[mythtv-users] help needed speccing out small silent frontend.

Brian Wood beww at beww.org
Wed Jul 7 14:50:18 UTC 2010

On Wednesday, July 07, 2010 08:39:23 am Ryan Duffy wrote:
> >> I'd like some ideas for a small silent low-power frontend, if anyone
> >> has any experience they'd like to share.
> >
> >See .signature.
> Hmmm, I had already discounted the Revo due to reports that the CPU is very
> slow (compared with an i3 at least) and that the fan can be very noisy. I
> tend to watch TV with the volume fairly low and really want my PC to be as
> close to silent as possible, which ideally means no fans, or fans that run
> slowly and hence very very quietly.
> Would you agree with these reports, or would you say the Revo is fast
> enough and silent?

"Fast enough" for what? A single-core Atom Revo is certainly fast enough for an HD frontend, since the GPU is doing most 
of the work. OTOH, if you want to run a backend, or a BE/FE combo, it's not fast enough. Transcoding and commflagging in 
anything close to real time is not something I'd ask a Revo to do, at least not if I was to any degree impatient for the 

But of course "fast enough" is subjective, and based on one's personal expectations.

I find my Revo 1600 to be quiet enough, but again tolerance for noise is a personal thing. I usually don't notice the 
C-130s that fly over my house, so my personal noise tolerance is likely not the norm.

I bought a Revo, and have had no reason to regret that move, but if you are asking your frontend to do more than just play 
back video, or if you are particularly sensitive to fan noise, it may not be the best answer for you.

Buying more CPU than you need is just as silly as not buying enough, but since Myth gear tends to run a lot of the time, 
any power savings you can achieve is worthwhile IMHO.

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