Received my Xtreamer Ultra HTPC yesterday order from http://www.xtreamer.net and shipped from Hong Kong. Release date was set to 3rd of May but mine was not shipped until 17th. It is a cool little PC with impressive accessories and nice presentation. Price including shipping came to €280 but after adding about €70 for VAT and import duty the total came close to €350. Xtreamer does not have the best reputation on the net with a lot of complaints regarding failed promises and lack of support to users. But with specs of the Ultra I still decided to give it a try. Hopefully it will turn out to something good.
Here is the neat package which gave a very good first impression. I hope the inside and the performance of this machine will not disappoint me.
Taking the parts out of the box did not disappoint either. The Xtreamer Ultra does not feel extremely plastic or cheap. It is a nice piece of hardware with a shiny and appealing look. Above with the accompanied USB stick, loaded with an image to boot either into XBMC, Boxee or Ultra OS(their own ubuntu distribution).
The Xtreamer Ultra is shipped with two input devices. A standard MCE type remote and a mini keyboard with built-in mouse pad. Very impressed by the mini keyboard, a nice geek thing, but we will see how useful it actually is in real life. The two input devices works right out of the box. The remote comes with two AAA batteries and the mini keyboard is rechargeable with standard USB cable(cable included).
In addition, the package included a 16GB USB key and a USB wifi antenna.
Above the BIOS splash screen. "HTPC in a Box".
Boot menu when booting up from the USB key. Option to boot into XBMC, Boxee, Ultra OS(Ubuntu customized version), Free NAS or Windows. Booting into Windows does not work out of the box as it requires Windows to be installed on a separate partition first.
Booting from the shipped USB key provided an easy way to try out XBMC and Boxee but it was not an optimal solution. Bad performance was for example noticed when navigating the XBMC system. So to make this into a usable HTPC a hard disk was a must.
A large hard disk was not a must as it mainly would host the OS itself, all media is stored on a server. So the choice fell on a 64GB SSD to get good performance and minimal additional noise. I picked the cheapest SSD on the market but have not had any bad experience.