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Ishta2000

Can I build a 4K capable HTPC under $500?

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Hello fellow late nighters :p

 

As the title suggests I am trying to keep costs down. I do have the following parts to reuse if possible.

 

CPU: i7-3770 @3.5GHZ

MB: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD5H

RAM: 4GB

GPU: AMD 7900 2GB

2x 128GB SSD

 

This build will be going into a Fractal Design - Node 605 case.

 

Will mainly be watching movies and TV on a Sony 4K UHDTV.

 

Would appreciate some guidance on parts and if its possible?

 

Cheers

 

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A quick search suggests you'd probably be OK with that lot. Ram amount doesn't really matter once you get over the threshold needed to run an OS without too much paging going on.

SSD or HDD doesn't really matter. Even a USB2 attached 5400 rpm HDD would provide probably 10 times or more the read speed needed for 4K video.

Graphics card should be up to it.

 

HEVC (H.265) is one of the latest/greatest standards and provides nearly double the compression ratio of H.264 (which you generally encounter in most MKVs you'd aquire).

The nature of compression is that usually the more efficient it is, the more CPU/GPU grunt it takes to decompress it. So it'd be well worth your while obtaining some 4K material that uses H.265 - alternatively you could use later versions of Handbrake to convert your own video.

 

If you've got all that gear to hand then it's going to cost $Zero to set it up and try out, no?

If you have shortcomings then it comes down to identifying the bottlenecking component/s and aquiring better ones.

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Thanks Rybags for the reply.

 

Yes I do have all the parts and it is currently running but for some reason I cannot get higher then 1080p resolution. Even in the Catalyst control centre for AMD it will not allow me to go higher then 1080p. I have a feeling I may have to reinstall my OS and drivers.

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there is no 7900 2g

need the exact model

what hdmi cable are you using and does it pass though something else first like a amp

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there is no 7900 2g

need the exact model

what hdmi cable are you using and does it pass though something else first like a amp

 

Hey Dasa.

 

It is a Gigabyte HD7950 GPU and I am using both HDMI 1.4B and HDMI 2.0 cables.

It is passing through an Onkyo receiver TX-NR515 that supports 4K.

 

Cheers

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try without the amp to see what hapens

hdmi 1.4a supports 4k at 24hz so maybe look at lowering that first

gigabyte specs a max res of 2560x1600 for some reason maybe thats just talking about the dvi port as the dp port should handle a lot higher

latest drivers?

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AMD list the 7950 as supporting:

  • DisplayPort 1.2
    • Maximum resolution: 4096x2160 @ 60 Hz per display
    • Multi-stream
    • 21.6 Gbps bandwidth (HBR2)
    • High bit-rate audio
    • Quad HD/4K/UHDTV display support
    • 1080p60 stereoscopic 3D (Frame Sequential Format)
  • HDMI® (With 4K, 3D, x.v.Color™ and Deep Color)
    • Maximum resolution: 4096x2160 @ 30 Hz
    • 1080p30 stereoscopic 3D (Packed Frame Format)
    • Quad HD/4K/UHDTV video display support
  • Dual-link DVI with HDCP
    • Maximum resolution: 2560x1600
  • VGA
    • Maximum resolution: 2048x1536

 

http://www.amd.com/en-gb/products/graphics/desktop/7000/7900#

 

So if it's not the cable, it's the receiver or the drivers. Very rarely is it the HDMI out on the card, you could try a passive DisplayPort to HDMI but not sure what that would do to resolution support.

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The receiver:

 

http://www.eu.onkyo.com/en/products/tx-nr515-76085.html?tab=Details

 

lists the following among its details:

 

The TX-NR515 offers full 4K (4096 x 2160) upscaling of standard video sources such as 480i/p, 720p, and 1080i/p.

 

and this:

 

Note: 4K video playback requires a 4K-compatible TV. HDMI pass-through of 4K content from source devices is not supported.

Edited by Mordenakhnen
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The receiver:

 

http://www.eu.onkyo.com/en/products/tx-nr515-76085.html?tab=Details

 

lists the following among its details:

 

The TX-NR515 offers full 4K (4096 x 2160) upscaling of standard video sources such as 480i/p, 720p, and 1080i/p.

 

and this:

 

Note: 4K video playback requires a 4K-compatible TV. HDMI pass-through of 4K content from source devices is not supported.

 

So Does that mean that I cannot do it then?

 

I ended up re-installing my OS and drivers but still no luck.

 

Will have another go over the week.

 

Thanks again guys for all the help. Much appreciated.

 

Cheers

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you can run 4k but not through the amp

maybe run sound to the amp via the igp as a workaround

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you can run 4k but not through the amp

maybe run sound to the amp via the igp as a workaround

 

IGP?

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5629.jpg

 

That's your motherboard rear panel, from the official product page, I would use the Optical out to the amplifier.

 

So basically:

  1. HDMI from your computer (graphics card output) to the TV directly, should allow 4K resolution albeit at 30hz
  2. Optical cable from the motherboard as pictured above to the amplifier
  3. Select appropriate inputs on both devices.
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optical out is fine for encoded audio like dolby dts in a movie but you will only get decent quality 2.1 in game or anything that isnt compressed small enough to go through optical at 5.1

using hdmi output from the back of the mb for audio has enough bandwidth to allow pcm un-encoded audio the down side is that you will have a screen you cant see for the mouse to disappear onto

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Which model Sony TV is it? Can it passthrough the HDMI audio on to the amplifier?

 

So PC 4K > TV > Amp audio

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FYI I ended up just going for a new Onkyo TX-NR636 receiver instead. Turned out it was the old receiver causing the problems as even though it was 4K capable it was only for certain equipment.

I figured if I have forked out for a 4K TV then I might as well upgrade the receiver too.

 

Thanks again for all the help guys much appreciated.

Cheers

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