SageTV Community  

Go Back   SageTV Community > Hardware Support > Hardware Support

Notices

Hardware Support Discussions related to using various hardware setups with SageTV products. Anything relating to capture cards, remotes, infrared receivers/transmitters, system compatibility or other hardware related problems or suggestions should be posted here.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
  #1  
Old 01-06-2006, 10:14 PM
mattporco's Avatar
mattporco mattporco is offline
Sage User
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 40
Recommendation: Media Extender vs. Windows Client

I'm looking for a recommendation for what to use as the front-end for my particular application. I have a SageTV v4 server in the basement with two DirecTV D11 receivers hooked to a PVR350+250. I am looking for a recommendation for what to use as a SageTV client for the family room.

Assuming I get a fairly good-quality TV (42" EDTV flat-screen or equivalent) and record everything on Great or Best quality, is it better to run a Media Extender w/S-video+composite to the TV, or would a Windows PC running SageTV produce better video output? I've seen some posts saying that the Media Extender w/S-video produces very good video quality, and of course is cheaper and quieter. But I'm wondering if a Windows box with a decent video card (I have a GeForce 5700 lying around) might be better. Of course the PC would have to be quieted which will add to the cost.

Will the video output from either or both of these options be good enough not to look crappy on a 42" screen?
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 01-06-2006, 10:33 PM
olyar15 olyar15 is offline
Sage Advanced User
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Bowser, BC, Canada
Posts: 240
a computer really shines with higher resolution using VGA, DVI or component. If you have to use s-video, chances are that a media extender would probably look better. Also, computers really can't compensate for rectangular pixels, which a lot of small plasmas have.

So to answer your question: It depends.

It depends on the display, how PC-friendly it is, and how it will be connected.

And that is not getting into the cost vs. versatility vs. reliability arguments.
__________________
Charles Lee
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 01-06-2006, 11:04 PM
mattporco's Avatar
mattporco mattporco is offline
Sage User
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 40
The TV hasn't yet been purchased, but I'm sure will have component inputs, possibly DVI.

Based on what you said, I would probably get the best video output using a video card with a component out (i.e. GeForce 6600) or DVI.

But a more basic question is: how noticeable a difference would there be in video quality (given great/best recordings off a DirecTV SDTV receiver) between a media extender w/s-video vs. a Windows client w/component or DVI? Is it night-and-day difference or a subtle difference? It would have to be night-and-day to warrant the cost difference ($100 for media extender vs. $1000+ for quiet PC+GeForce 6600).
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 01-07-2006, 04:52 PM
jptaz's Avatar
jptaz jptaz is offline
Sage Fanatic
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Detroit Michigan
Posts: 991
It really depends on wich you think will have a better video scalar. From my experience the scalar in my CRT HD is lousy compared to even the regular SageTV Decoders...and the $20 I spent on the NVidia Decoders blow away the video from the SVideo out on my MediaMVP. Granted my CRT HD Set can do better than EDTV.

But I think EDTV Native resolution is 848x480...to be honest I think you are throwing money away if you do not at least get a tv with a native resolution of 1280x720 or more commonly on plasma and LCD 1366x768. If you get TV with that resolution I am fairly certain that as long as the you can feed it native resolution with a 1:1 pixel mapping that the PC based solution will look much better.

Just my opinion.

John
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 01-07-2006, 04:54 PM
jptaz's Avatar
jptaz jptaz is offline
Sage Fanatic
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Detroit Michigan
Posts: 991
Another note. When I switched from my 27" SDTV to 32" HDTV I also felt that I needed to bump the Quality from Great(2GB/HR) to DVD Standard(3.25GB/HR). I noticed more pixelation and noise in the Great quality setting on the HD Set.

John
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 01-08-2006, 11:50 AM
ben_95sl1 ben_95sl1 is offline
Sage Aficionado
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 290
It really depends on the svideo out quality of your video card. My ATI 8500le isn't so hot, but it's fine on a 27" TV. But connecting to something decent sized, I'd stay away from svideo if at all possible. I've found component or better is much improved over svideo most of the time. This isn't necessarily a huge deal when most tv programming is over compressed, etc; but when using dvd or better, menus, etc, you'll notice the difference.

If I was using a good tv (I'd consider a 42" 480p widescreen TV to be good, a regular 4:3 SDTV isn't good), i'd try to do the client route + Comp/VGA/DVI if feasible, but the media extender is very convenient, small, simple, cheap, comes with remote and its reliable. The advantage of the client is that you can upgrade it as needed.

I use a client so that I can:

play dvds remotely
play ANY file the server can without issues
output SPDIF for sound

if the extender has component and spdif out I would be using it.
__________________
Server: XP SP3, X2 BE 5000+, WD 1.5TB x 2, PVR150 & HD-PVR, USB-UIRT
Clients: HD300, HD100 x 2, Media MVP in a box somewhere
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 01-08-2006, 09:12 PM
src666 src666 is offline
Sage Aficionado
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 459
Also keep in mind that HDMI is the same video signal as DVI, so don't limit yourself just to TV's with a DVI input. A converter cable is easilly found.
Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 04:03 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
Copyright 2003-2005 SageTV, LLC. All rights reserved.