ATI Theater 650 Pro & Catalyst Media Center Preview
Closer Inspection of the ATI Theater 650 Pro
The Theater 650 Pro reference card we received for evaluation came with the Theater 650 Pro processor at its core coupled with a Samsung TECC1149FG01A mini-can tuner. The Samsung tuner supports both analog and digital signal in a single package while European models come equipped with a Philips TDA10046A digital demodulator to meet DVB-T standards.
ATI's documentation lists North American Theater 650 Pro products as being coupled with their Theater 311 demodulator for DTV functionality, however, the reference card we received for review was actually equipped with a Theater 312 demodulator, which carries the same functionality as the Theater 311, while adding 64 and 256 QAM reception. Whether retail models come with a Theater 311 or 312 demodulator remains to be seen. Digital signal standards of ATSC and DVB-T are integrated, making the Theater 650 Pro a more globally marketable digital TV-tuner solution.
The Theater 650 Pro reference card was also outfitted with 128MB of Samsung K4D261638I-LC40 GDDR Memory, which is rated at 250MHz, for buffering purposes. Two coaxial inputs are provided, one for Analog signal input while the other handles FM and DTV (over the air) reception. Additionally, an Audio/Video input is provided for external Audio/Video capture used in conjunction with ATI's proprietary A/V Block.
Lastly, select models of Theater 650 Pro based TV cards will come with ATI's Remote Wonder Plus, an RF based remote control that does not require line-of-sight to function. We've reviewed the Remote Wonder Plus on several occasions with previously reviewed TV ready components, so we're not going to delve much further in this preview of the Theater 650 Pro.