Help with new graphics card purchase



I have built a media centre PC for my living room, based on a Shuttle SN41G2 and using a Nebula Digital DVB-T card for TV input. Up to now I have used the motherboard built-in graphics card to output in s-video to my TV, but have now bought a new TV with DVI-D input and I want to take full advantage of this.
What is the best graphics card to output to the TV using the DVI connection with the following points in mind.
1: The best picture quality for TV broadcasts
2: The card must not have a fan
3: Can meet the TV’s 1280X720 resolution
4: Can output HDTV

I believe the Radeon cards have the better video engine and have found Connect3D do a 9600 without a fan. Would a vivo card be a better choice than a stright foward graphics card for my needs?
Sorry for all the questions, but any advice would be very welcome, Thanks


ATI All In Wonder 9600XT.


Several options I’d look into. Depends on how many slots in your SFF. If you have PCI, an ATI HDTV Wonder might be an option along with an inexpensive discrete graphics card. If you want an all-in-one solution, the All-In-Wonder 9000 should be inexpensive and pretty good. The AIW 9600XT is better yet, but many solutions will use a fan. Can you show us a picture of the inside of your SFF case? I’d just like to see before I make more recommendations.


“Can you show us a picture of the inside of your SFF case? I’d just like to see before I make more recommendations.”

Thanks for the reples, as to the above I’ll have to look into it, but basically there is 1 PCI slot and 1 AGP slot. The Nebula card takes up the PCI slot.
Will a All-in-Wonder card give me a better picture than using the standard version of the same card? i.e. Radeon 9600 All-in-wonder or Radeon 9600.
I have no need for the video-in (the Nebula takes care of that) or outputting on anything other than the DVI output, so do not want to pay the extra for a All-inWonder unless the picture quality is far better.

Again Thanks.


I don’t know much about your Nebula card; perhaps you could post a manufacturer’s link. I was going on the assumption that you needed your video card to do TV tuning/PVR stuff. The AIW 9600 has a good TV tuner, as well as VIVO. It also comes with a nice RF programmable remote control operated via USB transmitter, which can work as a remote mouse as well as operate the TV functions. Furthermore, the card has hardware-assist for MPEG encoding.

If your Nebula card does all of the VIVO stuff, that’s a different story. You’re not doing any gaming, right? If you aren’t, a Radeon 9600 is overkill. You could scale back and go to a more basic Radeon card such as the 9000/9200/9550 as long as you get one with DVI. I’d go with a 64MB model, which should be mroe than enough. You can probably find one on Ebay for peanuts.


OK, LoneWolf15,
Hope this link works as I am being blocked
This card is a TV tuner for digital broadcasts

I think your right about needing a low power card (radeon9000/9200), but as far as I can tell neither of these cards can handle the 1280X720 resolution. On the other hand my Nvidia5950 can. Does this mean old Nvidia cards will also display at this resolution? I have been on there site & could not find this info.
I am leaning towards the Radeons due to good reports about there video quality, but does it have the resolution?


Sent e-mail to ATI for some help on this matter and got this reply:

“Regarding output to HDTV with DVI-I at 1280x720:
If the set supports input from a PC by the DVI cable a Radeon 9600 or better is all you will need.
If it does not accept input from a PC on the DVI connector you will need a DVI to HDTV adapter to convert the DVI port to a component output to input to the set to get the HDTV resolutions. You can purchase this adapter from Shop ATI.
If you use an X700 or higher there is a video out to coponent adapter included and you would not need the DVI to HDTV adapter.”

Bought a very cheap Radeon 9600 (without fan) made by Sapphire updated the driver to the lastest version and it works fine at 1280X720.