Sunday, December 7, 2008

MEDION AKOYA E5310 D (MD 8394) Multimedia entertainment-PC

At the local Aldi supermarket, I bought this computer that seemed interesting for what I want to do: making music with synths, recording and using a lot of effects, rendering Blender 3D projects, editing movies etc.

Actually it was stupid to just buy it, because it comes with Windows Vista installed and has an onboard Intel HDA sound card that's not supported under Linux (edit: this guy got it working with the latest Alsa drivers). And the Vista drivers for midisport 2x2 didn't work either, but this didn't matter 'cause I wasn't going to jump back in the windows jail just because of one weak consumption moment in a silly supermarket.

Specifications of the MEDION AKOYA E5310 D:

Motherboard: MEDIONPC MS-7501 (here's the output of dmidecode) with AMD 780 chipset, ATI HD3200 onboard graphics (but no onboard port) ATI HD34xx audio, Realtek RTL8111/8168B PCI Express Gigabit Ethernet, Standard Microsystems Corp. 9-in-2 Card Reader
CPU: AMD Phenom X3 8450 Triple-core
Graphics card: ATI Radeon HD3450 256MB memory
RAM: 3072 MB DDR2 SDRAM (667 mHz ?)
Disk: 640GB WD SATA (shop)

Motherboard:
I'm not sure about the brand and model of the motherboard but it's one with this chipset:
http://www.amd.com/us-en/0,,3715_15532_15533,00.html#780G
AMD M780G chipset with ATI Radeon™ HD 3200 Graphics


Socket AM2+ , Chipset AMD 780G , Form factor: ATX , DVI: yes (no onboard slot) , HDMI: yes
onboard sound : hda hdmi , RV620 RS780 controllers

It's probably some version modified by Medion, when I boot the pc, I can already read MEDIONPC somewhere in the first three lines.

Hard Disk Drive:
Western Digital Caviar GP 640Go : SATA2 3.5in 7200rpm 16Mo (WD6400AACS)


UbuntuStudio_8.04 installed fine, 64 Studio 2.1 also installed fine, but when I start it, I get a black screen.
Also the 64studio 2.1 installer didn't work when I didn't set the BIOS to use IDE instead of SATA with the disk drives.
I think I'll have to enable the etch-backports repositories first so 64Studio can use the flgrx-glx driver for my ATI Radeon HD3450 graphics card. (edit: I wrote this at my first attempt to install 64studio, and I'm asking myself now if X was really the only problem.)

Another hint from Brian Blater I read in this thread on the ubuntustudio users list is this:
If you type exit at the initramfs prompt does the machine successfully
boot? If so, are these HDs SATA? If so you may need to edit your
/boot/grub/menu.lst and add rootdelay=90 to the end of kernel line.
You can try a different number other than 90, maybe start with 30, but
from what I've experienced, 90 worked for me and I've seen others use
120.

My guess is the SATA controller is not initializing fast enough and so
the boot partition on the HD is not available soon enough. The
rootdelay will pause the boot process to allow the controller to
initialize.

May help and is worth a try to see if this fixes the problem.
I've also posted something about this pc on the 64studio users list.

Conclusion:
I shouldn't just buy a computer in a supermarket.
If I want to stay local, I could have gone to e.g. linuxbelgiumshop .
Also do some good reading before getting any new hardware, it's all here in this linuxguide .

I'll gather all I find about setting up a linux musician dedicated computer in this post.
And this Medion multimedia computer will go to the second hand market.

1 comment:

Susanne Aldridge III said...

Hi there, I bought the same computer. Unfortunately, I bought an open-box display version (in the US) and it didn't have any video output so we had to send it in. I am a little sad to see you didn't have too much luck with Ubuntu because I was hoping to run Ubuntu and XBMC on it. Happy New Year! Susanne
PS: I think the mobo is an MSI Micro-Star.