System builders looking to design high-end multimedia systems often have to cobble together various components from different manufacturers. One way to avoid all that is to build a system around ATI&'s new All-In-Wonder X1800 XL. This high-end graphics card, based on ATI&'s next-generation video and display platform, offers every imaginable multimedia function.
The All-In-Wonder card is designed for the PCI Express platform, which provides double the bandwidth of AGP 8X. Among other things, the platform will support next-generation high-definition blue-laser optical discs such as Blu-ray and HDDVD. Software updates will be required to support these formats, but no hardware upgrades will be needed.
Designed for professionals and gamers looking for top-notch graphics performance and image quality, the card offers video- and photo-editing capabilities, great gaming, a TV tuner with PVR functionality and more. At the heart of this functionality is a tiny gold-plated TV tuner module with its own silicon that makes up a complete RF/amplifier front end. The tuner is quick to respond to channel changes and allows viewing of up to 125 channels of cable or antenna broadcasts with password-protected parental control. The PVR lets users pause live TV, get instant replays and record live broadcasts for later viewing.
Special viewing modes help users combine work and play. A ThruView mode plays live TV in a transparent format that lets users click through the TV video to access their desktop. An EazyLook mode provides context-sensitive on-screen help when using the remote control, and the display switches to a special mode for easy viewing at a distance.
The All-In-Wonder X1800 XL includes a remote control, cables and adapters, setup guides and software.
A 3.0GHz or faster processor, 256 Mbytes of memory and a 450-watt power supply are recommended, and Windows XP and a motherboard with a free PCI Express x16 slot are required.
> Product: All-In-Wonder X1800 XL graphics card
> Price: $429
> Distributors/Integrators: D&H, Ingram Micro, Synnex, Tech Data
> Company: ATI Technologies