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53 posts

Master Geek


Topic # 30783 21-Feb-2009 11:44
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I have recently updated the driver and CCC for my GA-MA78GM-S2H in Vista 32, however now the videocard doesn't accelerate video in DvbViewer or MPC HC anymore.

Anyone else find this?

And if so do you have the above mobo or are you finding this with other ATI graphics cards?

I am considering getting a new ATI videocard hoping that it might not have this issue but I am not sure it's limited to 780G.

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  Reply # 197097 21-Feb-2009 13:07
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To be honest I wouldn't go near anything ATI branded even if you paid me. Just reading the number of issues over the past year and the ones popping up now  it's still very clear now that their issues are far from solved.



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Master Geek


  Reply # 197107 21-Feb-2009 13:39
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So is a 8500GT recommended?  Can it do x264 MKV's?  ($88)
A GeForce 9400 GT 512MB PCI-Express is not much more. ($91)
Is the 8600GT worth the extra few bucks?  ($95)
A GeForce 9500 GT 512MB PCI-Express isn't out of the question ($103)

Obviously I am tempted to believe that higher numbers are always better but of course that isn't always the truth.
Anyone have an opinion?

 
 



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Master Geek


  Reply # 197116 21-Feb-2009 14:29
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After a bit of research I have established that:

A 9400 = 8500 effectively just rebranded
A 9500 = 8600 except it has enough tweaks and improvement to make it worth while.

So if a 9500 is the same as a 8600 then will it work for dvb-t and h264 mkv decoding as effectively as it's predecesor?

Hmmm, now I can probably find this out but does the 8500/9400 have a silence or coolness advantage over the more powerful 8600/9500?

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  Reply # 197119 21-Feb-2009 14:40
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Hey there aether22

I've been having problems - could be partially with the graphics driver and partially with my version of PowerDVD. I'd be really interested to know what version of the catalyst driver you tried to use. Did you use DXVA checker to check your hardware/driver support for hardware acceleration? If so, what did you see?

mm1352000



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Master Geek


  Reply # 197120 21-Feb-2009 15:15
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I did check but so far only in 32bit vista and i'm not sure how to read the results.

I will run it in win7 where DXVA does function and compare.

I am curious about possibly getting an older version of the gfx card driver but only the version from gigabyte works I think and not sure how to get old versions.
 
I'm going to have to think what is worth doing...

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  Reply # 197122 21-Feb-2009 15:47
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Okay I think I've made a personal breakthrough. You can see a description of my most recent problems and what I found here http://www.geekzone.co.nz/forums.asp?ForumId=83&TopicId=30608

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 197645 24-Feb-2009 07:32
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sbiddle: To be honest I wouldn't go near anything ATI branded even if you paid me. Just reading the number of issues over the past year and the ones popping up now  it's still very clear now that their issues are far from solved.


That's interesting. Is this primarily an issue because of Freeview's 720p and 1080i (or the profiles they use?) and/or Media Players Classic's codec and/or perhaps Windows XP?

I ask because I've been doing a lot of research, primarily in general forums i.e. full of US readers and my impression is that ATI cards are generally preferred for HTPCs. The primary reason may be the LPCM7.1 support which you can only otherwise get via the Intel and recent Nvidia IGPs or the expensive Asus audio card (which also support bitstream of DTA HD-MA and Dolby TrueHD of course) but it also seems to me that there are fewer issues reported (either way there are people reporting issues). With ATI cards, the primary issue I've seen is with 1080p24 over HDMI. There were also some HDMI audio issues with certain receivers but it appears to be resolved. However the 4xxx ATI cards appear to be generally considered to have better post processing particularly for SDTV sources (except for the 4350 which can't handle it, the 4550 had driver issues which seem to have been resolved) and fewer problems reported, particularly fewer dealbreaking problems. The Nvidia cards other then the lack of LPCM7.1 (and the need for a SP/DIF connection on the card for HDMI audio which I think some cards lack) I seem to see more problems reported (one with the black levels seems to be the one that concerns/annoys people the most) and I also got the idea their SDTV post processing is crappier. Indeed the primary reason I've seen for people choosing Nvidia cards has tended to be because of perfect/problem-free 1080p over HDMI, and perhaps the price (since the 9400 has ok post processing but the 4350 has little.)

But I haven't really seen many complaints of hardware accelerated decoding not working particularly for h.264 for either recent Nvidia or ATI cards (even the low end ones) or IGPs, or even the Intel G45. But of course most Americans only experience h.264 from BluRay and sometimes the HD Cam formats as well as perhaps some MKVs, and usually use one of the commercial codecs and software like PowerDVD, WinDVD or TMT. And most are using Vista not XP (well I haven't really look well but I've tended to ignore any problems that seem related to XP)

P.S. This site says it's broken in the latest Cat but only on XP http://nunnally.ahmygoddess.net/watching-h264-videos-using-dxva/

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  Reply # 197656 24-Feb-2009 08:03
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On paper ATI's video cards are superior for HTPC use and performance wise many people seem to think so as well. Their integrated audio is also fantastic.

You only need to start reading posts here on GZ to realise that ATI's cards & drivers have had issues with dealing with interlaced H.264 content since we first started receiving DVB-T H.264 test transmissions a little over a year ago. I purchased a HD2600 myself a year ago and gave up trying to get it going, since then there have been numerous posts here on GZ and in other sites such as the GB-PVR, Media Portal and DVBViewer forums from people all complaining about "green screen" issues affecting interlaced H.264 content.

Some people seem to have solved these issues with various combinations of Catalyst drivers and PowerDVD codecs (there was even specific mention in a PDVD update about it fixing the green screen issues) however it's an issue that seems to be raised continually and still seems to exist in Windows7. It's certainly not just an issue here in NZ, people in other countries who have H.264 broadcasts such as Norway and the UK DVB-T trials have all reported the same issues.

So who's problem is it? Where does the problem lie? That's anybody's guess. All I know is that Nvidia works great..

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  Reply # 197659 24-Feb-2009 08:08
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Yes I too have heard of HDMI issues, but I had heard that even the very latest (catalyst 9.2) drivers had not solved a few of the receiver hdcp handshake issues.

As for the dxva (hardware acceleration): after the experience I have had with drivers 8.12 and 9.1, I would say that dxva on xp works in 8.12, but is broken in 9.1. On Vista dxva appears to work on both. I have no idea about 9.2 - now that I have XP working I'd rather not try since I have heard that although it improves performance on some games, it does not fix dxva (amd gamezone forums).

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  Reply # 197662 24-Feb-2009 08:30
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sbiddle: On paper ATI's video cards are superior for HTPC use and performance wise many people seem to think so as well. Their integrated audio is also fantastic.

You only need to start reading posts here on GZ to realise that ATI's cards & drivers have had issues with dealing with interlaced H.264 content since we first started receiving DVB-T H.264 test transmissions a little over a year ago. I purchased a HD2600 myself a year ago and gave up trying to get it going, since then there have been numerous posts here on GZ and in other sites such as the GB-PVR, Media Portal and DVBViewer forums from people all complaining about "green screen" issues affecting interlaced H.264 content.

Some people seem to have solved these issues with various combinations of Catalyst drivers and PowerDVD codecs (there was even specific mention in a PDVD update about it fixing the green screen issues) however it's an issue that seems to be raised continually and still seems to exist in Windows7. It's certainly not just an issue here in NZ, people in other countries who have H.264 broadcasts such as Norway and the UK DVB-T trials have all reported the same issues.

So who's problem is it? Where does the problem lie? That's anybody's guess. All I know is that Nvidia works great..


So the problem is only with interlaced content then? When you say it's been raised continously, do you mean including on systems where it should be fine (recent Cat drivers, Vista, PDVD)? I'm not trying to argue here, just trying to understand if it's actually a problem I should worry about. Since I'm setting up a system largely from scratch, issues that ATI had before or has in certain setups doesn't really concern me. For example, I'd never planned to use XP since I was under the impression (perhaps incorrectly) that hardware accelerated h264 was a bit hackish in XP anyway, so issues which only affect XP don't concern me. Similarly I don't have a preference for any of the WinDVD et al products, so don't mind choosing whatever works best.

Given the lack of LPCM on Nvidia and the post processing issues it still seems to me ATI is the better choice if I can be sure of no problems with Freeview h264

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  Reply # 197666 24-Feb-2009 08:49
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Nil Einne:
So the problem is only with interlaced content then?



Yes. The issue does not occur on progressive scan content which is only TV1 and TV2.

As for how widespread the issue is now I think you'll just need to wait until a few people who still have ATI chipsets/cards add their comments. It certainly does seem that a lot of people have just given up and jumped ship to NVidia.

The current issus affecting the latest Catalyst drivers do really have to make you question ATI.
 

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  Reply # 197670 24-Feb-2009 09:10
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sbiddle:
Nil Einne:
So the problem is only with interlaced content then?



Yes. The issue does not occur on progressive scan content which is only TV1 and TV2.

As for how widespread the issue is now I think you'll just need to wait until a few people who still have ATI chipsets/cards add their comments. It certainly does seem that a lot of people have just given up and jumped ship to NVidia.

The current issus affecting the latest Catalyst drivers do really have to make you question ATI.
 


Okay that explains why the issues aren't commonly reported in general forums then. As I mentioned, most Americans only tend to use BluRay so 720p or 1080p is what they do most of al for h.264. I had read of problems with interlaced content before but thought people were referring to de-interlacing which I know has issues of its own. Kind of forgot that 1080i is generally more complex a stream then 1080p24 which is what BluRay's tend to have

As for ATI driver issues, you're right they are a concern but currently we only of a problem in XP. (Which as I mentioned, I don't really care about indeed I would prefer it if they just give up on Windows XP and concentrate on Vista, sorry mm1352000 ;-P). Whether mm1352000 Vista issues are driver related, I'm still trying to ascertain (we'll have an idea once he/she downgrades to 8.12)

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  Reply # 197671 24-Feb-2009 09:27
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The ATI green screen issues are not just related to XP, they affect Vista as well. Infact many of the people who have had Freeview|HD interlaced content working fine have been using XP but not Vista, probably in art because of the way DXVA hardware acceleration was just a hack in XP.

It has been widely reported that H/A is broken in Catalyst 9.1 and 9.2 which probably explains their issue.



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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 197676 24-Feb-2009 09:46
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sbiddle: The ATI green screen issues are not just related to XP, they affect Vista as well. Infact many of the people who have had Freeview|HD interlaced content working fine have been using XP but not Vista, probably in art because of the way DXVA hardware acceleration was just a hack in XP.

It has been widely reported that H/A is broken in Catalyst 9.1 and 9.2 which probably explains their issue.


You're right that the green screen issue has occured in Vista. What I'm trying to understand is whether people are still having it with recent Catalyst drivers and if so, with which codecs.

As for the second thing, are you sure? The link I posted to for example suggest it's only in XP that 9.1 and 9.2 have broken hardware acceleration, as I mentioned earlier. So do both these threads http://www.rage3d.com/board/showthread.php?t=33940281 http://forums.amd.com/game/messageview.cfm?catid=279&threadid=109192&enterthread=y which I found from a quick Google looking for people having problems with the new Cats and hardware acceleration in Vista. This isn't a great sample size but with so many people saying specifically it's only in XP and not Vista, I'm leaning towards you being wrong unless you've specifically remember people reporting broken hardware acceleration and the new Cats and Vista (well other then the OP which I forgot about :-P). Of course, there may still be problems with 1080i that carry over from previous drivers, but I don't think that's what we're discussing is it? I'm not complaining of course just pointing out how easy it is to get confused about precisely what's wrong and under what configs.

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  Reply # 197685 24-Feb-2009 10:16
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Nil, I'm one of those people that just had to give up on ATI for my HTPC.

I had a very nice passive HD3850 in my MC, but have now swapped it out for a passive 9600GT. The thing that forced me to switch was ATI's glitchy decoding of h.264 in 7MC. The Nvidia decodes h.264 perfectly.

Nvidia has had an option for setting black levels since a few versions back. It allows you to get consistent video levels as you can on the ATI. It's accessable in the control panel instead of being buried in a reg key which is nice.

I also find the PQ on the Nvidia to be supperior to the ATI, which suffered from artifacts such as red jaggies, clouding and banding on SD content. The Nvidia also seems to give a more vibrant picture than the ATI.

I still have an ATI HD4870 in my main WS, but it has problems with 8GB of ram and I'm kind of regretting going with ATI now. :-(

Nvidia is by no means perfect, but they seem to have less issues than ATI does. I would recommend you save yourself the heartache and stick with Nvidia for now.






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