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Thread: what do i need to watch dvd's on my tv from my pc




  1. #1

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    i know i need a video out card, but what system requirements do i need? cpu, ram, etc...

    also, what is a good card that has tv/out? i'm not going to be playing games, only watching movies on my big screen.


    thanks


    :cheers:

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    You need:

    A CPU over 600-700Mhz, I recommend an old P3 733Mhz for example, on a BX motherboard with 128MB of SDRAM should be fine.

    A TV ;)

    A Video Card with Video Out...this is most recent video cards, but if you want to save money try a GeForce4 Ti4200 with video out (comes with all the cables necessary usually). This type of card will also have the power to play the movies smoothly without a hardware decoder card. If you want to save even more money, grab a second-hand GeForce3 "classic" with video out. Once again, enough power to do the job but cheap as can be.

    A DVD Drive, something like a 16xDVD drive is quite cheap and handy.

    DVD Playback software. I use WinDVD, and you can usually get it as part of the software bundle on graphics cards. My old Morpheus GeForce3 came with WinDVD in the box for example, but some come with PowerDVD. Both are good.

    There you have it.

  3. #3

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    thanks for the quick reply. are geforce cards better than ati cards when it comes to tv/out?

    what is a hardware decoder card? does it just go in an empty pci slot? what kind of video card would require a decoder card?

    : peace2:

  4. #4
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    ATi is better than Nvidia for DVD image quality IMHO, but both are quite good.

    You don't need a hardware decoder card if you have the kind of rig I described above. The decoder card is only to speed up MPEG decoding on older systems or those with poor graphics cards, as far as I know. I've never used one and my DVD playback has been flawlessly smooth, even on a P3 550 (4 years ago).

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by PersianImmortal
    ATi is better than Nvidia for DVD image quality IMHO, but both are quite good.

    You don't need a hardware decoder card if you have the kind of rig I described above. The decoder card is only to speed up MPEG decoding on older systems or those with poor graphics cards, as far as I know. I've never used one and my DVD playback has been flawlessly smooth, even on a P3 550 (4 years ago).
    the pc that will be running the movies will be on an amd 500 machine w/ 128 ram and i'm not sure about the video, it is a friend of mine, i don't think the video is higher than 8MB.
    tom's hardware had a review on a hardware decoder card that decodes mpeg4. maybe this is the route i should suggest to my friend. it was called the xcard. made by sigma designs

  6. #6
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    Ok, but I still think you can pick up a second-hand GeForce3, or heck even a GeForce2 with video out and good quality DVD output and cheaper than a decoder card.

    Either way, that CPU will require a reasonable graphics card or decoder to help it play DVDs smoothly.

  7. #7
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    most older ATi cards have hardware DVD decoding...I wouldn't go any older than a 7200/7500 - but if DVD playback is all you want they would be superior to a GF2/3 w/software decoding. If you want to play games too - then get look at a 9100 as the minimum.

    Watch out for some of the cheap 3rd party boards - they left the hardware decoder off in some cases to save $$'s & lower the price - make sure it has the "Rage theatre" chip on the PCB

  8. #8

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    ok, thanks guys. i think i'll check into an ati 7500 or higher

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