The amount of PC power you need to play HD DVD. - High-Def Digest Forums
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Old 01-15-2007, 08:29 PM
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Default The amount of PC power you need to play HD DVD.

I stole this post from another forum. My current PC has a AMD 64 3500+ and a 6800 GT and apparently it is not good enough to play HD DVDs smoothly. My new PC I am building will be plenty strong though. I am getting a Q6600 CPU (Quad core) and a one 8800 GTX and later I will get another 8800 GTX for SLi.

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But, do you even know how your system handles 1080p video? I can tell you HD-DVD takes up quite a bit of power, and I'd recommend at least a dual core cpu. I could 99% confirm you won't have enough power to play back HD-DVD. There is a thread going on right now on HDbits with people testing out sample clips in PowerDVD 6.5, PowerDVD 7 HD, and WinDVD 8 HD.. here's how some of them go.

AMD X2 3800+ & 6800ultra - Lags, unwatchable


Intel e6600 -- plays fine


P4 Northwood 3.0GHz overclocked at 3.7GHz with GF6600GT AGP and here are my results from PowerDVD 6.5... hangs, unwatchable.


2800+ barton + ATI 9800PRO... nowhere near enough cpu power at all.. freezes.



As you can see, you need a pretty darn powerful CPU to play HD-DVD. On my AMD 5000+ at 3GHz, and hardware accelerated 8800GTX, I get a small lag blip on start of play, but it plays smooth everywhere after that. I would really recommend at least a e6300 conroe, or a AMD X2 4400+ or higher, that coupled with at least a GB or two of RAM, and a decent HDCP graphics card.

Last edited by MentokTheMindTaker; 01-24-2007 at 12:38 PM.
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Old 01-15-2007, 08:30 PM
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I should be good I would imagine. 6700 Core2duo with 2 gigs of ddr2 ram and 7950 GX2 graphics card.
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Old 01-24-2007, 11:28 AM
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Anandtech has a decent article about HD DVD on the PC.

It looks like it depends greatly on the encoding of the movie, either H.264 or VC-1. VC-1 looks to be much easier than the H.264. I have a Xbox HDDVD drive on the UPS truck as we speak and some netflix HD movies to test out when I get home, so I will test with both of my systems:

AMD 3200+ with 6600GT
Intel P4 2.53GHz with 6600GT

I am actually fairly confident I will be able to play VC-1 titles as even without help from the video card, the CPU doesn't get more than 30%. Of course, that CPU is WAY faster than either of mine, but I can't see the CPU jumping up to 100%. I will post later with the results.
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Old 01-25-2007, 02:26 PM
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Well, after about 4 hours of work on this last night, I couldn't get anything to play. I don't think it is just my meager hardware as I couldn't even get a choppy video to play. PowerDVD 7.2 just bombed out each time or got hung up, depending on what movie I tried to play. I am going to try some different Nvidia drivers and see if that helps. I am also going to try to get the Japanese version of WinDVD 8 and see if that works any better.
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Old 01-26-2007, 07:39 AM
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Finally got it playing last night on Vista RC2, but still errors in XP on both machines. The A64 3200+ machine in Vista couldn't keep up with any of the three HD-DVD's that I have. It would play perfectly at about 70-80% CPU and then shoot up and the image would hang for 5-10 seconds. Even so, a X2 3600+ or so should be able to handle it with a 6600GT.
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Old 01-26-2007, 11:16 PM
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do remember, Vista is glitchy as all hell. The amount of power Vista needs to operate is beyond stupid so im not surprised if it was having problem trying to run the HD-DVD add on and Vista from your specs
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Old 01-27-2007, 07:55 AM
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Vista RTM is not "glitchy as all hell." Vista RC2, which is what notalentassclowns13 is running has glitches, but that is to be expected from an uncomplete product.

Been running Vista RTM from my MSDN subscription for over a month on my regular PC and on my Media Center PC. Both painless and un-glitchy. Playback of High-Def on my Media Center is with a X2 3800+ and 7600GT card. However, I normally stick with playback on a dedicated player as HD DVD does not playback within Media Center itself but must play via either PowerDVD or WinDVD.
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Old 01-29-2007, 08:01 AM
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I installed the RTM version of Vista and had about the same result. I noticed some spots would be sitting at 35-40% CPU usage, but still laggy. I also tried disabled hardware acceleration and that didn't really play at all, so the hardware acceleration is actually working on the 6600GT.

Also, Vista might be glitchy, but neither of my 2 Windows XP installs will even play the video, so Vista at least gets me that far. Looks like I need at least a dual core CPU or a much faster CPU to play the videos though.
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Old 02-11-2007, 10:55 AM
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Hi, that chart doesn't seem right to me on the 3800, because I'm running my add on to my pc with an X2 3800 not overclocked with 2x7600 Gt Diamonds in SLi and I get almost perfect playback with King Kong and especially Assault on Precinct 13. From what I've heard Warner titles seem to have playback issues due to the 640 kbp's sound track, but Universal's seem to play just fine on my rig. I had a 3800 winchester clocked at 2.5 and it stuttered but it was just a tad shy of one horse so to speak. Although the X2 3800 only has 2x512 L2 cach I don't think you really need to go there because I feel the players just need to be more optimized for HD content. In other words they can do better in utilizing the hw acc on the gpu and at least have the option to playback in VMR 9. Andand did a test on how ATI and nVidia utilize HD content with very poor results from both sides, so it's also a driver issue to with video card makers.

Hello, and it's nice to be here.

Regards, smurfer
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