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  • LoneWolf15 - Tuesday, November 22, 2005 - link

    Until ATI adds HARDWARE ENCODING (from all I know, the Theater 200 does not) of at least MPEG/MPEG-2 (better MPEG-4), the extra money doesn't justify buying an All-In-Wonder. I'd rather spend my money on a Hauppauge WinTV PVR card, or something else that does that job so I can encode video and free my CPU for other things I might be doing. Reply
  • Tewt - Saturday, November 26, 2005 - link

    No Theater 550 chip and outdated Gemstar Guide will keep me from buying another AIW card. BeyondTV is ok but it is too buggy/incompatible(esp with ATI AIW cards) and accesses the internet waaaayy too much. Though I liked the automatic download, I had switched to the Gemstar Guide because it didn't access the internet so much and take a lot of CPU usage while just operating in the background. But Gemstar feels old in that I cannot set an automatic download(for instance, once a day check for updates at 9pm) and it cannot get all the channels/programs listed correctly. Not to mention, I've never had a satisfying experience with ATI's multimedia center. Tivo has been out so long, why can't ATI, Hauppage or Snapstream get it right when it comes to ease of use/installation/update?(Yes I know its PC versus consumer electronics but I hope you get my point).

    For now the best I can hope for is my Hauppage/BeyondTV combo.


    Reply
  • ElJefe - Thursday, December 01, 2005 - link

    I know this is now an old thread, but I have to add some things:

    550 chip has been rated as being LESS clear in picture quality than the 200. yes it has been by all in wonder reviewing sites as well as me personally. For regular tv cleaning up the picture type of function, 200 actually does it better. 550 has some synthetic cleaning procedures for fuzz and such, but sometimes it degrades the picture.

    200 actually is where it is at.

    But the non hdtv is mad gay.
    Reply
  • Leper Messiah - Tuesday, November 22, 2005 - link

    Maybe the picture quality is better, but ATi has really stagnated in this market. nVidia needs to get serious in this market and force some competition! Reply
  • NullSubroutine - Monday, November 21, 2005 - link

    again, i think there are alot of people like me who have 19" LCD's who run 1280x1024. seeing who the fastest in 1600x1200 really isnt helpful. i request to have 12x10 with 4x 8x restored in all future benchmarks. Reply
  • huges84 - Tuesday, November 22, 2005 - link

    I second that. The high resolutions are nice for some people, but 1280x1024 with some AF and AA should be a standard test. This helps a lot bigger section of your audience make a decision than 1200X1600 does. Reply
  • g33k - Tuesday, November 22, 2005 - link

    Looking at the 16x12 4aa benchmark it would seems like ATi would be the way to go for 12x10 with 4aa/8aa. Their cards suffer less of a performance hit with AA enabled. Reply
  • AaronAxvig - Monday, November 21, 2005 - link

    I have the X600 AIW, and I must say that ATI has dropped the ball on its software. 3 times I have tried getting the TV software to run decently, but I never can. Just last night I tried, on a clean install of XP Pro, with the newest drivers from ATI's website. I thought all was going well, and recording some TV. Then BANG, it freezes. 1/2 hour of recording is gone, and the TV program is stuck there. This is the same thing that has always happened to me. You can't use task manager to end the program; the only way is with a hard reboot. Can't even shut down. So, until ATI does some hardcore fixing (or I find out how to fix it), this card will remain a novelty to me. Reply
  • quasarsky - Monday, November 21, 2005 - link

    i'm getting really sick of ati not adding the theatre 550 chip. c'mon ati. get it together! :( Reply
  • quasarsky - Monday, November 21, 2005 - link

    oh and at's comment about the card will always be more expensive than a 1800xl regular card? ha

    my x800xt aiw card was cheaper than alot of x800xt cards, and it was $275 shipped brand new from buy.com :-D
    Reply
  • BPB - Monday, November 21, 2005 - link

    How does the X800XL compare to this card? I know neither has the Theater 550 chip, but I was thinking og getting a second turner card anyways for pip, and so I can record one show and watch another. The X800XL is much cheaper and probably meets my needs. Reply
  • yacoub - Monday, November 21, 2005 - link

    More confirmation that a $320 7800GT is still the way to go. Reply
  • Wilco - Monday, November 21, 2005 - link

    Interesting the GUIDE Plus+ website lists NVidia as a partner for PC cards but not ATi. Reply
  • rqle - Monday, November 21, 2005 - link

    I stopped buying these "AIW" cards. Couldnt jusify the price and continous upgrade. And bought a PCI version of ATI TV card, makes upgrade much easier, doesnt matter what video card i use, still have similar functionality. Reply
  • erwos - Monday, November 21, 2005 - link

    No HDTV tuner? Check!
    Only one DVI out? Check!
    No Theatre 550? Check!
    No availability? Check!

    What an underwhelming product. I like the AIW concept as much as the next guy, but it seems like they've really moved nowhere with the video features in the past few years.

    -Erwos
    Reply
  • Jedi2155 - Tuesday, November 22, 2005 - link

    Although I'm a ATI Fan...(fan, not fanboy), I find it annoying that they are still using the Theatre 200 chip....where are you 550??! Reply
  • agent2099 - Monday, November 21, 2005 - link

    Couldn't have said it better myself. You'd think by this time the AIW cards would be incorporating HDTV tuners. Reply
  • phusg - Monday, November 21, 2005 - link

    Here here. Although nowhere in the article does it mention the lack of HDTV support, I guess you got it from ATIs site. You would expect it on a 4Q 2005 >$400 card really though wouldn't you? Reply
  • bloc - Monday, November 21, 2005 - link

    Anand's Benches have the 7800 GT over the X1800 XL

    while FS has X1800 over the 7800 GT

    Who's right? It makes a difference as one card is consistenly beating the other.

    Viperlair has x1800 on top

    motherboard.org has 7800 GT

    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Monday, November 21, 2005 - link

    Different games, different levels, different settings, and different benchmarking methodologies. Combine those four aspects and you'll get variance in the scores. Our BF2 benchmark uses the Operation Clean Sweep level, which appears to run slower than other levels. Reply
  • bloc - Monday, November 21, 2005 - link

    One card consistently performs better though.

    It's not like one card does better with some demo's and the other card in different ones.

    Something to consider...as I think if AT saw the XL beating the GT in all benches, the reviews may be better. As would FS with the inverse.
    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Monday, November 21, 2005 - link

    Meh. I generally consider the X1800XL and 7800GT to be about equal. The problem is, why would you want to spend extra for a card that includes an old TV-IN chip? Theatre 200 is not that great. If it were a 550, the additional cost would be worthwhile. I think there are far better TV cards out there that could be used with any setup.

    Personally, I've never been a big fan of the AIW series: upgrade your GPU, and lose the TV tuner function! With other tuner cards, you can move them around to other PCs quite easily and GPU performance isn't a factor. Just my opinion, though.
    Reply
  • Doormat - Monday, November 21, 2005 - link

    Wow. Nothing mentioned about the whole GPGPU aspect of the X1x00 series of cards. This is the most synergistic part of the whole AIW/X1800 experience. Having the GPU transcode the show on the fly to a suitable format (MPEG4, H264, whatever) for your PSP or your iPod would be an extremely powerful feature. Reply
  • ElJefe - Monday, November 21, 2005 - link

    hm what do you mean? didnt aiw already encode and record tv? it does on mine? soemthing different now?

    I am trully chipper that this card is out. now i can finally buy a new system. My 9800 aiw pro with 754 a64 system is not completely outdated but before summer it will get to be.

    No mention of rage 200 vs 550 theater chips and stuff. hm.
    gota go check this out. 429 isnt too expensive for it. you get ALOT of stuff with aiw, and also PICTURE QUALITY, something that is never mentioned in reviews, is always superb on them, hm, i guess it's ati again. Nvidia never bothers to excell in this area. a shame really.
    Reply
  • Doormat - Monday, November 21, 2005 - link

    It records, but what about when I want it to record in MPEG2 for my home viewing, and then transcode it to MPEG4 for my PSP or iPod Video. Thats the single biggest hook for getting people to buy this card - roll your own videos for you device. And not one nary of a mention in the AT article. Reply
  • tayhimself - Monday, November 21, 2005 - link

    But is the transcoding accelerated by the AIW card? Some sort of new AVIVO feature? This article does seem to forget about AVIVO which was a big marketing push for the X1x00 series launch. Reply
  • Doormat - Monday, November 21, 2005 - link

    No, the transcoding is accelerated by the X1x00 chip, hence my reference to the whole GPGPU thing in my first post.

    There was an article a few weeks ago about how the X1x00-series chips will have custom programs to transcode video...

    http://www.extremetech.com/article2/0,1697,1880749...">http://www.extremetech.com/article2/0,1697,1880749...

    Encoding this nearly 5-minute clip, at DVD resolution, takes about 2 minutes 17 seconds with DivX 6, with single-pass encoding at 1 megabit. Windows Media Encoder can produce a high-quality single-pass transcode to WMV9 at 1 megabit in about 4:35. Windows Movie Maker 2 takes a few quality shortcuts to produce a DVD resolution clip at 1.5 megabits in 2:05. That's all pretty good: This is, after all, one of the fastest CPUs money can buy, paired with very fast RAM.

    How fast does ATI's new Avivo Transcode app get it done? Try 24 seconds! Okay, that's "give or take a second," because the MPEG-4 profile finished a 1-megabit encode in 23 seconds, the MPEG-2 and Windows Media Video 9 profiles were done in 24, and the DVD profile at 6 megabits finished in 25 seconds. That's all at the default full resolution, too. Crunching down the output resolution by choosing the "WMV9 for PMC (Portable Media Center)" profile at 700 kilobits per second completed the job in 17 seconds.
    Reply

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