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View Full Version : Looking for good multi-purpose video card...


htismaqe
02-24-2005, 05:36 PM
OK, I'm looking for a solution that can do PC-TV, some basic DVR, and most importantly I want to capture video from my VHS-C camera and put it on my PC to be burned to DVD's.

This is what I'm looking at:

http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProductDesc.asp?description=15-116-307&depa=0

Saulbadguy
02-24-2005, 06:01 PM
Well, buy it already. Except thats not a video card, its a tuner card only. I'm assuming thats what you need though.

htismaqe
02-24-2005, 06:34 PM
Yeah, I already have an nVidia video card, guess I should have said that... :D

It the ATI card a good one? It's rather inexpensive compared to AverMedia and Pinnacle. I know that ATI makes good video cards, but I've never used them.

Saulbadguy
02-24-2005, 06:43 PM
Well, I use an ATI AIW 9800, so i'm assuming it includes similar hardware and software for the TV portion of the product, and I love it.

htismaqe
02-24-2005, 06:48 PM
Well, I use an ATI AIW 9800, so i'm assuming it includes similar hardware and software for the TV portion of the product, and I love it.

From the looks of it, it's basically the same card, without the video accelerator...

Pants
02-25-2005, 02:42 AM
I'm a big nVidia fan (read: dislike ATI), but All-In-Wonder is pretty much as good as it gets. Also, make sure it'll be compatible with your video card, I don't think ATI and nVidia drivers mix together well.

htismaqe
02-25-2005, 07:34 AM
I'm a big nVidia fan (read: dislike ATI), but All-In-Wonder is pretty much as good as it gets. Also, make sure it'll be compatible with your video card, I don't think ATI and nVidia drivers mix together well.

Well, as far as I can tell, the ATI isn't a video card at all...

I don't want to deal with driver issues...

Saulbadguy
02-25-2005, 07:39 AM
You won't have driver issues.

fbodyman
02-25-2005, 10:50 AM
I'm looking at this one. It's about $100 at CompUSA, but they have in the past rebated it to $70. It uses a hardware MPEG-2 encoder instead of the computer processor. Also lets you pause, rewind etc.

http://www.hauppauge.com/pages/products/data_pvr150.html

Baby Lee
02-25-2005, 11:50 AM
Well, I use an ATI AIW 9800, so i'm assuming it includes similar hardware and software for the TV portion of the product, and I love it.
Have you tried MCE yet? It's the shiznit. Almost exactly like TiVO, where you can keep it on the lookout for episodes of shows, wherever they pop up. Wish I could integrate with my Satellite somehow, but my new sat receiver is HD, and thus only puts out S-Vid, Component and DVI. No more running an R-6 line back to the office. If I learn enough about girder to run my satellite from the computer, I'm playing with getting rid of the office/desk atogether and putting the computer into the home theater.

Baby Lee
02-25-2005, 11:54 AM
I'm looking at this one. It's about $100 at CompUSA, but they have in the past rebated it to $70. It uses a hardware MPEG-2 encoder instead of the computer processor. Also lets you pause, rewind etc.

http://www.hauppauge.com/pages/products/data_pvr150.html
If you are at all interested in Windows Media Center Edition, either get the hardware encoder types, or get ready to fiddle. MS wants a hardware encoder in MCE, and is poo-poohing any driver development for software decoding cards in MCE. I got around it with my AIW9800 and HDTV Wonder, but not with ATI's help.

Baby Lee
02-25-2005, 11:58 AM
Also, I don't know what level of quality you're wanting, but ATI just came out with a TV Wonder Elite that, for the first time, carries ISF licensed software and hardware, what the pros use to get the most out of displays.

Think Sony KV -v- XBR, or Mitsu -v- Mistu Elite.

http://www.ati.com/products/tvwonderelite/
http://www.ati.com/products/tvwonderelite/features.html

Thig Lyfe
02-25-2005, 08:19 PM
Is it just me, or did the title of this thread sound like a personal ad?

htismaqe
02-28-2005, 08:14 AM
If you are at all interested in Windows Media Center Edition, either get the hardware encoder types, or get ready to fiddle. MS wants a hardware encoder in MCE, and is poo-poohing any driver development for software decoding cards in MCE. I got around it with my AIW9800 and HDTV Wonder, but not with ATI's help.

You're talking about the MPEG-2 encoder? ATI's "Wonder" chipset is a hardware-based MPEG-2 encoder. I was just using it yesterday.

That being said, I have Windows XP Pro, not MCE. I used the TV Wonder for about 20 minutes before I realized that with my older Nvidia graphics card and the TV Wonder, I have no hardware DVD DECODER. I'd been using a software codec from Intervideo to watch DVD's in Windows Media Player. (didn't even realize it I guess)

So I took the TV Wonder back, and bought the AIW9800.

Baby Lee
02-28-2005, 10:13 AM
You're talking about the MPEG-2 encoder? ATI's "Wonder" chipset is a hardware-based MPEG-2 encoder. I was just using it yesterday.

That being said, I have Windows XP Pro, not MCE. I used the TV Wonder for about 20 minutes before I realized that with my older Nvidia graphics card and the TV Wonder, I have no hardware DVD DECODER. I'd been using a software codec from Intervideo to watch DVD's in Windows Media Player. (didn't even realize it I guess)

So I took the TV Wonder back, and bought the AIW9800.
Sorry, I should have specified. It's the TV tuner encoder that is software for the AIWs.

Not totally related, but in a strange bit of irony, the HDTV Wonder has both a Digital Tuner and an Analog Tuner on it, so you get OTA HDTV and regular OTA TV [no QAM], and PiP from one card if you know your way around graphedit. BUT, the digital tuner is HW and the the analog tuner is SW. Not a problem under XP, but again, MCE requires a HW tuner, AND the Digital Tuner needs an analog tuner to set itself up, finding channels and the TiVO [Zap2It] guide.

I have the AIW9800Pro and the HDTVW. It took some research and some fiddling, but I can now, if I wish, view or record 3 seperate sources at a time, one of them being HiDef. Worth the work, natch.

htismaqe
02-28-2005, 10:27 AM
Sorry, I should have specified. It's the TV tuner encoder that is software for the AIWs.

Not totally related, but in a strange bit of irony, the HDTV Wonder has both a Digital Tuner and an Analog Tuner on it, so you get OTA HDTV and regular OTA TV [no QAM], and PiP from one card if you know your way around graphedit. BUT, the digital tuner is HW and the the analog tuner is SW. Not a problem under XP, but again, MCE requires a HW tuner, AND the Digital Tuner needs an analog tuner to set itself up, finding channels and the TiVO [Zap2It] guide.

I have the AIW9800Pro and the HDTVW. It took some research and some fiddling, but I can now, if I wish, view or record 3 seperate sources at a time, one of them being HiDef. Worth the work, natch.

OK, cool.

I'm not doing HDTV, so it shouldn't be a big deal for me.

I mostly got the Wonder for capturing MPEG-2 video off of my VHS-C camcorder. The ability to watch TV is a wanted, but unnecessary, bonus. However, I want to watch DVD's and the Wonder install freaked out when it couldn't find a hardware DVD decoder.

However, I thought I noticed XP installing drivers for a Phillips TV Tuner, which would lead me to believe it's hardware-based? Maybe I'm just a moron.

htismaqe
02-28-2005, 10:29 AM
By the way, has anyone here using the AIW9800 had problems with sound being out of sync?

I run the diagnostics and it says that my sound card has an unstable clock. (> +/- 0.2%)

Saulbadguy
02-28-2005, 10:36 AM
By the way, has anyone here using the AIW9800 had problems with sound being out of sync?

I run the diagnostics and it says that my sound card has an unstable clock. (> +/- 0.2%)
Nope. What kinda card are you using?

htismaqe
02-28-2005, 10:39 AM
Nope. What kinda card are you using?

Soundblaster Live Value.

I went out to the Creative message boards and found several people with other Live/Audigy boards with the same issue.

Baby Lee
02-28-2005, 10:39 AM
OK, cool.

I'm not doing HDTV, so it shouldn't be a big deal for me.

I mostly got the Wonder for capturing MPEG-2 video off of my VHS-C camcorder. The ability to watch TV is a wanted, but unnecessary, bonus. However, I want to watch DVD's and the Wonder install freaked out when it couldn't find a hardware DVD decoder.

However, I thought I noticed XP installing drivers for a Phillips TV Tuner, which would lead me to believe it's hardware-based? Maybe I'm just a moron.
1. There's no HDTV on the AIW, just the HDTVW.
2. HW DVD decoding is a bit of a dinosaur these days. Not even sure there are any mainstream cards doing it. SW decoding that uses the video card's resources efficiently is pretty much the standard, and that's what you're getting with the AIW. Just guessing, but I imagine it's because the SoTA in decoding moves so fast, it's easier to update the SW than pump out a new card every 6 mos or mess with flash updates.
ATI, NVidia, Nero, Interactual, PowerDVD, Sonic, are just some of the decoders out there. A lot of people like the NVidia, because it's closest to/most compatible with WMP 10.

htismaqe
02-28-2005, 10:40 AM
Oh and I should say, this happened with a Live Value and my Nvidia GeForce + TV Wonder Pro.

I haven't gotten the AIW9800 yet, so I don't know if the problem will go away or not.

Baby Lee
02-28-2005, 10:40 AM
By the way, has anyone here using the AIW9800 had problems with sound being out of sync?

I run the diagnostics and it says that my sound card has an unstable clock. (> +/- 0.2%)
I've gotten the same warning from the diagnoistics [I have Soundmax on board]. Never had a problem with synch.

htismaqe
02-28-2005, 10:51 AM
1. There's no HDTV on the AIW, just the HDTVW.
2. HW DVD decoding is a bit of a dinosaur these days. Not even sure there are any mainstream cards doing it. SW decoding that uses the video card's resources efficiently is pretty much the standard, and that's what you're getting with the AIW. Just guessing, but I imagine it's because the SoTA in decoding moves so fast, it's easier to update the SW than pump out a new card every 6 mos or mess with flash updates.
ATI, NVidia, Nero, Interactual, PowerDVD, Sonic, are just some of the decoders out there. A lot of people like the NVidia, because it's closest to/most compatible with WMP 10.

1. I know that. I wasn't needing one.

2. Yeah, I guess I should have said that different. The AIW (and most of the new 3D chipsets from Nvidia etc.) do DVD decoding in SW, but by offloading processes to the video card, to save resources. The Intervideo (WinDVD) decoder is purely software and I don't like the player, nor do I really like WMP 10. I was doing it out of necessity. With the AIW, I want to view DVD's in the same (general) interface that I watch TV on. With the TV Wonder, it had no ATI hardware to offload the decoding to, so the ATI software for viewing DVD's simply would not install.

I love my Nvidia GeForce for playing games. It's definitely the baddest 3D card on the market. But yes, I'm switching out for a Radeon chipset solely because of the AIW. I look at it like the difference between an F1 racer and a regular car, say a Jag or a Mercedes.

The Nvidia is fast - super fast - but in the end, it's a for games and that's about all it can do. The ATI is still fast, and besides that, it can do all of these other things.

Baby Lee
02-28-2005, 01:12 PM
Yeah, I took it from your earlier posts that you weren't looking so much for TV or HD.
Sorry to dwell on the MCE and TV/HD stuff, I'm just a little high on the experience. MCE rocks so HARD, esp w/HD. All the Fx of TiVO, on my computer. MMC [ATI's version] is OK, but MCE brings in the TiVO functionality [ability to be on look out for episodes of shows wherever they might crop up. Keeping track of, and not recording, episodes you've already seen, recommended shows, one touch recording, etc. and STABILITY].
It also integrates your music [including going online and getting you all the info and cover art for whatever you have on your comp or stick in your CD player], DVD, video clips, pictures, and if you have the right card, FM radio. Though I'm limited to S-Video quality, I can connect my satellite and use media extenders to control the satellite through Windows too. A set of Component/DVI cables, a SPDIF cable and the remote and you can hook it into your HDTV and Receiver to have a full-on media server [save cassette, LP, SACD, etc]. If I had the scratch for more HDs, I coud put all 1200 of my CDs and all 75-ish of my DVDs on the HD and could then pack them up and put them in the attic.
If you decide to switch to MCE, let me know and I'll guide you through getting the AIW to work.
BTW - I went to Best Buy last week, and they had an encap s/u of a MCE machine. TV and FM were working, as well as everything else. Only thing not utilized is getting info off the I-net. Very informative.

htismaqe
02-28-2005, 01:20 PM
Yeah, I took it from your earlier posts that you weren't looking so much for TV or HD.
Sorry to dwell on the MCE and TV/HD stuff, I'm just a little high on the experience. MCE rocks so HARD, esp w/HD. All the Fx of TiVO, on my computer. MMC [ATI's version] is OK, but MCE brings in the TiVO functionality [ability to be on look out for episodes of shows wherever they might crop up. Keeping track of, and not recording, episodes you've already seen, recommended shows, one touch recording, etc. and STABILITY].
It also integrates your music [including going online and getting you all the info and cover art for whatever you have on your comp or stick in your CD player], DVD, video clips, pictures, and if you have the right card, FM radio. Though I'm limited to S-Video quality, I can connect my satellite and use media extenders to control the satellite through Windows too. A set of Component/DVI cables, a SPDIF cable and the remote and you can hook it into your HDTV and Receiver to have a full-on media server [save cassette, LP, SACD, etc]. If I had the scratch for more HDs, I coud put all 1200 of my CDs and all 75-ish of my DVDs on the HD and could then pack them up and put them in the attic.
If you decide to switch to MCE, let me know and I'll guide you through getting the AIW to work.
BTW - I went to Best Buy last week, and they had an encap s/u of a MCE machine. TV and FM were working, as well as everything else. Only thing not utilized is getting info off the I-net. Very informative.

I saw MCE at Best Buy this weekend and they had an LG 23" LCD monitor on the thing...the monitor alone was like $4k :D

Baby Lee
02-28-2005, 01:44 PM
I saw MCE at Best Buy this weekend and they had an LG 23" LCD monitor on the thing...the monitor alone was like $4k :D
Nice thing about the AIW is you can send it out to any TV or HDTV you might have, or wish to have. Composite, S-Vid, Component and DVI outs.