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319 posts

Ultimate Geek


# 20657 2-Apr-2008 00:27
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I am planning on purchasing a Shuttle barebones for a HTPC system and for viewing recording DVB-T.
I am wondering which is recommended out of the following. Would the 7050PV do hardware accel of h.264? What about the Intel GMA?


SN68PTG6
nVidia GeForce 7050PV/ NVIDIA nForce 630a
VGA Integrated NVIDIA GeForce 7 Series

SG33G5 Pro
Intel G33 + ICH9DH
Built-in Intel GMA 3100 256bit




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176 posts

Master Geek


  # 120586 2-Apr-2008 19:52
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The 7050 will do the acceleration, unsure about the intel.

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  # 120593 2-Apr-2008 20:30
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I wouldn't be so sure of the H.264 acceleration on a Geforce 7 series. Several others have said it just doesn't work well and it seems that series 8 is the minimum spec to get H.264 working properly.

 
 
 
 


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Master Geek


  # 120606 2-Apr-2008 21:25
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Hmm, might have a point. Things might be smoother if you're running a higher-end processor with ample ram. I've been really happy with the Asus en8500gt I bought for a smidge over $100. If you budget for a separate vid card then that opens up the type of shuttle you can go for.
Oddly enough I'm looking at building a shuttle for a htpc machine in a week or 2.

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  # 120641 3-Apr-2008 01:37
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I have had one shuttle, never again.

Case form factor doesnt fit into any normal av cabinet without wasting a lot of space beside it (remaining space isnt wide enough to put an xbox or anything there in a standard 17" gapped cabinet)

And they are hot and noisy compared to a real HTPC case which will then also open up a range of motherboards to you that are more suited.




Richard rich.ms

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  # 120656 3-Apr-2008 06:54
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Decoding the channels isn't just about processing power. Video cards have hardware deinterlacing and features that simply can't be emulated well in software which means dedicated hardware H.264 decoding delivers a far superior picture to software decoding.

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  # 120663 3-Apr-2008 08:15
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richms: I have had one shuttle, never again.

Case form factor doesnt fit into any normal av cabinet without wasting a lot of space beside it (remaining space isnt wide enough to put an xbox or anything there in a standard 17" gapped cabinet)

And they are hot and noisy compared to a real HTPC case which will then also open up a range of motherboards to you that are more suited.


How long ago was that?

I have built a few shuttle PCs for customers and have used one myself for a HTPC and the noisiest thing in them was the hard drive!
Never ran very hot at all either.  These were all AMD versions so don't know about the Intel ones.

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  # 120732 3-Apr-2008 14:54
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I agree with richms in terms of the size, they don't fit in with normal HT gear, amp, dvd etc. Personally I'd go for a full size HTPC case because I like to load it up with tuners but if you want something a bit smaller get a slim small form factor htpc case, they look so much better than those ugly stubby little cubes. (just  my opinion  no offense intended!)




 
 
 
 


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  # 120779 3-Apr-2008 16:56
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CYaBro:
richms: I have had one shuttle, never again.

Case form factor doesnt fit into any normal av cabinet without wasting a lot of space beside it (remaining space isnt wide enough to put an xbox or anything there in a standard 17" gapped cabinet)

And they are hot and noisy compared to a real HTPC case which will then also open up a range of motherboards to you that are more suited.


How long ago was that?

I have built a few shuttle PCs for customers and have used one myself for a HTPC and the noisiest thing in them was the hard drive!
Never ran very hot at all either. These were all AMD versions so don't know about the Intel ones.


My one I have in the mame machine is pretty old, its a socket A based one, but the PSU in it is new, since its the 3rd one. I 40mm fan in it is bloody noisey despite it being called low noise, and yes, there is a lot of hdd noise since they do not provice decent acoustic isolation. I had the use of a newer one for a while but I didnt find it to be substantially better. Add to that the unneeded height for the machine with its layout and it would only fit on the lower shelf of my rack, which is the one that has the reciever on it since its too high for any of the other shelves.

The motherboard is essentially non upgradable. I know you can swap between some shuttles but its always a shame to send a nice case off to the tip when upgrading, whereas a mini-atx or full atx htpc case should be good for some time since the btx factor never happened thankfully (other then some dells it seems)

portable gaming rigs are what the shuttle are ok at. Not a HTPC IMO.




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Master Geek


  # 121019 4-Apr-2008 11:38
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I run the SG33G5 as our main PC, it is noisier the the HTPC build I did, and does have some constraints in terms of add-in cards etc. I run mine with a 9600GT card, the on-board one wouldn't cut it with games so I never bothered to try. I have set it up as a second HTPC, so the kids watch tv on that with a 24" wide screen while we use the main TV. It is fine & quick with a Q6600 etc, has been very stable, although the main cooling fan is very noticable, hence building a second dedicated HTPC.

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