Best bang-for-the $… any OS…

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Frank
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Joined: Fri Apr 20, 2007 9:06 am

Best bang-for-the $… any OS…

Post by Frank » Wed Nov 19, 2014 6:08 am

If I want to make a compression mule dedicated solely to Handbrake compression, what would give me the best bang for the buck?

Assume a budget of say $1.5 k total. The goal for the compression (1080p TS MPEG2 or H264 streams captured off a cable box) is to be as tight as possible, not necessarily as 'fast' as possible i.e. with QuickSync which seems to be much faster but less efficient from what I've read.

I don't mind sticking with a Mac Mini if I can find one (i7 x 4 cores), but I don't mind going for a Linux/Windoze solution in a mini-box of some sort.

Ideas? Pointers for looking at other existing rigs that people use for Handbrake compression?

Smithcraft
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Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2009 8:04 pm

Re: Best bang-for-the $… any OS…

Post by Smithcraft » Wed Nov 19, 2014 8:38 am

Although I didn't test against my i5 Mac mini(HTPC), I found installing Win7 64 to be the best over all option for me. I found Ubuntu to be a nightmare to get set up and get going, and Win7 was pretty easy to get everything going.

As for CPU, which is the most important consideration for Handbrake, I believe 6 cores is the effective limit. After that you will have diminishing returns. Intel is generally preferred over AMD last time I noticed.

Go for 4GB of memory so that Handbrake will have space to play if you set some intensive options.

You can find my comparison thread(old vs new) in the Benchmarks section, to get a general iDea of how the i7 4771 works out.

SC

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Rodeo
HandBrake Team
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Joined: Tue Mar 03, 2009 8:55 pm

Re: Best bang-for-the $… any OS…

Post by Rodeo » Wed Nov 19, 2014 9:37 am

Intel is best if you want to maximize encoding performance. When it comes to performance per dollar, I'm not sure, it probably depends on what CPUs you're looking at.

Anandtech has added some HandBrake benchmarks to their test suite:

http://anandtech.com/bench/CPU/1051
http://anandtech.com/bench/CPU/1052

x264 benchmarks are also useful:

http://anandtech.com/bench/CPU/27
http://anandtech.com/bench/CPU/28

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