Print 50 comment(s) - last by hinchesk.. on Mar 26 at 8:16 AM

  (Source: matbe)

  (Source: matbe)
The Asus Eee PC lineup expands to include a desktop model

DailyTech reported in late January that ASUS was hard at work on a desktop variant of its popular Eee PC sub-notebook. The original Eee PC turned out to be the surprise hit of 2007 and the company has already announced its Eee PC 900 successor.

ASUS is looking to cash in on that success with its new desktop PC which is called the "Digital Home System EP20". However, right below the name of the device on the ASUS placard is the familiar "Easy to Play ; Easy to Learn ; Easy to Work" catchphrase which places the EP20 squarely in Eee PC territory.

Hard specs on the devices are hard to come by, but ASUS notes that the device is much smaller than typical than typical desktops and that it has "good enough performance". Other niceties include Hi-Fi Stereo and Dolby Digital Live support. Also noteworthy is the fact that the EP20 will soldier on with the Eee PC Linux operating system (which is based on Xandros Linux).

Those looking to use the machine as an HTPC will be glad to know that the EP20 only emits 24 db of noise when running.

Things are less clear when it comes to the EP20's hardware specifications. ASUS said back in January that the initial versions of the desktop Eee PC would chip with Celeron processors, while later versions would employ Diamondville. As we all know now, Diamondville is known as Intel Atom, so the EP20 will likely get both single-core and dual-core version of Intel's new low-power processor.

ASUS said that the desktop-based Eee PC would start at $199 which is quite optimistic for a fully functioning desktop PC, but expect to see pricing closer to the $299 mark when it eventually hits the market during the second quarter.

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will it be special?
By johnsonx on 3/14/2008 6:54:45 PM , Rating: 5
Like ASUS motherboards, will this new Eee Desktop be Rock Solid and Heart Touching?

RE: will it be special?
By WTurner on 3/14/2008 8:34:19 PM , Rating: 5
Hah! I recall seeing that slogan on their website and thinking "Man these guys need better marketing people".

RE: will it be special?
By Polynikes on 3/15/2008 11:32:24 AM , Rating: 5
They need better marketing people whose first language is English, I think.

CoolerMaster's "Experience the Amazement Beyond Expectation" slogan also needs work.

RE: will it be special?
By AnnihilatorX on 3/15/2008 6:19:46 PM , Rating: 2
That's a minor error. I've seen worse.

RE: will it be special?
By Warren21 on 3/16/2008 11:29:16 PM , Rating: 2
I like Thermaltake's "Cool all your life".

Buy Thermaltake CPUY cooler, it cool you long time!

RE: will it be special?
By bryanW1995 on 3/17/2008 12:49:38 AM , Rating: 2
All your base are belong to us!

RE: will it be special?
By Slash3 on 3/15/2008 12:10:15 AM , Rating: 2
Looks like the slogan is displayed on the monitor in the 1st pic (albeit mostly out of frame), so I'd say that hearts are about to get touched a little bit more when these launch.

RE: will it be special?
By jpeyton on 3/15/2008 6:47:21 AM , Rating: 2
Two comments.

1) It looks surprisingly large for a basic PC; compared to the benchmark for size...the Mac Mini. Is this really the best Asus could come up with? Acer had a micro-desktop about half this size a year ago.

2) Asus plans to introduce it at $199, so expect to see it at your favorite retailer for at least $299-$399. Their lofty price points haven't been on target yet.

RE: will it be special?
By xSauronx on 3/15/2008 7:38:57 AM , Rating: 2
It might be worth nothing that Shuttle is selling a small, low-powered pc for $199. They call it the KPC and at that price you get linux, a celeron and 512mb, integrated video and audio and an 80gb hard drive.

you can customize it and have up to 2gb ram, 250gb hd, dual core processor, and vista. the base unit is plenty of power for general desktop use, and i think a $199 pricepoint is just as doable for the new Asus desktop.

RE: will it be special?
By inighthawki on 3/15/2008 11:05:16 PM , Rating: 2
It doesn't appear THAT small to me. Compared to the size of the disc drive, it looks maybe the equivalent of 2 wiis put together, which is MUCH smaller than the average computer. Mac Mini sized? Maybe not, but it's really not too far off, and of course, you can't compare the two until we have all the specs.

As for the pricing, we can't say anything until there's a finished product. Expected price points almost always go up, so we will have to wait and see.

RE: will it be special?
By theapparition on 3/17/2008 8:06:17 AM , Rating: 2
2) Asus plans to introduce it at $199, so expect to see it at your favorite retailer for at least $299-$399. Their lofty price points haven't been on target yet.

On the contrary, they have been exactly on target.....your just not the target.

When the original EEPC Laptop was anounced at $199, that was US$199 OEM price, not retail. Meaning, Newegg pays Asus $199. Retail price is something entirely different, that's what you pay. The original Asus announcement never indicated retail price. See the difference?

RE: will it be special?
By Xodus Maximus on 3/15/2008 12:15:39 PM , Rating: 3
Hopefully you guys are not police detectives or anything... ;)

Because you saw the touching part on the monitor, but missed the obvious placement of the slogan right front on the piece of paper of the first pic. To the right of the title "Digital Home System EP20" you see the blue ASUS logo, under the asus name it says in blue Rock Solid. Heart Touching.

RE: will it be special?
By Lazarus Dark on 3/15/2008 3:19:45 PM , Rating: 2
My fiance laughed at me when she saw that on the box for my Maximus Formula. Here I am trying to impress her with my manly quad-core core 2 maximus formula 8800gt (and other big impressive words and numbers she couldn't understand) and she sees that rediculous slogan and laughs her butt off. There went my cool factor.

RE: will it be special?
By theapparition on 3/17/2008 8:10:29 AM , Rating: 3
Trust me, your cool factor was already gone when when you tried to impress your girl with the "leet" hardware.

She was alreay laughing in her mind, the Asus logo just pushed it over the edge. ;)

RE: will it be special?
By waltzendless on 3/15/2008 4:43:56 PM , Rating: 4
It's working - for my heart is deeply touched, and elsewhere I have become rock solid with all the touching.

RE: will it be special?
By johnsonx on 3/17/2008 1:34:31 PM , Rating: 2
Like many people around here, I build systems for customers. As is somewhat common for (very) small scale system builders, I used to provide to the customer all the little manuals, Windows package, disks, extra cables, etc. that came with the components by putting them in the mainboard box. But I just couldn't bring myself to hand a customer a box that said 'Rock Solid and Heart Touching' on it. Likewise the ASUS mainboard boot logo says it too, so I had to disable that as well.

In the pantheon of lame marketing slogans, this one has to rate right up there. One of the case and cooler companies has "Cool all your life"; that isn't much better. I get it, but it has that 'all your base are belong to us' sort of ring to it.

(yes, i'm replying to my own post... so shoot me)

This is a Nettop......
By crystal clear on 3/15/08, Rating: 0
RE: This is a Nettop......
By drzoo2 on 3/15/2008 5:03:39 PM , Rating: 3
Vista does not fit the requirements of netbooks & nettops .

There, fixed it for you. Nothing sad about it.

RE: This is a Nettop......
By crystal clear on 3/16/2008 2:44:16 AM , Rating: 2
it does not have "good enough performance".


RE: This is a Nettop......
By crystal clear on 3/16/2008 2:38:49 AM , Rating: 1
Asustek says two-thirds of Eee PCs will have Windows XP

TAIPEI (Reuters) - Asustek Computer (2357.TW: Quote, Profile, Research), the world's top maker of computer motherboards, said nearly two-thirds of its Eee PCs shipped this year will be Windows-based as consumers embrace the company's low-cost laptop models.

The Taiwan company's branded business last year launched a 7-inch child-friendly Linux-based personal computer priced as low as $200, and new models with Microsoft's Windows XP will be priced around $390 to $400.

"About 60 percent of them (Eee PCs) will have Windows XP operating system," Asustek Chairman Jonney Shih said at a news conference.

The Eee PC has won Asustek much recognition worldwide and Shih said his company was keeping its previous target of shipping 5 million units this year versus 300,000 units shipped in 2007.

RE: This is a Nettop......
By johnsonx on 3/17/2008 2:12:37 PM , Rating: 3
Am I the only one who thinks Crystal Clear's name is a bit ironic?

About time...
By RyanM on 3/14/2008 9:21:56 PM , Rating: 4
This seems like a no-brainer to me. You take an ePC, rip the LCD off, add a DVI-I and HDMI output, and voila - decent desktop or fantastically cheap thin client.

Most casual users never add a second HD, never add a new video card, and hate big, ugly computers. This is such an awesome idea.

RE: About time...
By Brandon Hill on 3/14/2008 9:44:20 PM , Rating: 2
I'd buy one in a heartbeat to replace my Intel E2160 desktop. Damn thing gets so hot... it heats up my room quite a bit. It's not so bad in the winter, but in the summer it can be a pain.

I only do basic productivity and internet stuff -- no gaming -- that's for my Wii and PS3.

This system would be perfect.

RE: About time...
By mindless1 on 3/14/2008 11:52:36 PM , Rating: 2
Actually it has very little to do with ePC, they're just trying to bank on the success of the former product.

Having smaller more integrated desktop sysetms similar to a VCR is an inevitable thing, as is dropping more expensive OS to lower price. How much do you perceive the OS for your VCR or DVD player costs? Bet it's a small % of total cost.

The idea is obvious, and other manufacturers will follow suit as soon as they perceive the market big enough to make it a profitable venture. Ultimately people who own several PCs will desire mostly the integrated type with perhaps one server and one workstation more traditionally designed.

By WilsuN on 3/14/2008 10:25:48 PM , Rating: 5
HA! Love the description.

Performance: Good Enough Performance.

Sure ain't being precise :]

By diego10arg on 3/15/2008 4:41:31 PM , Rating: 3
Hard specs on the devices are hard to come by, but ASUS notes that the device is much smaller than typical than typical desktops and that it has "good enough performance".

If it is small, extremely quiet and powerful enough to play DVD, HDDVD, BR, etc. then it is what I am looking for!

Where the desktop is going
By thestereotype on 3/14/2008 7:43:01 PM , Rating: 2
I have to say this looks somewhat similar to the new DC7800, which contains laptop parts (SO-DIMMs, 2.5" HDD) and most annoying, an external power supply , just like the pictured EP20.

By hinchesk on 3/14/2008 10:32:39 PM , Rating: 2
ASUS did a nice job creating a well known brand in the eee PC laptop. They arguably innovated in a very competitive market and it wasn't fancy schmancy marketing that got them their either.

Assuming the right price/features, the desktop version could fit in a lot of spaces. Cheap machine for the non-technophile parents, one for the kids, stick it in the home theater, make a car PC, bathroom internet station, etc. With any luck they'll shrink them with the Intel Atom and use desktop memory/hard drive/etc.

Instead of having a vcr/dvd player on every TV in the house people will stick one of these things in there.

The promise of low cost PCs
By tarpon on 3/15/2008 1:30:15 PM , Rating: 2
Means the explosion of web apps. NO I don't have anything to do with them, nor Linux, but there is an obvious connection. The user experience is being reduced to a "display device". This is good, no more needs for user who know nothing about their PC to have to worry about backups. Perfect for the traveler ... who has an EEpc type device and the home based version.

Yes I am tired of fixing others machines after they have screwed them hopelessly up :-[

By Comdrpopnfresh on 3/16/2008 1:14:53 AM , Rating: 2
First big name brand lending a home to those new celeron duallies w/ 512k L2?

nice try...
By DeepBlue1975 on 3/16/2008 4:43:28 PM , Rating: 2
But the final configuration of the OS will tell if it can or cannot be a success.

For starters, I think most HTPC users are computer geeks like me prefer a DIY SFF.
But I guess many DIY fans could say "lets get this one instead of building one" if its functionality right out of the box allows it to really perform as an HTPC box, in every respect including hardware and software, and I think, specially the latter aspect (straight forward, simple but powerful GUI and remote controlling ability are the most desirable features on an HTPC, at least for me).

And I say specially the software because cramping some adequate components in an SFF box is not as time consuming as configuring the OS and GUI to behave like a "beefed up media appliance".

Asus Eee PC Desktop or Asus Nova
By hinchesk on 3/26/2008 8:16:15 AM , Rating: 2

Uh aren't these all the same product... same case at least... with some juggling of internals. The Eee PC halo is likely big enough for a few more products. Why not... Apple stretched the iPod's out over most of their product line.

Asus better drop the Nova branding though... where's a good marketing firm when you need one.

Bad move`
By Nik00117 on 3/14/08, Rating: -1
RE: Bad move`
By amanojaku on 3/14/2008 6:30:49 PM , Rating: 3
What are you talking about? If this thing is capable of playing and displaying HD movies I might use it to replace my aging Shuttle. $200, even $300 ain't bad at all.

RE: Bad move`
By fezzik1620 on 3/14/2008 6:40:03 PM , Rating: 2
Desktops will never (in the next 5-10 years) completely go away. While it is true that laptops are fast taking over the more common spot for primary home pc users, there will be a place for desktops for a long time. The article and amanojaku mention one, htpc's, and small desktops like this are also common for business kiosks.

RE: Bad move`
By michael2k on 3/14/2008 7:41:25 PM , Rating: 1
You're assuming things like the Wii, PS3, XBox 360, AppleTV, etc, don't "assume" the role of HTPC. If that is the case, then the "classic" desktop PC does go away (even if all the things listed above are technically computers)

RE: Bad move`
By RonLugge on 3/14/2008 10:22:30 PM , Rating: 3
Um, I don't see "classic" desktop PC ever going away. Its always going to be cheaper to get a desktop than a laptop. And even as requirements for an "internet" machine continue to drop relative to the power available, desktops will remain more powerful for less money -- which means that serious gamers will still go with a desktop, rather than a notebook for their gaming. You just can't get as much power into a laptop as you can a desktop, period the end.

RE: Bad move`
By mindless1 on 3/14/2008 11:58:28 PM , Rating: 2
Besides the cost of the laptop battery, it is inevitable that a laptop-like small integrated form factor be cheaper eventually - and that day is quickly arriving.

Yes an upgradable desktop will be more powerful - if you upgrade it. Beyond that all we have in desktop's favor is adding more HDDs and better cooling to deal with a gaming video card, but "serious gamers" are a very tiny fraction of the market - remember that Intel integrated video is the most popular video on a PC.

Getting the most power as on a desktop is in no way "period, the end". You have no grasp of the market, if that mattered as much as low cost then the lowest cost PCs wouldn't sell in highest volume - by far.

Most people are not as concerned about performance for performance's sake, rather getting what will handle their subjective needs cheaply, quietly, and reliably. Most people buy low then think later about whether they need to spend more again if/when their system won't handle something they want to do very well, and most don't then upgrade just yet, if the performance mattered so much the average system would be under two years old which it certainly isn't, except perhaps at a hardware oriented website or forum like we have here.

RE: Bad move`
By RonLugge on 3/18/2008 9:13:19 AM , Rating: 2
Your overlooking at least part of the intent of my statement. Yes, laptops are going to become the "norm" sooner or later, but for the raw power / over clocking / gaming "communities", desktops are going to stick around.

RE: Bad move`
By eye smite on 3/14/2008 8:04:07 PM , Rating: 3
I don't think desktops are going anywhere either. I'm sure laptop sales have increased because of how cheap they've gotten and the new buyers of laptops have a desktop that still works well enough for them. Also since laptops have gotten so cheap, probably alot of parents buying them for high school and college students as well. As computers continue to be developed I'm sure at some point laptops will be the majority and desktops will pretty much go the way of the ghost, but it's not going to be anytime soon. On a side note, I think it would be awesome and hysterical if Asus worked up the version of Xandros they're using to be as friendly as windows and get a solid foothold in the market. Since cheap drives consumers more than fit, function or performance, there's a very realistic chance that could happen.

RE: Bad move`
By Nik00117 on 3/15/2008 5:43:54 AM , Rating: 1
I think yall missunderstood my point, not saying desktops are going be the thing of the past but that I don't believe ASUS will be able to do good in the desktop market.

RE: Bad move`
By psychobriggsy on 3/15/2008 7:16:22 AM , Rating: 2
It's not capable of doing HD movies. That's what the same version of this article at the Tech Report said.

The CPU isn't powerful enough to do the HD decode on its own, even with all 4 threads going, yet the chipset is a crippled ancient thing rather than a modern up to date low power creation with HD decode acceleration.

Hence it's targeted for "DVD resolution movie playing". Win.

RE: Bad move`
By rebturtle on 3/16/2008 1:34:49 AM , Rating: 1
ASUS stay outta the desktop market my friends, you don't belong there

Ummm, where do you think ASUS came from? They've been setting the bar for desktop motherboards and graphics cards for as long as I've been building systems (~ early 2000). The only thing I've ever seen them falter at is their English translations. Given the quality of the grammar of today's youth though, that's no longer such a glaring issue.

If they can take their highly competitive electrical engineering skills and apply them to the low-profile/low energy desktop market, I welcome their products and the competition it will provide for others.

By electriple9 on 3/14/08, Rating: -1
RE: Re
By rsasp on 3/14/2008 7:52:02 PM , Rating: 2
lol 24DB is hardly audible.

RE: Re
By VitalyTheUnknown on 3/15/08, Rating: -1
RE: Re
By VitalyTheUnknown on 3/15/2008 12:38:56 AM , Rating: 2
My bad
Edit me.

RE: Re
By idconstruct on 3/15/2008 2:29:21 AM , Rating: 1
He was rated down because his post was unnecessary and had poor relevance to the article as a whole

RE: Re
By mindless1 on 3/15/2008 12:02:47 AM , Rating: 2
Yes, many people have misconceptions about noise levels. They buy some fan with a (pick a number) 24dB noise rating, install it in a system where it produces more noise and think they've a reference for 24dB which they don't, while this rating of the Asus system is for the whole thing.

Heatsink manufacturers seem to be some of the largest offenders with misrepresented noise ratings where they just tell you what the fan manufacturer rated but not what their whole integrated product does. It's hard to point the finger at only this kind of misrepresentation though, even some fan manufacturers do it in other ways like telling you what their fans' MTBF is not based on their fan but only on a model using a certain bearing in a hypothetically perfect fan, while theirs is far from perfect.

RE: Re
By Samus on 3/15/2008 3:14:38 AM , Rating: 2
24 decibles is barely audible. Anyone complaining about 24dB is a crackhead, it can't get measurably quieter unless your in a sound-proof room. Most walls and flooring will absorb much of anything that is quieter in your typical theater environment.

"Google fired a shot heard 'round the world, and now a second American company has answered the call to defend the rights of the Chinese people." -- Rep. Christopher H. Smith (R-N.J.)

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