VidaBox: Soon with CableCARD

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Media center maker VidaBox has announced that it will soon be offering CableCARD options with its media center systems like the VidaBox Stealth and MAX, enabling users to tap into cable server providers offerings, potentially while enjoying a variety of other high-definition digital video offerings.

“We’re thrilled to be the only manufacturer to offer the latest in high definition&mdahs;CableCARD, Blu-ray, and HD DVD—all in one box,” said Steven Cheung, one of VidaBox’s co-founders, in a release. “Integrated dual CableCARD systems are one step closer to having a true ‘one box’ entertainment solution. Anyone can obtain a CableCARD from their cable television provider, insert it into their VidaBox, then start watching and recording dozens of premium HD digital channels (HBO, Showtime, Cinemax, ESPN, Discovery, etc.) All of our users can now experience up to 1080p playback, whether it be from their TV provider or a high-def video disc.”

VidaBox’s CableCard-enabled systems will enable users to record two HD shows while playing back a third pre-recorded show, or watching video from a Blu-ray or HD DVD disc, upscaled DVD, or enjoying music or a digital image slideshow. Being built around Windows Media Center Edition, VidaBox will also enable users to stream video to Xbox 360 gaming systems.

No word on pricing, but VidaBox expects its CableCard options to be available in March, 2007. VidaBox rigs don’t come cheap though: if you want all the HD DVD/Blu-ray action plus many terabytes of hard disk storage…don’t be surprised by priced in the neighborhood of $5,000.