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Can watch 1080 on Pentium III?

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Reply 20 of 94, by appiah4

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DVD is 480p and around 9.8Mbps data. 1080p Bluray in comparison is around 40Mbps. Both should easily be manageable on a 133MB/s 32-bit PCI Bus or am I missing something?

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Reply 21 of 94, by derSammler

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Not sure if my posts are invisible or people just don't read them. 😉

The Crystal HD is just a decoder, not a video card. So encoded data goes to the card first, gets decoded by it, and then decoded data is send back to the video card (or even worse to RAM first), so that it can be displayed. So PCI must handle transfering encoded data to, and decoded data from the Crystal HD, hence why you need a bandwidth of >300 MB/s.

Besides, the rest of the system must also be able to drive the PCI bus at full speed. In my case of DVD playback, the X5 simply had not enough beef to do this.

Reply 22 of 94, by appiah4

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derSammler wrote:

Not sure if my posts are invisible or people just don't read them. 😉

The Crystal HD is just a decoder, not a video card. So encoded data goes to the card first, gets decoded by it, and then decoded data is send back to the video card (or even worse to RAM first), so that it can be displayed. So PCI must handle transfering encoded data to, and decoded data from the Crystal HD, hence why you need a bandwidth of >300 MB/s.

Besides, the rest of the system must also be able to drive the PCI bus at full speed. In my case of DVD playback, the X5 simply had not enough beef to do this.

I get it now.

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Reply 23 of 94, by BinaryDemon

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So your saying he needs to overclock... well everything... ram, pci bus, cpu, etc. I predict his results will be similar to using the 8400gs. Underwhelming. Clearly there is some bottleneck because the that same “tier” gpu is good enough in the early atom/ion platform to get to 720/1080p and those pineville atom cpus aren’t much faster than high end Pentium3’s.

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Reply 24 of 94, by 640K!enough

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feipoa wrote:

I have a Creative DXR2 DVD decoder card which I noted played fine on a Cyrix 5x86-120 with SCSI DVD-ROM drive. Used only 20% CPU usage in NT4 and 44% usage in Windows 98SE. Re: DVD hardware decoder cards

The key point is that the Creative-branded decoder did its output via overlay directly to the monitor (making everything else look somewhat muddy in the process); no video data were sent back over the bus after decoding. Those cards did almost all of the work, so as long as the DVD reader and system could get the raw data to the card quickly enough, playback was almost sure to work well. I think I first used the same card on a Pentium 100.

Reply 25 of 94, by Mut

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I m a linux user and my main rig was a Athlon XP mobile until around 2012 (actually it's a core 2 quad). For some time I have used a radeon HD2400 AGP + Athlon XP to watch 1080p content with sucess.

I think P3 + crystal pci = 720p maybe possible. 1080p I dont think so.

Reply 26 of 94, by SPBHM

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pretty sure I watched 1080P30 with a pentium 3 667 + 8400GS PCI using XBMC on XP. even for streaming videos from youtube with the addon.
I remember I think VLC worked well with some configuration but with the default one it was bad,

the card can do 720P60 OK also, the pci bus usage can be monitored and it's not very high if you have video decoding and stuff working properly, without it will saturate the bus and performance will be bad.

Reply 27 of 94, by SirNickity

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I think there's documented proof that this works, since this is essentially the solution media player software was using to turn an Apple TV (1st gen) into a streamer. (Remember ATV1 is a 1GHz Pentium M.) It was never flawless, particularly due to insufficient onboard RAM, but AFAIK it did work. I have an ATV and a Crystal HD decoder, and kind of tried to get Gentoo running on it once. Had some driver issues and ignored it for a while, until more recent hardware made it a pointless endeavor anyway. Kind of a shame, it's such a neat little box, but just about anything is more capable now.

Reply 28 of 94, by Warlord

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you don't need 300 MBits per second bandwidth. The maximum bitrate for Blu-ray Disc movies is 48 mbps. that and a PCI bus is 133 megabytes per second (300 mega bits = 37.5 Mega Bytes)
Small update. Playing GOT 1080 10k bitrate with only 40% cpu utiliation on a pentium III
going to try a better graphics card than the one I'm using. It's slightly lagging and almost 100% playable.
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I'm going to try installing a stronger graphics card, right now its only a 440mx

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I put install an ATI 9550XL another pretty bad video card and my FPS went up to 21FPS it is almost enough. I think If i can get a much better card I should be able to hit the 24FPS.

Reply 29 of 94, by jmarsh

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Warlord wrote:

you don't need 300 MBits per second bandwidth. The maximum bitrate for Blu-ray Disc movies is 48 mbps. that and a PCI bus is 133 megabytes per second (300 mega bits = 37.5 Mega Bytes)

Again, the Blu-ray bitrate is only for the compressed data - the decoder card has to send the decoded raw frames back to the video card, which is where the large bandwidth requirement comes from.
For 1080p it would be close to 600mbps: 1920x1080 pixels X 12 bits per pixel X 24 frames per second = 597196800 bits per second.

Reply 30 of 94, by Warlord

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theres a difference between a mega bit and a mega byte my friend. 😘
1 megabyte is 8 megabits.
133megabytes per second PCI bus is 1064megabits.
AGP 2.0 is 1066 Mega bytes per second. that is 8528 megabits persecond.

megabit is lowercase mbps
megabyte is upercase MBps
🤣

PCI bus is more than enough bandwidth

So far I have successfully got 1080 MKV to play on a Pentium III smooth enough to watch it almost I just need a better video card.
Going from a MX 440 to a ATI 9550XL it went from 19fps with zero frams dropped to 21 FPS no framdrop. But it has a small lag. It is playable tho
I think if I could get a 9700 or any stronger card like that it should be perfectly watchable.

The was using MPC-HC 1.7.11.13 with a brodcom Crystal HD.

Update last version of potplayer for non sse2 cpu aka piii I could get to run was 1.6.63262 Currently getting steady 22FPS in 1080. Still working on trying to get a steady 24fps.

Reply 32 of 94, by Warlord

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Well as much as I could test it, it works it just wont work on really slow Pentium III builds, you probably need at least a ATI 9700PRO or better, a pentium 1ghz(even though the Brodcom offloaded 50% from my CPU) and Id wager DDR chipsets would work better than SDRAM ones but who knows. I am only talking 1080P for 720P. A crsyal HD would probably work on a BX chipset and even a slow GPU and allow you to watch that at full framerate and zero lag. If I have time ill try testing it, but what I really wanted to get working was sending youtube videos to potplayer but unfortunately that didn't work with the old version of pot player I had, or it could be becasue I didnt have IE8 and TLS2.1 installed. I am not sure if it works that way with potplayer or not. But I have gotten that to work on my T43 with a fully updated XP and the latest working SSE2 pot player.

The only video players it will work with are ones that use madvr and will run on SSE only non sse2.

Reply 33 of 94, by feipoa

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Are you able to test the PIII-S?

I don't think DDR on a PIII has any noticable benefit over SDR. This has been talked about a few times now. Best throughput on a PIII appears to be with dual-channel SDR.

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Reply 34 of 94, by Warlord

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I tested on a OR840 with RDRAM (i840) its a fast board. I remove 1 cpu for testing. I don't have a faster PIII to test with. I could run dual CPU but that would defeat the purpose.

All I know is it works but I felt that I was being held back by the graphics card, a faster CPU certainly wouldn't of hurt. Seems like a fair assumption a tualatin with a fast GPU and good ram can pull off 1080P with a crystal HD with zero lag without overclocking.

I will try dual 1ghz CPU and see if that makes a difference. I wish I had a better graphics card to test with.

Reply 35 of 94, by Standard Def Steve

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My DDR based QDI Advance 12T is easily the fastest P3 board I've ever tested, beating out BX, i815 and i820 in all benchmarks I've thrown at it. That's with some pretty speedy 2-2-2-5 DDR running at 155MHz (310MHz DDR). Like I said before, it can handle 720p H.264 in software without dropping any frames. Even "tricky" video with lots of fine detail works just fine.

WMV-HD at 1080p is also doable with a Radeon 9800 Pro performing partial (shader-based) WMV acceleration. Interestingly enough, my GeForce 6800GT doesn't seem to do any WMV-HD acceleration at all. With that card, 1080p WMV drops a ton of frames. Still, at 1.63GHz, the PIII-S is plenty fast to handle 720p WMV in software.

I do wonder if a dual PIII-S @ 1.63 would be able to pull off 1080p H.264 decoding in software. The dual 1.25GHz G4s in my Powermac MDD can actually handle 1080p (barely), so dual PIIIs might have a fighting chance.

Standard Def Rigs
Super P3: PIII-S @ 1.63 GHz/FSB155 | 2GB DDR-310 | 6800GT AGP | 500GB 7200 RPM
Super G4: 2x PowerPC 7455 @ 1.5 GHz | 2GB DDR-333 | 7800GS AGP | 300GB 10k RPM
Super G5: 4x PowerPC 970 @ 2.5 GHz | 16GB DDR2-533 | x1950XT PCIe | 512GB SSD

Reply 36 of 94, by Warlord

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Standard Def Steve wrote:

I do wonder if a dual PIII-S @ 1.63 would be able to pull off 1080p H.264 decoding in software. The dual 1.25GHz G4s in my Powermac MDD can actually handle 1080p (barely), so dual PIIIs might have a fighting chance.

No crystal HD can enable just a PIII 1ghz without overclocking to play back H264 and AVC 1 without stutter in hardware, with less than 50% cpu utilization. You need a strong Video card though like a 9700/9800 and a good soundcard like audigy 2zs or better. ATI cards are probably better than Nvidia cards but I haven't tested that. You need a strong motherboard that is naturally fast. 😘

Reply 37 of 94, by bakemono

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mrau wrote:

why 12 bits per pixel on raw frames?

Chroma subsampling. YUV12, 4:2:0, or whatever it's called.

I agree with previous posters that PCI bus bandwidth is likely a limiting factor here. 133,000,000 bytes/sec is the theorettical max, with a continuous burst, no time for other devices on the bus, no delays caused by the chipset, no delays from the actual decoding process, etc. So if you're asking it to deliver 70+MB/sec, it's reasonable to expect hiccups.

Can you overclock to 37.5MHz PCI? 😈

Reply 38 of 94, by jmarsh

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mrau wrote:

why 12 bits per pixel on raw frames?

Regular H264/AVC decodes to YV12 format which is made up of three 8-bit planes: a full resolution luma (Y) plane and two quarter resolution chroma (U and V) planes. 1 + 0.25 + 0.25 = 1.5, multiplied by 8 bits = 12 bits per pixel.

Reply 39 of 94, by Sedrosken

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Garrett W wrote:

A Tualatin 1.4 may actually be able to pull it off in software, barely.

Video for CPUs - The Software Decode Reference Thread&

Ha, no. Not in my experience at least. About the best Glenden Wood can pull off is 720p in VLC 2.0.8, and that's still with dropped frames on a 30fps file. The hardware decoder looks promising, I may have to snag one for myself sometime, I've already got a mPCI-E to PCI-E adapter, all I'll need is the PCI-E to PCI adapter and I may be able to try this myself. I run XP updated to the absolute latest a non-SSE2 CPU can take anyway, so drivers shouldn't be a problem for me. Application support might just kill it, unless VLC 2.0.8 can take advantage of it I may end up having to install yet another media player on it... 😜