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dual head video, tv tuner, dual 15's...a few q's

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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May 24, 2007 12:28:31 AM

I am building a PC and know very little (other than what I can research) about video/TV cards. Most info is gamer based and what I need to do is this:
pc will be used for mostly office apps and possibly light vid editing/creation

Dual 15"lcd monitors, with the possibility of turning monitors 90 deg, from landscape to portrait, for full page view. I'd like a good quality dual head video card with as much memory on board as possible and as little resource sharing as possible. (Matrox??)

Id like to be able to connect directly to my (non-digital) cable, without a set top box and pop up a TV window ( separate TV Tuner card??, Win-TV-Go??)

Id like to be able to digitize incoming video (on board encoding??).

Q. Do I need two cards, one dual head, one Tuner?, how does the tuner communicate with teh video cards, and is this a big performance hit?

I will choose the MOBO and other components after deciding how to accomplish my video requirements.

Any help for this newbie would be greatly appreciated.
May 24, 2007 4:51:59 PM

what is your total that you can spend, what parts do you have and what do you need?
May 24, 2007 5:06:00 PM

I plan on spending around 700 for system plus monitors, I guess, more if needed. Havent started yet. i want to figure out parts first,

Maybe 150 plus or minus for the vid card?

thanks for the reply.
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May 24, 2007 5:16:09 PM

so what do you already have? or are you starting from the ground up? also are speaking us dollars?
May 24, 2007 7:39:57 PM

I have no parts, I was actually figuring on following the budget system in Toms Builder Marathon, day one

US dollars.
May 24, 2007 8:13:44 PM

ok last base question. is this going to be a core platform where you will plan to upgrade this, or when this becomes outdated would you start all over again.
May 24, 2007 8:40:04 PM

excellent question...I will start all over again. My attic full of old tech will attest to this!...
May 24, 2007 9:17:33 PM

$700 for a machine AND two monitors??? Your joking right? Here is a quick search from newegg. The search was for 15/17" monitors that are LESS then $150 each. Notice that this returned 2 matches. One 15" and one 17", both are $150. This means that two of either of these monitors is going to cost you $300. (counting shipping, your looking at either $321 or $324.) This will leave you with ~$375 for a machine that you want to do video editing? (actually leaves you with about $300 for the machine, as a legit version of windows will run at least $75.)

Here's what I would do. Drop the dual screen idea for now. Buy the 17" monitor that I already linked to. (its not that good, but its cheap.) Add in a copy of windows, and you've already spent ~$275. This leaves $425 for the machine. Get a motherboard with a 650i/965 chipset. The cheapest C2D on newegg is the E4300. This should leave you with about $250 for everything else. There are two big purchases left to make, the ram and the video card. For the ram, you probably want to buy a single 1GB stick of DDR2-667/800. This will allow you to upgrade to two GBs later when you have more funds.
The cheapest video card I found on newegg that has 2 DVI ports is this one. Should be more then enough for your light video needs.
If you buy all of what I suggested, you should be NEAR $700 total. No second monitor, no dual channel memory, no Video input, etc. When you get the funds again, you can start adding these things. Get a USB2 video capture device. Buy another stick of ram. (gives you 2GBs, and dual channel.) Buy your second monitor. You simply can't get all of what you want right now.

(btw, check that attic for a keyboard and mouse so that you don't have to buy those.)
May 24, 2007 9:29:17 PM

no, 700 plus monitors.
Also, i have keyboards, mice, misc network cards, modems, cables etc. And if it came down to it, I have the case, when asked what I had, I assumed (I know...bad) that we were just talking about the bare bones stuff...case, PSU, MOBO, CPU, vid,big disk.

I'd like to spend around 200 for a video card(s) which meets my needs.

thanks for your help.
May 24, 2007 9:44:16 PM

Ohhhh, $700 NOT counting the monitors, thats different.

Why are you spending so much on the video card? You stated that your needs are:
Quote:
pc will be used for mostly office apps and possibly light vid editing/creation

The x1550 that I linked to will handle this with ease. If your going to be doing video editing, you need to speed $200 on the CPU, not the GPU. Try to get the 6600, but if you can't get that, don't buy the 6400. Get one of the lower clocked 6300/4300, and overclock that one. (I think I saw a 6320 that has the 4MBs of L2 cache for ~$170, this would be a good chip)
For the TV input, this would be a good PCI card, while this would be a good USB2 card. I would chose the PCI card myself.
May 24, 2007 10:03:56 PM

thanks for all of your advice. Another question regarding the X1550, since it is using the ATI chipset, does this mean that the flipping, landscape to portrait is handled by ATI software?
May 24, 2007 10:09:42 PM

usually. there are thrid partys who make software. altho there are better vid cards for the money. get a mobo that supports pci-e and get a better card.
May 24, 2007 10:12:06 PM

Realibrad, any suggestions?
May 24, 2007 10:27:56 PM

im about to leave to go home, if nobody leaves anything good ill list them tommrow. sorry
May 25, 2007 7:38:43 AM

Good luck finding a better card. Thats the cheapest card on newegg that has two DVI ports. I found cheaper, but they had one DVI and one D-SUB.
May 25, 2007 1:01:16 PM

thanks.
a question about tuner cards. am i right in guessing that you just hook up a cable to them and you can then open a tv windo on your desktop?There is no direct connection between the tuner card and your video card, it all happens over the buss?
May 25, 2007 2:17:21 PM

im really trying hard to get a good config. for the hardware, but im hitting a wall with the 700. the problem is that because your going to do video encodeing, you need a fast cpu, which intel has right now. but they cost more and the mobos cost more. so then i looked at amd. THG sistem builder 1 system would work but it would be slow. youll want 2gig of ram and they only have 1. youll want a tvtuner card and some sort of sound card. this is much harder than i thought.
May 25, 2007 4:24:19 PM

what tool are you using to configure a system? Is there a matrix of some kind or a software configurator, or are you just that into current hardware? I certainly appreciate all the effort, Thank You.
As far as the fast CPU, if the encoding is done in HW on the vid board, are the requirements for the (mobo) CPU still increased?
And for the THG system builder #1, adding another Gig of ram is fine, as well as going to a 250 HDD, its the video and tv that I have no clue about. Since the system itself isnt that powerful, Id want as much processing to occur on board the video board, the X1550 mentiond above has 512Mb and is dual output, seems resonably priced, you mentioned better cards for the money, what woudl you recommend?

thanks again!
May 25, 2007 4:37:08 PM

um... sure, im using a biomatrix that interfaces with electronic tools.lol
im just looking up parts on new egg and priceing them out. these are the items that you will probably need.

cpu
video card
tv tuner card
ram
hard drive
psu
case
mother board
dvd/cd rom drive
os
and maybe a sound card
as you see, i must advrage well under 100 dollars. give me a list of what you have and what you will need?
May 25, 2007 5:50:21 PM

Seeing as I also need to make the horse drink, here you go.

cpu http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
video card http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
tv tuner card http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
ram http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
hard drive http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
psu http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... case http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
mother board http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
dvd/cd rom drive http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
os http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Total price including shipping and rebates comes to $750. If you can't afford the extra $50, don't get the 6320 in this list, but the 4300 in my first post. That should drop it from $750 to $699. Remember, this list is just to get you started. Get the second ram stick later when you can afford it. Same with the second harddrive, and anything else you might want. This should be close enough to what you want/need.
May 25, 2007 5:59:11 PM

i think 4745454b has pretty much put the best parts that you can buy. i just wouldent expect to do anything quick. the video quality isint going to be anything great either. at least its a starting point. good luck.
May 25, 2007 6:34:02 PM

thanks for the info. Apparently there has been some misunderstanding, re: making a horse drink. I apologize for being unclear. I did not need a list of things to purchase to build a PC, I appreciate the time spent, but it wasnt necessary. My only question regarded a video card and tv card. I was quite happy with the response I got about the Powercolor X1550, and when RealiBrad suggested there were better cards for the money, I asked him which ones, and then I had a few follow up questions regarding vid card processing.

Once again I thank you for sharing so much info.
May 25, 2007 6:46:43 PM

Just in case I'm missing something, what do you have against the x1550? Its no gaming card, but he isn't gaming with it. He just needs a card that can drive two LCD displays. (this card has two DVI ports, so he should be good.) Am I missing something that your catching?
May 25, 2007 6:52:34 PM

dont get me wrong, i just bought the 1550 pci card, i just figured that there are much better cards out there. but you were right about the price point.

ex99125b, what then is the 700 for the hard ware for. i though you ment that you had 700 to spend on the eitire computer other than the mon. was i mistaken?
May 25, 2007 8:22:37 PM

RealiBrad,
yeah, I figure a budget of around 700 for the case, MOBO, CPU, mem, PSU, HDD, dvd/cd x2, vid card, tuner card. Looking at the THG system 1, which came in at about 500, I figure on adding memory and a bigger disk plus tuner card etc.

Thanks to you both for your patience and indulging me. I appreciate the help.

Jim
!