Sling Media has unveiled the Slingbox PRO-HD, the first version of its video place-shifting boxes designed to stream true high-definition video. The catch? Due to the massive bandwidth requirements, HD video can't be streamed over the Internet--just to other locations on a home network. Still, that means that PCs running the SlingPlayer software--or TVs attached to Sling's soon-to-be-reannounced SlingCatcher--should be able to view a high-def stream at up to 1080i resolution with 5.1 surround audio. (To date, some Slingbox models have been able to accept HD video, but the output stream was limited to DVD-level standard-definition resolution.)
The Slingbox PRO-HD will be loaded with a full range of inputs and passthrough outputs. Although it will lack HDMI (thanks to copy-protection restrictions), the PRO-HD will include NTSC, ATSC, and clear QAM tuners. The newest Slingbox is scheduled to be available in the third quarter of 2008 for $400.