[nSLUG] PVR systems

Robin Murray nibor.yarrum at gmail.com
Fri Feb 11 15:02:38 AST 2011

This is where all the complexity sets in, trying to scope out the hardware
that will give you a good mythtv experience. I'd been using built in
haupauge cards but found they sometimes produced a herring-bone picture. I
think if I got back into this again I'd use external USB units to reduce
interference. I wireless keyboard is great for using your large-screen tv
for internet access. Keep in mind you have a full system at your disposal,
not just an appliance PVR, so you can pause your show, check your email,
update facebook, and go back to your show again.

Robin Murray
Hatchet Lake,
Nova Scotia

On Fri, Feb 11, 2011 at 1:17 AM, Daniel Morrison <draker at gmail.com> wrote:

> On 11 February 2011 00:09, Ted Tibbetts <intuited at gmail.com> wrote:
> > Please correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe that ext3, even with
> > journaling enabled, will normally run a periodic fsck based on elapsed
> time
> Yes. Elapsed time or number of mounts since last check. Both can be
> disabled. Or use xfs, which doesn't have a traditional fsck, and can
> check the filesystem while mounted (read-only). Read-only small root
> filesystem is a good idea, as is putting it on flash.
> OK, you've suckered me into to starting to read the MythTV
> documentation. I smiled to find that in the 'filesystem' section, the
> use of xfs or jfs is "<i>strongly</i> encouraged". FAT and reiserfs
> are discouraged. ext3 is acceptable with a workaround.
> http://www.mythtv.org/docs/mythtv-HOWTO-3.html#ss3.1
> > Daniel, thanks for the tip about the Shuttle.  It's not quite the right
> form
> > factor, though -- I think my target recipient would prefer something more
> > vcr-shaped that could fit into the limited height of the cabinet space
> under
> > the TV, especially if the thing has a DVD slot.  Also, it seems like a
> P4,
> > in addition to being hot, and thereby presumably loud, might not be able
> to
> > deal with the demands of HD.  My Pentium M 1.4GHz laptop is a bit too
> slow
> > to play compressed 1080p video without dropping frames.
> The MythTV wiki talks about using a P4 2.4GHz minimum for HDTV
> playback. You also need a fast CPU for encoding, unless you buy a
> hardware encoder card. So the hardware isn't cheap. I think it would
> probably cheaper to buy a non-free sw PVR appliance. I assumed your
> primary motivation for this project was not financial...
> > Of course much of
> > this depends on how much work is done by the video card(s);
> Yes, the docs also mention that an Atom CPU with the nVidia Ion
> chipset and nVidia's proprietary binary drivers is able to play HDTV.
> Together with a hardware capture card, that would make a nice
> low-power/heat/noise system.
> > the laptop has a
> > lustreless old intel craphics chip.  I noticed that one of the four
> Shuttles
> > has an Athlon 64 CPU; I'm not sure how they compare to the P4.
> Of course both the P4 and Athlon 64 come in a wide range of speeds,
> cache sizes, etc. but I would say the Athlon 64 measures up well.
> For a more "VCR-like" form factor, the Compaq Evo series might be
> right. These are both P4 systems for ~$100, and happen to be in
> Canada:
> http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=170601337852
> http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=180574577155
> For something local, and more expensive but requiring less upgrades, see
> this:
> http://centurycomputer.ca/sales.php?cat=1&pid=121
> OK, I think that's about all the info I can collect. Oh, one more...
> Commercial MythTV sellers:
> http://www.mythtv.org/wiki/Commercial_MythTV_System
> -D.
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