The inclusion of Intel’s new Viiv platform makes the Evesham E-Box more exciting than it might initially appear. Plus, when people ask us what Viiv is all about, we can send them in this direction and let them work it out for themselves. Although we won’t let them leave without pointing out that it’s not pronounced ‘Veev’, as in ‘Vive la France’, but as in ‘five’.
Any way you say it, it’s a loaded word: it’s Intel’s attempt to facilitate the perfect product to watch a TV...
Given that one of the key stipulations of the Viiv classification is that the device runs Windows XP Media Center, any Viiv device must be a PC, and therefore not as well-suited to watching TV as an infinitely simpler, cheaper box marketed by Sky, Telewest, Homechoice, or even Freeview.
But, going back to what you can see in the picture, the Evesham E-Box was a good Media Center PC before, and so the upgraded hardware demanded by Viiv cannot harm it.
Along with the unassuming box, you’ll get a dual-core Pentium processor with a 256MB ATI Radeon Mobility X550 graphics card, dual hybrid analogue/digital tuners, 5.1-channel audio output and a natty slot-loading dual-layer DVD-RW drive.
The Western Digital 7200rpm hard drive is welcome, but the 250GB capacity is the very least we would spec for a media system.
Nevertheless, if a living room PC was demanded, the Evesham E-Box might well be the one we sent for. Even if we still don’t quite understand the Viiv thing.
The Evesham E-Box Media Center will set you back £1000 and is available now.