Video card vs Capture card - how to match?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Terry Wysocki, Feb 11, 2002.

  1. Terry Wysocki

    Terry Wysocki Stunt Coordinator

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    HELP! I'm building a new HTPC with MSI845 mobo, P4 1.6ghz cpu, M-Audio 2496 soundcard, Lite-on 163 cdrom. I also have Dish 6000 tuner fed via VGA to a Sanyo XP21N projector and Denon 5800 amp. I am totally confused with the video card issue though. I want the best DVD playback, some games, and display of desktop apps. Nice to have would be OTA recording (especially HDTV) and VHS-to-DV transfers.

    Question #1: Does the video card only need a VGA output or should I get S-Video output too? I assume the capture card is needed to get images from the DVD player and my VCR to send to the projector so it would need S-video and composite inputs, right?

    Question #2: Could I take the Dish 6000 (component out or VGA out), run it through the capture card, scale it, merge it with onscreen display from my Denon (composite), and send it to the projector via VGA, S-video, or component?

    Question #3: What should I buy?
     
  2. Hugh M

    Hugh M Second Unit

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    stick with the Dish the way you have it, and get a switch to use the HTPC output or the Dish output.
    run anything svideo through your receiver and have the HTPC capture card connect to the receiver as monitor on svideo.
    if you have to, use composite connections as well and route via receiver monitor to the capture card, but svideo is your best bet.
    find an iomagic pc pvr package from compusa. its between $20-$40 and is one of the cleaner capture cards for svideo input. (meaning better than more expensive ones)
    drop any notions of inputting digital sources into the HTPC, unless you want to spend $500 to mod your external hardware source and $500 for the card that will enable you to capture these digital modded sources. (SDI)
    don't bother spending any thought or money on a video card that has svideo or composite output, unless it really works like a dual head unit. The radeon pre-8500s don't do this... look for a Geforce if you really need to use two displays from the HTPC. otherwise take your pick between a radeon 7x00, 8500 or geforce 3 or 4.
    capturing HDTV -> search here for something along those lines.
    for the best DVD playback you should get a $50 DVD drive for your HTPC and get Windows XP, and buy a dvd add-on pack for $14.95 from cyberlink or ravisent or intervideo..or if you get an ATI card, just use the included ATI 5.0 player. these will install some of the best video and audio decoders available which you can use with zoom player. ( http://forum.inmatrix.com ) if you want a simple route and you can put up with, or for some reason you actually like the interfaces of windvd and powerdvd, then by all means be my guest and pay the full price for them and use those instead.
    best thing to do when looking at the HTPC route is to take one thing at a time, and make sure you really want to keep going before you spend a whole lot of dough and time on the project. hmmm, sounds like a hobby.
     
  3. Terry Wysocki

    Terry Wysocki Stunt Coordinator

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    Regarding the Iomagic PVR, this is from the FAQ on their website:

    Q: Does this card accept video input from devices such as a VCR or camcorder?

    A: No, at this time, this device can only record from a TV source, such as regular TV or Cable.

    I have three sources: 1-Dish, 2-DVD, 3-VCR.

    #1: The Dish is sent directly to my projector but I'd like to also capture it for PVR purposes via component, Svideo, or composite (in descending order). FAQ says they can't input this.

    #2: The VCR playback could be captured and rescaled but this also is explicitly excluded.

    #3: DVD playback from the PC would go right thru the video card to the projector, no? Where does Dscaler come in? I heard it doesn't even work with ATI cards but does work with Hauppage or Iomagic. Why/how do I capture something that is already in the computer (via DVD)?
     

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