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Considering to upgrade my PC for Blu-Ray...

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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September 3, 2008 6:12:02 AM

I have been seriously considering to max out the performance for my brand new Samsung T260 monitor. It has hdmi, so I want to see the maximum performance in my monitor from blu-ray. However, I am concerning with my computer since it's a 3 years old PC. (It was top of the line when I got it back in 2005).

Here is the spec from my PC:

Motherboard: ASUS PTGd1-LA
CPU: Pentium 4 630 3.0 GHz (w/ socket 775, 800Mhz Front bus)
Chipset: Intel 915Gv
Memory: 1 GB (2x 512)
hdd: 250GB, 7200 rpm
Power: dc output 300watts

I went to Fry's Electronic store and I notice that the minimum requirement for Blu-Ray is Pentium d 2.4 GHz. I am still not sure about this because I have P4 3.0 GHz. If I know about computer from 2005, I would say my P4 is better than the requirement because I have 3.00 GHz. However, I'd rather ask you than be sorry for myself.

Here are the questions:

1) Should I upgrade the CPU? If so, what's your suggestion?
2) What else would you recommend to maximum my blu-ray on the new monitor? (I am still eyeing on the hd4850 that everyone talks about).

More about : upgrade blu ray

a c 130 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
September 3, 2008 10:01:52 AM

The Pentium D is a dual-core processor whereas your P4 630 is a single core. A single-core 3.00Ghz processor won't stand up to a dual-core 2.4Ghz processor.

It doesn't look like your motherboard will support anything but a P4 or P4 w/Hyperthreading (which *may* be enough, I don't know). Additionally, you need to double your RAM amount, at a minimum, and replace your power supply to support a newer graphics card.

In my opinion, I think you'd be better served with a whole new system rather than pouring that much money into a significantly outdated system.

-Wolf sends
a b U Graphics card
September 3, 2008 10:04:50 AM

i agree its better to get a new system. urs is to old.
Related resources
September 3, 2008 2:23:33 PM

It would be enough if you have a video card that will offload the video processing to the GPU, ala 3450.
September 3, 2008 2:43:08 PM

Now my 20.1 inch laptop came with a Blu-Ray player and I love it... but in this instance, it sounds like the OP would just be better off buying a dedicated player or perhaps a PS3.
September 3, 2008 2:46:51 PM

Another thing, I think all the bluray drives are sata interface. I can't find info on your board but you'd want to make sure you have those. With a good video card (radeon HD series, etc) the cpu shouldn't be much of a problem with hd playback.
a b U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
September 3, 2008 2:47:43 PM

I'd say new PSU and a 3850.

Get a 450-500W from a trust worthy brand and u'll be fine. Like IndigoMoss said, as long as you get the video card to do the job, your processor won't be an issue.

Besides, maybe getting the PSU and the video card is way cheaper than getting a new rig all together.

Esop!
a b U Graphics card
September 3, 2008 3:08:33 PM

You would be better off going with a new build, or getting a PS3/BR player instead. (even a cheap AM2 system will own your P4 630)
September 3, 2008 3:28:02 PM

IH8U said:
You would be better off going with a new build, or getting a PS3/BR player instead. (even a cheap AM2 system will own your P4 630)


I agree, a cheap AM2 build would be the best solution. You can get a decent dual core CPU, motheboard and ram for only around $140, if not less. Then just pick up a 3450 if you don't plan on gaming, and voila! Now you have a decent HTPC.

If you are in the market for a console, a PS3 is not a bad choice at all for Blu-ray playback. I'd say getting a stand-alone player would not be worth it, since they are about the same price as the PS3 and many experts in the A/V field use the PS3 as their reference Blu-ray player.
September 3, 2008 7:36:50 PM

Yeah I have been considering about PS3 for less hassle with computer. I figure that I need about $400 to set it up with new VGA, blue-ray, mobo and cpu. I'll wait for xmas when PS3 will drop the value.
November 4, 2008 2:44:25 AM

Again, I forgot that my P4 630 3.00Ghz is still too old for getting a new graphic card. Can't I even just upgrade the cpu from this old motherboard?

Also, I wonder about the graphic from youtube. I see chunky blocky graphic, so will it improve if I upgrade the VGA?
November 4, 2008 2:50:40 AM

How about this...which BEST graphic card available would you recommend to upgrade for my system without upgrading anything?
a c 130 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
November 4, 2008 1:16:30 PM

Assuming your motherboard does have a PCI-Ex16 graphics card slot, I'd probably recommend something like the ASUS HD 3450 for $20 after rebate.

-Wolf sends
November 4, 2008 4:43:39 PM

Wolfshadw said:
Assuming your motherboard does have a PCI-Ex16 graphics card slot, I'd probably recommend something like the ASUS HD 3450 for $20 after rebate.

-Wolf sends


This one has a problem with using HDMI, according to the review in the link.
a c 130 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
November 4, 2008 10:01:59 PM

Quote:
This one has a problem with using HDMI, according to the review in the link.


And the review below that says the HDMI port works great. You have to take user reviews with a grain of salt. Many 1 egg reviews are due to a lack of knowledge by the customer, but then I should also say many 5 egg reviews are due to a lack of knowledge by the customer. In the review you pointed out, it sounds like a specific set of circumstances causing the problem.

Concerning the cards in the link you asked about, no, they're not all the same (I'm assuming you just meant the HD 3450s).

Some are AGP, some are PCI-E.
Some have 256 Meg VRAM, others have 512 Meg.
Some have native HDMI, some have HDMI via an adapter.
Some have cooling fans, some just have heatsinks.

For me, personally, I would go with a PCI-E, 512 Meg of VRAM, native HDMI (since my HDTV has an HDMI port that's not being used), and has a cooling fan.

-Wolf sends
November 5, 2008 6:03:26 AM

Wolfshadw said:
Quote:
This one has a problem with using HDMI, according to the review in the link.


And the review below that says the HDMI port works great. You have to take user reviews with a grain of salt. Many 1 egg reviews are due to a lack of knowledge by the customer, but then I should also say many 5 egg reviews are due to a lack of knowledge by the customer. In the review you pointed out, it sounds like a specific set of circumstances causing the problem.

Concerning the cards in the link you asked about, no, they're not all the same (I'm assuming you just meant the HD 3450s).

Some are AGP, some are PCI-E.
Some have 256 Meg VRAM, others have 512 Meg.
Some have native HDMI, some have HDMI via an adapter.
Some have cooling fans, some just have heatsinks.

For me, personally, I would go with a PCI-E, 512 Meg of VRAM, native HDMI (since my HDTV has an HDMI port that's not being used), and has a cooling fan.

-Wolf sends


After your suggestion, I come up to like this one better than you previously showed: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I am an inch to buy it off from the store, but I am not sure about the minimum requirement of 300 W power supply. I know that I have 300 watts PSU according to the specification link in the first post of this thread.
November 5, 2008 9:48:34 AM

Believe me it is not worth it. Buy a blu-ray player and hook it to the monitor. There is only 1 program that works with blu-rays and that is Power DVD. The license for one years costs between $50-$100. Also you will need much more power than yo realize, a dual core is NECESSARY, if not a quad core.
November 5, 2008 4:52:09 PM

The_Blood_Raven said:
Believe me it is not worth it. Buy a blu-ray player and hook it to the monitor. There is only 1 program that works with blu-rays and that is Power DVD. The license for one years costs between $50-$100. Also you will need much more power than yo realize, a dual core is NECESSARY, if not a quad core.


Are you kidding me? I would assume I am watching from Microsoft Media player, InterActual Player or other free samples. If that's the case with PowerDVD, then I would forget about blu ray for pc. I realize that it costs at least $400 range to have blu ray set up in my pc. For the price of $400, it's better to buy a complete player or PS3 console system.
November 5, 2008 6:27:35 PM

Yessir you get the idea. The PS3 is about the best Blu-Ray player since it is more advanced then any others on the market (yet). The only problem is it tends to be loud and the controls are a bit clunky. If you get an actual Blu-Ray player make sure its Sony, they made the damn technology and so they reserve some features for their hardware only. I guess I can't blame too much.
November 6, 2008 4:44:05 AM

The minimum I'd recommend for Blu Ray is an Athlon X2 3800+ or equivalent. A 3650 or 4670 card would do too. The only caveat I have is DRM issues.

I don't have a Blu-Ray drive yet, but I've bought DVD's that will play on both our DVD players, but not on any PC because of DRM. Instead, they offer a single digital download per DVD. I suspect something similar may roll out with Blu Ray movies, depending on the studio.

Before the economy went south, I was all set to upgrade to a Blu Ray drive and a 24" monitor at income tax time. With the DRM issues, I think I'd rather stick to DVD's that will play on my PC using VLC or Power DVD.
!