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Hardware Mpeg Assist/Radeon/AIW/TV wonder pro

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July 10, 2005 2:24:00 AM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.videocards.ati (More info?)

Question for the experts:

Will a radeon 9800Pro with a companion tv wonder pro yield the same quality
as an AIW9800?

My question is where the hardware mpeg assist comes into play and what I
might be loosing without it.

TIA

jeff
Anonymous
July 10, 2005 7:01:19 PM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.videocards.ati (More info?)

"jeff" <someone@microsoft.com> wrote in message
news:hMqdnbmPl7x9G03fRVn-jw@velocitywest.net...
> Question for the experts:
>
> Will a radeon 9800Pro with a companion tv wonder pro yield the same
> quality as an AIW9800?
>
> My question is where the hardware mpeg assist comes into play and what I
> might be loosing without it.
>
> TIA
>
> jeff
I'm hardly an expert but I can tell you that neither the AIW 9800 nor the TV
Wonder Pro have hardware for MPEG encoding - this is done fully through ATIs
MMC software. I've never tried the TV Wonder Pro (its not available in a PAL
version here in the UK) but I have used the TV Wonder and my All in Wonder
cards (which all use the Rage Theatre Chipset do better than the TV Wonder.
The new TV Wonder Elite is supposed to be the bees knees in terms of picture
quality but the current software lets it down. Personally I'd go with both
and have mulTView (check out ATIs website for an explanation of this if you
don't already know). If only TV Wonder Pros were available here!

Hardware MPEG encoding is SUPPOSED to be lighter on your CPU usage but
having said that, Windows MCE which uses predominantly hardware MPEG
encoding tuners has very high demands on CPUs. As long as you have a fast P4
or Athlon XP/MP or better your machine should be able to fully cope with
ATIs software demands. I use MMC 9.08 on my PIII 933 MHz machine and it even
manages to cope with native VCR encoding.

Paul
July 10, 2005 7:01:20 PM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.videocards.ati (More info?)

Thank you paul, good analysis!

Jeff
Related resources
Anonymous
July 10, 2005 7:01:20 PM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.videocards.ati (More info?)

Paul Murphy wrote:

> "jeff" <someone@microsoft.com> wrote in message
> news:hMqdnbmPl7x9G03fRVn-jw@velocitywest.net...
>> Question for the experts:
>>
>> Will a radeon 9800Pro with a companion tv wonder pro yield the same
>> quality as an AIW9800?
>>
>> My question is where the hardware mpeg assist comes into play and what I
>> might be loosing without it.
>>
>> TIA
>>
>> jeff
> I'm hardly an expert but I can tell you that neither the AIW 9800 nor the
> TV Wonder Pro have hardware for MPEG encoding - this is done fully through
> ATIs MMC software.

No, they have accelerated _de_coding.

> I've never tried the TV Wonder Pro (its not available
> in a PAL version here in the UK) but I have used the TV Wonder and my All
> in Wonder cards (which all use the Rage Theatre Chipset do better than the
> TV Wonder. The new TV Wonder Elite is supposed to be the bees knees in
> terms of picture quality but the current software lets it down. Personally
> I'd go with both and have mulTView (check out ATIs website for an
> explanation of this if you don't already know). If only TV Wonder Pros
> were available here!
>
> Hardware MPEG encoding is SUPPOSED to be lighter on your CPU usage but
> having said that, Windows MCE which uses predominantly hardware MPEG
> encoding tuners has very high demands on CPUs.

The demand is during playback, not recording. Remember also that it can
have three streams going simultaneously, two being recorded and one being
played back--even with low utilization in any one stream, that can add up.

Under MCE, I see at most 10% or so on an Athlon 2800+ during single-channel
recording, whether HD (which comes encoded) or hardware-accelerated analog.
On the other hand I see 40% during HD playback on an Athlon 64 3200+, using
the nvidia decoder. Using any other decoder I get dropouts during HD
playback even on the 64--it sits at 100% utilization and that's not quite
enough.

The big trouble with hardware encoding is that the chips that do it are a
generation or so behind the non-encoding chips in terms of capture quality.

> As long as you have a fast
> P4 or Athlon XP/MP or better your machine should be able to fully cope
> with ATIs software demands. I use MMC 9.08 on my PIII 933 MHz machine and
> it even manages to cope with native VCR encoding.
>
> Paul

--
--John
to email, dial "usenet" and validate
(was jclarke at eye bee em dot net)
July 10, 2005 7:01:21 PM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.videocards.ati (More info?)

J. Clarke wrote:

>
>
> The demand is during playback, not recording. Remember also that it can
> have three streams going simultaneously, two being recorded and one being
> played back--even with low utilization in any one stream, that can add up.
>
> Under MCE, I see at most 10% or so on an Athlon 2800+ during single-channel
> recording, whether HD (which comes encoded) or hardware-accelerated analog.
> On the other hand I see 40% during HD playback on an Athlon 64 3200+, using
> the nvidia decoder. Using any other decoder I get dropouts during HD
> playback even on the 64--it sits at 100% utilization and that's not quite
> enough.
>
> The big trouble with hardware encoding is that the chips that do it are a
> generation or so behind the non-encoding chips in terms of capture quality.
>

How are you measuring the CPU utilization? I have an ATI HDTV Wonder and
a Saphire card with an ATI 9600 chip and playing back a recorded clip I
am getting total CPU utilization in the low 40's on an AMD XP 2200 under
W/XP Home.

I checked CPU utilization by doing a ctl-alt-delete and took the total
from the bottom. To get this I had to pay the clip at 50% resolution
because ctl-alt-delete does not display the pop-up window properly when
displaying the clip full screen. I have a 1280 x 1024 monitor if that
makes a difference.

ATI docs seem to say an XP 1300 is sufficient for the HDTV Wonder, but I
have read elsewhere that that is not enough. In my limited experience
so far it an XP 1300 would seem to be enough. (I should add that the ATI
software, particulary EasyLook, seems to be a bit flakey).

I am trying to put together a parts list for a media PC and was thinking
of getting the 35 watt version of the AMD Mobile 2200 while dumping the
ATI software for W/MCE. Bad idea?

Roger
Anonymous
July 10, 2005 7:01:22 PM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.videocards.ati (More info?)

Roger wrote:

> J. Clarke wrote:
>
>>
>>
>> The demand is during playback, not recording. Remember also that it can
>> have three streams going simultaneously, two being recorded and one being
>> played back--even with low utilization in any one stream, that can add
>> up.
>>
>> Under MCE, I see at most 10% or so on an Athlon 2800+ during
>> single-channel recording, whether HD (which comes encoded) or
>> hardware-accelerated analog. On the other hand I see 40% during HD
>> playback on an Athlon 64 3200+, using
>> the nvidia decoder. Using any other decoder I get dropouts during HD
>> playback even on the 64--it sits at 100% utilization and that's not quite
>> enough.
>>
>> The big trouble with hardware encoding is that the chips that do it are a
>> generation or so behind the non-encoding chips in terms of capture
>> quality.
>>
>
> How are you measuring the CPU utilization? I have an ATI HDTV Wonder and
> a Saphire card with an ATI 9600 chip and playing back a recorded clip I
> am getting total CPU utilization in the low 40's on an AMD XP 2200 under
> W/XP Home.

Using what player? I was using Media Player 10 for playback of a stream
recorded under MCE.

> I checked CPU utilization by doing a ctl-alt-delete and took the total
> from the bottom. To get this I had to pay the clip at 50% resolution
> because ctl-alt-delete does not display the pop-up window properly when
> displaying the clip full screen. I have a 1280 x 1024 monitor if that
> makes a difference.

I just right-clicked the taskbar--in full screen if you move the mouse Media
Player 10 lets you do that.

> ATI docs seem to say an XP 1300 is sufficient for the HDTV Wonder, but I
> have read elsewhere that that is not enough. In my limited experience
> so far it an XP 1300 would seem to be enough. (I should add that the ATI
> software, particulary EasyLook, seems to be a bit flakey).
>
> I am trying to put together a parts list for a media PC and was thinking
> of getting the 35 watt version of the AMD Mobile 2200 while dumping the
> ATI software for W/MCE. Bad idea?

With an HDTV Wonder I have no idea--it's almost identical to the current
Dvico I understand and the Dvico works fine with that combination, using
the nvidia codec. But you're going to see a lot of CPU utilization during
HD playback.

> Roger

--
--John
to email, dial "usenet" and validate
(was jclarke at eye bee em dot net)
Anonymous
July 10, 2005 10:05:49 PM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.videocards.ati (More info?)

"Roger" <crosseyedpenguin@cox.net> wrote in message
news:75cAe.21543$4o.8723@fed1read06...
> J. Clarke wrote:
>
>>
>>
>> The demand is during playback, not recording. Remember also that it can
>> have three streams going simultaneously, two being recorded and one being
>> played back--even with low utilization in any one stream, that can add
>> up.
>>
>> Under MCE, I see at most 10% or so on an Athlon 2800+ during
>> single-channel
>> recording, whether HD (which comes encoded) or hardware-accelerated
>> analog. On the other hand I see 40% during HD playback on an Athlon 64
>> 3200+, using
>> the nvidia decoder. Using any other decoder I get dropouts during HD
>> playback even on the 64--it sits at 100% utilization and that's not quite
>> enough.
>>
>> The big trouble with hardware encoding is that the chips that do it are a
>> generation or so behind the non-encoding chips in terms of capture
>> quality.
>>
>
> How are you measuring the CPU utilization? I have an ATI HDTV Wonder and a
> Saphire card with an ATI 9600 chip and playing back a recorded clip I am
> getting total CPU utilization in the low 40's on an AMD XP 2200 under W/XP
> Home.
>
> I checked CPU utilization by doing a ctl-alt-delete and took the total
> from the bottom. To get this I had to pay the clip at 50% resolution
> because ctl-alt-delete does not display the pop-up window properly when
> displaying the clip full screen. I have a 1280 x 1024 monitor if that
> makes a difference.
>
> ATI docs seem to say an XP 1300 is sufficient for the HDTV Wonder, but I
> have read elsewhere that that is not enough. In my limited experience so
> far it an XP 1300 would seem to be enough. (I should add that the ATI
> software, particulary EasyLook, seems to be a bit flakey).
>
> I am trying to put together a parts list for a media PC and was thinking
> of getting the 35 watt version of the AMD Mobile 2200 while dumping the
> ATI software for W/MCE. Bad idea?
>
> Roger

Well with my AMD 1600+ machine capturing at the best possible MPEG2
settings, MMC 9.08 uses around 29% of CPU resources - only but is that its a
dual CPU machine but in task manager it shows the 2nd CPU as contributing
about two thirds as much resources as the first. Playing back that same file
only uses about 7% resources. This is NOT because the ATI card has Hardware
MPEG2 decoding - it does NOT. The card does have some features that assist
with this however and thats why way back in the pre Radeon days ATI card
equipped machines could play DVDs with much lower CPU requirements that
machines equipped with other cards.

I'm looking to build an MCE machine when finances permit and will likely go
with an Athlon 64 -certainly not a P4 anyway as I don't want a lounge heater
built in. Windows XP MCE 2005 is great only problem last time I tried was
that ONLY the tuners channels could be used as an input source on the TV -
ie you cant play your VCR back though the Composite or S-Video input as with
MMC.

Paul
!