My M8100Y showed up yesterday with the single ATI tuner and I have a second ATI tuner that I was able to acquire via another source.
I decided to get it all working first with the single ATI tuner and then add in the second.
Verizon is schediuled to come out and install the 2 cablecards so obviously, I need to make sure this puppy is working 100%This HP M8100Y is to be used primarily as a DVR for Verizon FIOS TV and my Sharp 52" 1080P LCD.
I have some questions that I am sure you all can answer and some 'gotchas' that folks need to know about to save some headaches (#1 cost me a solid hour on the on-line chat and could have been prevented with a single paragrpah in the quick start chart about confiugureing for DUAL Monitors).
The system comes 99% installed. They have the OS installation + add on SW stuff on it's own partition for system recovery instead of giving you the pile of CD's. That of couse will be backedup onto a few DVD's because ,as I noted, this system comes with ZERO CD's.
When you turn it on, it asks for an Admin username/password,Computer name,what type of network you want(Home or Business),Intsallation questions about Norton, Your personal info to register it over the net and then it reboots.
That's all you have to do and you have a Vanilla VISTA Ultimate PC ready to use and connected to the net.
I had allocated 2 hours last night expecting to have install VISTA and the add on SW they always toss in but I did not need it.
I should have stopped there and picked up tonight because the simple install jynxed me. I ended up spending an hour with tech support trying to to get HDMI to work between the PC and my Sharp LCD TV.
The issues/probelms are in italics below
1) So my first snag in the install was due to NOT having a PC monitor connected to the HP
I assumed that I could simply use the target 52" Sharp LCD display but:
A) The system comes up in a graphics mode that is not an ATSC compatible mode so my Sharp put up a message for 2 seconds complaining then went blank.
I had to hook up a monitor on the DVI output on the Nvidia video card to see what the problem was and then set the resolution to 1024x768 as that is guaranteeed to work on both my monitor and my TV.
YMWV- Your Mileage WILL vary.
The Sharp TV displayed the DVI ,using a DVI to HDMI cable, output from the video card fine. So, I decided to contine the remainder of the Media Center configuration.
I was able to set the TV resolution to 1080i but when I tried 1080P,which works on my HTPC,the HDDVD and the Blu Ray, I got a display that looked like something from a 60's Psychedilc movie
. That issue is on hold right now because using this HP as a DVR will only need 1080i anyway.
B) Now that I got the windows desktop to display at 1080i on the Sharp, I moved on to getting the HDMI to work because that will be needed for the copy protection issues.The only instructions having to do with using HDMI on this PC are on 2 pieces of paper that are piled in with all the all the other paper work.
It warns that the factory default is DVI and that you will need to tell the sound card to go over HDMI if you plan on using HDMI and it tells you how to enable sound over HDMI.
I ran an HDMI cable from the PC through my Denon Receiver (it does HDMI switching) and into the Sharp.
I selected the appropriate HDMI input on the TV BUT my TV's display remained dark and the remote's INDFO button gave me NADA.
That means that the graphics card is not outputting anything on the HDMI output.
Here is where the fun began
I went back to the DVI setup and did the online HP tech support chat system.
He had me tell the NividIA Control Panel to dual monitor,clone mode.
That gave me a choice of 2 monitors.
One was the LG PC monitor and the other was a 'Denon AV AMP Display"
One can only assume that the graphics card's HDMI connection is seeing my HDMI switching Amplifier.
I am still not sure what I did but eventualy I got it to stick and I have the HDMI displaying on my TV set.So, to get HDMI working , you MUST go into Dual Monitor Mode
C) I left the PC on all night in that configuration but the TV set off,obviously.
This morning,when I turned on the TV, I had NO picture even though the PC had never been turned off.
I rebooted the PC with the TV ON and got the Windows Desktoip displaying again on my TV. Turning the TV on and rebooting is ALL I did differently from when I left it last night.I guess this Graphics card has some kind of HDMI handshake issue (sound familiar?) I sure hope I don't have to reboot the PC evertime I turn the TV off then On
2) I barely started the Media center startup so I do not have much to say yet.
However, I do have this to add.
Even though I followed the instructions exactly, I do NOT get sound passed over the HDMI
I am using the HDMI through the Denon receiver (which passes audio/video over the HDMI from my Motorola 6416DVR and all the other devices I have hooked up) but for the HP, I have the the HP's Digital output connected to one of the Denon Receiver's Digital inputs so at least I do get sound now.
I do NOT know what that will mean to the copy protection when I get the cabelcards installed so I still need to call HP about thjis issue.
That is as far as I have gotten so now I am going to try and get the ATI working and will continue to edit this post.
I know I could have used a list of 'gotchas'Several of you in this forum are using this HP and I have never read any issues like I have been describing. Maybe I am just dense even though I have been doing HTPC's for several years.