updated 08:50 am EST, Fri January 12, 2007
Gefen PVR and HD Mate
Accessory maker Gefen at CES released a trio of Mac mini-shaped home theater devices. The company's simply-titled Personal Video Recorder (top) captures video directly from digital sources, including FireWire ports from digital cable or satellite boxes and camcorders, and transfers it directly to removable USB storage such as external flash and hard drives. Video is recorded in MPEG-4, and the user can manually switch inputs -- allowing owners to keep more than one device attached, Gefen says. Two versions are expected in late February: a basic, standard-definition version will be released for conventional footage, while an HD version will ship with native 1080p support and HDMI output. Pricing is undetermined for either model.
Read more for details of the company's new Mac-friendly and home theater scalers.
Also released at the expo was the HD Mate Scaler and its Home Theater Scaler counterpart. Each is built to convert and upscale video from common television-oriented sources into digital signals. The HD Mate (pictured) is particularly well-suited to Apple's Cinema HD Display, according to the company: it accepts both dual component and single DVI sources, upscaling the former to resolutions as high as 1080p while maintaining a pass-through for the DVI signal of a computer's video card. In turn, the Home Theater Scaler accepts component and HDMI input and converts non-native signals to an HDMI-equipped TV's native resolution, including 1080p. Both scalers include the analog and optical audio outputs needed and create less than one frame of delay in the signal, making it possible to connect even an Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3 for gaming, Gefen claims. Both devices should be available in January for $349 (HD Mate) and $449 (Home Theater).