One of the difficulties in swallowing Microsoft's home theater PC concept is the ugliness associated with plopping a boxy tower anywhere near your sleek living room set-up.
This post is neither the time nor place to discuss the merits of HTPCs and Windows Vista Home Premium, but if you've made the decision to go that route, here's a fashionable box that can minimize the eyesore factor: Norwegian company Mesiro's Merium.
It has all the components you'd want, including a 1.66GHz Core 2 Duo
processor, 250 gigabytes of storage, DVD-burner, a powerful graphics
card, WiFi, a card reader, and a wireless remote and keyboard. But
you've also got the design flexibility of face plates!
All of the solid colors — black, white, slate, crimson — are glossy. But
other patterns, such as wood paneling and minimalist floral designs,
are also available. You'll pay for the privilege of style, though. The
PC is $1,578, while the faceplates (sold seperately) are $87 each. Or,
you can buy yourself a cheap and ugly box, and simply hide it behind a
potted plant. —Rachel Rosmarin
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