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ECS Liva 64GB Mini PC Review: A tiny, efficient HTPC kit

By Steve
Nov 2, 2014
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  1. ecs liva white edition 64gb mini kit ecs htpc mini pc ecs liva liva

    Setting the bar for small form factor PCs in July, ECS' Liva made comparable machines look oversized and overpriced, weighing only 190g and measuring 118mm wide, 56mm tall and70mm deep (0.46L volume) while costing a rather affordable $165.

    Since its debut, ECS has updated the Liva with a 64GB option and now offers a white case (initially it came in just black). Although ECS has doubled the storage, we have only seen a mild price increase with the 64GB version currently selling for just $185.

    On top of being so inexpensive and compact, the Liva is efficient -- so much so that it can be powered by a USB power bank. Its low power consumption has also allowed for a fanless design that is said to let the Liva run in total silence while still being quick enough to deliver smooth 1080p playback -- precisely the sort of claim that grabs folks' attention.

    Read the complete review.

     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 6, 2015
  2. 185, lol buy a real strong PC for 100.
     
  3. VitalyT

    VitalyT Russ-Puss Posts: 3,149   +1,423

    And where's the link to that "real strong" PC for $100?

    They should replace VGA + Micro USB with couple extra USB-s and a mic input.
     
    SantistaUSA and Steve like this.
  4. Lol'd at the $100 pc post. I'm currently deciding on parts for a cheap htpc and you would probably get the motherboard and cpu for that money if you want something half decent. The main thing holding me back though is the lack of hdmi 2 equiped motherboards as I would like this feature for 4k movies in future.
    Guess I'll wait untill next year and see what happens.
     
  5. 70 seems like too high a score from the review. I would say it should have been 50 at best.
     
  6. Can this run XP? I want an Old School Emulator Machine
     
  7. penn919

    penn919 TS Booster Posts: 178   +19

    Get an Ouya. You can get em' under $100 and they come with controllers. Lots of free emulators on their discover store that were designed specifically for the device too.
     
  8. Perfect torrent machine!
    ordering tonight!
     
  9. axiomatic13

    axiomatic13 TS Booster Posts: 88   +30

    I am using my 32Gb Liva as the DHCP and authoritative DNS for my home network using Lubuntu sans desktop. (Why Lubuntu you ask? Because I couldn't figure out how to land F2FS on Ubuntu server at install time. Lubuntu has it there by default and removing the desktop bits was trivial.) Regardless, the Liva is fantastic for this task and the procs are never above 50% for these functions even when 4 people in my house are browsing.
     
  10. thelatestmodel

    thelatestmodel TS Enthusiast Posts: 86   +22

    Disappointed to see that despite promising / claiming smooth 1080p playback, the device was unable to achieve this in your review. Shame because we might have snapped a few of these up for running videos at work.
     
  11. SuperVeloce

    SuperVeloce TS Booster Posts: 133   +34

    While performance is a bit... well.. low, power usage of this little box is phenomenal.
     
  12. I'm thinking about setting up shared external 2.5" WD Passport HDD with this computer. I'm worried about power consumption, is there enough power from AC/DC charger to power up both devices together. Does anybody something about that possible problem?
     
  13. Steve

    Steve TechSpot Editor Topic Starter Posts: 2,214   +1,240

    It is a 15 watt power brick and the most the system consumed for us was 10 watt. Those 2.5" hard drives to my knowledge don't use more than 3 watts so it should work but doesn't leave much headroom.

    That said the 10 watt consumption was recorded with both CPU cores and the GPU load at 100% which won't really happen under normal conditions. The 6 watts seen in the Prime95 test would be a more realistic maximum load.
     
  14. Radient

    Radient TS Rookie Posts: 43

    Perfect seedbox
     
  15. This does run 1080p video as well as 4k video. Under windows 8.1 use the Microsoft Video Player. This uses hardware video decoding. You can use LAV audio/video filters and enable hardware decoding. Make sure you install latest drivers from ECS Liva website. CPU is usually at 15-20% load when playing 1080p video and about 50-70% when playing 4k videos at 60fps :)
     

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