[mythtv-users] Question on Backend and frontend functionality
reynolds at cs.duke.edu
Mon Feb 16 14:21:45 EST 2004
On Mon, 16 Feb 2004, Franco wrote:
> Ok, so the frontend has control and the backend
> manages the database, but, from an hardware point of view?
> Which are the pieces that are _necessary_ to the frontend,
> the pieces that are _necessary_ to the backend, and the
> pieces that could be in both?
> I guess that the only cards necessary for the frontend
> should be a soundcard, a videocard and a network connection,
> that the backend could be non-graphic and just need
> the network connection,
> and that tuners/digitizers/etc. etc. could be both
> in the frontend or the backend,
The frontend needs playback A/V: a sound card and a video card. The video
card will often have TV out, but that's optional. Many people attach
remote controls or wireless keyboards to their frontends. The frontend
should also look nice and not make too much noise, because it's likely to
be in your living room. :) Your frontend probably only needs to be
500-600 MHz, though faster is always better. If your video card supports
XV, then slower CPUs are OK. Some people use modchipped XBoxes as
The backend needs capture A/V: one or more TV tuners and a matching number
of sound cards. (Some tuners include their own sound cards.) If you're
not using a hardware encoder (e.g., Hauppage PVR-x50), you need a lot of
CPU power in the backend, like 2GHz or more. The backend needs a big
disk, about 2GB per hour of video you'll want to record. The backend
should also have at least an intermittent connection to the Internet, to
grab TV listings.
If your backend and frontend are the same box (mine are), your sound card
must be full-duplex. If your backend and frontend are different boxes,
you need networking, preferably 100 mbps.
An example front+back combined system: AMD Athlon 2400+, integrated VIA
IDE and sound, integrated S3 ProSavage DDR with TV out, 512 MB RAM
(overkill), integrated RealTek 8139 10/100 Ethernet, Samsung 160GB 7200
RPM disk, and a KWorld TV878RF TV/FM tuner card.
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