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Seeking the Ultimate Intel DHCAT PC

Last response: in Tom's Guide
October 3, 2007 10:48:42 AM

Intel's DHCAT tool is supposed to assess the media-handling capabilities of PCs. We've worked with it quite a bit now. Here are some new tests and findings that may surprise you.
October 3, 2007 6:14:17 PM

AVerMedia M780, I can't find this product even on their website. Is there any in depth test comparisons of tv video cards that exist?
October 3, 2007 8:44:34 PM

Though indeed the SKU for the part is M780, AVerMedia calls it their PCIe Combo card, and that's how it appears on the Web site. You can find it here: It has also been reviewed at numerous other Web sites, and we ourselves reviewed it in more detail here: I'll get the editor to put a parenthetical phrase in the story that says (aka AVerTV Combo PCIe) just to keep others from suffering your apparent fate. Sorry for the inconvenience.
As for comparisons of other TV video cards, see also "SomeTimes TV Gets Too Hot to Handle" at


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October 3, 2007 11:34:46 PM

Why bother with the q6800 cpu?
It's extremely expensive, compared to the q6600.
I don't see anyone but real enthusiasts going for that, seeing what you can buy instead of those extra easily overclockable 600/core..
October 4, 2007 12:35:40 AM

Funny, that's what we said in the conclusion to our story, too. No doubt the QX6600 is a much better buy.
October 4, 2007 7:23:01 PM

All that sounds nice and good, but my fairly old system is good enough for me. I use BeyondTV. I can record 2 HDTV shows and playback 1 all at the same time with no apparent problems. Here is my setup:

Asus P4C800-Deluxe
P4 Single Core overclocked to 2.8Ghz
2.5 GB DDR
250GB SATA-150 Hard Drive

ATI All-In-Wonder 9600 - Not capturing

KWorld ATSC-110 - HDTV Capturing
AVerMedia AVerTVHD MCE A180 - HDTV Capturing
October 10, 2007 3:45:04 PM

If your setup works for you, that's good enough for me. Our objective in this story, however, was to try to push the limits to see what kinds of hardware would enable production of higher DHCAT scores. We seem to have enjoyed some success at this exercise, to the point where it looks like a machine built around the older (and much cheaper)QX6600, reasonably priced DDR2-800 memory, and a decent mid-range graphics card (8600GT or maybe a 2600 AT model) will do the trick pretty nicely.

HTH, and thanks for posting.