Tranquil T2.e – Silent Media Center PC

Score

Sections

  • Page 1Tranquil T2.e – Silent Media Center PC
  • Page 2 Tranquil T2.e

Key Features

  • Review Price: £939.00

A few weeks ago I looked at the E2-MCE Media Center PC from Hush Technologies. Now I’m looking at another totally silent Media Center box, this time from Tranquil PC. The Tranquil T2.e is a slightly different beast to the Hush machine, but the overall principle is the same – it’s a PC that’s doing its best to look like a piece of AV equipment so that it can blend into your living room rather than an office.


The Tranquil is definitely a smaller machine than the Hush, but that doesn’t come as a huge surprise when you look at what’s inside. Instead of going for an Intel Pentium 4 based solution, Tranquil has chosen a VIA C3 based platform. This means that the motherboard is tiny, allowing for a much smaller system case.

Tranquil has definitely done its best to make the system case look good. The main body has a brushed aluminium finish, while the front fascia is constructed from a one centimetre thick slab of transparent perspex. Embedded in the perspex is the power light and there are no prizes for guessing what colour it is – yep, that’s right, it’s blue. I wonder if Sony will use a different colour light for the PlayStation 3 and whether the entire technology world will copy the design once more.


Embossed into the rear of the clear fascia on the left is the a large Microsoft Windows XP Media Center Edition logo. I’m not sure whether this is what you’d want to see on a device sitting in your AV rack, but it does glow blue, along with the T2 logo sitting just above it.

Embedded in the perspex fascia is a slot loading DVD writer which will burn to DVD-R/RW and CD-R/RW media. Next to the optical drive is the power button, along with the infrared receiver for the Media Center remote control.


There’s not as much solid aluminium on show as there is with the Hush, with much of the case looking like any other low profile PC chassis. However, the right hand side of the case is constructed from a solid billet of aluminium and finished with a similar fin effect to that seen with the Hush. Unsurprisingly, the heatpipes from the passive CPU cooler are routed to the right hand side of the case, allowing the fins to efficiently dissipate the heat.


The hard disk enclosure is flanked on two sides by large, finned heatsinks as well, but since these are inside the chassis, the heat is still trapped in the case – albeit being drawn away from the drives themselves. The review unit came with a single 160GB IDE hard disk, but there is room for a second drive, which could come in handy if you let all those TV recordings start to pile up.

The Mini-ITX motherboard only has a single PCI expansion slot, but Tranquil has employed a riser card to allow for two cards to be used as well as keeping the profile of the case as low as possible. One of the PCI slots was filled with an nVidia GeForce FX5200 graphics card with 128MB of RAM. Although this card only sports D-SUB and S-Video outputs, Tranquil has assured me that production units of the T2.e will ship with DVI support.


The second PCI card is the TV tuner and Tranquil has been smart enough to include a DVB card. Not only will a digital TV tuner provide you with a better image, but it will also give you access to all the free-to-air digital channels that are available. Tranquil also informed me that a dual DVB tuner will be available as an option soon which will take advantage of Media Center 2005’s dual tuner support. With two tuners you can watch one channel while recording another, or even record two channels while watching pre-recorded content.

Tranquil has filled the single DIMM socket with a 512MB DDR module, but the motherboard will support up to 1GB of memory. Of course if you want more memory you’re going to have to specify it at purchase unless you want to have to discard the 512MB module – also 1GB modules are still pretty pricey.

More from TrustedReviews

LG Q8 finally brings the V20’s promise to Europe

Atari is now in the speaker business… and the hat business

Thinner Moto Z2 Force could come with a huge trade-off

HyperLoop One

Elon Musk’s Hyperloop gathering pace as NY-DC link gets ‘OK’

N64oid

Is this proof an N64 Classic will follow the SNES?

Agents of Mayhem preview

cats 17

Why you’ll want to download this OnePlus 5 update today

Golf rory

British Open Golf Live Stream: How to watch online for free

Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare for Xbox One down to under £9

Samsung Gear S3 finally gets Samsung Pay support in UK

Welcome to the all new Trusted Reviews

Netgear Arlo

Netgear Arlo Pro

Cat Amazon

Are you kitten me? Pet translation devices tipped for future smart homes

fire emblem warriors

Fire Emblem Warriors

pokken

Pokkén Tournament DX

TP-Link Smart Wi-Fi LED Bulb 5

TP-Link Smart Wi-Fi LED Bulb

Samsung Pay

Samsung Pay now lets you use your PayPal funds at the checkout

assassins creed origins

Ubisoft teases new games for Nintendo Switch, coming ‘quite soon’

amazon echo

Ask Vodafone: Mobile network’s first Amazon Alexa voice skill is revealed

Google Feed

The Google app’s new personalised feed might just drag you off Facebook

z2play 9

Moto Z2 Play

Mira Prism

For just $99 you can bring AR to the iPhone 7

Samsung Galaxy S8

Samsung Galaxy S9 displays may be the same, save one major new feature

movie theatre

The Netflix Effect: ‘Binge-watching’ is coming to movie theatres

Porsche MIssion E

Porsche’s latest electric car chargers put Tesla to shame

EE logo

EE’s new 20GB SIM-free deal is the best value tariff you’ll see all summer

Int-Ball

These are the first images from the ISS – as captured by a zero-gravity drone

iMac 21.5-inch 4K (2017)

LG V30 case

LG V30 design ‘confirmed’ ahead of IFA 2017 launch

iPhone 7 vs iPhone SE

Waiting for the iPhone SE 2? Sadly, it could be a one-and-done

Google Glass Enterprise

Google Glass 2 has arrived, sort of

Denon AH-C621R

Denon AH-C621R

BBC Proms

Get ready to listen to the BBC Proms like never before

Fender Newport Monterey Bluetooth speakers

Fender’s new Bluetooth speakers look just like tiny guitar amps

Garmin Vivosmart 3

Garmin Vivosmart 3

airplane

Is the laptop travel ban dead? Electronics restrictions lifted by TSA but UK fails to follow suit

KitSound Immerse

KitSound Immerse Wireless Headphones

Emojis

It’s World Emoji Day and Apple is showing off all of its newcomers

Porn Block

Privacy fears as UK plans age verification for porn sites

WhatsApp

New WhatsApp feature could give Apple’s iMessage a run for its money