HDMI graphics card & streaming PC content to a secondary display

First and foremost, this is my first time posting here, so please just consider me a novice. I want to catch up with the digital revolution. Please be aware, that I already own a blu-ray player w/wifi capabilities; so Netflix, HULU, etc . . . . is something I already have covered. My goal is to quit paying for cable entirely. I am now interested in purchasing something akin to the WAVI 2-Way HDMI Streaming Kit or a Sling-Catcher. It will allow me to take advantage of the free internet content, mainly movies and network TV from Comcast, on my PC and view it on my TV. The problem is that to utilize such equipment, I will be required to upgrade my graphics card to one that has HDMI capabilities. Right now I'm running the 32 bit version of Windows XP Home Edition SP3, on a DELL Dimension 4550; my graphics card is a GeForce4 MX420. The graphics card does have a secondary, S-Video, interface for a second display; and Nvidia/NView Desktop Management Software, which allows me to hook up a second display screen, but I fear that the S-video will not provide a good picture. I have no desire to waste any money on technology that will be obsolete in the not so distant future. From what I understand, in order to upgrade my graphics card to a card that has HDMI capabilities, I need to run a 64 bit operating system. Subsequently, in order to accomplish that, I need to upgrade my hard drive, and increase my DRAM to the 2GB maximum. I bought this box brand new, 10 years ago, and it has been extremely reliable. Other than viruses, and the occasional OS reboot, it has never given me grief. I paid almost $1700 for it back then; and I don't really want to trash it. I might just buy another Dimension 4550 I seen on Craigslist, and go from there. Right now, with a cable modem, the speed is tolerable; it has the Intel® Pentium® 4 microprocessor that runs at 2.53 GHz internally and 533 MHz externally


My questions are:

Does anyone know if there is an easier way to accomplish my goal of streaming PC content to the big screen TV, without jumping through all these hoops?

Is it worth the money to upgrade my system? Or should I just go find something new?

If I do jump through all those hoops, is there any advantage to upgrading my motherboard, processor, or chip set?

If I do have to upgrade my motherboard, [ ACPI\GENUINEINTEL_-_X86_FAMILY_15_MODEL_2\_0 ], does it match up with the 775 sockets used for P4s back in 2002? ***I would be interested in knowing this regardless of whether I upgraded the motherboard or not.***

Hypothetically, if I do change out the motherboard, I would like to go to upgrade to the best that is out there; from what I have be reading that is the Core i7. Is this true? Will this fit into my tower? No? Then what will fit in my tower.

I fully understand that I may just be spinning my wheels, as there are some really fast systems out there for around 800 bucks. Nonetheless, I suspect its time that I finally built something on my own; even if it means buying another system, preferably another Dell Dimension . . . only because I know its nuances . . . and rebuilt it. Please advise me on your thoughts and suggestions. Below I have included some specs from Intel System Identification Utility & Dell’s resource center.

Here is the system info according to the "Intel System Identification Utility”:

Computer Manufacturer Dell Computer Corp. Dimension 4550
Operating System (O/S) Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition SP3

Operating System Build (O/S) (build 2600)
Operating System (version) 5.1.2600
O/S Language 0409

System RAM 511.0 MB
Internet Browser[1] Internet Explorer
Internet Browser Version[1] 8.0.6001.18702
.NET Framework Version 3.5.30729.01
CD or DVD Device HL-DT-ST CD-RW GCE-8481B

System Hard Drive Overview
System Total Storage Size: 111.8 GB
Physical Drive 0
Model ST3120023A
Bus Type ATA
Local Disk C: 111.8 GB
Used space: 81.3 GB
Free Space: 30.4 GB

Memory Detail
Total Physical Memory 511.0 MB
Available Physical Memory 38.5 MB
Total Virtual Memory 2.0 GB


Graphics Product [1] NVIDIA GeForce4 MX 420
Graphics Driver Version not detected
Driver Status Non-Intel device detected
3D Acceleration Yes
Hardware Transform & Lighting Support Yes
Video Memory 174.0 MB
Vertex Shader Support 0.0
Pixel Shader Support 0.0
Microsoft DirectX* Version 9.0c
Current Graphics Resolution 1024x768
Current Color Depth 32 Bits Per Pixel

Raw EDID[1] 00 FF FF FF FF FF FF 00 10 AC 05 70 52 55 36 4C 08 0D 01 03 68 1E 17 B7 EE E0 58 A1 54 46 9B 24 10 48 4C A0 42 00 61 59 45 59 31 59 71 4F 01 01 01 01 01 01 01 01 C3 1E 00 20 41 00 20 30 10 60 13 00 2C E1 10 00 00 1E 00 00 00 FF 00 34 50 31 32 31 33 32 48


Manufacturer Intel
AA Number not detected
BIOS Vendor Dell Computer Corporation
BIOS Version A08
BIOS Release Date 09/23/03
System Memory 511.0 MB
Built-in Audio Driver Component not detected
Built-in Audio Driver Version 5.1.2535.0
Built-in Audio Driver Status Non-Intel device detected


Manufacturer Intel
Model Intel(R) Pentium(R) 4 CPU 2.53GHz
Intel Processor analysis tools not detected
CPU Speed 2.5 GHz
Link to Processor Specification Intel(R) Pentium(R) 4 CPU 2.53GHz
CPU Revision 37
CPU Type 00
CPU Family 0F
CPU Model 02
CPU Stepping 7


Wired Networking Product Intel(R) 82562 based Network Controller(OEM)

Driver Version
Driver Status Newer Driver Available

Intel PROSet Version not detected
Hardware IDs not detected


Wireless Networking Product Linksys WMP110 RangePlus Wireless PCI Adapter
Driver Version
Intel PROSet/Wireless Version not detected
Software/Driver Status Non-Intel device detected
Latest version available
Hardware IDs not detected

Here is the system info according to "Dell Technical Specifications”:

Microprocessor type Intel® Pentium® 4 microprocessor that runs at 2.53 GHz internally and 533 MHz externally
L1 cache 8 KB first-level
L2 cache integrated 256-KB or 512-KB at full microprocessor speed
System Information
System chip set Intel 845PE
DMA channels four
Interrupt levels 15
System BIOS chip 4 Mb (512 KB)
System clock 100 MHz X 4 for 400 FSB or 133 MHz X 4 for 533 FSB - data rate
Expansion Bus
Bus types PCI and AGP
Bus speed PCI: 33 MHz; AGP: 66 MHz
AGP connector one
AGP connector size 172 pins
AGP connector data width (maximum) 32 bits
AGP bus protocols 4x/2x modes at 1.5 V
PCI connectors four
PCI connector size 120 pins
PCI connector data width
(maximum) 32 bits
Architecture DDR SDRAM
Memory connectors two
Memory capacities 128-, 256-, and 512-MB non-ECC DDR SDRAM
Minimum memory 128 MB
Maximum memory 1 GB
Memory type DDR 333 (non-ECC) only on computers with a 533-MHz system clock speed
DDR 266 (non-ECC) on computers with either a 400- or a 533-MHz system clock speed
BIOS address F8000h
Externally accessible two 5.25-inch bays
two 3.5-inch bays
Internally accessible two bays for 1-inch–high IDE hard drives
Available devices ATA-100 Ultra DMA hard drive, CD drive, Zip drive, DVD drive, DVD+RW drive, and CD-RW drive
Ports and Connectors
Externally accessible:
Serial 9-pin connector; 16550C-compatible
Parallel 25-hole connector (bidirectional)
Video 15-hole connector
Keyboard 6-pin mini-DIN connector or USB connector
Mouse 6-pin mini-DIN connector or USB connector
USB two front-panel and four back-panel USB 2.0–compliant connectors
NIC RJ45 connector
Headphone front-panel miniature connector
Audio1 three miniature connectors for line-in, line-out, and microphone
Internally accessible:
Primary IDE channel 40-pin connector on PCI local bus
Secondary IDE channel 40-pin connector on PCI local bus
Floppy drive 34-pin connector
1 Present only on computers with integrated audio capabilities.
Audio controller 1981A Codec
2 Present only on computers with integrated audio capabilities.
NIC controller Integrated Intel 10/100 Ethernet/Intel 82562ET (10/100)
Video controller AGP 4X
Controls and Lights
Power control push button
Power light green light on power button—blinking green in sleep state; solid green for power-on state
Hard-drive access light green
Diagnostic code lights four bicolor (amber and green) located on back panel
DC power supply:
Wattage 250 W
Heat dissipation 853 BTU (fully-loaded computer without monitor)
Voltage (switch-selectable
on back panel) 90 to 135 V at 50/60 Hz; 180 to 265 V at 50/60 Hz; 100 V at 50/60 Hz for Japanese computers
Backup battery 3-V CR2032 coin cell
Height x Width x Depth 42.5 x 18.1 x 44.7 cm
(16.7 x 7.1 x 17.6 inches)
Weight 12.7 kg (28 lb)
Operating 10º to 35ºC (50º to 95ºF)3
Storage –40º to 65ºC (–40º to 149ºF)
Relative humidity 20% to 80% (noncondensing)
Maximum vibration:
Operating 0.25 G at 3 to 200 Hz at 1/2 octave/min
Storage 0.5 G at 3 to 200 Hz at 1/2 octave/min
Maximum shock:
Operating bottom half-sine pulse with a change in velocity of 50.8 cm/sec (20 inches/sec)
Storage 23-G faired-square wave with a velocity change of 508 cm/sec (200 inches/sec)
Operating –15.2 to 3048 m (–50 to 10,000 ft)3
Storage –15.2 to 10,670 m (–50 to 35,000 ft)
3 At 35°C (95°F), the maximum operating altitude is 914 m (3000 ft).
1 answer Last reply
More about hdmi graphics card streaming content secondary display
  1. groovyinco said:
    From what I understand, in order to upgrade my graphics card to a card that has HDMI capabilities, I need to run a 64 bit operating system.
    Not true. HDMI works great with the 32bit OS versions.

    groovyinco said:
    it will allow me to take advantage of the free internet content, mainly movies and network TV from Comcast, on my PC and view it on my TV.
    This is much free video content available on the internet but I've yet to see anythink like 'free Comcast broadcast content over the internet'.
    What slingbox/slingcatcher does is let you location shift from your paid content location (like your home) to somewhere else (a hotel room while you're on a trip) across the 'Net.
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