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Discussion Starter #1
after dithering for about a year i finally pulled the trigger on a 50" plasma (woohoo!, thanks AVS community for the help on this decision)


now i need a new GPU for playing files from my hard drive to the new plasma panel


the constraint is that my current (aged) system has an AGP mobo. I'm currently using a Radeon 9600 All-in-Wonder which has served me well (sorta) - i don;t mind spending some a little cash on the new card to get what i want


recommendations?


ideally i would like 1080p output over HDMI (maybe DVI is sufficient? i can deal with audio later). i have a PS3 so i'm not playing BDs or DVDs from the computer. i do some PC gaming and i wouldn't mind a card that can support the latest titles.


also, i eventually want to set-up PVR functionality (like i had with the all-in-wonder). does my GPU choice effect my TV Card options? i want to set-up OTA HD eventually.



specs:

mobo: ASUS K8N-E-Deluxe

cpu: AMD Athlon 64 2800+

RAM: 1 stick of 1MB DDR
 

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Your best option is to allocate your upgrade budget into replacing the motherboard and possibly the processor to support a $20 PCI-E video card like the ASUS EAH3450 and future upgrades, rather than attempting to shoehorn newer technology into a dying interface format.


That said, if swapping motherboard is not an in-house proposition, something like the ASUS AH3650 AGP card might do the trick for you.


The former supports HDMI natively, the latter via an adapter.
 

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I added a Sapphire HD2600XT (AGP version) to my Socket 754 MB with AMD Athlon 3200+. I have hundreds of DVD's stored on my unRAID server that I play to my 52" Sony (DVI from computer to HDMI into AVR. Then HDMI from the AVR to DVI to my TV). I don't own any HD/BR players or Drives but I can play the 1080p Mpeg4 encoded trailer from I am Legend thru MPC-HC no problem (13 to 15% CPU usage).
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by BCDouglas /forum/post/14278574


I added a Sapphire HD2600XT (AGP version) to my Socket 754 MB with AMD Athlon 3200+. I have hundreds of DVD's stored on my unRAID server that I play to my 52" Sony (DVI from computer to HDMI into AVR. Then HDMI from the AVR to DVI to my TV). I don't own any HD/BR players or Drives but I can play the 1080p Mpeg4 encoded trailer from I am Legend thru MPC-HC no problem (13 to 15% CPU usage).

May I ask what OS are you using while doing all these? XP or Vista?


I have a similar situations, and I am contemplating a HD 3650 AGP. But I also heard AGP driver is no longer support by ATI.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by cychou /forum/post/14278603


May I ask what OS are you using while doing all these? XP or Vista?


I have a similar situations, and I am contemplating a HD 3650 AGP. But I also heard AGP driver is no longer support by ATI.

I'm using XP Home edition.
 

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I upgraded from a PNY GeForce 6800 128MB to this Monsters Sapphire HD3850 AGP works perfect with XP.

I use Catalyst 8.6 Hotfix from Sapphire and it Extremely fast for AGP 8x, Runs Cool and so far I LOVE THIS CARD.

It is a really a good idea to upgrade your PSU

My system

PSU brand new Corsair TX650W "CMPSU-650TX"

MB Intel D865PERL with 2.8GHz Prescott

"2" Kingston PC 3200 512MB DDR Memory

Creative Labs Sound Blaster Audigy 2 ZS


Upgrade to PCIe is not always a good option when you have pettey much buy everthing all over which it is a good idea if your hardcore gamer which is not the same with audio and video user even with HD video the key is in the graphics card hose power to hardware decode the video in real-time.

All of the newer good motherboard are way OVER cost and that dosen't count cost Dual-Core CPU and you all need new Memory "DDR2 or better", Harddrive "SATA 3.0Gb/s", Newer PSU and if your still using IDE you want to upgrade the CD/DVDrom to "SATA" if still using IDE for the best over all performance there no point in using LEGACY outdate device.


I could be wrong but the way I look at it rigth now there not any good high count PCIe 1x "min 4 for PVR Tuner" slot motherboard at a low cost there not always 100% fully compatible with all PCIe 4x/8x/16x slot nor one's with multiple 2/3/4 16x slots which most purpose dedicated to video graphics nor can you use the first 16x slot for something else if there on board video graphics and there also moving PCIe 16x over to ver 2.0 then ver 3.0 which nice for bandwidth, I say in the long run just wait a few more years then upgrade other then that upgrade what you all ready have.

To me PCI Express is far form being a trully universal slot like PCI was.

Quote:
But I also heard AGP driver is no longer support by ATI

That wrong you do need get them form Video Card Manufacturer which is nothing more then a Modified INF file.

AMD has beta drivers which do have all lates AGP card in them but I think the problem has to do Microsoft WHQL crap which is not digitally signed even with Vista which MS dosen't want to test or some thing like that.


The best option are to look at real-time Hardware MPEG2 Enocder or how about Hauppauge HD PVR with real-time Hardware H.264 Encoding.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by stevenash /forum/post/14277570


after dithering for about a year i finally pulled the trigger on a 50" plasma (woohoo!, thanks AVS community for the help on this decision)


now i need a new GPU for playing files from my hard drive to the new plasma panel


the constraint is that my current (aged) system has an AGP mobo. I'm currently using a Radeon 9600 All-in-Wonder which has served me well (sorta) - i don;t mind spending some a little cash on the new card to get what i want


recommendations?


ideally i would like 1080p output over HDMI (maybe DVI is sufficient? i can deal with audio later). i have a PS3 so i'm not playing BDs or DVDs from the computer. i do some PC gaming and i wouldn't mind a card that can support the latest titles.


also, i eventually want to set-up PVR functionality (like i had with the all-in-wonder). does my GPU choice effect my TV Card options? i want to set-up OTA HD eventually.



specs:

mobo: ASUS K8N-E-Deluxe

cpu: AMD Athlon 64 2800+

RAM: 1 stick of 1MB DDR

Do you need the new card for connectivity reasons? A 9600 should play 1080p fine over the VGA or DVI port. I use a 9700 in my HTPC outputting through the DVI and it works great for playing mpeg2 HDTV files that I record OTA. I would at least give it a try with the newest drivers from ATI and the latest codecs for playing h264 stuff. Any of the decent HDTV cards will work with the 9600 or any other newer card you get. I have 2 HDTV Wonders that I am still using for watching/recording.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by cychou /forum/post/14278603


I am contemplating a HD 3650 AGP. But I also heard AGP driver is no longer support by ATI.

ATI is still providing hotfix drivers for people who can't get the official drivers from their video card manufacturer. I just downloaded the Catalyst 8.6 drivers for my PowerColor HD 3650. Seems to be working fine.


OP's configuration should be fine for what he wants to do. Besides the video card upgrade, just make sure you have a beefy power supply. As a point of comparison, here's my configuration:


AMD XP Mobile 2600+ (yes, you read that right)

768 MB RAM

PowerColor HD 3650 AGP

650w CoolerMaster PS

LG GCC-H20L BD/HD DVD drive

500 GB Hard drive X 2

DVico Fusion Gold3 HDTV tuner

Avermedia A180 HDTV tuner

KWorld ATSC 115 HDTV tuner X 2

Avermedia PVR 150 Plus

Media Center 2005


I can get all 4 tuners recording simultaneously without breaking a sweat. If I watch a program while all 4 tuners are recording, the CPU utilization might hit 65% or so. Watching HD DVD/BD also causes the CPU utilization to hit 65% or so, occasionally going to 80%. I think I still have a bit of tweaking to do, the CPU figures seem kinda high. However, I'm running at 720p so I don't know how my rig would work at 1080p.
 

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Or just get a new system with integrated video and upgrade to a discrete GPU later on if it's not enough.


ATI 780G-based mobo = $90

AMD X2 4850e CPU = $80

2GB DDR2-800 = $40


Now you're future proof as far as GPUs go...then you can upgrade to a mid-range ATI or nVidia card for under $200 at your leisure.


Though the onboard GPU inside the 780G is essentially an Radeon HD3200 with shared memory. It's not going to tackle anything very graphically intensive though.
 

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Try with what you have (assuming your plasma has VGA and/or DVI ports). If it works, then hold off on upgrading. Right now, I think it's a waste spending $100 for a new AGP video card when none of the newer motherboards support it.


I was also considering upgrading the graphics card on an old PC (PIV 1.7GHz, 512MB DDR2 RDRAM, GeForce 4 MX440) for watching OTA HD. However, after reading about how problematic it is to get hardware decoding working with AGP and looking at prices (and the PC has become unbearably slow at times, too), I bit the bullet and decided to build a new low-end PC. Total came up to $245+tax, and half of that was for case, power supply and hard drive.
 

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Discussion Starter #11

Quote:
Originally Posted by speedfrk /forum/post/14280742


Do you need the new card for connectivity reasons? A 9600 should play 1080p fine over the VGA or DVI port. I use a 9700 in my HTPC outputting through the DVI and it works great for playing mpeg2 HDTV files that I record OTA. I would at least give it a try with the newest drivers from ATI and the latest codecs for playing h264 stuff. Any of the decent HDTV cards will work with the 9600 or any other newer card you get. I have 2 HDTV Wonders that I am still using for watching/recording.

WOW! i'm an idiot -- i've had my tv hooked up to the card over composite for so long i didn;t even consider that i could hook it up otherwise


i do have a connectivity issue tho, unlike the 9700 the aiw9600 doesn't have DVI output - so i need a VGA-to-Component adapter to drive the HDTV - (the adapter direct from ATI/AMD is CDN$50 but it looks like i should be able to get one somewhere else for much cheaper)


anyway, looks like this is the best way to go for me right now


if i could only get the software to work again


thanks speedfrk
 

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I have a ATI AIW 9600XT and with a P4 2.3Ghz Single Core it was fine at 720p (KABC OTA HD) and local PBS-HD (KCET-HD) but with anything else it was spike the CPU to 100% and cause frame skipping or sometimes a "slow motion" effect, not good.


I then bought new HD2400 card only to find out that it didn't support MPEG-2 hardware acceleration.


After spending a few days with various cards, I decided enough as enough, my PC was 5 years ago, served me well, I don't do anything heavy duty with it anyway, but I felt it was time to upgrade.


The money I spent trying to get a few more years out of the Dell ending up being more trouble than it was worth combined with a fresh install of XP MCE come to find out I couldn't install the rollup disc anymore it just wouldn't install no matter how many versions of net I had installed and searching hours on the net trying to find answers ended up in a dead end, I had the Vista dic saved for when I had time to build a PC.


I said screw it and took both video cards back and new sound card back.


I kept the tuner (TV Wonder 650 PCI)


I bought a Gigabyte 69GM board (there's a thread located in this forum), Asus case with 500W Earthwatts PSU from Fry's on sale, 120mm fan, AMD Black Edition and the motherboard combo from Mwave and 3GB of RAM.


I spent a total after rebates of $330


Had the machine up and running in 6 hours with Vista installed and watching TV


HD is no longer an issue, it can more than likely play Blu Ray but I'm not concerned while I haven't done it, I plan on picking up the last of the backward compatible PS3's.


Anyway, I think you should invest in a new machine and re-use whatever you can from the old PC. I don't have SATA drives, I used recently purchased IDE drive (320GB WD) as this machines main drive, its the only one in the machine currently, I don't even have a floppy!
 

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Discussion Starter #13

Quote:
Originally Posted by dj4monie /forum/post/14323495


Anyway, I think you should invest in a new machine and re-use whatever you can from the old PC.

it might happen, but for now i dropped $9 on a VGA-->Component adapter (eBay, free shipping) and i'll see what happens


-if i can play HD files from my HD i'll be happy


-if i can get the PVR software working again i'll be really happy (ATI stuff stopped working for me, i might try MediaPortal again)


-next step is to get a ChannelMaster 4228 and see if i can get OTA HD going
 

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The adapter probably will not work since for that price it is most likly a VGA to RGB Component and not a VGA to Yprpb component used by HDTVs.
 

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Discussion Starter #15

Quote:
Originally Posted by walford /forum/post/14324787


The adapter probably will not work since for that price it is most likly a VGA to RGB Component and not a VGA to Yprpb component used by HDTVs.

damn, you're right -- and i knew that but at 1:00am my brain was too mushy
 
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