If you're considering adding a TV tuner card to better integrate the a1250n into a home entertainment center, also think about investing in a high-end sound card, as the integrated controller does not provide optical outputs. There's room inside the tool-free chassis to add two PCI cards (three, if you remove the preinstalled modem card). The system does not include a monitor or speakers, which can drive the price up more than $1,000 if you're in need of one or both.
Bundled software is abundant; the Pavilion a1250n comes with HP's Image Zone Plus software, which lets you edit and organize photos, and Sonic's Digital Media Plus with LightScribe for CD and DVD burning and labeling. The system also ships with WinDVD 5 and.
Included in the box are a quick-start guide, a generic user guide, and two manuals to get you acquainted with the Image Zone and Media Center software. A one-year parts-and-labor warranty is included in the price, but you can opt for an extended two-year plan for $99 or bump it up to three years for $150. Each plan offers round-the-clock toll-free telephone support for the life of the plan and use of HP's Total Care service, which includes real-time online-chat tech help sessions and guaranteed one-hour e-mail response to technical questions. You can also visit HP's Web site for general troubleshooting, help with setting up your system, tips on system recovery and backup, and the latest software and driver downloads.
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
|BAPCo SysMark 2004 rating||SysMark 2004 Internet-content-creation rating||SysMark 2004 office-productivity rating|
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Dell XPS 400
Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 SP2; 3.2GHz Intel Pentium D 840; Intel 945GP chipset; 1,024MB DDR2 SDRAM 533MHz; 256MB Nvidia GeForce 6800 (PCIe); two WDC WD160JD-75HBB0 160GB Serial ATA 7,200rpm; integrated Intel 82801GR/GH SATA RAID Controller (RAID 0)
Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005; 2.2GHz AMD Athlon 64 3500+; ATI Radeon RS482 chipset; 1,024MB DDR SDRAM 400MHz; integrated ATI Radeon Xpress 200 graphics chip using 128MB shared memory; WDC WD2000BB-22GUC0 200GB 7,200rpm EIDE
HP Media Center m7260n Photosmart PC
Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005; 3.0GHz Intel Pentium D 830; Intel 945P chipset; 1,024MB DDR2 SDRAM 400MHz; 128MB ATI Radeon X300 (PCIe); Seagate ST3300831AS 300GB 7,200rpm Serial ATA
HP Pavilion a1250n
Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 SP2; 2.0GHz AMD Athlon 64 X2 3800+; ATI Radeon RS480 chipset; 1,024MB DDR SDRAM 400MHz; integrated ATI Radeon Xpress 200 graphics chip using 256MB shared memory; Hitachi HDT722525DLA380 250GB 7,200rpm SATA
Sony VAIO VGC-RC110G
Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005; 3.0GHz Intel Pentium D 830; Intel 945P chipset; 1,024MB DDR2 SDRAM 533MHz; 128MB ATI Radeon X300 (PCIe); WDC WD2500JS-98MHB0 250GB 7,200rpm Serial ATA