[mythtv-users] New laptop - what video do I need for MythTV these days?

Stephen Worthington stephen_agent at jsw.gen.nz
Tue Jun 15 10:38:08 UTC 2021

On Mon, 14 Jun 2021 08:43:00 -0500, you wrote:

>Hi Stephen!
>> And what about 4K?  I would hope to keep any new laptop I buy going
>> for at least the 8 years I got out of the GT70, so does that mean I
>> should be getting one with a 4K screen?  Or at least one that can do
>> 4K on its HDMI port?  Currently, I do not have any 4K screens, and TV
>> here in New Zealand is only 1080i.  And I do not do Netflix or other
>> subscription TV that has a 4K option.  So deinterlacing is very
>> important, but 4K not so much yet.
>I tend to look ahead when making purchases; maybe you don’t have 4K now, 
>New Zealand broadcast services don’t offer 4K, but probably eventually 
>will. I’d lean towards getting the 4K option, unless priced out of 
>range. Can’t swap graphic cards in laptops nearly as easily like one can 
>in desktops.
>> I am thinking that 17" is overkill and 15" is probably fine, but 17"
>> has worked well for when we are away on holiday and two people are
>> watching at the same time.
>If you want a happy vacation (and life) stick with the 17” screen!  :) 
>Plus you’re getting older and will appreciate the slightly larger 
>display (easier to see without reaching for the reading glasses).

I would love to get a 17" 4K laptop, but so far the prices I have seen
are in the eye watering category - 3 times the price of a reasonable
15.6" 1080p laptop.  They all seem to be extreme gaming laptops.  But
I have not checked out the business/workstation type laptops yet - and
maybe the HP or Dell web sites will have something.  There are
certainly a huge number of laptops available!  I have only had time to
visit one shop so far to see them in real life.

>One thing that soured me on AMD in my last desktop build was skimping on 
>the heatsink. The “AMD approved” heatsink/fan combo that came with the 
>CPU was barely adequate for cooling under near-idle conditions. Doing 
>normal backups caused overheating to the point of shutdown. Due to this 
>issue I found AMD expects people to chuck their supplied unit in favour 
>of a bigger/proper coolers when building a system. AMD also is geared 
>towards gamers while Intel (forgot the term but what I’d considered 
>‘work’). So makes me wonder if they “cheat” on desktop units if the same 
>issue with laptops? Not intended a slam on AMD, but more ‘use the proper 
>tool’, plus a couple of factoids I was not aware of at the time I made 
>my purchase.

Your experience with a new AMD CPU is completely different from mine.
A couple of months ago, I updated my old "no. 3" Ubuntu 20.04 PC from
a 2008 motherboard to an Asus Rog Strix X570-E Gaming motherboard with
an AMD Ryzen 7 3700X (8 core, 16 threads).  I chose that processor as
it was the fastest one in the new AMD releases that came with a
cooler, an AMD Wraith Prism, which seems to be their best cooler.  All
the faster AMD CPUs come with no supplied cooler and you have to add
one yourself.  The stock cooler provided seems to work just fine with
the 3700X, but I am sure there is a reason they are not provided with
the bigger CPUs.  I was not wanting to pay the rather extreme extra
cost for the bigger CPUs anyway, and the 3700X has worked out to be
excellent.  The upgraded PC is staggeringly fast - it actually does
the "blink and you miss it" trick, which is a bit disconcerting when
your eyes are used to seeing the screen changes happen.  I did also
invest in 32 Gibytes of good RAM and the fastest M.2 PCIe 4 SSD
available here to go with the motherboard, and that will all be
playing a significant part in just how fast everything runs.  It is
overkill for Ubuntu, but I am saving up to do the same for my main
Windows box too.  But that will have to wait for a while now with the
laptop having died.

So I am wondering if you were actually supplied the right cooler with
your CPU.  AMD's current policy seems to be not to supply a cooler at
all if they do not have one of their own that will do the job


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