Shuttle XPC X200M mini PC
Shuttle revises its small form-factor X100 by... um... removing the AMD GPU
Review We gave a brief rundown of the Shuttle X200 at the beginning of January and now it's time for a proper look at the new media centre PC. Externally, the X200 is near-identical to the X100HA that we previously reviewed as it uses the same sleek case. So it's still absolutely tiny, with dimensions of 21 x 30 x 6cm.
The small form-factor means that laptop components are used throughout, with the exception of a 3.5in desktop hard drive that is housed in a compartment on the bottom of the unit. This is a very practical approach as laptop parts are engineered to use a minimal amount of power while shedding very little heat, which is just what you want in such a compact case. However, it also means that upgrades won't be a practical proposition once you've configured your original X200M, and you'll be well advised to consider the Shuttle as a closed environment.
The specification of the X200M is very similar to the X100HA, although our review sample had a few optional extras tacked on, so we got 1GB of PC4300 RAM, a 300GB Samsung hard drive, Shuttle's XPC 802.11b/g wireless module and a couple of monitor adaptors. The X200M has a single DVI output but Shuttle included a DVI-to-HDMI adaptor along with a split cable that offers both DVI and VGA connectors, all of which covers most of the likely display options.
Graphics are the most obvious change in the new model. The X100 we reviewed had ATI Mobility Radeon X1400 graphics with DVI and s-video outputs, but the X200M uses the GMA950 graphics core integrated into the Intel i945GM chipset. On the face of it this is a step backwards as you lose the s-video output along with a fair chunk of graphics horsepower and with any pretence of support for Shader Model 3.0, but as we'll see there are two sides to this particular coin.
Shuttle's is high on Junk, again!!
Here's another highly overpriced Shuttle... They must figure at some point people will believe computers that cost more than Macs must be better. Unless you enjoy the pains of owning crapy tech products and using even worse tech support and customer service, stay away from Shuttle computers. Get a Mac, Dell or even HP for your small form factor systems. I'd even take a lenovo! They are better and you won't get ripped off nearly as much as you do buying one of these.
Where to buy?
Does anyone know where I could buy this pc? I'm trying to order one for delivery before the 17th of February.
Can't seem to find a supplier here in the UK. Does the manufacturer deal direct to the public?
Looks pointless and decidedly lacklustre for high definition playback, to me...
That's a very expensive product for something that hasn't been tested with a high definition source. For that sort of money I'd expect something that can handle HD-DVD or Bluray in the future with ease.
I really question the emphasis of the review - the omission of firewire is far more serious than the addition of two PS/2 ports (cost of a USB to PS/2 adaptor : a tenner). Compared to the 100HA (which is itself expensive) it's terribly unattractive.
What, exactly, is the point of a product which can only watch TV/DVDs (as it is unusable for games and flawed at web browsing).? For 850 quid you can purchase Toshiba's bleeding edge 1080p HD-DVD player *and* an embedded DVR. The HD-DVD player will play CDs too, which XP Media Centre won't...