When you’re thinking about small-form factor PCs I’m willing to bet the notion of glamour barely enters your head. I’m sure like most of us you’ll associate the word with grubby shots of large-breasted, plastic ladies posing for calendars destined for the walls of garages across the land. Shuttle’s Glamor though has more in common with its use as an old spell-casting verb than the lad’s mag noun.
What they’ve crammed into this teeny chassis is nothing short of magical. The G33 chipset allows you to use practically any socket 775 CPU, from 65 to 45nm, and in 800, 1,066 and 1,333MHz FSB flavours. With a quick BIOS switch into overclocking mode, you’ll also be able to take advantage of DDR2 RAM up to 1,066MHz.
If you’re sitting there with some high-speed memory, looking at the chunky heatsinks and scoffing at the notion of being able to fit it in such a midget-esque chassis, then just remember the magic…
Small but perfectly formed
The internal design of the chassis is excellent; there is enough space beneath the caddy that holds the hard drive, optical drive and floppy drive (if you’re feeling all retro) to comfortably fit a couple of sticks of Corsair Dominator memory.
The CPU cooler too is created to ensure maximum space and airflow inside with angled cooling pipes leading to a heatsink and fan setup bolted onto the rear of the case. This ensures all the hot air gets blown out the back, rather than over the other already toasty components.
The Glamor makes up a perfectly powerful lounge PC and would not look out of place among the trendiest of home entertainment equipment. Stick a PCI TV tuner inside and you’re away, you don’t even need a graphics card as the integrated GPU, combined with a decent CPU will quite happily churn through your 1,080p movies and the included HDMI port will ensure a simple link up to the monster TV that’s hopefully gracing the room.
It’s highly likely that you’ll be able to pick up this barebones system for closer to the £250 mark. If you then go and spend another couple of hundred on a quad-core processor, some decent RAM and hard drive, you’ll have yourself an excellent, tiny, very quiet media centre. Granted it’s possible to create an adequately effective media centre for far less money, but you’ll be hard pushed to find a package as classy as one that Shuttle’s offering.