Question for HTPC/MadVR users - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
post #1 of 6 Old 02-21-2020, 11:22 AM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 207
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 167 Post(s)
Liked: 33
Question for HTPC/MadVR users

Hi all,

After a few months of seeing various posts about how many people swear by HTPC/MadVR setups for HDR tone mapping etc, it's made me wonder if I should put together an HTPC for that purpose.

My hesitation is I've been down that road in the past and came away very frustrated. I used an HTPC with Kodi for several years, but between iffy 3D playback support, audio devices that would become deselected upon restarting, and constant pings for windows 10 updates, I felt like I was spending more time troubleshooting the PC than watching movies.

I'm currently running a Vero 4k+ that I'm mostly happy with, but there's no clear timeline for when it will get HDR tone mapping, and whether that feature will be competitive with MadVR.

Tl;DR: Are people using HTPCs still running into issues with 3D, audio devices that reset themselves and annoying update prompts, or is it possible to setup an HTPC that truly feels like a dedicated appliance?

Also, for JVC users, how much better is dynamic mapping than a well setup static curve?
filmgeek47 is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 6 Old 02-21-2020, 01:08 PM
Advanced Member
 
brazen1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 969
Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 631 Post(s)
Liked: 357
I use both the Kodi front end along with many other components including madVr you mention. I have never experienced iffy 3D playback support, audio devices that would become deselected upon restarting, or constant pings for windows 10 updates? Maybe you only get as much out of it as you put into it? Does it truly feel like a dedicated appliance? No, an HTPC offers much, much more. Can you strip it down to just one limited dedicated task like a Vero 4k+? Of course.

HOW TO - Kodi 2D - 3D - UHD (4k) HDR Guide Internal & External Players
W10 1909 / MPC-BE\HC / PotPlayer / PowerDVD 19 / DVDFab Player 3&5 / KODI 19 videoplayer
GTX960 4GB / RGB Full 4:4:4 / 8bit Desktop mode =60Hz / 10/12bit Video mode = Matched Refresh rates IE 23,24,25,60Hz
Samsung 82" Q90R / Denon S720W
brazen1 is offline  
post #3 of 6 Old 02-22-2020, 12:23 AM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
markmon1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 7,497
Mentioned: 146 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6278 Post(s)
Liked: 4375
Quote:
Originally Posted by filmgeek47 View Post
Hi all,

After a few months of seeing various posts about how many people swear by HTPC/MadVR setups for HDR tone mapping etc, it's made me wonder if I should put together an HTPC for that purpose.

My hesitation is I've been down that road in the past and came away very frustrated. I used an HTPC with Kodi for several years, but between iffy 3D playback support, audio devices that would become deselected upon restarting, and constant pings for windows 10 updates, I felt like I was spending more time troubleshooting the PC than watching movies.

I'm currently running a Vero 4k+ that I'm mostly happy with, but there's no clear timeline for when it will get HDR tone mapping, and whether that feature will be competitive with MadVR.

Tl;DR: Are people using HTPCs still running into issues with 3D, audio devices that reset themselves and annoying update prompts, or is it possible to setup an HTPC that truly feels like a dedicated appliance?

Also, for JVC users, how much better is dynamic mapping than a well setup static curve?
I have never had any of the listed issues above. However, some possible hints:
- HDMI audio devices don't work well going into and out of standby or hibernation. A full reboot or leaving on all the time is workable.
- Windows updates can be completely blocked if you so choose. Something such as "windows update blocker" does the trick. The other option is to just shutdown and power up for each session in which case windows updates will just happen silently on shutdowns as needed.
- Your HTPC can direct boot into Kodi for control with a remote no need to pull out keyboards etc.
- 3D has always worked fine for me. You're not going to get madVR like performance from a cheap ARM device. MadVR offers more features than even a 2080TI can handle at the moment.

Video: JVC RS4500 135" ST130 G4 screen in batcave, htpc nvidia 1080ti madVR.
Audio: Anthem mrx720 running 7.1.4, McIntosh MC-303, MC-152, B&W 802d3 LR, B&W HTM1D3 center, B&W 805d3 surround, B&W 702S2 rear, B&W 706s2 x 4 shelf mounted for atmos, Infinite Baffle Subs 4x15 fi audio running on behringer ep4000 + 2x12 fi audio mounted in main chair firing into back.
markmon1 is online now  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #4 of 6 Old 02-22-2020, 01:03 AM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 207
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 167 Post(s)
Liked: 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by markmon1 View Post
I have never had any of the listed issues above. However, some possible hints:
- HDMI audio devices don't work well going into and out of standby or hibernation. A full reboot or leaving on all the time is workable.
- Windows updates can be completely blocked if you so choose. Something such as "windows update blocker" does the trick. The other option is to just shutdown and power up for each session in which case windows updates will just happen silently on shutdowns as needed.
- Your HTPC can direct boot into Kodi for control with a remote no need to pull out keyboards etc.
- 3D has always worked fine for me. You're not going to get madVR like performance from a cheap ARM device. MadVR offers more features than even a 2080TI can handle at the moment.
I think that was the crux of my problem: using hibernate instead of rebooting. I had the audio device issue on multiple builds and installs so I know it wasn’t just a fluke. Never ran them on cold reboots every time though.


We’ve been making an effort to be more power efficient/environmentally friendly so leaving a pc on 24x7 isn’t something I’d want to commit to.

Is there a practical solution for powering on a pc with a remote? Last I looked into it I didn’t see a good option for doing that.

I get that madVR processing can get very GPU intensive, but surely any dynamic tone mapping is a step up from static curves, and by that same logic, if Blu-ray players can handle tone mapping, surely a device like vero ought to eventually have the power to handle that processing, right? I’m less bothered with the rendering improvements offered (never noticed much of a difference when I played with them on HD content, and I don’t really watch anything else than HD).
filmgeek47 is offline  
post #5 of 6 Old 02-22-2020, 01:09 AM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
markmon1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 7,497
Mentioned: 146 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6278 Post(s)
Liked: 4375
Quote:
Originally Posted by filmgeek47 View Post
I think that was the crux of my problem: using hibernate instead of rebooting. I had the audio device issue on multiple builds and installs so I know it wasn’t just a fluke. Never ran them on cold reboots every time though.


We’ve been making an effort to be more power efficient/environmentally friendly so leaving a pc on 24x7 isn’t something I’d want to commit to.

Is there a practical solution for powering on a pc with a remote? Last I looked into it I didn’t see a good option for doing that.

I get that madVR processing can get very GPU intensive, but surely any dynamic tone mapping is a step up from static curves, and by that same logic, if Blu-ray players can handle tone mapping, surely a device like vero ought to eventually have the power to handle that processing, right? I’m less bothered with the rendering improvements offered (never noticed much of a difference when I played with them on HD content, and I don’t really watch anything else than HD).
There are a couple options. First, I use hibernate. But I also have a scheduled task so that any time the PC wakes out of hibernate, it runs my task. My task executable is: shutdown -t 1 -r (which reboots the PC). Since the PC boots in about 3 seconds, this essentially puts my PC to sleep letting it be easily woken, then reboots it the second it wakes to avoid any weird stuff from coming out of standby. This also lets you turn your PC via iphone or such using a wake on LAN app. There are other options. Just use shutdown. Put your PC on a Wi-Fi remote controlled plug and set the PC in the bios to power on automatically on power restore. Then control the PC power state using the plug which can be controlled remotely, using phone, etc.

If you're not going to use madVR's incredible upscaler to upscale 1080p to 4K, you can probably get away with tone mapping using that 1660. You may not notice much difference upscaling on a small display like an 85" since 4K on an 85" would require you to be inside 5 feet from the display to really benefit from it. And also, if your display is bright enough, you may not really need the tone mapping. Just depends on what you're trying to accomplish.

Both the tone mapping and upscaling are crucial for a projector and a massive screen.

Video: JVC RS4500 135" ST130 G4 screen in batcave, htpc nvidia 1080ti madVR.
Audio: Anthem mrx720 running 7.1.4, McIntosh MC-303, MC-152, B&W 802d3 LR, B&W HTM1D3 center, B&W 805d3 surround, B&W 702S2 rear, B&W 706s2 x 4 shelf mounted for atmos, Infinite Baffle Subs 4x15 fi audio running on behringer ep4000 + 2x12 fi audio mounted in main chair firing into back.
markmon1 is online now  
post #6 of 6 Old 02-22-2020, 08:34 AM
Advanced Member
 
brazen1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 969
Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 631 Post(s)
Liked: 357
I use an old cheap X-10 momentary power module mapped to my Harmony 900. I hard wired the module to the power button of my Silverstone case using an RCA plug. One push of the remote and the HTPC starts. While this is occurring, other commands are being sent from that single button press. Lighting is adjusting, AVR is turning on and adjusting inputs and outputs, bass shakers and amp are turning on and adjusting, the display is turning on and adjusting, etc. Once booted into Windows, task manager can start Kodi. I also mapped Ctrl + Alt + Delete to the Harmony which provides all shutdown options for Windows allowing all updates to install during shutdown and next reboot. This also turns off all the equipment. The HTPC draws no power when it isn't in use but does provide live USB ports fwiw.

HOW TO - Kodi 2D - 3D - UHD (4k) HDR Guide Internal & External Players
W10 1909 / MPC-BE\HC / PotPlayer / PowerDVD 19 / DVDFab Player 3&5 / KODI 19 videoplayer
GTX960 4GB / RGB Full 4:4:4 / 8bit Desktop mode =60Hz / 10/12bit Video mode = Matched Refresh rates IE 23,24,25,60Hz
Samsung 82" Q90R / Denon S720W
brazen1 is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply Home Theater Computers

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off