Geekzone: technology news, blogs, forums
Guest
Welcome Guest.
You haven't logged in yet. If you don't have an account you can register now.




295 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 3


Topic # 24815 3-Aug-2008 20:40
Send private message

I just know today that there are options with a TV tuner and UHF antennas which enable me viewing FreeView HD on my PC, and are pretty exciting about it. But with my currently five years plus old PC, is it a good idea to rush out tomorrow to buy tuner and antenna?

I know there are list of compatible videocards lists in the forums, but I don't mind have a high CPU usage with soft encoding and as my PC can play back h.264 encoded video (backups of DVDs made by myself with 712*480) with CPU usage under 30%. I don't see why my system couldn't handle HD contents from FreeView using same encoding, or did I missed something ?

My system is a AMD Althon XP 2500+ with 1G Ram and ATI Radeon X800 GTO AGP and I am using mostly Linux, but with dual boot with Windows XP pro.

Many thanks in advance.


Create new topic
4025 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 1076

Trusted

  Reply # 153879 3-Aug-2008 21:14
Send private message

Your system definitely won't play Freeview HD smoothly. DVD's are less detailed and lower resolution than HD, so don't require as much power to decode. Also Freeview HD is essentially a live stream so your computer has to be able to keep up with it, or you'll get dropped frames.
Theres a pretty good reason why you use a h264 video card, im going to be using an 8500GT with my Athlon 5200 because otherwise it won't be smooth.

You could however play Freeview Satellite SD fine, if you don't want to upgrade.



295 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 3


  Reply # 153882 3-Aug-2008 21:24
Send private message

Thank you very much for your information.

But I am downloading FreeView samples now to see if my PC can keep up with simple playing back HD contents. If in that case, can I assume it is going to fine?

PS: It going to take a while to download samples, I wouldn't see the result until tomorrow.

 
 
 
 


25690 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 5444

Moderator
Trusted
Biddle Corp
Subscriber

  Reply # 153886 3-Aug-2008 21:34
Send private message

pstar008: Thank you very much for your information.



But I am downloading FreeView samples now to see if my PC can keep up with simple playing back HD contents. If in that case, can I assume it is going to fine?



PS: It going to take a while to download samples, I wouldn't see the result until tomorrow.



You can try the samples but the reality is your system simply isn't going to cope. You might get away with the regular 576i channels but TV1, TV2 and TV3 will not work with such a low spec system.

4025 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 1076

Trusted

  Reply # 153903 3-Aug-2008 22:45
Send private message

I see you say you are using mostly linux - currently i don't think theres any solutions for playing Freeview HD under mythtv or similar. If you want to use linux to watch tv rather than windows maybe talk to the user 'openmedia', but i dont think you'll get Freeview HD going, only SD satellite.

357 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 21


  Reply # 153912 3-Aug-2008 23:39
Send private message

I had a pc with better specs than yours (still agp though), and freeview hd was unwatchable.



295 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 3


  Reply # 154109 4-Aug-2008 20:07
Send private message

Thanks for all the reply, yes indeed neither my CPU nor my video card is up to that task, finally got a reason to update my old box.

To build a new upgrade box, looks like I should pick a Nividia card as apparently Ati card user get more issues?

To eXDee, after skim through some information, I think as I do have a Windows xp partition, I should try to get FreeView HD working on Windows first. I use Linux mostly because most of the time I can use it to get things done faster, but not in this case I believeFrown

4025 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 1076

Trusted

  Reply # 154166 5-Aug-2008 00:04
Send private message

Yeah go nvidia. 8500GT is good, go for the 8600GT if you want to give newer games a go.
If you want a cheap upgrade then go for AMD, for high end go for Intel.

If you're wanting to upgrade and aren't sure on what to get, give an estimate budget and what you want to upgrade and i'll spec one up for you. If you choose to upgrade you'll need to get a PCI-E motherboard for the videocard, which then means a new CPU and RAM. Possibly power supply too if yours is very old.



295 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 3


  Reply # 154179 5-Aug-2008 07:36
Send private message

eXDee: Yeah go nvidia. 8500GT is good, go for the 8600GT if you want to give newer games a go.
If you want a cheap upgrade then go for AMD, for high end go for Intel.

If you're wanting to upgrade and aren't sure on what to get, give an estimate budget and what you want to upgrade and i'll spec one up for you. If you choose to upgrade you'll need to get a PCI-E motherboard for the videocard, which then means a new CPU and RAM. Possibly power supply too if yours is very old.


That will be really great if someone could help me to get a list, to avoid off topic I put a new thread in Desktop area:
http://www.geekzone.co.nz/forums.asp?ForumId=50&TopicId=24855

880 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 45

Trusted

  Reply # 154579 6-Aug-2008 10:44
Send private message

itey: I had a pc with better specs than yours (still agp though), and freeview hd was unwatchable.

 

These slow machines that can't play freeview HD: can they still record the data stream ok? I'm wondering if keeping the display on to check what's coming in (but not to watch) would disrupt the recording process.

 

I'm considering recording on my old laptop, and transferring the recorded file to my media player to play back on the TV.





 

25690 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 5444

Moderator
Trusted
Biddle Corp
Subscriber

  Reply # 154582 6-Aug-2008 10:51
Send private message

TinyTim:

itey: I had a pc with better specs than yours (still agp though), and freeview hd was unwatchable.


These slow machines that can't play freeview HD: can they still record the data stream ok? I'm wondering if keeping the display on to check what's coming in (but not to watch) would disrupt the recording process.


I'm considering recording on my old laptop, and transferring the recorded file to my media player to play back on the TV.



This would work OK. All the system is doing is dumping the TS stream straight from the capture card to the HDD.

What sort of player do you plan to use? I'm not aware of any that support H.264 + AAC Audio.

880 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 45

Trusted

  Reply # 154594 6-Aug-2008 11:09
Send private message

sbiddle:

What sort of player do you plan to use? I'm not aware of any that support H.264 + AAC Audio.

 

You're right, it doesn't support H.264, it'll require an overnight conversion to DivX. (As discussed in another thread, I have conversion working on Fossie's progressive samples but not interlaced samples so that'll require investigation.)

 

Not the simplest process I know, but it's more to satisfy my curiosity than anything: spending cash on Freeview isn't a high priority for us because we get good reception on analogue here, and I'd rather spend my money on blu-ray and/or wait till later when there is more choice (e.g. HDD recorder) (and perhaps Prime goes Freeview??).

 

$140 for a HVR900 is probably enough to satisfy my curiosity at the moment. 





 

49 posts

Geek


  Reply # 155584 10-Aug-2008 12:28
Send private message

sbiddle:

You can try the samples but the reality is your system simply isn't going to cope. You might get away with the regular 576i channels but TV1, TV2 and TV3 will not work with such a low spec system.


not to disagree with you but just to throw a spanner in the works, what are the specs of the hardware on a decoder (set top box) that _CAN_ decode hd content? surely, even though different hardware platforms, that machine would out spec a set top decoder? just a matter of embedded software or firmware, something could be made, just by a better person than me.

25690 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 5444

Moderator
Trusted
Biddle Corp
Subscriber

  Reply # 155586 10-Aug-2008 12:39
Send private message

seriouslycgi:
sbiddle:

You can try the samples but the reality is your system simply isn't going to cope. You might get away with the regular 576i channels but TV1, TV2 and TV3 will not work with such a low spec system.


not to disagree with you but just to throw a spanner in the works, what are the specs of the hardware on a decoder (set top box) that _CAN_ decode hd content? surely, even though different hardware platforms, that machine would out spec a set top decoder? just a matter of embedded software or firmware, something could be made, just by a better person than me.


The simple requirement is a GPU capable of H.264 decoding.



295 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 3


  Reply # 155742 10-Aug-2008 23:08
Send private message

Hi guys thanks for the info, and there is an update.

I have a laptop with Pentium M 2.0 GHz (Thinkpad Z60) and intergrated (Intel 940G?) with HVR-900h,
and ALL the channels are watchable using PowerCinema comes with my TV tuner, but not perfect.

My CPU is constantly on high load which is obvious, switch channel iskind of slow but works fine, and
even better TV 3 are not too bad as well during the few minutes I am watching, but I notice some lag
during fast action scenes. I just watched Sports Extra for a couple of hours tonight and am very happy
with that so far, and on all the channels the picture quality are just superb!

I just got my UHF arial installed today and that is my experiences on the watching TV side so far. My
old desktop are getting its age anyway and I am busying build an upgrade box and have no plans on
testing my old desktop box. But I would suspect it will be a little bit worse than my laptop but still barely
watchable with most channels but TV3.

880 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 45

Trusted

  Reply # 155822 11-Aug-2008 10:53
Send private message

pstar008:

I have a laptop with Pentium M 2.0 GHz (Thinkpad Z60) and intergrated (Intel 940G?) with HVR-900h,
and ALL the channels are watchable using PowerCinema comes with my TV tuner, but not perfect.

My CPU is constantly on high load which is obvious, switch channel iskind of slow but works fine, and
even better TV 3 are not too bad as well during the few minutes I am watching, but I notice some lag
during fast action scenes. I just watched Sports Extra for a couple of hours tonight and am very happy
with that so far, and on all the channels the picture quality are just superb!

 

I have a similarly specced laptop to you, and I got my HVR-900H late last week. I too have had surprisingly good results - I might even try connecting it up to the TV.

 

The only problems I've had are I can't watch TV at the same time as recording - I need to turn off the TV viewing to get a decent recording - and playback of a TV3 recording is jerky (though I haven't tried with only PowerCinema running). 

 

How am I going to get any work done with the Olympics on?





 

Create new topic



Twitter »

Follow us to receive Twitter updates when new discussions are posted in our forums:



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when news items and blogs are posted in our frontpage:



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when tech item prices are listed in our price comparison site:





News »

New Zealand government to create digital advisory group
Posted 16-Dec-2017 08:47


Australia datum changes means whole country moving 1.8 metres north-east
Posted 16-Dec-2017 08:39


UAV Traffic Management Trial launching today in New Zealand
Posted 12-Dec-2017 16:06


UFB connections pass 460,000
Posted 11-Dec-2017 11:26


The Warehouse Group to adopt IBM Cloud to support digital transformation
Posted 11-Dec-2017 11:22


Dimension Data peeks into digital business 2018
Posted 11-Dec-2017 10:55


2018 Cyber Security Predictions
Posted 7-Dec-2017 14:55


Global Govtech Accelerator to drive public sector innovation in Wellington
Posted 7-Dec-2017 11:21


Stuff Pix media strategy a new direction
Posted 7-Dec-2017 09:37


Digital transformation is dead
Posted 7-Dec-2017 09:31


Fake news and cyber security
Posted 7-Dec-2017 09:27


Dimension Data New Zealand strengthens cybersecurity practice
Posted 5-Dec-2017 20:27


Epson NZ launches new Expression Premium Photo range
Posted 5-Dec-2017 20:26


Eventbrite and Twickets launch integration partnership in Australia and New Zealand
Posted 5-Dec-2017 20:23


New Fujifilm macro lens lands in New Zealand
Posted 5-Dec-2017 20:16



Geekzone Live »

Try automatic live updates from Geekzone directly in your browser, without refreshing the page, with Geekzone Live now.



Are you subscribed to our RSS feed? You can download the latest headlines and summaries from our stories directly to your computer or smartphone by using a feed reader.

Alternatively, you can receive a daily email with Geekzone updates.