Power Consumption and Synopsis
We have one final data point we'd like to cover before bringing this article to a close. Our goal was to give you all an idea as to how much power the new Asus Eee Box consumed while idling and running under load.
Please keep in mind that we were testing total system power consumption here at the outlet. In this test, we're showing you a ramp-up of power from idle on the desktop to full CPU load.
As the above graph illustrates, the Eee Box is absolutely miserly on power consumption, with only a slightly heavier draw than an Eee PC 900 system. At a peak power consumption of only 22.3 Watts, it's hard not to be impressed with what the Eee Box can deliver in terms of its capabilities and performance per watt profile. Note that our Atom and Nano reference systems consume significantly more power due to their standard full sized components, specifically hard drives, motherboards and system memory.
Boot and Application Load Times and Performance Summary: In terms of its general performance profile, the Asus Eee Box delivered more than we expected for its size, power consumption and price tag. The machine provided a fluid experience in all but our full 1080p digital video playback test but held up to 720p playback with good quality. System boot time was easily as fast as a standard entry-level desktop or notebook system, with application load times that felt snappy and responsive throughout testing. We have a good test drive demo of the Eee Box in our Eee Box video spotlight, so be sure to check that out as well.
If Asus was looking to make another splash with the Eee Box, as they did with the Eee PC mini notebook, we think they've likely succeeded. The Eee Box delivers a lot of functionality for its $349 price tag that also includes a keyboard and mouse (expected availability is August 11). Though future upgrades of the system are really limited to only system memory or hard drive capacity, it's our humble opinion that the base value of the Eee Box is strong out of the gate and the consumer gets what they paid for and then some. We were impressed with the system's responsiveness and capability to deliver fluid internet experience whether tethered to a wall over a Gig-E link or with its integrated 802.11n WiFi adapter. Digital video playback was somewhat of a mixed bag however, with the system showing capability up through standard DV content and 720p HD content but falling flat at full 1080p playback.
In some respects, when we think about what the capabilities of a $349 desktop system should be like, we can't help but be impressed what Asus has achieved and the overall value of the Eee Box. What's more impressive though is the Eee Box's absolutely tiny form-factor and completely miserly power consumption. The original Eee PC notebook cultivated quite an enthusiastic following in the marketplace and we think the Eee Box is likely to as well. When you stop to think of the numerous embedded applications for a computer this size (kiosk, digital signage, car computer, etc), the market acceptance of the Eee Box should by all rights be just as impressive as previous generation Eee PC products.