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NVidia GT 620 good for HTPC use?

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
The Egg has a good deal on one today. I'm not really happy with the image quality on my current HTPC (using the Intel HD graphics on a Sandy Bridge Celeron G530). NewEgg has a great deal on a GT 620. Is this a quality GPU for HTPC use?
post #2 of 13
What in the image quality don't you like? What kind of media?

I found the G530 didn't do a great job with certain 1080i broadcasts. I believe it was the 29/59 issue but I don't know for sure because when I dropped in a $20 HD5450 and it cleared up all the issues which meant it was time to stop the research and get back to enjoying my HTPC.
post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 
I moved to the Sandy Bridge from a GeForce 8200. The contrast and black levels are markedly worse, and there seem to be some small stuttering issues on some broadcasts. Driving me bonkers.

I figure if the ancient integrated nVidia 8200 was good enough, a GT 620 has to be at least as good...
post #4 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by jonnythan View Post

I moved to the Sandy Bridge from a GeForce 8200. The contrast and black levels are markedly worse, and there seem to be some small stuttering issues on some broadcasts. Driving me bonkers.

I figure if the ancient integrated nVidia 8200 was good enough, a GT 620 has to be at least as good...
I actually get quite good results with an i3 Sandybridge. I have several Nvidia cards around here including a GTS450 I could stick in the box. It is being used for OTA and Cable TV (HD Homeruns and a Ceton). Absolutely zero issues that are not already in the source. I have a Tivo HD as well and everything is being fed to the TV via a Lumagen Radiance. The i3 GPU is doing just fine and the levels are very good. While the HTPC is not calibrated the TV is via 125 Point Color Auto-Calibration on the Lumagen.

I don't know what display dirver I am using for the intel graphics but it must be at least a year old. I never touch the box, it runs 24x7 and other than necessary patch updates it 1-00 percent dedicated to Live and Recorded TV in WMC. Could it be better with Nvidia, perhaps a tiny bit, but since you are kind of limited on decoders and renderers with TV in media center I am quite content. Considering the power demands of a discrete card and the marginal possible picture quality improvement it just does not make sense. BTW, I have messed MadVR and LAV and all that but since they are pretty much useless with WMC and protected content there is not much point. If I was watching a lot of movies on the box and running JRiver or MP-HC with madVR and LAV I would think about additional GPU power. I have zero stuttering or motion issues with the intel. Any glitches are signal or Ceton.

I run the Lumagenn and get very nearly perfect results with the 3D LUT 125 point color calibration, I also use a Darbee Darblet. For WMC based TV, this TV can not look any better. No point in the heat and energy use. Maybe your setting are not right, or intel farkled recent driver versions.
post #5 of 13
I have a G620 Pentium & had some stuttering when using WMC7 & watching some older SD OTA programs. WMP & MPC-HC did not stutter. But I like to use WMC. I bought a $15 HD6450 card and no more stutter. I did adjust the limited/full range color space settings to make the HTPC WMC match the other software & hardware players.
post #6 of 13
IIRC, the GT620 is just a rebadged GT430 which used to be pretty popular here.
post #7 of 13
GT 620 is identical with GT 430, except that memory bus is cut in half (128bit -> 64bit), not a good move for video post processing.

GT 630 (DDR3 version) = GT 440 (DDR3 version) is closer to GT 430 in performance (core clock 700MHz -> 810MHz). DDR3-1600 or higher is recommended in these graphics cards.
Edited by renethx - 1/20/13 at 12:36am
post #8 of 13
Thread Starter 
FWIW, the 620 is significantly better than the Sandy Bridge graphics.
post #9 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by jonnythan View Post

FWIW, the 620 is significantly better than the Sandy Bridge graphics.

Better for what specifically? This is a pretty broad statement.

Better for power consumption?
Better for cooling?
Better for fitting into a mini-ITX case with no slot?
Better for 1080p video with no post-processing?
post #10 of 13
Thread Starter 
Better for the issues I mentioned earlier: OTA motion has no stutter, and black levels and shadow detail are markedly improved.

I guess I wasn't clear. I got the GT 620 and installed it today. I am pleased by the results.
post #11 of 13
I had the strange live TV stuttering issue with a i3-2100 as well as the G530. I got by with a HD5450 for a while and that was ok but it would still have some weird pauses and stutters here and there. I've since replace that system with a AMD Llano A8-3820 and it's night-and-day for sure. It seems live TV puts a lot more strain on things than simple 1080p viewing for which the i3-2100 and G530 were fine.
post #12 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by StardogChampion View Post

I had the strange live TV stuttering issue with a i3-2100 as well as the G530. I got by with a HD5450 for a while and that was ok but it would still have some weird pauses and stutters here and there. I've since replace that system with a AMD Llano A8-3820 and it's night-and-day for sure. It seems live TV puts a lot more strain on things than simple 1080p viewing for which the i3-2100 and G530 were fine.

I am really surprised by the motion issues you are seeing with the i3 and live tv. I watch a ton of live TV majority 1080i and just don't have any issues. I mostly watch on 92' display. My brother has a number of displays all driven by Sandy Bridge Pentiums and i3-2100s. His displays range in size from 40 to 80" all work great. No motion problems at all.
post #13 of 13
Thread Starter 
Interestingly, I had no issues with a much older Athlon X2 250e and a motherboard with integrated Geforce 8200 graphics.
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