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what´s the best possible hcpc

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I have just bought a second hand sony vpl10ht, please tell me what´s the best htpc for my projector.

thanks, Juan
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Hi Colmenar:

___You are asking a tough question nowadays … It all depends what you want to use your HTPC for.

___For the best all around display quality, the Radeon “LE†or beyond is the answer. For an avid gamer, a PCI based Radeon and a GeForce in the AGP slot most certainly fills the bill. For a simple 1 card solution for the avid gamer, the GeForce lines are well proven but the just recently released 8500 series Radeon may just fill the bill for both.

___For your sound options, it again depends if you are an avid gamer or not. For the gamer, I would consider a Live Value II (

___Their are HDTV and S-Video/Composite capture solutions to consider here such as the AccessDTV and the HiPix DTV-200 for OTA HDTV recording and playback as well as any number of capture cards for use w/ DScaler. See the description below.

___And the big question is the platform the whole enchilada is built off of … If you want the most reliable and quietest HTPC solution, I would suggest the I815EP-B chipsets w/ a high frequency PIII as they can be cooled almost silently and they work for the most part with everything you can throw at them in the HTPC realm. For someone looking at pure performance for other uses besides the HTPC and has the gumption to accept glitches w/ certain HW/SW/OS/Driver interactions, the recently released KT266a, SiS735, AMD 761, Ali Magic 1 chipsets may fill the bill. Look for the Nvidia nForce chipsets in the near future as well. The performance for the price is truly astounding but you pay for this platform w/ higher dB output cooling solutions in both the CPU and the PS while cooling the cases and some incompatibilities with the HW we all use for our HTPC’s today as mentioned above. I am not a full fledged fan of this solution for HTPC uses just yet but for the kids HTPC’s, they work and they work damn fast! For the latest, a socket 478 based P4 solution which may give you the most upgradeability into the future but at some expense w/ the I850 and RDRAM or somewhat slower performance with the I845 using SDRAM. Intel may move up the schedule for their DDR based I845 chipsets called the I845-D and in a socket 478 form, this may be the best solution for most without considering the ridiculous prices of Intel based CPU’s to date. I say this not knowing if Intel will play games by throttling the performance of the I845-D in some fashion like a non-dual channel DDR memory architecture or similar …

___And what about SW and OS’s … For SW, its best to have at least two SW DVD players because you never know when a disc is going to give a player trouble. I currently I have four installed but have narrowed the choice down to one which will be released soon. As far as the OS is concerned, either Win98 SE or Millennium are the true HTPC OS’s of choice today. You lose functionality when using Win98 or prior and w/ Windows 2000 or the latest Win XP, you lose the best in audiophile quality sound as well as display configuration capabilities depending on the players used. There are some exciting things coming down the pipe for the XP owners in particular but they may take some time before making it to us HTPC’ers. If you are going to use OTA std. NTSC or LD sources to your new FP, you can also use a SW deinterlacer called DScaler w/ a capture card like mentioned above. In its latest iterations as well as with some of the cards you can purcahse today, it truly makes the HTPC a wonderful addition to the HT environment.

___This is a very general post of course but it will give you some ideas when you begin doing you HW search …

___Good Luck

___Wayne R. Gerdes

___Hunt Club Farms Landscaping Ltd.

___ [email protected]
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