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I was thinking of building an HTPC and came across the nForce chipset. Integrated Geforce-2 class graphics as well as built in TOSLINK output which I assume can be used with DVD software and a DD/DTS reciever/decoder. Any one have any luck with nForce based systems (should I avoid them like the plague?)
 

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Welcome to the forum. If you use the search function, you will find a number of discussions re nForce on MB.
 

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Hi Ramick:


___Thank you ;)


___Bsoft16384, Ramick’s search function comment has probably led you to 10’s of threads in regards to the nForce as an HTPC platform of choice. If an AMD solution is what you truly want to build, the nForce 415/420-D chipset is the one I would use for my HTPC uses. I would not however use either the onboard sound or the included GeForce2 MX400 equivalent onboard video. The onboard digital sound is great for gaming but for HTPC 44.1 KHz PCM and 48 KHz DD/DTS output, it is not the best solution. The item I want you to consider is that the nForce chipsets compatibility is first rate for a non-Intel solution and this makes it worth every penny vs. a slightly faster KT266A/333 VIA based solution.


___Good Luck


___Wayne R. Gerdes

___Hunt Club Farms Landscaping Ltd.

___ [email protected]
 

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I have both nForce and KT266A motherboards. I have no compatibility or speed issues with either choice software-wise. The only compatibility issue with the shuttle AK31 KT266A motherboard is I can't use the fourth memory slot with my Radeon 8500. It worked with my Geforce 2. Also when I got it, loading the VIA 4-in-1 drivers caused problems (specifically the VGA part of the drivers). Perhaps they fixed it now that it is months later. In any case, I never needed the drivers and it runs perfectly. With the nforce, I had problems with my Hipix until I changed the PIC/APIC setting in the BIOS to PIC. The nForce is NOT imho compatible with Windows 98 (hence the non-certified drivers). Any newer OS is fine.
 

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Thorr-


I am putting together an HTPC with an nforce 415 board, Abit NV7-133R, and a HiPix card. I am having problems getting the Abit board to recognize the HiPix card (it is possible it is not seated correctly, I will try again tonight). What problems did you have with the HiPix card and which nforce board do you have?


I am not immediately formiliar with the PIC/APIC Bios setting. What is it, what does it do?


- Phil Klein
 

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Phil,


The problem I had was with recording. The recordings would come out choppy, as if the signal was coming in and out. If your computer is not recognizing it at all, it could still be related to the PIC/APIC setting. This setting assigns IRQ's above the original 2-15 available when in the APIC mode. Also, it could be not seated properly, and you might also try a different slot. Good luck.


Mike
 

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Hi Thorr:


___I only had the nForce’s for a few days but I had no compatibility problems under Windows Millennium using the HiPix in both view and record modes. The problem with the KT266A’s (Soyo Dragon +’s) have been the onboard C-Media chipset has problems with DTS audio every once in a while as well as having to detune the M-Audio cards for perfect audio playback of both DD and DTS disc’s.


___As far as the HiPix HW itself, I do not believe they ever did fix the slightly short I/O shield to card attachment points causing poor PCI seating problems. Maybe Kei has seen this change for the better with the latest and greatest but ordering one a few months ago, I saw the same problem as when the Beta’s were first made available to us.


___Good Luck


___Wayne R. Gerdes

___Hunt Club Farms Landscaping Ltd.

___ [email protected]
 

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I've got one and it works great. Not sure about the HiPix thing...when I do use HDTV, I use my RCA DTC-100.


That being said, a good sound card and network card onboard a mATX motherboard is nice.
 
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