[mythtv-users] Looking to build my first MythTV box--in search of advice!

Peter Schmitt pschmitt at gmail.com
Wed Jun 8 03:25:43 UTC 2005

Hey, thanks alot for your responses!

As someone new to the whole MythTV thing, choosing the PVR card itself
is somewhat overwhelming...  A newegg.com search for "pvr" returned
some PCI PVR cards ranging between $29.99-$191!

As per Dewey's suggestion, I think I will get this operational on my
p2-450 & go up from there.  I definitely need to prove this thing for
my girlfriend... she thinks I'm nuts :)

Thanks for the PCRetro link!  I've never heard of that company before,
what a great idea!


On 6/7/05, Dewey Smolka <dsmolka at gmail.com> wrote:
> Your P II will probably be enough to make everything run and to prove
> to yourself (or significant other) that it really does work. Once you
> get going with Mythtv, though, you're going to want a more powerful
> processor.
> I built my first system on an AMD K6, which worked but which was very,
> very slow to respond. I ended up abandoning that machine and built a
> fresh one on a P III 750.
> As long as you can offload most of the heavy processing to extra
> cards, this is enough to drive a backend/frontend and deliver fast
> enough response times.
> This does mean that your TV capture card has to do its processing in
> hardware. The Hauppage PVR 250 is the obvious choice, particularly for
> its level of support in Myth, although there are plenty of success
> stories with the 150/500 (newer, lesser support than 250) and the 350
> (same as 250 but with TV-Out that has been problematic).
> I still use the remote that came with my 250, and I think the rest of
> the Hauppage PVR cards come with remotes as well.
> Your graphics card should be fine as long as you avoid OpenGL and 3D
> effects. If not, there's plenty of solid cards for under $50, like the
> the nvidia fx5200.
> The problem you'll run into with a PII 400, besides slow menu
> response, is that you'll be able to record to mpeg2 no problem, but
> operations like commercial flagging and transcoding will take forever.
> Again it's probably enough to get an idea of what MythTV is capable
> of, but surely you will want something a bit stronger later.
> Fortunately, the hardware is very cheap and getting cheaper -- check
> out pcretro.com for great deals on older used/refurbished/unsold
> hardware.
> If nothing else, your PII has plenty of power to be a file server
> later on, particularly after you fill up your 240 GB (which will
> happen far sooner than you think).
> If you haven't already, have a look at knoppmyth
> (http://www.mysettopbox.tv/knoppmyth.html). It is a complete MythTV
> installation built on Debian unstable. Other than that, I can't give
> you any Debian-specific information, but others on this list and at
> the Knoppmyth forum can.
> Good luck,
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