Computer users who are interested in building a high-definition capable home entertainment PCs will soon be able to purchase graphics cards that support HD input and output. Tul is one of the first companies to announce an ATI-based X1600 Pro graphics card that comes with an integrated HDMI interface – which is necessary to connect to HD peripherals such as HD DVD or Blu-ray player or HD-capable monitors.
Tul did not reveal any performance-related specifications and it remains unclear whether the card is able to decode just MPEG 2 sources (which is used on HD DVD and Blu-ray movie discs in the US) or the more demanding H.264 codec (which is used for example in Japan). The low-profile card, however, does support output in full HD resolution, 1920×1080 progressive (1080p). Just as the regular X1600 Pro, the HDMI version includes 256 MB GDDR3 memory and a 500 MHz graphics core.
Pricing has not been announced. Of course, in order to run HD videos on a computer, an HD graphics card is just one part of the equation. You will need a monitor supporting HDMI and a software that actually can play HD movies as well.