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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.

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  #1  
Old 09-12-2009, 06:15 PM
adidas445 adidas445 is offline
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Location: OKC
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will it run?

I want to know if i can run sagetv on the following system:

* CPU : Via C3 1.0GHz (Motherboard is a Via EPIA-M)
* Memory Total : 256MB PC2100 DDR SDRAM
* HD : 40GB IDE
* Optical Drive : 8x DVD±RW Dual Layer DVD Burner (There is no floppy drive)
* Network : Onboard integrated 10/100Base-TX Fast Ethernet
* Dimensions: Case size - 15 x 12 x 4 (inches)
* Power Supply : 220W AC - This can switch between 120v-220v input
* Video : Onboard integrated VIA UniChrome AGP graphics with MPEG-2 decoding acceleration and 32MB shared video memory
* Ports : Four (4) USB, One (1) Firewire, One (1) Serial, One (1) Parallel, One (1) HD-15 VGA, One (1) RCA Video-Out, One (1) S-Video, One (1) IrDA and Two (2) PS/2
* Form Factor : Mini-ITX Desktop
* Audio : Onboard integrated VIA VT1616 6-Channel AC-97 codec
* TV Tuner Card : TVision TVF-7531MF PCI with Coax(TV-In), S-Video, RCA Video-In, Audio-In/Out and Remote
* Memory Config : 1x256MB
* Keyboard : IR Keyboard with integrated Mouse
* Model Number : VIA EPIA-M
* Condition : New in Sealed Box (NIB) and sold with warranty

I will upgrade the ram and the hard drive but is the processor and graphics card enough? Thanks!!
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  #2  
Old 09-12-2009, 08:03 PM
robogeek robogeek is offline
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Personally, I'd stick a little more money into a real PC with a bit more horsepower for SageTV. Or use an existing PC and invest in an HD200 extender. I ran a VIA EPIA C3 1GHz SageTV Client (with 512 meg RAM and XP Pro) back in the SageTV v2.x days. It worked, but not very well. The more addons I added, the more sluggish and unusable it got. I eventually rebuilt another desktop machine with a P4 processor and have been happy using that (and my MVP extenders) ever since.

If you really need to get SageTV to work on the VIA EPIA, then it depends on how you plan on running it. One thing to keep in mind about upgrading the RAM...if the motherboard is in one of those small mini-ITX cases, you'll need to use half-height RAM modules or you won't get the top of the case back on. And the half-height modules are significantly more expensive than regular modules. You'll probably want a gig of RAM. You might be able to work with 512 meg of RAM if you strip down the OS to use less RAM and don't install any software (besides SageTV) that runs in the background. And you won't get the fancy VMR semi-transparent OSD or 3D acceleration for animated menus to work without really crippling and slowing down the whole system. I've seen these mini-ITX systems selling for $80 online...I'd guess that at that price, the included TV card is probably not a hardware-based MPEG2 encoding card and that would probably be the straw that breaks the EPIAs back.

Running it as a server only, with PC clients or extenders that don't require transcoding, should be doable if doing a very basic SageTV installation. By basic SageTV installation, I mean no SageTV addons installed. If the TVision tuner card isn't a hardware MPEG2 encoding card, you may have to step up to something like a Hauppauge PVR-xxx type of TV tuner card if CPU usage of the TVision tuner makes the server slow to respond from PC clients or extenders.

Running it as a client only might be doable if you are only doing MPEG2 SD video playback. You probably won't be able to do online videos, MPEG4, or HD video playack with the weak CPU and GPU. To get reasonable SageTV UI responsiveness, you'll need to use Overlay renderer, disable 3D acceleration, and use a MPEG2 decoder capable of using DXVA acceleration with the VIA UniChrome AGP video chipset. And even then, I wouldn't expect SageTV to run very fast or without some hiccups due to the weak CPU and GPU.

Running it as a server and client might be doable if you keep a basic SageTV installation and only plan on doing MPEG2 SD video recording and playback. If the TVision is not a hardware MPEG2 encoding, you'll need a hardware-based MPEG2 encoding TV tuner card for sure if want to record and playback at the same time. Just like the client only scenario, you'll also have to use Overlay renderer, disable 3D acceleration, and use an MPEG2 decoder capable of using DXVA acceleration with the VIA UniChrome AGP video chipset. Just don't expect trouble-free operation with such a weak CPU and GPU...depending on the OS and how you set everything up, you'll probably be fighting SageTV UI sluggishness and video stuttering regularly. VIA C3 1GHz processor is about the equivalent of a Pentium III 500MHz-700MHz processor, so you're really at the bare minimum requirements to run SageTV.
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Server Hardware: GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3R, Intel Q9550 CPU 3.2GHz, 11GB RAM, 1xHDHR, 1xHVR1600, 1xHVR2250
29TB Server Storage: 1TB SSD (OS), 1TB (data), 2x6TB+2x10TB (22TB FlexRaid storage pool), 2x2TB (recordings), 1x750GB (VMs).
Server Software: Win10 Pro x64 OS, SageTV 64bit v9.2.0.441, Java 1.8 u201, PlayOn, Comskip (Donator) v0.82.003, WampServer v2.5.
Clients: 3xHD300s, 2xHD100, 2xPlaceshifters
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  #3  
Old 09-12-2009, 10:29 PM
adidas445 adidas445 is offline
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thank you for the awesome detailed post!! makes me wanna rethink the decision...although, $80 for the case, hdd, power supply and dvd burner might not be a bad way to start as i have nothing to build on currently. Thanks!!
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  #4  
Old 09-13-2009, 01:11 AM
robogeek robogeek is offline
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$80 for a mini-ITX system that includes everything but the OS and monitor sounds like a pretty good deal. It might be worth the gamble if you can spare the $80 on something that might not be suitable. You can probably unload it on craigslist as a mini pc or carpc for at least $80 if it doesn't work out and you can't return it.
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--Jason

Server Hardware: GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3R, Intel Q9550 CPU 3.2GHz, 11GB RAM, 1xHDHR, 1xHVR1600, 1xHVR2250
29TB Server Storage: 1TB SSD (OS), 1TB (data), 2x6TB+2x10TB (22TB FlexRaid storage pool), 2x2TB (recordings), 1x750GB (VMs).
Server Software: Win10 Pro x64 OS, SageTV 64bit v9.2.0.441, Java 1.8 u201, PlayOn, Comskip (Donator) v0.82.003, WampServer v2.5.
Clients: 3xHD300s, 2xHD100, 2xPlaceshifters
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  #5  
Old 09-13-2009, 08:23 AM
adidas445 adidas445 is offline
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yeah, i figure i could always buy another board and use everything that came with the $80 pc at least. any thoughts on this board?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813500030
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  #6  
Old 09-13-2009, 11:27 AM
robogeek robogeek is offline
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I'm not too familiar with what the real-world performance of the Atoms are, but I'd think it would work. Just a couple of things that would concern me with that Atom-based board would be the lack of internal expansion slots and the video performance for MPEG4 and H.264 videos. The specs say the board has one mini-PCIE slot, and it looks like it's occupied by the onboard wireless. That means you'll be limited to USB tuners, HDHomeRun network tuners, or PCI tuners on another PC as network encoders.
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--Jason

Server Hardware: GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3R, Intel Q9550 CPU 3.2GHz, 11GB RAM, 1xHDHR, 1xHVR1600, 1xHVR2250
29TB Server Storage: 1TB SSD (OS), 1TB (data), 2x6TB+2x10TB (22TB FlexRaid storage pool), 2x2TB (recordings), 1x750GB (VMs).
Server Software: Win10 Pro x64 OS, SageTV 64bit v9.2.0.441, Java 1.8 u201, PlayOn, Comskip (Donator) v0.82.003, WampServer v2.5.
Clients: 3xHD300s, 2xHD100, 2xPlaceshifters
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  #7  
Old 09-13-2009, 12:24 PM
SWKerr SWKerr is offline
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I would love to see someone that has one of these ION based systems using Sage post their experiences. I think it may be fine in an HTPC as a dedicated client but I would not want to use it as a server. ION is supposed to accelerate the video but I expect that depends on codec and application support. I would be worried about stuff like Netflix and Hulu as well.

To me all these ITX systems seem to be overpriced to me. You can get a GIGABYTE GA-MA785GM with a AMD Athlon II X2 250 for $136 at Newegg and it would crush any Atom based system. The case and power supply options would also be better and cheaper in a MicroATX. The only advantage to the ITX system seems to be size and possibly heat but it comes at a huge cost for a HTPC setup.
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  #8  
Old 09-13-2009, 01:48 PM
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Folkboat Folkboat is offline
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Location: Edgewater, FL
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Atom based WHS

Anyone built an Atom based WHS??
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  #9  
Old 09-13-2009, 01:53 PM
paulbeers paulbeers is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Folkboat View Post
Anyone built an Atom based WHS??
The Atom will work fine, but be very limiting when it comes to placeshifter, transcoding, and comskip. If all you want is "Sage Basic" it would work fine, but for everything else it will just be much tooooo slow.
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Sage Server: AMD Athlon II 630, Asrock 785G motherboard, 3GB of RAM, 500GB OS HD in RAID 1 and 2 - 750GB Recording Drives, HDHomerun, Avermedia HD Duet & 2-HDPVRs, and 9.0TB storage in RAID 5 via Dell Perc 5i for DVD storage
Source: Clear QAM and OTA for locals, 2-DishNetwork VIP211's
Clients: 2 Sage HD300's, 2 Sage HD200's, 2 Sage HD100's, 1 MediaMVP, and 1 Placeshifter
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