[mythtv-users] hardware considerations: fast CPU vs nvidia/vdpau?

Steven Adeff adeffs.mythtv at gmail.com
Mon Jul 18 15:36:49 UTC 2011

On Sun, Jul 17, 2011 at 2:22 PM, Matt Garman <matthew.garman at gmail.com> wrote:
> My current combined Myth FE+BE is using an AMD X2 250 processor, AMD
> 760G chipset, and an nvidia geforce 210 video card.  I have no
> performance problems.  However, this system uses a fair amount of
> power (50+ Watts at idle).  I know 50 Watts isn't that much, but
> I've recently built two Intel Sandy Bridge systems (using the
> integrated graphics): a micro-ATX system for myself that uses about
> 30 Watts at idle, and a mini-ITX system for my dad that uses about
> 25 Watts at idle.  Both of these Sandy Bridge systems are quad core
> as well.
> Anyway, I don't have a link handy, but a few months ago I read on
> this list that mythtv has really been designed around CPU-based
> decoding; things like vdpau, while great (and working well for most
> people, including me), are not really part of the "core" mythtv
> design paradigm.  That's a loose paraphrasing, but hopefully I'm
> conveying the right idea.  If nothing else, it is one extra thing to
> set up.
> What I'm trying to get to is the simplest possible setup (i.e.
> minimal configuration) that does what I want.  So my current thought
> is to build a new Sandy Bridge-based system, using the built-in
> Intel graphics and letting the CPU do all the decoding,
> deinterlacing, etc.  Dumping my current AMD CPU + nVidia video card
> in favor of Intel Sandy Bridge gets me all these features:
>    - Mini-ITX (I know it can be done with AMD, but Intel is
>      currently better for power consumption).  Mini-ITX gets me a
>      smaller machine overall.
>    - Lower power consumption (I've seen mini-ITX SB builds on the
>      web that use 14 Watts at idle).
>    - Simpler configuration (no proprietary Nvidia drivers, no AMD
>      video driver headaches, no vdpau configuration, etc).  To be
>      fair, I've never used Intel graphics on Linux, so maybe they
>      come with their own set of headaches?
> Anyway, assuming the Intel graphics are relatively easy to get
> working correctly under Linux (I plan on using CentOS 6.0), is there
> any downside to my plan?  I.e., is there any reason I *want* to keep
> the nvidia/vdpau setup?
> Thanks,
> Matt

the downside to the VDPAU solution is the VDPAU stutter issue which
from the looks of it the dev's still haven't quite figured out. so
going with a pure CPU decoding solution avoids that problem.

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