ATi's AIW Radeon Demo Machine, Continued
After using the AIW home system for a few days, I figured out that its uses were somewhat limited in my case. I already have a hardware DVD player and a Dolby surround sound receiver so most of my needs are covered for watching movies. I also have digital cable in my area so I don't really need the tuner features of the AIW or the TV guide software.
What I did end up using the system for was goofing around with a few games, playing MP3's and capturing a few clips from a TV show or two. Games are a kick to play on your TV as long as it doesn't require you to read small text. MP3's were a warm welcome to my sound system as the HDD was able to hold a ton of my favorite albums without having to shuffle through CDs. The videos I captured were sections of the news I found interesting and mailed to someone through the painfully slow modem. The machine has a LAN card inside but my DSL connection isn't ready yet so the modem had to do.
Overall the system wasn't something I'd fight to have in my living room but it has its perks. The main annoyance was that the resolution of the system had to be turned to 640x480 to make most of the fonts legible and it really killed desktop space. I'm not sure about you but even for a recreation PC, a small desktop is a big headache.
Now that we're done reviewing the system, ATi in coordination with Tom's Hardware has decided to auction off this evaluation unit on EBay and all proceeds will go to the American Foundation for AIDS Research . Head over to EBay or look for item number 414222523.
The unit will be touched up with a Tom's Hardware Logo and should look like the picture below.