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Assassin's Simple/Beginner HTPC Buying Guide - Page 69

post #2041 of 15907
I was thinking of putting a spacer in between but I guess you know the machine better, assassin.
post #2042 of 15907
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sammy2 View Post

I was thinking of putting a spacer in between but I guess you know the machine better, assassin.

It reached easily. I think it probably just slid during transport.

One thing I have learned the hard way is that I want all my screws tight, but not too tight. Over tightening of screws can lead to a lot of problems.
post #2043 of 15907
Quick question, Can I buy win7 pro upgrade edition and install on a newly assembled PC (i.e. without any prior windows installation on it).

I have win XP license but don't want to go through installing XP first.
post #2044 of 15907
Quote:
Originally Posted by sharmaravi View Post

Quick question, Can I buy win7 pro upgrade edition and install on a newly assembled PC (i.e. without any prior windows installation on it).

I have win XP license but don't want to go through installing XP first.

I believe you will have to do the two-step install in your case. It is always better to do it fresh from the current version but I am not sure if it will cause issues if you go straight from the XP install to the Win7 install.

I haven't faced this issue in several generations of Windows.
post #2045 of 15907
Here's one article that explains three ways to do a clean install using the upgrade version: http://www.winsupersite.com/article/...ade-media.aspx.

Here's another one that shows some screenshots of the "double install" method: http://helpdeskgeek.com/windows-7/cl...-upgrade-disc/.
post #2046 of 15907
Quote:
Originally Posted by dpmb View Post

Update on my use of the Zacate build performed by Assassin.

My HTPC requirements were as follows:

1. Play 1080p movies
2. Use Win 7 / Media Center
3. Download & play movies, music, pictures & data
4. Surf the internet
7. Connect to a HDTV via HDMI
8. Watch HULU +, Netflix, etc.
9. Be easy to use
10. Connect wireless to home network

So, does it do all this? Yes! I have completed each of those tasks without trouble. I still have much to learn, but so far it does what I am asking of it. I have a couple files to test for a fellow member and will hopefully attempt that today.

I'm able to get Hulu to play nicely, but still having issues with Netflix. What does your CPU load look like when running Netflix in browser?

Also have you tried running flash videos from sites like ESPN.com? Those are playing choppy for me as well on my Zacate build, even with the latest ATI drives Assassin just posted up.
post #2047 of 15907
I'm looking for some sample HD clips or trailers to test my new HTPC. Anyone know of a good thread or site out there with some variety?

Haven't started cataloging my collection yet so just looking for some smaller stuff to test different audio streams and file types.

Thanks!
post #2048 of 15907
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bdbrown View Post

Here's one article that explains three ways to do a clean install using the upgrade version: http://www.winsupersite.com/article/...ade-media.aspx.

Here's another one that shows some screenshots of the "double install" method: http://helpdeskgeek.com/windows-7/cl...-upgrade-disc/.

Double install method works perfectly. It took me about 1 hour to install windows using a Green hard drive this past week. Win7 installed and was verified without any issues.

Not too bad!
post #2049 of 15907
Quote:
Originally Posted by bdbrown View Post

Here's one article that explains three ways to do a clean install using the upgrade version: http://www.winsupersite.com/article/...ade-media.aspx.

Here's another one that shows some screenshots of the "double install" method: http://helpdeskgeek.com/windows-7/cl...-upgrade-disc/.

Thanks for the links, looks like double install will work. I will go ahead and buy the upgrade version then.
post #2050 of 15907
Quote:
Originally Posted by okillagorilla View Post

I'm able to get Hulu to play nicely, but still having issues with Netflix. What does your CPU load look like when running Netflix in browser?

Also have you tried running flash videos from sites like ESPN.com? Those are playing choppy for me as well on my Zacate build, even with the latest ATI drives Assassin just posted up.


Hulu is good to go. It plays at 720p just fine.

The majority of my Netflix viewing is with shows not available in HD.
I am currently not able to watch HD offerings from Netflix in HD. This is true for my Zacate build and a Roku player I have. Don't know if it's my connection or not. My internet speed is 1 Mbps, Netflix says you need at least 5 Mbps to play in HD. Does someone with the minimum speed have the same difficulty?
post #2051 of 15907
Quote:
Originally Posted by dpmb View Post

Hulu is good to go. It plays at 720p just fine.

The majority of my Netflix viewing is with shows not available in HD.
I am currently not able to watch HD offerings from Netflix in HD. This is true for my Zacate build and a Roku player I have. Don't know if it's my connection or not. My internet speed is 1 Mbps, Netflix says you need at least 5 Mbps to play in HD. Does someone with the minimum speed have the same difficulty?

That's it but it really isn't HD anyhow.
post #2052 of 15907
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sammy2 View Post

That's it but it really isn't HD anyhow.

I don't use Netflix but I have heard that netflix over a HTPC is completely different/worse than Netflix over a player like what is built into some bluray stand alone players.

I don't believe that picture quality is equivalent to that on a stand alone player at this time. I beleive that its a netflix thing, not a HTPC thing.
post #2053 of 15907
How about playback directly from netflix.com using Silverlight rather than through WMC?
post #2054 of 15907
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sammy2 View Post

How about playback directly from netflix.com using Silverlight rather than through WMC?

I have someone working on it. Should be posting screenshots shortly about what the zacate can do with these...
post #2055 of 15907
Quote:
Originally Posted by 12th Man View Post

I'm looking for some sample HD clips or trailers to test my new HTPC. Anyone know of a good thread or site out there with some variety?

Haven't started cataloging my collection yet so just looking for some smaller stuff to test different audio streams and file types.

Thanks!

Here is a great list of demo's with different videos and audio from the cinema experience thread.
http://www.demo-world.eu/trailers/hi...n-trailers.php
@okillagorilla, what version of flash are you running, I just visited espn.com and saw some videos without any problems although I did see some high cpu usuage not enough to make the video choppy though but certainly enough to grab my attention. Let me study this matter a bit more and see what kind and if any gpu acceleration is going on when streaming espn videos.
Netflix......Unfortunately guys netflix uses silverlight instead of flash therefore there is no gpu acceleration going on resulting in stressing your cpu enough to where you can't enjoy HD(fake)Netflix movies, shows. SD content plays fine in netflix. That was the bad news, the good news is I emailed netflix customer support and explained this matter, and they kindly replied that it is something they have been getting requested alot and Silverlight hardware acceleration(DXVA) is in development.
post #2056 of 15907
I have a roku player next to my htpc setup. I've definitely noticed a difference in quality when it comes to netflix playback with the roku easily coming out ahead. Sound playback still leaves much to be desired on both though --more of knock against netflix than my roku or htpc.
post #2057 of 15907
Quote:
Originally Posted by dpmb View Post

Hulu is good to go. It plays at 720p just fine.

The majority of my Netflix viewing is with shows not available in HD.
I am currently not able to watch HD offerings from Netflix in HD. This is true for my Zacate build and a Roku player I have. Don't know if it's my connection or not. My internet speed is 1 Mbps, Netflix says you need at least 5 Mbps to play in HD. Does someone with the minimum speed have the same difficulty?

I'll try some SD videos with Netflix tonight...Not sure if I believe their 5Mbps claims, given that through my PS3 the HD content on netflix plays flawlessly, but on my Zacate build it's a slide show. I was mainly testing out the capabilities, and so far, netflix and espn seem to be the only two sites that give me trouble.

Whats also curious about espn.com is that I believe it uses Flash, so it's strange that Hulu and other flash sites play great for me but ESPN.com clips are choppy...could be a bandwidth thing, maybe the on board NIC is acting up (I've had it randomly disconnect itself twice so far and win7 had to "repair" it to re-establish a connection)

I'll have to do some more investigating on that, maybe the NIC is the culprit afterall. I'll try and hard wire it directly to the modem and see if I get some results (my router is close to 4 years old).
post #2058 of 15907
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2riv1dra View Post

I have a roku player next to my htpc setup. I've definitely noticed a difference in quality when it comes to netflix playback with the roku easily coming out ahead. Sound playback still leaves much to be desired on both though --more of knock against netflix than my roku or htpc.

That has been echoed throughout this forum. Netflix simply does not have the same quality over even the most powerful HTPCs.
post #2059 of 15907

Here's an espn video, with quality on high....I still don't like the cpu usage, it should be way less....let me do some more research.
Zacate users.....are you guys using AMD cool n quiet feature in bios, if you are disable it and you will see huge improvements in video playback.
Zacate users with NIC issues download these drivers from realtek not the one's on the CD
http://www.realtek.com/downloads/dow...&getdown=false
post #2060 of 15907
Netflix HD on PC is 720p @ 3800kbps. I believe some of the Netflix HD streams on the PS3 is already 1080p.
post #2061 of 15907
That has been echoed throughout this forum. Netflix simply does not have the same quality over even the most powerful HTPCs.

I gave up on Netflix from HTPC months ago. The stuttering and jerky motion made it unwatchable. I do Netflix from my PS3 only.
post #2062 of 15907
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by claw View Post

That has been echoed throughout this forum. Netflix simply does not have the same quality over even the most powerful HTPCs.

I gave up on Netflix from HTPC months ago. The stuttering and jerky motion made it unwatchable. I do Netflix from my PS3 only.

In netflix's defense I am sure that 95% or more of their business is from non-HTPC users. Hopefully they can concentrate some of their resources to the HTPC world in the near future.
post #2063 of 15907
Quote:
Originally Posted by assassin View Post

In netflix's defense I am sure that 95% or more of their business is from non-HTPC users. Hopefully they can concentrate some of their resources to the HTPC world in the near future.

Right, and Netflix gets license fees from set-top box manufacturers, so it's not surprising if they tailor their streaming service to look better on them.
post #2064 of 15907
Quote:
Originally Posted by homewrek View Post

Here is a great list of demo's with different videos and audio from the cinema experience thread.
http://www.demo-world.eu/trailers/hi...n-trailers.php

Ah, this is exactly what I was hoping for. Thanks man.

Assassin, seems like a good link to add somewhere on page 1 or maybe in the FAQ.
post #2065 of 15907
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by 12th Man View Post

Ah, this is exactly what I was hoping for. Thanks man.

Assassin, seems like a good link to add somewhere on page 1 or maybe in the FAQ.

Absolutely.

Adding it now...
post #2066 of 15907
Quote:
Originally Posted by homewrek View Post


Here's an espn video, with quality on high....I still don't like the cpu usage, it should be way less....let me do some more research.
Zacate users.....are you guys using AMD cool n quiet feature in bios, if you are disable it and you will see huge improvements in video playback.
Zacate users with NIC issues download these drivers from realtek not the one's on the CD
http://www.realtek.com/downloads/dow...&getdown=false

What's wrong with 44%? It isn't even over 50% so it should be able to handle it.

And most of the time I don't even install the drivers that come on the disc with the product but rather download them from the manufacturer's website.
post #2067 of 15907
every recommended matx mobo for sandy bridge build are out of stock or no longer available. Any recommendations for boards that can be acquired now.
post #2068 of 15907
Just real quick, there's quite a few GA-H67MA-UD2H-B3 MOBO's over at amazon.
post #2069 of 15907
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sammy2 View Post

What's wrong with 44%? It isn't even over 50% so it should be able to handle it.

And most of the time I don't even install the drivers that come on the disc with the product but rather download them from the manufacturer's website.

Agree that it's not too high but when compared too youtube HD flash videos playback it is.....playing 1080p video in youtube my cpu doesn't even hit 30% but playing videos in espn which are not HD my cpu hits 40-50%. Never install drivers from CD especially for motherboards, video, and audio. Go to manufactures website and download latest. By the time they make these new products available and finally reach your home, there could be one or in some cases several new drivers available. Keep in mind we are using an early preview of Catalyst 11.4 which are beta drivers, that show great improvement and a huge step in the right direction, I can assure you when the official Catalyst 11.4 is released there will be even more improvements. In the forum where I got this preview driver from, we the members discuss any bug's or problems we are having with driver's on our system, and amd support representatives try to answer all our questions and problems....so this next batch should be epic for all Zacate or HD 6000 series users.
post #2070 of 15907
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by homewrek View Post

Agree that it's not too high but when compared too youtube HD flash videos playback it is.....playing 1080p video in youtube my cpu doesn't even hit 30% but playing videos in espn which are not HD my cpu hits 40-50%. Never install drivers from CD especially for motherboards, video, and audio. Go to manufactures website and download latest. By the time they make these new products available and finally reach your home, there could be one or in some cases several new drivers available. Keep in mind we are using an early preview of Catalyst 11.4 which are beta drivers, that show great improvement and a huge step in the right direction, I can assure you when the official Catalyst 11.4 is released there will be even more improvements. In the forum where I got this preview driver from, we the members discuss any bug's or problems we are having with driver's on our system, and amd support representatives try to answer all our questions and problems....so this next batch should be epic for all Zacate or HD 6000 series users.

I usually install off the DVD to get things up and running (especially the LAN/Wireless drivers).

Then I go to the website and get the latest drivers.

Either way is correct though. I have done both with good results.

Edit: I just remember the other issue I had. That ASUS zacate wasn't even on their website yet. Now it is.
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