x vs 780 ti or possibly just holding out until the next gen comes soon. That'd be an 880 for nvidia. Not sure for amd.
- 23Hz output (not 24Hz output): In most systems AMD is near perfect. NVIDIA always requires a custom refresh rate.
- limited vs full black range or rgb vs ycbcr output: AMD supports all of them fine. NVIDIA requires a tweak to get full range RGB.
- NNEDI3 performance in madVR: AMD is roughly 1.5 times better than NVIDIA.
- HDMI audio problem: NVIDIA does not support 88.2kHz/176.4kHz (this matters only for high resolution audio).

For the rest I don't see any problem with either one. Others may have different experience, of course.
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post #19152 of 19153 Old 07-30-2014, 06:26 PM
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Sounds like AMD is more turnkey. What about 3D playback for Bluray? I'd be using powerdvd and/or stereoscopic player. Any logistical difference?

Thanks for the info.
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post #19153 of 19153 Old 07-30-2014, 09:41 PM - Thread Starter
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Sounds like AMD is more turnkey. What about 3D playback for Bluray? I'd be using powerdvd and/or stereoscopic player. Any logistical difference?

Thanks for the info.
AMD supports 3D right out of the box. As usual NVIDIA requires a stupid "3D Test", then will work. But you will have to switch back and forth between 2D 23Hz and 3D 23Hz manually if you create a custom 2D 23Hz.

As for Stereoscopic Player, AMD just doesn't work right: AMD HD3D broken. NVIDIA works with the $40 3DTV Play software suite.
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