Yesterday I got barebone ASUS P2-M2A690G for testing as media director for LinuxMCE. That box is priced just in €100. But it’s really good: integrated ATI RadeonTM 1250 with HDMI output, S/PDIF-out (Optical) audio, slim form-factor and nice looking design.
Additionally I had Desktop Athlon 64 X2 5400+ and 2GB RAM. Installation of processor and memory took about 15 minutes (thanks to well thought-out internal design). By the way I like the quality of P2-M2A690G assembling. All wires are tied up into braid and placed around case. So, internal space looks very clear.
After installation of all needed components I connected P2-M2A690G to LinuxMCE internal network and started boot it via PXE. Box got IP but boot was failed with following error:
NET: Registered protocol family 17
ipconfig: eth0: SIOCGIFINDEX: No such device ipconfig: no devices to configure
/init: .: 1: Can't open /tmp/net-eth0.conf
kernel panic - not syncing: Attempted to kill init!
It happened because Ethernet card Attansic L1 integrated in the P2-M2A690G is not supported by LinuxMCE from the box. I solved that just making a simple modifications according to that wiki page. After that the box boot successfully. The ATI RadeonTM 1250 was recognized and default drivers were installed.
To have possibility to use maximum card functionality I made another customizations – install the latest ATI drivers. After that I chose UI2 with overlay and resolution 1080p. I played a few HD trailers and they were showed well. I didn’t see any delay or other problems. The processor took about 55% during 1080p playback under UI2. I think it’s not so bad. I found only one issue with UI2. By some reason the Video screen with list of movies was not displayed at all. I saw just black square instead of grid. I have no idea what causes that problem and how to solve that. But with UI1 everything works fine.
The next step will be configuration of Gyration remotes and testing digital audio.