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HTPC Low powered 1080 capable HTPC

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by soopahfly, 28 Jul 2008.

  1. soopahfly

    soopahfly Minimodder

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    I'm looking at building a low power, 1080p capable HTPC.
    Something that is as close to 100% silent as possible.

    I'm looking at atom based systems, but the drawback is the power. Does anyone know if you can get a decoder card that would go with one of these that would take all the HD processing instead of the cpu?
    Any suggestions?
     
  2. Guest-16

    Guest-16 Guest

    Atom? HAHA! No chance. :p It's not designed for it.

    What 1080p content exactly?
     
  3. Kode

    Kode What's a Dremel?

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    i think thats his point of offloading the work from the cpu elsewhere

    Edit: i believe 3850 and up can do hardware acceleration with audi pass through through the hdmi, whether that will work with an atom i dont know, but dont see why not
     
  4. GavX

    GavX What's a Dremel?

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    780G motherboard, got Radeon 3200 IGU (or whatever you call them) and with the software it takes all the eload off the CPU and onto the GPU for decodibng, does the job well. I havev not had a change to test mine (currently waiting on a friend to bring over a DVD drive to get Vista installed, I forgot to buy one..) but in reviews it seems good, plus you can throw in a cheap AM2 processor saving you some pennies
     
  5. Kode

    Kode What's a Dremel?

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    I dont think there are currently any 780G motherboards for atom processors, which was the original question, but i would agree, this is the route im going down as well, a 780G motherboard with a 4850e processor
     
  6. Guest-16

    Guest-16 Guest

    But my point is that there's no PCI-Express on the Atom platform so anything offloaded will have to be a PCI card :eyebrow:

    What I'm asking is - can his content be offloaded from CPU to GPU? What does he play? ;)
     
  7. Kode

    Kode What's a Dremel?

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    Yep thats a good point, tbh, ive not really paid much attention to the platform, so didnt realise there was no pci-e
     
  8. GavX

    GavX What's a Dremel?

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    Oh, I thought he was just looknig for an ideal HTPC not one based around the Atom, my bad.
     
  9. soopahfly

    soopahfly Minimodder

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    Its going to be a combination really, HD-DVD, Blueray and MKV, Want to run all my existing Divx stuff and DVB-T HD.
    Doesn't have to be Atom based, but if its on 24/7 I want it to be as frugal as possible.
     
  10. Burnout21

    Burnout21 Mmmm biscuits

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    i am also interested in this answer to this problem. i also want a super low powered system like the atom, but i want a decent HTPC aswell.
     
  11. Ramble

    Ramble Ginger Nut

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    Atom won't cut it, you need something that has a PCI-E socket, especially if you're running HD DVB.
     
  12. Guest-16

    Guest-16 Guest

    What kind of MKV? x264? Are they a consistent codec version (4.1?)

    If so - get an AMD 780G board - that'll decode HD-DVD, BD, and 4.1 x264/h264 as long as you offload onto GPU. Then you can just use a super-low power CPU like a BE-2400 or 4850e, underclocked.

    MPC-HC, PowerDVD 8 Ultra but not things like VLC will work for you.
     
  13. Langer

    Langer Jesse Lang

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    Are any special steps needed to 'offload' HD playback to GPU, or will the 780g platform do that automatically, somehow?
     
  14. Kode

    Kode What's a Dremel?

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    theres a sticky in the tech support section for offloading playback to the gpu, i dont think it matters whether its integrated gfx or discrete
     
  15. Langer

    Langer Jesse Lang

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    Thanks for clearing that up Kode.
     
  16. soopahfly

    soopahfly Minimodder

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    I'm not sure about the codec versions, although my MP4's are 4.1 so the 360 can read them.
    It sounds like I might just have to lump it and put something powerful in there and not worry about it.
     
  17. azrael-

    azrael- I'm special...

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    Like previously stated a combination of AMD780G-based mobo and a low power Athlon processor is your best bet. I've built one for a pal based around "that" Gigabyte mATX 780G mobo and an Athlon 4850e, and it rocks for full HD playback. Noise really isn't an issue here because the 4850e is a 45W model. I think it could even be passively cooled.
     
  18. Guest-16

    Guest-16 Guest

    If you have a large enough heatsink - the only issue I've found with the above combination (I use it for my own HTPC) is that Cool n Quiet doesn't work unless you manually set the minimum processor frequency in Vista power options.


    MPC-HC software and a 780G board will be perfect for you then :thumb:
     
  19. Kode

    Kode What's a Dremel?

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    will the hsf that comes with the 4850e be sufficient? and quiet enough?

    Edit: soopahfly, this is what i went for, it would probably do for your needs as well

    [​IMG]

    However ths case and motherboard arent due in till the 4th, and the memory till tomorrow, however, there is the uprated motherboard with the 128mb sideport memory http://www.scan.co.uk/Product.aspx?WebProductId=855947 and you could always get different case and memory,
     
  20. Mister_Tad

    Mister_Tad Will work for nuts Super Moderator

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    not to run it passively. Its not the greatest heatsink tbh. The 4850e is billed as a low power processor so I guess they figure you don't need a huge amount of cooling power.

    I'm running mine passive with a ninja mini, admittedly its underclocked and undervolted, (1.8GHz ~1.0v) but it still plays 1080p so the speed is moot really. Power consumption is around ~45w for 1080p playback.
     
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