Following the launch of Microsoft’s Windows XP Media Centre Edition (MCE) 2005, AverMedia has announced a number of new TV Tuner cards. The cards will initially be available to Original Device Manufacturers (ODMs) and OEMs and individual availability will depend on how enthusiastically Windows Media Centre 2005 systems are taken up in the UK.
Pride of place is the so called ‘Seattle’, which takes full advantage of the key new feature in MCE 2005 – the support for dual tuners.
The card supports NTSC, PAL and SECAM, and features two tuners on one board. This enables consumers to record two programs at once or record one channel while watching another. The board boasts two hardware encoders relieving the CPU of the much of the burden of generating the picture, improving system performance and stability. Quality is further enhanced by the built-in comb filter, which separates the luminance and chrominance of video signal for a cleaner more stable picture. The Seattle board is attractive to manufacturers as they only need to fill one PCI slot, giving them the choice of either lowering hardware costs or increasing system flexibility.
High Definition TV is already big in the United States and will be arriving in the UK in 2006. The AVerMedia A180 is a high-definition tuner and can be used in conjunction with the standard analogue AVerMedia M180 TV Tuner enabling existing MCE to upgrade their systems to view HD content.
AVerMedia also has a solution for those who have MCE on their notebooks but don’t already have a TV Tuner built into their system. The E502 CardBus TV Tuner, the M105 mini-PCI TV Tuner and the M033 USB TV Tuner are all MCE compliant.