Electronic Design

2D/3D Graphics Card Offers Enhanced Features

The Marvel G450e-TV AGP add-in card provides enhanced TV, MPEG, DVD, and VCR functions. Among the features this device offers are TV tuning, MPEG-2 analog video capture and editing, TV on the PC, PC out of TV, DVD playback, and dual-display support. This 2D/3D card also provides improved time-shifting and immediate-record controls.

With 32 Mbytes of DDR SDRAM, this card includes a 360-MHz digital-to-analog converter (DAC). This configuration supports resolutions up to 2048 by 1536 pixels. The chip is manufactured on a 0.18-µm fabrication process and features a 256-bit DualBus internal bus width. Compatible with Windows 98, 2000, and Me, the board requires a PC with a 2x or 4x AGP slot and a CPU speed of 500 MHz or faster. Also, at least 64 Mbytes of system memory and 2 Gbytes of free disk space are required. The device's DualHead design lets the user attach a second connector to a standard television.

The software that is included with the G450e-TV graphics card makes it competitive with standalone hard-disk-based video recorders. The Matrox PC-VCR software allows the user to record TV programs or video sources directly onto the hard disk, change TV channels, and preset audio and video capture parameters.

Additionally, G450e-TV users can program parental lock and timer controls. Time-shifting and search by closed-captioning are controlled by this software as well. Other features of the PC-VCR software include keyword search, multichannel preview, transcript creation, and still-image capture.

Digital video editing functions are controlled by the Ulead VideoStudio 4.0 software, which lets the user capture and edit video footage from a number of sources. Also, the user can add narration, music, and titles, borrowing from a library of over 100 Hollywood-style effects.

Footage may be previewed on a TV using DualHead TV Out, e-mailed, posted on the web, stored on CD-ROM, or saved to an MPEG-2 file. The Ulead Photo Explorer 6.0 software offers digital photography functions. Image editing and special effects tools are included, along with advanced Internet photo-sharing options.

Standard and advanced navigational features are incorporated into the Matrox Software DVD player. These include full-screen output to TV, slow-motion playback, and support for Dolby Digital audio.

In single-monitor mode, the Marvel G450e-TV AGP add-in card provides full-frame, full-resolution playback. In addition, the user can view a DVD title full-screen on TV while leaving a fully accessible Windows desktop on the monitor, thanks to the DualHead DVDMax mode.

Other graphics features of the G450e-TV include Dx7 environment-mapped bump mapping, and 32-bit color VCQ rendering. With the DualHead gaming feature, users can view the playing field from two distinct viewpoints or play on a TV.

The G450e-TV graphics card will be available later this fall. It is currently priced at $265.

Matrox Graphics Inc., 1055 St. Regis Blvd., Dorval, Quebec, Canada H9P2T4; (800) 361-1408; fax (514) 685-2853; www.matrox.com.

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