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  1. Member
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    Hi, Iím here to ask your help guys to choose the right components to build a PC dedicated to run multiple Virtual Machines at the same time; media players and recording apps like OBS for example, that will be ran directly on VMs or in the main system to record videos from browser pages or the screen of the VMs; PCIe capture cards (for example Elgato 4k60pro mk2; AVerMedia Live Gamer 4K GC573; Blackmagic DeckLink Quad HDMI to record from consoles; decoders using HDMI splitter if needed to bypass the hdcp protection; tv boxes; VHS player if I need to recover something analog etc.) and TV tuner cards.
    It will also be used as an HTPC.

    With all those cards I think Iíll need something with a good amount of PCIe lanes; Elgato, Avermedia and similar are x4, TV tuner cards are usually x1 and the Blackmagic one is x8 so the motherboard should have at least the possibility to split x8/x8 with the GPU slot.

    For VMs I guess Iíll need a CPU with a good amount of core/thread and same for the RAM, but how much exactly?
    And what about the frequency of the CPU?
    Must it also have an integrated graphics?

    For the GPU I thought that an RTX3060 could be enough to handle the other PCIe cards.


    What hardware do you recommend?
    Thanks in advance.
    Last edited by Compulsive2012; 18th Aug 2022 at 16:11.
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  2. Member
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    Nobody can help me?
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    I certainly can't help you. Multiple VMs running at once with the VMs able to use the capture devices? I don't think it is reasonable to expect one desktop built from cheap or used parts to do everything on your list. I'm not even sure it could be done with expensive new parts.
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    Capture cards will be used on the main system, not on the VMs.

    VMs will be used only for record their screen for those services that can detect recording software like OBS and don't let you record the screen on the main system.

    For the main hardware I was thinking about something similar:

    With AMD

    CPU: Ryzen 9 3900x or Ryzen 7 5700x/5800x

    MOTHERBOARD: Asus PRIME X570-PRO (that is the motherboard with the highest number of PCIe slots) or Asus ROG STRIX B550-E GAMING (here it's the cheapest one that can do x8/x8)

    RAM: 2x16GB 3200Mhz (but I don't know which model excatly)

    GPU: RTX 3060


    With Intel

    CPU: i9 10900(k or not)/10850k

    MOTHERBOARD: Asus PRIME Z490-A

    RAM: 2x16GB 3200Mhz

    GPU: RTX 3060
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    I haven't built an AMD machine since 2009, so I don't know much about their recent hardware. ...and I have never had more than one VM running at a time.

    The Intel hardware that you picked out looks very capable but although I have built 3 HTPCs to date, they have all been relatively low-power devices. (I use the processor graphics and a 65W processor.) I don't record streaming videos, so I can't be much help there. I have used a few PC TV tuners to record OTA TV and have recorded the video and audio output from my cable box using a single capture device.

    I can make a suggestion regarding PC TV tuners if you don't have enough PCI-e slots. Silicondust HDHomerun PC TV tuners use Ethernet as their interface and can be connected to a router or directly to a PC. You can have a look at their OTA tuners here: https://shop.silicondust.com/shop/?_ga=2.97777503.133560708.1660689543-331051588.1660689543 I have used their CableCARD tuner since 2015 (now discontinued) and have been a very satisfied customer.
    Last edited by usually_quiet; 16th Aug 2022 at 18:39.
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  6. Member Cornucopia's Avatar
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    You are trying to make a bunch of right turns to avoid having to make a left turn.

    Get the right tools for the job. If you can't afford those tools immediately, readjust your expectations and work your way up.

    Scott
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  7. Last time i checked (3-4 years ago) VM's had a hard time to tap from TV cards (pcie or usb), it was a hardware limitation.
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    [QUOTE=Cornucopia;2665198
    Get the right tools for the job.[/QUOTE]

    Which tools?
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    Originally Posted by themaster1 View Post
    Last time i checked (3-4 years ago) VM's had a hard time to tap from TV cards (pcie or usb), it was a hardware limitation.
    As I've already written, I don't want to use the capture hardware on the VMs.

    VMs are just for those sites that can detect recording software like OBS and don't let you record the screen or page, and there's no other way to download the video like scripts or similar because most of them require a paid membership (please note that I'm not asking how to download from paid sites).
    Last edited by Compulsive2012; 18th Aug 2022 at 14:33.
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    The video from each screen to be recorded by OBS needs to be encoded on the fly. There are lots of things that I don't know about how well that will work. Is CPU encoding fast enough when encoding multiple screens at one time? The fastest encoding method is via the GPU but I don't know if a VM will allow GPU encoding. ...and if so, can GPU encoding handle more than one VM at a time?
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    Originally Posted by usually_quiet View Post
    The video from each screen to be recorded by OBS needs to be encoded on the fly. There are lots of things that I don't know about how well that will work. Is CPU encoding fast enough when encoding multiple screens at one time? The fastest encoding method is via the GPU but I don't know if a VM will allow GPU encoding. ...and if so, can GPU encoding handle more than one VM at a time?
    This is why I asked for help here
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    Originally Posted by Compulsive2012 View Post
    Originally Posted by usually_quiet View Post
    The video from each screen to be recorded by OBS needs to be encoded on the fly. There are lots of things that I don't know about how well that will work. Is CPU encoding fast enough when encoding multiple screens at one time? The fastest encoding method is via the GPU but I don't know if a VM will allow GPU encoding. ...and if so, can GPU encoding handle more than one VM at a time?
    This is why I asked for help here
    If anyone here sometimes has multiple VMs running concurrently on their personal computer, I can't recall them posting about it. I remember that there is someone with multiple VMs available on their machine but the VMs existed to allow them to do things like using a modern PC to run old 16-bit software that only works properly under Windows XP or using a Windows machine to run Linux-only software.
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  13. I had to reread what you said a few times to understand what it is you want to do.

    In the simplest terms, you want to use a VM to run an Is that will play content and you plan on recording that playback using OBS that is running on the host system, correct?

    If that is the case, then I don't understand what your question is.

    I run VM all the time, using a simple laptop with a i5-1035G1, igpu, 16gb and an NVME, I prefer vmware player but virtualbox is already great.

    Just install either on a host system (I have done it using Win 10/Linux and Linux/Linux), install the guest OS and go from there.
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    Originally Posted by sophisticles View Post
    I had to reread what you said a few times to understand what it is you want to do.

    In the simplest terms, you want to use a VM to run an Is that will play content and you plan on recording that playback using OBS that is running on the host system, correct?

    If that is the case, then I don't understand what your question is.

    I run VM all the time, using a simple laptop with a i5-1035G1, igpu, 16gb and an NVME, I prefer vmware player but virtualbox is already great.

    Just install either on a host system (I have done it using Win 10/Linux and Linux/Linux), install the guest OS and go from there.
    As I understand it, thinredline wants to run multiple VMs simultaneously, with each VM running a player ap for a streaming service. He intends to use OBS to simultaneously screen-record from all the running player apps. So far the number of VMs running simultaneously has yet to be decided,
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    usually_quiet im not so sure thats possible. unless he wants to watch side by side streams (that would get confusing). wouldnt you have to have obs on each vm? then record each one separately? for instance linux mint as an os then virtualbox running a vm or 3 with win10 win11 and Fedora with obs on each separate os. in this case 4 of them and 4 different streams and obs recording each separately providing he has the hardware and passthrough to do all this. i think at the minimum a 4 port lan card? thats the best i can figure out from the description given
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    Originally Posted by the_man_one View Post
    usually_quiet im not so sure thats possible. unless he wants to watch side by side streams (that would get confusing). wouldnt you have to have obs on each vm? then record each one separately? for instance linux mint as an os then virtualbox running a vm or 3 with win10 win11 and Fedora with obs on each separate os. in this case 4 of them and 4 different streams and obs recording each separately providing he has the hardware and passthrough to do all this. i think at the minimum a 4 port lan card? thats the best i can figure out from the description given
    I'm also not sure it's possible to screen-record multiple streaming services simultaneously with each running on its own VM using OBS. For one thing, I don't know the limit on the number of streams that can successfully be decrypted, decoded, displayed, and encoded simultaneously for capturing the screens in real time using the CPUs under consideration. Will there be multiple monitors connected to this HTPC? Who knows? Not me.

    As far as needing multiple Ethernet ports, that might not be necessary, unless each VM needs a dedicated Ethernet port for some reason. Otherwise, it depends on the total bandwidth required for all the streams being received plus any other network traffic and the Ethernet port's rated speed. One Ethernet connection on the PC might be enough. I have a CableCARD tuner with a single Ethernet (1000BASE-T) interface. It can stream 3 HD channels (MPEG-2 + AC3) at once over my network, with no problem using just that one Ethernet connection.
    Last edited by usually_quiet; 21st Aug 2022 at 22:30.
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    not saying it cant be done differently but i have 6 lan connections i generally run bridged. then i can separate connections for vm's. i also use enterprise servers for this and not a desktop. 16 cpu cores and 200 gb ram.
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