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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently built the following HTPC.

Asus P5E-VM HDMI motherboard

E2460 cpu overclocked to 3.0GHz

LG combo drive

Connected to 52" XBR4 TV

Windows XP Home

I have Showtime (latest) installed with HD plug-in.

Also PDVD that came with LG drive.


CoreAVC H.264 decoder

Onkyo 605 receiver on order

Of course all standard definition content plays back smoothly with no issues.

I can't use PDVD at all because it doesn't detect a compatible (read hardware assisted) video card. Bummer since I would at least like to see what my system can decode in software with this program. Is there a way to get this working without the proper video card?

Showtime 4 won't play HD-DVDs from the disc drive. BR's sometimes play but the freezing and stuttering make them unwatchable.

VC1 encoded material plays back perfectly from the hard drive but of course no subtitles and menus.

H.264 content plays back pretty well from the hard drive but ocassionally I can detect a stutter on a pan here and there. My wife doesn't pick up any problems.

So my problems are a few if anyone would like to offer advice.

I'd like to be able to play discs from the drive. Should I buy an accelerated video card to get PDVD working?

I'm not sure why I'm getting any stuttering when playing back HD H.264 content if my cpu usage never goes above 60%. Is something else causing the stutter that occur every now and then? The fact that they occur during pans makes me think either there is a problem with the pulldown detection or a decoding of the codec issue as pans are when the bitrate would spike.

The good news is that I can play all of the HD titles from the hard drive. It would just be nice to have the subtitles. Of course I can get them on HD-DVD but that's quite a bit of work.

And the quality is fantastic with Showtime 4 and CoreAVC. Absolutely stunning picture on my Sony 52XBR4. I'm thinking about getting an ATI 3000 series video card so I can use PDVD for optical disc playback and Showtime 4 for hard disk playback even if Showtime can't do hardware assist.

It's always tough getting in at the start with these new technologies as we have to work out all the little bugs and issues!

Thanks for any advice and great forum. I'm hoping my post will help some other people.
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