[mythtv-users] Need Help in setting up MythTV system

David George david at thegeorges.us
Wed Oct 13 19:24:52 UTC 2004

On 10/13/2004 2:35 PM, clemens at dwf.com wrote:

>Whatever the machine, it will be running Linux, at the moment my preference 
>be for Fedora2 with a 2.6.x kernel, since thats whats on my other machines.
>INITIALLY I will be viewing the result on my Computer monitor,
>later to a standard TV, and still later to a HDTV.
Works great here.  Also a good online guide for setting up Myth with 
FC2.  http://www.wilsonet.com/mythtv/fcmyth.php

>My first thought would be to get a local shop that I have dealt with before to 
>together the bare bones machine, viz (1)-(3).  I would expect a Pentium 4, 
 From reports of others P4 2.8 HT should be fine to playback HD 
content.  You didn't ask about memory, but put in at least 512Meg.  Not 
that anything needs that much, but you will be happier.

>(4) DISKS
>This could be the simplest, most generic choice.
>Any reason to worry about rotational speed?

>Any reason to worry about transfer rate (ATA/100, SATA/100, SATA/150)?

>I'm guessing one disk for the OS, I usually set aside space for 3 or 4 5GB 
>for different OS revisions, and space for several versions of MythTV.  Thats 
>still a
>'small' disk these days, 60-80GB.

>In addition 150-300GB for TV storage with room for more disks.
>I see numbers like 200GB / $139 ATA/100  7200RPM
>                   250GB / $159 SATA/150 7200RPM
200Gig Seagate SATA $125 5 year warranty 

>Considering the most recent disk I bought, I would assume that this 3-1/2" 
>drive would
>be mounted in a 5-1/2 slot in the box, mounting it in a tray with extra 
>cooling fans.
Can't hurt.  My tower case has 3.5 inch HD bays with a fan right in 
front of them.  Nice cool drives tend to last longer.

>(5) TVCard
>As noted above, the only part of this project that I have in hand is a pcHDTV 
>card.  I may at some point add a second card (a 3000?).  I currently record TV 
>2 VCR's,- If there is ANYTHING decent on, its always across from something 
>else I want
>to see...).  thoughts?
>It seems to me that the PVR250/350 series of cards are going to be obsolete 
>a year so I have not considered them.
Get a PVR250.  Don't worry about it possibly being obsolete in a year.  
It doesn't mean they are going to magically stop working.

>(6) Video Card
>I know *nothing* about video cards so I can really use some help here.  Cards 
>days seem to have ENORMOUS amounts of video memory.  I can understand some 
>extra, but
>In any case I have seen references to TVout in addition to monitor out (ok)
Depends on if you have an HDTV monitor.  If not, the SVideo out may be 
fine for you otherwise TV out doesn't matter.

>Ive seen references to MPEG2 support.
Not fully supported in many cases.

>Ive seen references to Direct 8 support.
Winblows (tm), who needs it.

>What are people using, and why?
NVidia FX5200 Ultra.  XvMC support (although I have had better luck not 
using XvMC). 

>I can understand the first requirement above.
>The 2nd is a bit more iffy, if in fact you re-encode things on disk to MPEG4 
>better compression.
I also have an NVidia (Chaintech) MX4000, works great and no fan (also 
from newegg).

>Ive also seen references to 'external adapters' to convert VGA -> NTSC but I 
>think I've ever seen one of these advertised.  Any pointers here?
(pacificcable.com $108)

>(7) Sound Card
>It looks like something like the Sound Blaster Live! 5.1 would be appropriate.
>I currently have a Sound Blaster Live! (not 5.1) on my current system and it 
>fine for what I need.
You motherboard doesn't have SPDIF output?  It is usually good enough.  
Otherwise an SBLive should work.

>(8) DVD Recorder
>All the (+/-) formats are confusing.  Is this just going to be a continuing 
>like VHS/Beta forever, or is one set of specs starting to take over?
>And Recording speed.  I just read an article that said, independent of how 
>fast the
>recorder CAN record, don't record faster than 4x, or you'll probably end up 
>a disk that is unreadable.  Well not totally unreadable, but with unreadable 
Get a Sony.  Has DVD-R/W and DVD+R/W.

>And double layer (is that the term?)  Seems that twice the capacity  WOULD be 
>but the media is still quite expensive.  thoughts
Haven't seen an affordable double-layer burner yet, but I could be wrong.

>(9) IR Remote.
>It appears that some of the TV Cards (the Hauppauge cards), and some 
>come with an IR Remote, but the pcHDTV doesn't, so Ill need a free-standing IR 
>There must be free-standing units.  Recommendations?
>Or perhaps a different MotherBoard?
I use an ATI remote wonder, but it can be a pain.  I modified the kernel 
module to use a key mapping more friendly to myth.  I still need to 
modify mplayer and xine to have a more myth-like keymap (yes, I decided 
to go this route rather than modifying the myth keymap).

Have fun,

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