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Official HTPC Guide Discussion Thread (Part 1)


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#37 krazypoloc

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Posted 21 February 2009 - 06:26 PM

I have downloaded ripbot264 but have not played w/ it much because BD Rebuilder has been working so well for me, but I do plan on checking out this tool

I do have (2) hot swap bays

I ran RAID0 in w/ 1st gen Raptors in my first serious gaming rig, and upgraded to 15k SAS RAID0

Now w/ my Main PC having evolved into being primarily a HTPC I am running a JBOD configuration, both my OS's (32bit/64bit) and a My Documents partition sit on the outside EDGE of a 1500GB HDD which HD Tach reports as 108Mb/s sustained average so I don't really need the speed or the complexity of a RAID array, and I would rather have maximum capacity than redundancy, what I have done is breakup my (8) HDD's into 22 partitions to decrease the chance of losing a lot of movies, in 10 years of PC building I have only lost a HDD once, and that 1 was the only HDD I ever ran w/o a fan blowing directly on it (knock on wood)

W/ 6780GB of storage I only have 650GB left, I will be swapping out 1 of my 500GB drives for a 1500GB drive next week, and as I encode movies to smaller file sizes and gain storage room I will begin to backup my favorite movies

ocgw

peace


I was doing that for a while but got sick of juggling my partitions and since I am now pulling everything from my server to my HTPC, Laptops, other PC's in the house, and soon to come popcorn hour's it is nice to have everything in one place and not have to worry about losing anything as its running on a redundant array.

lol...I ran scuzzies for a while too man and wasn't overly impressed. This was a few years ago.


Another nice thing about the RAID 5 that I have is that if I need more space I can expand it on the fly by just adding another drive without losing any data. Pop it in>dynamic capacity expansion>expand the partition via diskpart.exe>have an additional 1.5 TB of space just like that. Since I am running 4x1.5 TB drives now and am on an 8 port SATA controller I can expand the array up to 10.5 TB just by adding drives. I'm at 4.5 TB with 4 drives BTW. :)


The drive cages I was referring to are actually multiple HDD enclosures like the ones in my sig. You can hold 3 HDD's in the space of 2 optical drive bays.


Also with JBOD if you lose 1 drive you lose them all. Even if you have your data spanned across the drives/partitions.

Edited by krazypoloc, 21 February 2009 - 06:29 PM.

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#38 ocgw

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Posted 21 February 2009 - 07:59 PM

I was doing that for a while but got sick of juggling my partitions and since I am now pulling everything from my server to my HTPC, Laptops, other PC's in the house, and soon to come popcorn hour's it is nice to have everything in one place and not have to worry about losing anything as its running on a redundant array.

lol...I ran scuzzies for a while too man and wasn't overly impressed. This was a few years ago.


Another nice thing about the RAID 5 that I have is that if I need more space I can expand it on the fly by just adding another drive without losing any data. Pop it in>dynamic capacity expansion>expand the partition via diskpart.exe>have an additional 1.5 TB of space just like that. Since I am running 4x1.5 TB drives now and am on an 8 port SATA controller I can expand the array up to 10.5 TB just by adding drives. I'm at 4.5 TB with 4 drives BTW. :)


The drive cages I was referring to are actually multiple HDD enclosures like the ones in my sig. You can hold 3 HDD's in the space of 2 optical drive bays.


Also with JBOD if you lose 1 drive you lose them all. Even if you have your data spanned across the drives/partitions.


I wanna' use my HTPC as a whole house server 1 day

My SAS RAID0 array got me in the game (BF2) first most of the time so I could get the jet or the chopper to get my medals, I got every medal, expert badge, and ribbon in BF2 vanilla, Special Forces, EURO, and AF, over a year ago, so I have a solid gold sig in the BF2 forum

Lieutenant General |SI| SERIALBUTCHER 200,000+ kills aka THESE-BIG-NADES

http://battletracker.../SERIALBUTCHER/

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http://battletracker...p;pid=174554953

Posted Image

About the drive cages, I added 2 hot swap trays, to my htpc, 1 more and I run out of ports lol

Each drive on my OB SAS controller is an individual JBOD array and the drives on my LSI Logic SAS card are 1 big stripe RAID on each drive lol

ocgw

peace

Edited by ocgw, 21 February 2009 - 08:08 PM.


#39 krazypoloc

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Posted 21 February 2009 - 08:21 PM

I wanna' use my HTPC as a whole house server 1 day

My SAS RAID0 array got me in the game (BF2) first most of the time so I could get the jet or the chopper to get my medals, I got every medal, expert badge, and ribbon in BF2 vanilla, Special Forces, EURO, and AF, over a year ago, so I have a solid gold sig in the BF2 forum

Lieutenant General |SI| SERIALBUTCHER 200,000+ kills aka THESE-BIG-NADES

http://battletracker.../SERIALBUTCHER/

Gunnery Sargeant |SI| THESE-BIG-NADES

http://battletracker...p;pid=174554953

Posted Image

About the drive cages, I added 2 hot swap trays, to my htpc, 1 more and I run out of ports lol

Each drive on my OB SAS controller is an individual JBOD array and the drives on my LSI Logic SAS card are 1 big stripe RAID on each drive lol

ocgw

peace



Nice man nice......I forgot to mention though that I was comparing 2 striped 64GB 15k SCSI's to my 4 striped 36GB Raptors. :)

Ahhh....I remember the good old BF2 days.....I used to play that game a lot too. But I think we are on different addiction scales when it comes to that game though...lol.

Yeah I just thought I would mention the JBOD thing....in case you were going to move forward with the same scheme....the older the drives get the more prones to failure. I actually have NEVER lost a single drive in the 6 or 7 years I have been into this hobby. I HAVE however seen A LOT of drives die from customers and such and am leary of my drives croaking because of it.


You said you are getting a 920? You will have to let me know how it does for encodes as one of my buddies has an old X2 3800 that he is looking to upgrade and is torn between Intel and AMD. He does a lot of bluray encoding so he would be interested to find out. In general the Intel's usually whipe the floor when any type of encoding is involved.

Edited by krazypoloc, 21 February 2009 - 08:27 PM.

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Workstation

Gigabyte G1.Sniper 3 | i5 [email protected] | Megahelms | 16GB G.SKILL Ripjaws DDR3 1600 | 2X GTX670 4GB FTW | 3x Shimian 27" displays | 2x Crucial  M4 256GB | Windows 8


#40 spectrascope

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Posted 21 February 2009 - 08:31 PM

as far as input issue this Wireless usb kit
plus hub an additional hub could be answer, has a range of 30ft, and is compatible with hubs so you could have five 6 wireless usb ports right next you thus curing the cable and connectivity issues, also be convenient to hook up thumb drives other devices without having to get up.

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32GB 4x8GB Geil, sniper ddr3 1866 | 16GB 4x4GB 1600mhz DDR3 balistics

Galaxy GTX 560Ti 1GB SOC White edition 1Ghz core/2GHz shader/4.5GHz mem 256bit bus | Zotac GT545 1.5GB 900mhz core/2Ghz shader/1Ghz mem 192bit bus

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#41 ocgw

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Posted 21 February 2009 - 09:42 PM

To philly: you welcome anytime bro'

To krazypoloc: I ordered a 940, and in some benchmarks a 940 is competitive w/ the slighly more expensive Q9650 in encoding benchmarks

http://www.tomshardw...40,2114-22.html
http://www.tomshardw...40,2114-23.html

ocgw

peace

Edited by ocgw, 23 February 2009 - 08:20 AM.


#42 ocgw

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Posted 23 February 2009 - 07:02 AM

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I was using 3319a to play BD folders, and PDVD8 to play blu ray discs, & the .m2ts files, I also can play the .m2ts files w/ VLC Lan, and Divx player

I always had problems w/ getting TMT, & WinDVD to work on my system

I once told a guy I did not see the difference in picture quality between PDVD7, and PDVD 8, I think maybe my last HDTV (Sony 60" LCoS) was smoothing out the flaws

I have a Samsung 56" DLP now and can see the difference between PDVD7, and PDVD8

Recently I was playing around w/ loading all my DVD's in the PC too, and have them all sorted in the WMP 11 library like my CD's, & I thought wouldn't be great to have all my music and movies in 1 spot playable w/ 1 click

So I loaded the K-Lite codec pack, set up ffdshow w/ it, let WMP scan the HDD's and pickup the .m2ts files, and I had to edit in the movie names

The picture is smooth, w/ no tearing or artifacts

I already joined all my DVD's into 1.ts file w/ TsSplitter, so I scanned and added them the same way

So now I have 400+ movies, & 4800 songs in 1 spot playable w/ 1 click

cool huh?

1 day if I am bored maybe I will edit them for categories

So I finally retired PDVD from playback from the HDD lol

ocgw

peace

#43 ocgw

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Posted 25 February 2009 - 05:03 AM

Well chaps, my AMD Deneb Phenom II X4 940 BE arrived along w/ my Coolermaster V8

Installing the heatsink was a breeze after I got the magnifying glass out to read the directions lol

I could not start in 32bit, was getting BSOD because of a MSI monitoring utility, started up in 64bit and went right to the 32bit programs folder and tossed that utility, problem solved

I set up the OC by this phenom II overclocking guide I found, put it on 3.8Ghz, and have been burning DVD's, & ripping blu rays, all night lol w/ out a hickup (w/ just 4GB of mem to start)

Gonna' throw the other 4GB in & try to push it a lil' tomorrow, if I get to 4Ghz I will be happy

fsb 200
memory divider 1:2.66
HT Auto
cpu multiplier 19
memory 2x2GB 1066 6-6-6-18-30
memory on the "both" setting
memory "unganged"
cpu temp w/ light activity 41*

cpu 57* all cores pegged @ 100%

typing on back up PC while main PC is working, will post screenshots shortly

Posted Image

Posted Image

ocgw

peace

Edited by ocgw, 25 February 2009 - 09:28 PM.


#44 Silverfox

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Posted 25 February 2009 - 10:59 AM

If you are leaving the GPU to upscale, reun FFDShow with the console on, to check that it is scaling properly and not stretching. I did this at first and felt let down, until I got the CPU to scale properly for me. As mentioned, getting an x264 file to scale on the GPU hardware is tricky, especially getting the right codecs to play ball too.

Anything in 1080p tends to be over 8GB for me and 720p is between 4GB and 8GB. 720p scaled to 1080p looks rather decent, but I refuse to invest in a Blu Ray player for a good few months. I run everything from my laptop, so anything with too high a bitrate can become a problem with CPU processing.

Until I find something better to deal with Matroska container files in x264 format, I'll stick with FFDShow :D Hopefully looking to get myself some floorstanders hooked up to my Yamaha amp (in sig) again, for some jucier sound. HDMI receivers that use HDMI sound are rather pricey at the moment still sadly :(

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#45 ocgw

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Posted 25 February 2009 - 08:37 PM

If you are leaving the GPU to upscale, reun FFDShow with the console on, to check that it is scaling properly and not stretching. I did this at first and felt let down, until I got the CPU to scale properly for me. As mentioned, getting an x264 file to scale on the GPU hardware is tricky, especially getting the right codecs to play ball too.

Anything in 1080p tends to be over 8GB for me and 720p is between 4GB and 8GB. 720p scaled to 1080p looks rather decent, but I refuse to invest in a Blu Ray player for a good few months. I run everything from my laptop, so anything with too high a bitrate can become a problem with CPU processing.

Until I find something better to deal with Matroska container files in x264 format, I'll stick with FFDShow :D Hopefully looking to get myself some floorstanders hooked up to my Yamaha amp (in sig) again, for some jucier sound. HDMI receivers that use HDMI sound are rather pricey at the moment still sadly :(


I am shrinking blu rays w/ BD Rebuilder, using the x264 encoder, but the out put is still a blu ray compliant 1080p h.264 blu ray BD-9 burnable size (7.7GB) folder w/ a .m2ts file that any player can play

ps. the free Divx player plays those files well I believe

ocgw

peace

Edited by ocgw, 25 February 2009 - 08:39 PM.


#46 Silverfox

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Posted 26 February 2009 - 12:30 AM

Not had a lot of joy with divx player to be quite honest. I quite like Media Player Classic, due to low resource requirements and massive flexibility in the codecs it uses.

Horses for courses and all that I guess!

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#47 Waco

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Posted 26 February 2009 - 12:41 AM

...but I refuse to invest in a Blu Ray player for a good few months.

$80 at Newegg gets you one. :)
Tolerance is a sign of weakness.

#48 ocgw

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Posted 26 February 2009 - 01:08 AM

Not had a lot of joy with divx player to be quite honest. I quite like Media Player Classic, due to low resource requirements and massive flexibility in the codecs it uses.

Horses for courses and all that I guess!


you try the new Dvix 7 for windows?

also VLC plays those files well too

btw I have some Sennheiser's too, best sound anywhere including car, home ot theatre (HD 470's)

ocgw

peace

Edited by ocgw, 26 February 2009 - 03:09 AM.