Suggestions for cheapest 4k 120Hz GPU? (No gaming)

TristanDuboisOLG

Average Stuffer
Original poster
May 10, 2018
75
14
I recently picked up a Lian Li PC-05s for about $100. Which means that I can actually stand to look at my homelab server. So it's going to also double as a media server in my living room. I haven't owned a TV for a LONG time because my roommate always had a 60" 4k TV that he kept in the livingroom. But since he moved out, I decided that I wanted to get a TV.

With 4k 120Hz being ~$250 now I want to make sure that the server can handle it. My GPU limitation is 190mm. I don't plan on gaming on this because it sits across the room from my main computer. What GPU can I get for this? I know that certain displayport technologies limit signal bandwidth so there's that. But, the PC-o5s also supports 3 PCI slots so I may be able to still run a M.2 raid array if I bifurcate the slots. to x4x4x8 I just don't know if limiting a GPU to x8 is going to cause issues with the refresh rate.

Any advice?
 

ermac318

Airflow Optimizer
Mar 10, 2019
295
245
I would recommend holding off buying a GPU for this purpose (of any significant price) until you can buy GPUs with HDMI 2.1. Right now, HDMI 2.0 will top out at 4K 60Hz, and DisplayPort 1.4 will top out at 4K 98Hz with full chroma, which for an HTPC use case is a big deal - losing color data means no HDR.

HDMI 2.1 is new display tech that's closest to market and will support 4K 120Hz and Variable Refresh Rate, which will both be great for HTPC (no more mode switching for 24Hz display, etc). Right now there's nothing that will do what you want well.
 

TristanDuboisOLG

Average Stuffer
Original poster
May 10, 2018
75
14
I would recommend holding off buying a GPU for this purpose (of any significant price) until you can buy GPUs with HDMI 2.1. Right now, HDMI 2.0 will top out at 4K 60Hz,
So, the interesting thing is that the TV that I was looking at actually doesn't do 120Hz, they simulate 120Hz with a sort of "strobe" backlight that helps keep down the motion blur that is normally associated with 60Hz. So, as much as I hate it, I may buy that TV and then find a cheaper GPU.

Any suggestions for 4k 60Hz gpus?
 

ermac318

Airflow Optimizer
Mar 10, 2019
295
245
So, the interesting thing is that the TV that I was looking at actually doesn't do 120Hz, they simulate 120Hz with a sort of "strobe" backlight that helps keep down the motion blur that is normally associated with 60Hz. So, as much as I hate it, I may buy that TV and then find a cheaper GPU.

Any suggestions for 4k 60Hz gpus?
I figured that was the case. BTW make sure you turn all that interpolation stuff off, it's garbage to sell TVs on the show room floor, and it's bad enough even Tom Cruise made a video about how garbage it is.

Literally any video card with HDMI 2.0 in the last 3 years will output 4K 60Hz just fine. HDR is slightly more complicated, and 4K Bluray playback even moreso. I recommend you check AnandTech's video card reviews as they do proper HTPC testing on all their cards. Something as cheap as an NVIDIA 1650, GT 1030, or the RX 550 would suffice.
 

NOKYARD

Caliper Novice
Jul 7, 2018
26
36
Any Intel CPU with Intel UHD Graphics 630, like a Pentium Gold G5600 or an i3 8100, can run a 4K HDR TV without a video card.
(the UHD part is important, regular Graphics 630s are much weaker)

You just have to make absolutely sure the motherboard's "Onboard Video Chipset" spec features this line -

"HDMI port, supporting a maximum resolution of [email protected] Hz Support for HDMI 2.0 version, HDCP 2.2, and HDR."

Most motherboards HDMI port handles HDMI at [email protected] Hz so be careful. You might have to pay a bit more for the motherboard but it's much less than buying a video card. This will leave plenty of room for the RAID array.

[edit] Next, make sure to purchase a good 18Gbps YUV 4:4:4 HDMI cable (under $5 at Monoprice).
 
Last edited:

rfarmer

SFF Guru
Silver Supporter
Jul 7, 2017
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1,386
@NOKYARD is absolutely right. I am using an i3 8100 in my HTPC and did not check carefully enough ended up buying the Asrock H370 itx and it only supports HDMI 1.4, the Gigabyte H370, Z370 and Z390 all supprt HDMI 2.0. You would have to check specs on other boards. I ended up getting a RX 550 which pushes my 4k TV without problem, you could also use a GT 1030.
 
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TristanDuboisOLG

Average Stuffer
Original poster
May 10, 2018
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@NOKYARD is absolutely right. I am using an i3 8100 in my HTPC and did not check carefully enough ended up buying the Asrock H370 itx and it only supports HDMI 1.4, the Gigabyte H370, Z370 and Z390 all supprt HDMI 2.0. You would have to check specs on other boards. I ended up getting a RX 550 which pushes my 4k TV without problem, you could also use a GT 1030.
The server is actually running a 6950x so I'm going to have to find a cheap card to run in it since it has no IG. Thanks guys!