We're usually a little scared of multi-room audio streamers and their heart-attack price tags. Where the Yamaha MusicCast and Sonos systems give us the jitters, though, Evesham’s MBox puts us at ease with a mix of secure data back-up and a reasonable price.
The system is something of a Frankenstein in hardware terms – the MBox hard-drive borrows the design of Thecus’ media box, while the MBridge ‘clients’ are Roku Soundbridges in all but name.
Together they do two handy jobs. The main unit is ideal for backing up the music, photos and videos from your PC as it contains two hard-drives which duplicate your data in real-time. This means you’ll have not one but two back-ups in the case of a crash, and a secure standalone reserve too.
Its fun side comes out when it chats to its MBridge friends. The MBox can stream different tunes to up to five of its buddies which, like the Squeezebox, can play internet radio from your PC and are compatible with iTunes. They also come with remotes and display all the usual song, album, artist and genre info.
The standard package from Evesham costs £600 and includes an MBox with two 160GB hard drives and one MBridge. There are other hard-drive options ranging from 80GB-500GB, and each additional MBridge costs £150. It’s still by no means pocket money, but our bank managers may just pause before turning us down this time. And that’s progress in our book.