Shuttle SS51G XPC Review
I suppose you noticed the trend in the hi-fi industry that emerged a few years ago ?. Out went the large, black boxes that consumed a whole corner in your living room, and in came the chic, ever-so-sweet cube-based hi-fi units.
These tiny boxes could emulate most of the functions of the larger, cumbersome designs, yet managed to do so with style and a great deal less size. Hi-fi didn't have to be a static affair, you could simply move these 'life systems' to any room with the minimum of fuss, simply hook-up the speakers and away you went.
A good idea is hard to keep suppressed, especially in industries that are closely linked with each other. It has taken some time but we are now beginning to see the emergence of home PCs as not simply a beige box in the corner, but as a centre of one's multimedia entertainment. In an industry as fast-paced as ours, it sometimes surprises me that certain things are so slow to change. Although the performance of today's PCs are almost light-years away from those of 10-years ago, the external appearance is largely similar.
A few manufacturers have taken it upon themselves to be innovative both inside and outside the box. Following the lead laid down by the hi-fi business. Shuttle, perhaps more known to you as a decent motherboard manufacturer, have been producing a number of diminutive, attractive and 'cool' bare-bones units that rival mini hi-fi's in appearance. The idea is to produce a PC that does not skimp on features but only on space. With general PCs being largely homogenous in appearance, something totally different has the potential to do very well.
Let's take a closer look at what promises to be an interesting product.