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Quiet PC Streacom FC5-Z77 Fanless Media PC review

£1491.88 inc VAT

Manufacturer: Quiet PC

Our Rating: We rate this 4.5 out of 5

The Quiet PC Streacom FC5-Z77 Fanless Media PC is totally silent in operation and won’t attract dust, yet delivers superb performance and can handle up to four TV channels simultaneously.

Quiet PC’s excellent Streacom FC5-Z77 Fanless Media PC shows just what can be achieved if you have enough money to spend. See also Group test: what's the best power PC?

It is, externally, rather similar to Tranquil PC’s Media One. Both live in impressive super-slim cases designed to sit harmoniously within your living environment and blend in with any existing Hi-Fi separates you may already own. Visit Palicomp Alpha Media Blaze review.

There are, however many important differences: Where Tranquil PC employs a bespoke aluminium unibody housing, Quiet PC has gone for an off-the-shelf solution in the form of still extremely sleek and stylish Streacom FC5.

This all aluminium system case is slightly larger by volume than Chillblast’s system based on the FC8, but its larger footprint allows for either a mini-ITX or a micro-ATX format motherboard to be used. The front facial is entirely blank apart from a power switch and discreet slot where Blu-ray disks can be loaded.

Leaving little room for upgrades, the FC5 creates a Media Centre which is more of an appliance than a standard PC. You won’t be delving inside tinkering and adding cards, but you will benefit from entirely silent operation thanks to a set of built in heat pipes which link the low-voltage Intel Core i7-3770T processor to a row of fins which run from front to back on the exterior of the PC.

This is a very powerful, yet power-efficient processor from Intel’s latest ‘Ivy Bridge’ range, which helps the PC to achieve nearly the same performance as Arbico’s system while consuming only around half the power.

Internally, the system is a little less impressive, with some rather strange-looking cables enabling certain components to fit horizontally in the low-profile case. However, none of this is evident from the outside and the system is backed by a two-year collect and return warranty.

With a total absence of cooling fans and storage provided by a 128GB Crucial SSD, the only sound emanating from this PC will come from the Blu-ray combo drive when it’s in use. This means you can listen to music or watch movies at low volume without audible distractions from the PC.

Although the motherboard supports S/PDIF digital audio, there’s no connection wired up to the outside of the case. Still, more often than not the digital audio provided by the HDMI connector will suffice.

Quiet PC’s system is the only one reviewed which comes with four TV tuners. It’s also capable of viewing Freeview HD.

Quiet PC Streacom FC5-Z77 Fanless Media PC Expert Verdict »

Processor: 2.5GHz Intel Core i7-3770T (Quad core)
Storage: 128GB Crucial SSD
Power supply: External 160W Pico (fanless)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77M-D3H
CPU cooler: Heatpipes built into case
USB: 4x USB 2.0, 2x USB 3.0
TV tuner: TBS 6284 Quad DVB-T2
Graphics card: Integrated Intel HD4000
Media-centre software: WMC, ArcSoft TotalMedia Theatre 5
Sound: onboard
Connectivity: Gigabit Ethernet
Optical drive: Sony Blu-ray reader / DVD re-writer
Operating system: Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
Ports: DMI, VGA, DVI
Case: Streacom FC5
Keyboard and mouse: Microsoft Wireless Desktop 3000 mouse and keyboard
Extra features: Streacom remote control
WorldBench 6 score: 172
Gaming performance (fps): 48.3 / 30.8
MediaEspresso time: 1min 42sec
Power consumption (Idle/Max): 28W / 74W
Dimensions (WxDxH): 435x325x60mm
Warranty: 2-year collect and return
  • Build Quality: We give this item 9 of 10 for build quality
  • Features: We give this item 10 of 10 for features
  • Value for Money: We give this item 7 of 10 for value for money
  • Performance: We give this item 9 of 10 for performance
  • Overall: We give this item 9 of 10 overall

Excellent built quality and beautifully understated design mark out Quiet PC’s system place Quiet PCs among the most desirable of Media Centre PCs. It’s totally silent in operation and won’t attract dust, yet delivers superb performance and can handle up to four TV channels simultaneously. It is however rather expensive and you will need external storage to complement the 128GB SSD installed.

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