Questions about hardware and quality of sound and picture. (1 Viewer)

T0mpa

New Member
October 27, 2005
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Hi, i am new to this(htpc) and i have a couple of questions.
It would be nice to replace all the boxes(dvd, digital tv box and more) in the living room so i thought i would give my pc a go.
Its a P4 2.8 1Gb memory
Nvidia 6800GT
Soundblaster 2 audigy.
The thing is that i want the best sound and picture around since i am thinking about replacing some fairly good stuff.
So will it really be as good picture with a HTPC as i get with a 600€ DVD player? Will it be as good sound(i will keep my yamaha amplifier as a amplifier)
I know that i will need to buy a tv card for satelite aswell.
If i need to buy some new equipment, what do you recomend?

Things that i want:
Excelent picture with DVI or HDMI (at least 720p?).
Excelent 6.1 or 7.1 sound.
Ease of use(for the wife and kids, wich i perhaps do not have today :) )

Stupid questions perhaps....
Thanks in advance.
/Thomas
 

T0mpa

New Member
October 27, 2005
4
0
Thanks for answereing...
Digital i guess, what would you recommend?
Buing the latest(and greatest) soundblaster or should i look at something else? I would prefer to get the out on a coax or possible optical output.

Regards,
Thomas
 

hakuna

Portal Pro
October 15, 2004
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Callifo said:
How do you plan to hook up the audio? Analogue or digital? If digital, you wont get very good surround sound of that card.

From what I have read on other forums the sound card does not do anything with the digital signal other than sending it to the spdif output. If so, how could the sound get better or worse?


I use coax out, to my MD recorder, press REC, continues via optical to my amp. I had only one coax in on the amp, and that is used by the DVD... Workaround that works for me until I get a new MB with built-in optical out.

Look out for Terratec cards! Some don't work with SPDIF and DTS!
http://nolanparty.com/mediaportal.sourceforge.net/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?p=53738#53738

/Niclas
 

Callifo

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  • December 7, 2004
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    If you use analogue 5.1 connectors you wont have any problems. If you use digital connectors, unless everything is in dolby digital or DTS then it will only work in stereo. Youll have that trouble with any Creative card so youll have to look at a card with DDL encoding. The X-Mystique does DDL encoding so youll have 5.1 DD all the time. There is another card which will do it but I cant remember the name sorry (its a little cheaper).
     

    hakuna

    Portal Pro
    October 15, 2004
    395
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    Gothenburg
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    Sweden Sweden
    Callifo said:
    If you use analogue 5.1 connectors you wont have any problems. If you use digital connectors, unless everything is in dolby digital or DTS then it will only work in stereo. Youll have that trouble with any Creative card so youll have to look at a card with DDL encoding. The X-Mystique does DDL encoding so youll have 5.1 DD all the time. There is another card which will do it but I cant remember the name sorry (its a little cheaper).

    You can let FFDshow mix the sound, this way you'll have 5.1 DD sent in the cable to the amp. This way you won't get that anoying PCM-icon in the amp display and I have been told it actually sounds better! 8)
    I have not made any tests myself yet, my computer is a bit slow...
     

    jf2020

    Portal Member
    January 9, 2005
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    You don't need to buy an expensive sound card if all you want is to have the best sound for DVDs and TV *AND* you have an amplifier with a digital input. All you need is to have a spdif output (which may motherboards with integrated sound have today). In this case the sound card does NOTHING but send the Dolby or DTS encoded stream to the amplifier decoders.

    Good sound = good amplifier (which will have hardware Dolby and DTS decoders) + good speakers.

    You may want to have an expensive sound card only if you want to play some games or need a good MIDI synth.
     

    T0mpa

    New Member
    October 27, 2005
    4
    0
    Thanks for the replies again. I will try with a minijack to rca cable then, i hope supra cables hus such :)
    What about video out then. Will a nvidia 6800GT connected via DVI to a HD ready plasma deliver equal picture quality as a 600€ DVD player to the same plasma?
    What are your experiances?
    Regards,
    Thomas
     

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