Also on display were Shuttleâ€™s new external drive caddies. These 5.25in external drive housings are finished in black and silver, and are designed to complement the Shuttle XPC boxes. I have to say that they do just that, especially when populated with one of Shuttleâ€™s silver or black DVD writers.
At present the PE20 external drive enclosures are equipped with USB 2.0 and FireWire interfaces, but Shuttle assured me that it wonâ€™t be long before these cases will have SATA connectivity as well. Once the SATA port is added to these enclosures, youâ€™ll be able to have an external hard disk that performs are well as the one inside your machine.
Shuttle also increased its support for Microsoft Windows XP Media Center Edition with the M1000. Unlike Shuttleâ€™s XPC based Media Center box, the M100 is designed to sit underneath your TV, just like a DVD player or VCR.
The M1000 is reasonably slim line and is finished in black and silver to keep things pretty neutral. Inside Shuttle has put an Intel Pentium M chip in the driving seat, which helps make this a very quiet box â€“ ideal for watching movies. Also, it wouldnâ€™t be a Shuttle box if there wasnâ€™t some kind of neat feature integrated into it, so, as well as the internal 3.5in hard disk, there is also a removable 2.5in drive, making it easy to transfer content to and from the M1000.
Thereâ€™s a dual analogue TV tuner card inside, but a DVB card will be an option for anyone that wants to take advantage of digital terrestrial television. Obviously WiFi comes as standard so that you can connect to the Internet from the comfort of your living room. Oh, and talking of comfort, as well as the Media Center remote control, the M1000 will also ship with a wireless keyboard with trackball â€“ so youâ€™ll never have to get up from your sofa again.
But the M1000 wasnâ€™t the only Shuttle box running a mobile Intel chip, the SD11G5 is an XPC cube machine that sports an Intel 915GM chipset for Pentium M CPUs. The box on show was finished in Apple-like ice white and looked pretty good.
The SD11G5 is very quiet with only the power supply fan raising a murmur in operation. The box on show was still preproduction but I did get to have a little peak inside and it was amazing how much space there was. Thereâ€™s only a small heatsink on the CPU with twin heatpipes running up and back to the rear of the case. For anyone thatâ€™s bothered by the slightest bit of noise pollution from their PC, this could be the answer.