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Diamond All-In-Wonder HD Premium AIW5000 E-mail
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Written by Dan Ferguson   
Sunday, 27 February 2011
Table of Contents: Page Index
Diamond All-In-Wonder HD Premium AIW5000
Features and Specifications
Closer Look: Diamond HD5570
Closer Look: Diamond HD750
Diamond AIW5000 Software
Multimedia Testing Methodology
Tuner Performance
3DMark Vantage GPU Tests
Devil May Cry 4 Benchmark
Unigine Heaven Benchmarks
Diamond HD5570 Temperatures
Diamond AIW5000 Power Consumption
Final Thoughts and Conclusion

Multimedia Testing Methodology

TV Tuner Testing Methodology

Two aspects of TV tuner performance were of interest; resource consumption and recording quality. To monitor resource consumption each card was used to record and watch live television. Percent CPU usage was recorded while streaming over-the-air channels at resolutions of 4801, 720p, and 1080i. Next, CPU usage was recorded while recording over-the-air streams at the same resolutions. Each test was repeated three times to check for variability between runs.

For all tests the computer, antenna and software remained constant. The only changes were the tuner card and the content of the streamed videos (but not the resolution).

The recorded videos were then analyzed for recording quality. Two objective measurements were used to assess the quality of the recordings. For the first test the video size was divided by the total number of video frames to determine the kilobytes per frame. For identical file types, more kilobytes means a better image. For the second test the recording bit-rate was divided by the combination of frame rate and resolution to determine the bits per pixel. This helps compare recording quality between different resolutions. For both metrics, higher values mean more information was captured and saved from the original stream. As a subjective test, the videos were reviewed to see if there were any noticeable recording defects.

TV Tuner Test System

TV Tuner Test Products

Video Card Testing Methodology

Although the AIW5000 is a multimedia package, the HD5570 can be used for more demanding tasks like gaming. Personally, I enjoy some light gaming from the couch. Whether I just want to frag and blow off some steam or get a more cinematic experience, playing on a big screen can be more immersive and relaxing. According to Steam, most of their gamers are now using Windows 7 64 bit with resolutions above 1280x1024. Of that majority almost two thirds use resolutions of 1280x1024 or 1680x1050. In response Benchmark Review tested the HD5570 on a few games using those settings to see what kind of framerates can be had from an HTPC.

The 5000 series of products was designed for DirectX 11 and they perform comparatively better in DirectX 11 applications than in DirectX 10 applications. As such the results posted here may be considered conservative for the ATI cards.

At the start of all tests, the previous display adapter driver is uninstalled and trace components are removed using Driver Cleaner Pro. We then restart the computer system to establish our display settings and define the monitor. Once the hardware is prepared, we begin our testing. In each benchmark test there is one 'cache run' that is conducted, followed by five recorded test runs. Results are collected at each setting with the highest and lowest results discarded. The remaining three results are averaged, and displayed in the performance charts.

Video Card Test System

Benchmark Applications

  • 3DMark Vantage v1.0.2 (All settings at Entry)
  • Devil May Cry 4 Benchmark Demo (Ultra Quality, 8x MSAA)
  • Unigine Heaven Benchmark 2.0 (DX10, 2x AA, 4x AF, Low Shaders)

Video Card Test Products

Product Series PowerColor AX5550 Reference Diamond HD5570
PowerColor AX5670 ASUS EN9800GT Palit GeForce GTX 260 Sonic 216SP
Stream Processors 320 400 400 112

216

Core Clock (MHz) 550 650 775 600 625
Shader Clock (MHz) N/A N/A N/A 1500 1348
Memory Clock (MHz) 900 1600 1000 1800 1100
Memory Amount 512 MB GDDR5 1 GB GDDR3

1 GB GDDR5

512 MB DDR3 896 MB GDDR3
Memory Interface 128-bit 128-bit 128-bit 256-bit 448-bit
  • PowerColor AX5550 512MD5-PP (650 MHz GPU/900 MHz RAM - Catalyst 10.4 Preview)
  • Diamond HD5570 (650 MHz GPU/1600 MHz RAM - Catalyst 10.4 Preview)
  • PowerColor AX5670 1GBD5-NS3H (775 MHz GPU/1000 MHz RAM - Catalyst 10.4 Preview)
  • ASUS EN9800GT/DI/512MD3 (600 MHz GPU/1500 MHz Shader/1800 MHz RAM - Forceware 197.13)
  • Palit GeForce GTX 260 Sonic 216SP (625 MHz GPU/1348 MHz Shader/1100 MHz vRAM - Forceware 197.13)



 

Comments 

 
# I don't think Diamond thought this through...aussiebear 2011-03-01 05:33
Good article.

Its just too bad that the Radeon HD 5570 part is going to be made a bit pointless as AMD's A-series (Llano) arrives sometime in June or so. It's GPU-based IGP is spec like a 5570, but from the charts I've seen; it performs a tad higher than a 5550 because of the shared memory bandwidth with the x86 cores.

The other part is with Diamond itself. They didn't make an effort on a solution that is thoughtful for the role that it was intended. It feels like they wanted to save as little money spent as possible.

They would be better off with a Mini-ITX mobo based on the Socket FM1 for A-series (Llano) Fusion APU and a digital/analog tuner integrated onto the motherboard.
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# RE: I don't think Diamond thought this through...Olin Coles 2011-03-01 07:15
Hardware is never 'made pointless' because a newer generation is coming. 60Hz HDTV's are still being sold and used, even though 120Hz became the standard and 240/480Hz versions are available. The same is true for video cards: what one person uses for Crysis 2 another person may only need for WoW.
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# All-In-WonderMaster Zoen 2011-03-04 04:53
You know, this is really odd. I was going through my parts closet last week to get a jump on spring cleaning, and came across my old AIW 1900. As I held it, thinking of all the fun transferring and encoding I had done when I received it nearly 4 years ago, I thought, "Huh, I haven't heard of a new All-In-Wonder card in a while. I wonder if they still make them?"
Suddenly, here it is! Providence! Coincidence? Who cares?! It's All-In-Wonder!
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# retireeOrville 2011-03-04 05:38
Dan,

So, why didn't Diamond put two receivers on the tiny card and add the minimal circuits to multiplex? Why didn't they go with a USB receiver that met the WMC spec? We all need one more remote don't we? Why do they push another god damned fan on HTPCs. Can't they passively cool their 5570. If not, why not a passively cooled 5550.

The single thing I like about this product is the possible way better signal sensitivity. Please write more about that aspect, not gaming.

Orville
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# RE: retireeDan Ferguson 2011-03-04 12:01
Orville,

thank you for your opinion. It sounds to me like you are calling for Diamond (and others) to expand their vision of a product and consider how it will most likely be deployed. I agree on your points on desired features. I don't need another remote.

This emphasizes my feeling that All-In-Wonder is best for a new or first-time builder and multitasker. If you already know your way around an HTPC and its peripherals then you'll probably want more features than an 'all in one', 'out-of-the-box' setup.

We try to balance our reviews around both the pros and cons of every product, highlighting areas of both that will most likely be of interest to our readers. What specifically do you like to know about signal integrity? Station capture is something to which everyone can relate.
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# RE: RE: retireeOrville 2011-03-05 07:09
Dan,
I have a small home theater system that I use for watching live TV, playing movies from my NAS and surfing the Internet. My system consists of a home assembled PC, a 7.1 channel Sony AV receiver, a 5.1 Channel JBL speaker system, a Sharp 46” HDTV set and a homemade TV antenna perched on my second story roof.
The HTPC includes a Core i3 530 CPU on an MSI HD57M-ED65 motherboard with 2x2GB 1.35 volt DDR3-1333 memory. Drive C: is an Intel 80GB SSD. Drive D: is a WD 500GB 2½” HDD. The PC also includes a Blu-ray combo ODD. My graphics card is a Radeon HD 5450 with 512MG GDDR3. My tuner is a Hauppauge WinTV-2250 TV receiver card that is based on the NXP SAA7164E chip made on older 90nm lithography and released way back in 2006. My HTPC runs Windows 7 Home Premium. I use HDMI 1.3 to connect the HTPC to the AV receiver and the AV receiver on to the TV Set. The only functions of the AV receiver are to siphon off the audio stream and drive the 5.1 speaker system and multiplex the video stream on to the HDTV set.
I chose the Radeon HD 5450 made by PowerColor because I thought it would do the job and because it was passively cooled. So far it seems to be working OK.
The HTPC burns about 65 Watts, at the wall, when it is active no matter what I ask it to do. When it is hibernated it burns less than 1 Watt, near as my WattsUp? Pro can measure. The whole home entertainment system burns 300 Watts, at the wall, active and 130 Watts, at the wall, when the HTPC is hibernated.
I dislike very much having to use a goddamned keyboard to operate the home entertainment system, but since I want access to files on other PCs and NASs connected to my copper network using the Windows drive mapping method, and those files are password protected, I am forced to use password protection on the HTPC to get automatic connection to shares. Therefore, I hibernate the HTPC instead of shut it down because from hibernation it will resume to the desktop without requiring a keyboard logon.
My home theater has two glaring weaknesses. The first is Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium as it relates to home entertainment. It is pure #, in my opinion. The second is the lack of sensitivity of the Hauppauge WinTV-2250 TV receiver. I live near the epicenter of Houston, TX. There, the blessed NXP SAA7164E chip does not do a decent job of picking up even the major TV channels. It really sucks.
I tried out Dish Network last year, but their fraudulent over-billing practice led me to send their receiver back after three months of double billing. I didn't find out about the class-action lawsuit against them until after it was already settled. Anyway, I'm making do with my homemade OTA antenna and I read every article like yours with interest. If you have any suggestions relating to better TV reception I would welcome them.
Thanks again for your article on the Diamond AIW5000,
Orville
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# RE: RE: RE: retireeDan Ferguson 2011-03-07 00:45
I find two resources helpful for improving my signal with ANY setup: rabbitears.info and TSReader. This combo allows me to know the technical data for each station and measure the performance for very small changes in my setup (orientation). I especially like TSReader for antenna tweaking, which could be useful in getting SNR for you homemade antenna. Best of luck.
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