Alienware Intros AMD-Based Hangar 18

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Alienware has taken the wraps off its Hangar 18 HD entertainment PC, designed to park in users’ living rooms and serve as the center of their lives—at least, so far as digital media is concerned.

Built on the AMD Live platform, the Hangar 18 unit runs Windows Vista Home Premium on AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual core processors and supports up to 4 GB of memory. The unit ships with 250 GB of hard disk storage, but HD video buffs will be pleased to know that expands out to 2 terabytes without resorting to external drives. The Hangar 18 connects to a home network using gigabit Ethernet or 802.11a/b/g Wi-Fi wireless networking, sports four USB 2.0 pots, a 4-pin FireWire port, Bluetooth, and a 4-in-1 memory card reader.

Hangar 18 users will have a choice of Nvidia integrated graphics with 720p HDMI output, or Nvidia dedicated graphics offering 1080p HDMI output, but there appears to be a catch: customers can either choose 1080p output and two television tuners (one analog, one HD/digital) or 720p output and up to four tuners (two each, analog and digital). Otherwise, the Hangar 18 unit offers VGA, S-video, and analog video out, a 5.1 surround sound system with 200 watts per channel, and a slot-loading DVD/CD drive. The system offers all the standard Vista media center features, so users should be able to stream video to other PCs on the home network, or to their Xbox or PlayStation 3 systems, along with using the Hangar 18 as a central repository for music, video, and photos. The Hangar 18 also comes standard with a Gyration remote control, so users don’t have to worry about keeping a mouse handy.

The Hangar 18 should start shipping June 21; prices range from $1,999 for a base configuration with 720p output and 250 GB of storage to $3,899 with 4 GB of RAM, 2 terabytes of storage, and 1080p output.

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