[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
Canada


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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