ATI's All-in-Wonder 9600 Pro

As the name implies, the All-in-Wonder 9600 Pro is based on the Radeon 9600 Pro, but compared to past AIW cards, the AIW 9600 Pro takes a few strides that we haven't seen before.

Traditionally, ATI has tried to match the wits of an AIW card to its graphics only counterpart, as the AIW uses the same graphics processor unit. Recently, the clock speeds for AIW cards have been able to keep up with the clock speeds of graphics-only cards. Now though, for the first time, we see an AIW surpass the clock speeds of its counterpart. While the Radeon 9600 Pro is clocked at 400MHz core clock and 600MHz memory clock (effective), the final clock of the All-in-Wonder 9600 Pro was at 400MHz core clock and 650MHz memory clock (effective). The 50MHz memory clock increase seems to be the result of time that ATI has taken to go over and tweak out the remaining juice, something that wasn't originally planned. The result is performance that will run between the Radeon 9600 Pro and the Radeon 9600XT, though definitely leaning toward the former than the latter.


Click to enlarge.


The AIW 9600 Pro also features a new analog tuner from Philips, which has become dual purpose. The tuner still maintains its TV functionality, but now adds FM tuner support for stations between the ranges of 87.5MHz and 108.0MHz.



Because of dual monitor support, ATI has been forced to rearrange the connector layout scheme. Considering the alignment of the TV tuner, it would have been impossible to place two display outputs (DVI and/or VGA in any combination) and I/O ports on a single slot. For this to be accomplished, ATI would have had to use a riser for a two-slot design, similar to what ABIT has done with their OTES cards. Though this would be considered bulky and odd for the mainstream market, the other option was to redesign the I/O layout. VGA and DVI are outputs, so naturally, combining this with the traditional output connectors into a single cable makes perfect sense. By this method, ATI is able to keep I/O cables separate and still make room for the tuner — in this case, the TV and FM tuner.


Click to enlarge.


The All-in-Wonder 9600 Pro uses a new video out interface that is secured via screws, which we preferred over the clip method that we saw on the first batch of Personal Cinema 2 cards. Component output is supported by the VGA to YPrPb component adapter, which needs to be separately purchased. The All-in-Wonder 9700 Pro and 9800 Pro are the only All-in-Wonder cards that will be equipped with in-box component adapters.


Click to enlarge.


A/V input still comes via the traditional purple breakout box. Meanwhile, the Theater 200 chip, which we looked at in our ATI All-in-Wonder 9700 preview and review, continues its life cycle in the All-in-Wonder 9600 Pro.

The Test Dual Monitor Support – What the doctor ordered
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  • ddschmidt - Tuesday, October 28, 2003 - link

    I just bought an ATI AIW 9600 Pro and am wondering if you want tell me how to get the tv tuner to display on the secondary monitor. The article talks about the tv display "docking" when you try to move it to the secondary monitor, but the article goes on to discuss what happens when the tv display spans two monitors and that it shows only on the monitor that has the largest part of the tv display window.

    Thanks.
    Reply
  • Anonymous User - Friday, October 24, 2003 - link

    Does anybody where I can buy this card in Europe (Germany) Reply
  • Anonymous User - Friday, October 24, 2003 - link

    Is it really worth it to upgrade to an AIW AGP card for PVR type features, versus a PCI card? I have a AverTV Studio Card and use WinDVR software to record my shows. But, the quality seems to suck on some low & high channels! I was wondering if the xtra bandwidth from the AGP slot versus the PCI slot would clear up the recordings? I already have a 9000 Pro for what litte gaming I do. The gaming I'm not concerned with! I mostly use it as a TIVO (with no subscription fees!!!) Reply
  • Anonymous User - Thursday, October 23, 2003 - link

    Does this card offer hardware decoding or/and hardware encoding like the hauppauge PVR 350.
    Seems quite important if your going to actually use this card as PVR type device.
    Reply
  • Anonymous User - Tuesday, October 21, 2003 - link

    Or perhaps it's slower... Reply
  • Anonymous User - Tuesday, October 21, 2003 - link

    Hercules has released a AIW 9800SE in europe at a very cheap price! That should be faster than the 9600 Pro and perhaps it can be modded to a 9800 Pro?

    www.Hercules.com
    Reply
  • Anonymous User - Monday, October 20, 2003 - link

    I concur. Not having DVI is a real step back for ATI on this product line. This is the first Radeon AIW card that has not offered DVI. A huge disappointment, as my LCD monitor takes only DVI (which I bought because the first Radeon AIW I bought had the DVI connector). And because it's an MDR-20 to DVI-D connector, I can't use it at all (well, there is that $400 converter, but that kind of defeats the purpose). Talk about pulling the rug from under you. Thanks a bunch, ATI. Reply
  • Anonymous User - Monday, October 20, 2003 - link

    I am so disappointed that AIW 9600 Pro doesn't have DVI. Reply
  • Anonymous User - Monday, October 20, 2003 - link

    I want this card... bbbbaaaadddd! Thank you ATI for finally including RADIO!
    Reply
  • Anonymous User - Monday, October 20, 2003 - link

    I want this card... bbbbaaaadddd! Thank you ATI for finally including RADIO!
    Reply

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