Recommended Video Cards for Mediaportal (1 Viewer)

kiwijunglist

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    Please view our wikipedia page for information on choosing a video card for your HTPC

    A Simple explanation of the role of video cards in your HTPC

    When you play a video on your HTPC the decoding of the video can either be done by the CPU or the GPU (Graphical Processor Unit, ie. Video Card). The advantage of letting the GPU do the decoding is that there is less stress on the CPU which results in lower CPU usage, less power usage and less heat being produced. When the GPU does all the decoding this is called hardware decoding (which is also known as hardware acceleration/DXVA/CUDA/QuickSync). All current generation discrete (add on) GPUs and onboard GPUs can hardware decode 1080p, but some GPUs can struggle with 1080i which requires more work. If you don't plan on using hardware acceleration for video decoding then the choice of GPU for your HTPC is irrelevant.

    What is 1080i vs 1080p

    The p stands for progressive video and the i stands for interlaced video. Generally interlaced video requires more work to decode prior to displaying the video on most standard displays. 99.9% of all downloaded videos and blurays/dvds will contain only progressive video. You are only likely to encounter 1080i interlaced video if you are using your HTPC for Live high definition TV via a tuner card. If you are never going to use your HTPC for live HDTV then you don't need to worry about whether your video card can handle 1080i.

    Onboard video vs Discrete Video Cards

    All computers require a GPU, but this GPU can either be integrated into the CPU/motherboard (iGPU) or it can be an additional piece of hardware in the form of an add-on video card.

    Why do people choose to use an Onboard GPU?

    • Can be cheaper
    • Can use less power
    • Doesn't take up any room, so can use a smaller case
    Why do people choose a discrete (Add-On) GPU

    • More powerful/faster, therefore better for playing games
    • Onboard GPU that comes with your Motherboard/CPU might not be fast enough for 1080i
    Help choosing a video option

    AMD/ATI Discrete Video Cards
    AMD Integrated Video (Onboard GPU)
    Nvidia Discrete Video Cards
    Intel Integrated Video (Onboard GPU)

    MP User reviews of cards
    http://wiki.team-mediaportal.com/4_HTPC/HTPC_Hardware/Video_Cards_(GPUs)
     
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    kiwijunglist

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    Feel free to add your own reviews to the wiki page, if you don't know how to add to the wiki page then post in the thread and someone will add to the wiki for you.

    Please use the following format

    Title:
    Video Card Type - Video Card Brand Name

    Specifications:
    A link to the manufacturers website is usually enough

    Testimonials:
    Your personal opinion of the card, users are usually interested in Fan noise, Does it cope with 1080i, Is it low profile or full height profile.

    Picture:
    Please attach a picture of the video card
     
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    kiwijunglist

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    Example Post:

    HD4670 - Powercolor HD4670 1GB

    Specifications
    http://www.powercolor.com/global/products_features.asp?id=89

    Testimonials
    Fairly quiet card
    No problems with hardware deinterlacing of 1080i
    No HDMI connector, so you must use an HDMI-DVI adaptor
    Not worth buying new anymore, but would make a good card if you picked a cheap one up second hand

    =AG4670_1GBK3-P-500x500.jpg
     

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