We reported the release of Media Center 2004 on Monday, but here's the skinny on the upcoming models that will feature it.
The Dimension 4600 with Media Center starts at $999 and comes with a Pentium 4 2.6ghz processor with a 800mhz front side bus and Hyper Threading, 512mb of DDR400 SDRAM, an 80gb 7200rpm hard drive, a 16x DVD drive, integrated Dolby Digital 5.1 audio, a 64mb ATI ALL-IN-WONDER 9000 video card with remote control, and a 17" CRT monitor.
Of particular interest is Gateway's update to the Media Center with Plasma TV series which truly bridge the home media experience with desktop computing by adding a 42" plasma TV to the package. This line has been around for awhile, but the hardware updates and the new Media Center release make this rather intriguing product.
The base model, the S, is $3599 and comes with the 42" plasma tv and a 500S PC with a Pentium 4 2.4ghz processor (800mhz front side bus and Hyper-Threading), 256mb of DDR333 SDRAM, an 80gb 7200rpm hard drive, a 128mb NVIDIA GeForce FX 5200G video card, integrated Dolby Digital 5.1 audio, and a 48x CD-RW/DVD combo drive.
$999.99 gets you a m300 with a Pentium 4 2.4ghz processor with a 800mhz front side bus and Hyper Threading, 512mb of DDR333 SDRAM, a 48x CD-RW/DVD combo drive, a 128mb ATI Radeon 9200 video card, integrated Dolby Digital 5.1 audio, and an 80gb 7200rpm hard drive (no monitor included).
HP has also added the Media Center 2004 option to its line of zd7000 notebooks.
The base zd7000 Media Center configuration starts at $1999 ($1899 with a $100 mail-in rebate) and comes with a 17" WXGA+ screen (1440x900 resolution), a Pentium 4 2.66ghz processor, 256mb of DDR SDRAM, an 80gb 5400rpm hard drive, an 8x DVD drive, and a 64mb NVIDIA GeForce Go 5600 video card. The zd7000 also weighs in at a whopping 9.3lbs and is 1.8" thick.
A bit pricier, but more powerful, the P25 goes for $2799 and comes with a 3.0ghz Pentium 4 processor, 1gb DDR SDRAM, a 17" WXGA+ screen, a 64mb NVIDIA GeForce FX Go 5200 video card, an 80gb 5400rpm hard drive, a DVD burner, and integrated 802.11a/g WiFi. The P25 is also a 9.9lb beast that's 1.8" thick.