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AMD Releases ATI All-In-Wonder HD Card

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 12 comments


Sunnyvale (CA) - It has been a while since ATI offered a new version of its All-in-Wonder graphics/TV tuner card combination. AMD revived the product series with the ATI All-In-Wonder HD, which replaces the still offered AiW X1900 with a faster graphics core a much improved TV tuner chip and HDTV capabilities.

I had to think a bit about the last AiW card and ATI’s struggles with HDTV at the time. Just for the record, the X1900 version was released in January 2006, a few months before the ATI’s acquisition through AMD was announced. 30 months later, there is a new generation that hopes to build on successful AiW cards and maybe not so much on the lukewarm reception the X1900 received back then.

The All-In-Wonder HD has been updated with a PCIe 2.0 interface and upgraded to deal with the high-definition era. The card is now based on the Theater Pro 650 chip (the X1900 was based on the 200 version) and supports free over-the-air HDTV playback as well as HDTV and analog TV recording.

Also included is ClearQAM, a hardware MPEG-2 encoder (as well as VC-1 and H.264 acceleration), an adaptive 3D comb filter as well as a native HDMI interface. Blu-ray can be played back in full 1080p resolution.

The graphics chip is based on the previous generation 600-series 55 nm graphics core, clocked at 725 MHz (memory: 600 MHz). AMD claims that the graphics performance of the card will beat a Radeon HD 3650 by 5 to 15% in popular games.

The MSRP of the ATI All-In-Wonder HD is $199.

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  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , June 26, 2008 2:14 PM
    Atlhough my AIW is old - I'm still stinging from their decision to not help us owners out when Vista came on scene. I think I'll stick with separate PCI or USB items to handle this feature - at least that way, if my computer is still running well, I can upgrade the G-Card without worrying about losing the TV aspect.
  • 0 Hide
    cyborg28 , June 26, 2008 2:20 PM
    I also got burned by the whole not going to support vista thing... But I am a Torontonian and ATI Fanboy to the core. DO WANT!!!
  • 0 Hide
    rick_h , June 26, 2008 4:15 PM
    I've owned a few AIW cards, but can't recall the company ever releasing one with a mediocre video chip. I sure hope the fixed all the bugs with the theater pro 650. BTW- they could have hit the ball out of the park by offering HD Radio.
  • 0 Hide
    velocityg4 , June 26, 2008 5:03 PM
    It says you can record HDTV. Does this mean I can finally hook up my HD cable box and record at 1080i/p through HDMI? Or is it still the regular over the air HD recording BS?

    I found one company that actually makes true HD recording cards but do not recall the name at the moment.
  • 0 Hide
    johnbilicki , June 26, 2008 10:11 PM
    The 3600 series uses a 128-bit memory interface, great choice if you like to blunder a rerelease!

    Vista support? Only noobs can be tricked in to thinking newer is somehow automatically better.
  • 0 Hide
    mr roboto , June 27, 2008 8:51 PM
    Yeah I know quite a few people who loved their AIW and were hoping for a new version, but re-releasing this card using old tech is well...stupid. If ATI would have used the 4850 as a base it could have been something special.
  • 1 Hide
    vagetaqtd , June 27, 2008 11:57 PM
    Still bitter that they haven't release drivers for my Remote Wonder II remote for Vista.
  • 0 Hide
    turbolover22 , June 30, 2008 3:54 AM
    vagetaqtdStill bitter that they haven't release drivers for my Remote Wonder II remote for Vista.

    As am I that they haven't released all of the software for 64bit XP so that I can use my card.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , July 23, 2008 4:39 AM
    So I picked one of these up at circuit city for the bargain price of 149.99, so far it's a pretty solid card, but amd doesn't have catalysts for it online yet, and there is not a single review posted anywhere... anyone else try one out yet?
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , August 9, 2008 5:41 PM
    I installed this card, actually, the card was the driving force behind a complete rebuild (system needed it anyway, 4 years old, no SATA, no PCI-E, heck, no USB2.0).

    Anyways, a bit disappointed as it does not "see" my cable (comcast) as being digital even though I'm a digital subscriber! Only option for cable is "Analog Cable". It does give me an option for atsc antenna, but that does not pick up any channels with the cable as the input.
  • 0 Hide
    nrnoble , August 10, 2008 2:32 AM
    Same here Dav0! I bought this card and it doesn't get any HD signals off of cable (also comcast). All it detects is anolog channels (2-99), no QAM channels as stated in their marketing. So far I have not been impressed, if it can't detect HD cable signals, the only thing it does for me is HDMI. $200 just to have a video card that has HDMI card is not worth the price;

    Also, I have yet to get it to pass throw Dolby Digital when playing a DVD; I get sound, but it is strictly two channels. Maybe it does do Dolby Digital, but so far I have not figure out how.

    Documentation is extremely limit and for the most part no help at all. No where does it talk about HD TV, Clear QAM, DVD recording/playback, and other media center features it ships with. The Media Center software included looks to be Open Source stuff, which is fine, but it is left the user figure out how to make it work as if they already have the skill/knowledge as to where to go on the internet find what they need to make it work.

    Lastly, the NVidia 8600 card that I was using looked slightly sharper on my 50 inch HDTV. I notice that the fonts are slightly fuzzy with AIW-HD. The NVidia 8600 card had a very sharp/impressive image.

    Maybe I am missing something, but boy, this product does not deliver on the ATI marketing that is on their website. Taking a guess, the intent is for this card might be for OEM systems, therefor Dell, Gateway, HP, etc will make the card work with whatever software they decide to ship with their Media Center systems. Maybe it works great if a person already has Media Center software installed, or decides to get it.

  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , September 10, 2008 1:44 AM
    I still own a AIW X1900 which ATI/AMD would not support under Vista.
    I bought this card few months before Vista came and paid over $200 for it. Still waiting for AMD to come out with a driver to support the Video capture function. This is my first time that I bought a product and the company hang you to dry as far as support is concerned. I will NEVER buy an ATI/AMD product EVER....