updated 02:45 pm EST, Fri January 2, 2009
Ace CableCard HTPCs
Ace Computers will add two new models to its LMS range of HTPCs, unveiling them at the CES show next week, both under the LMS 250 designation. Both will include CableCARD support, allowing users to view and record encrypted digital TV programming. The key factor is that Ace will price the PCs starting at just under $1,000, or about $500 less than competing models with the same CableCARD support.
Ace will offer the LMS 250 with either a 2.66GHz Intel Core 2 Duo or a triple-core AMD Phenom X3 of unspecified speed, with the former running on a media-oriented Viiv mainboard and the latter on AMD's Maui entertainment mainboard. Both systems include an ATI Digital Cable Tuner which houses the CableCARD from service providers, and either sport 2GB of RAM, a 500GB hard drive and DVD burner. A version of Vista Home Premium with CableCARD support is pre-loaded onto either drive.
In exchange for the standard DVD burner and $100, a Blu-ray disc drive can be optioned up, while a second ATI tuner adds the ability to watch one program while recording another and $250 to the bottom line. Expandability is ensured via a dozen USB ports on the AMD-powered LMS 250, while the Intel setup gets eight USBs.
There is no word on exactly when the $999 Ace LMS 250 HTPCs are expected to hit store shelves. [via ZDNet]