ECS has been ramping up its line up of small form factor PCs under the LIVA banner, and one of their latest offerings would probably take the cake when it comes to size. Enter the LIVA Q, the current title holder for the world’s smallest 4K pocket PC, or so does ECS claim.
|Platform||Intel® Apollo Lake Pentium® N4200 SOC
Intel® Apollo Lake Celeron® N3350 SOC
|Expansion Slot||1 x Micro SD slot (Max:128GB)|
|LAN||1 x Gigabit LAN|
|USB||1 x USB 3.1 Gen1 Port
1 x USB 2.0 Port
|Video Output||1 x HDMI Port|
|Wireless||Intel® WiFi 802.11ac & Bluetooth 4.1|
|Dimension||70 x 70 x 31.4 mm|
|VESA||Supports 75mm / 100mm|
|Adapter||Input: AC 100-240V,Output: DC 12V / 2A|
|OS Support||Windows 10 64bit
Ubuntu 16.04 LTS
*Recommends to install Windows, ECS does not provide other OS installation technical support.
|Accessory||1 x Power adapter
1 x VESA Bracket
6 x VESA Mount Screws
Quick Guide & Driver DVD
As a testament to its size, the LIVA Q comes in quite a compact packaging. Its box measures 130 x 130 x 95mm, so you really wouldn’t need to worry about lugging something bulky that it wouldn’t fit your backpack. Moving forward, you’ll get pretty much the necessary inclusions to get you kickstarted on setting it up when you open the box – there’s the LIVA Q in the flesh, a microUSB power adapter, the manual, a disk for the drivers, and the VESA mounting kit.
Coming in at 70 x 70 x 31.4mm, the LIVA Q is indeed one of, if not the smallest mini PC that claims 4K capabilities. It’s real damn small. For reference, it’s no bigger than a power bank, which makes it quite discreet if you’re looking to put it beside your HDTV to power up your multimedia experience or put it in your pocket if you so choose to.
As far as the ports go, it’s equipped with a USB 3.1 and USB 2.0 port one a piece, and HDMI and a Gigabit LAN port at the back together with a microUSB port, a Kensington lock slot at the right and a microUSB slot at the other end.
Upgradability is, however, not an option on the LIVA Q other than expansion on the storage via an external drive or microSD card. While its 32GB storage, or even the 64GB variant would seem debilitating at first glance, it won’t be that big of a deal since you most likely won’t use it for work.
The LIVA Q that we have right now comes equipped with an Intel N3350 SoC with 4GB of RAM. Not the beefiest even by a stretch, but it would get the job done when it comes to 4K playback.
ECS tags the LIVA Q as a mini PC for home entertainment, but it also could work out for different environments such as offices or even POS if you’d like.
Futuremark’s PCMark 10 would serve as the perfect benchmark tool for it. It comes with a comprehensive set of tests that cover the basic, standard tasks the office from productivity to digital content creation.
We’re in the golden age of streaming, and quite frankly this is where the LIVA Q would shine. Streaming shows from Netflix is smooth, and would work well especially with that very minimal power draw.
The LIVA Q prides itself on 4K capabilities, and that claim holds truth. Testing 4K playback on Sony’s Swordsmith HDR UHD 4K sample with 3840 x 2160 resolution encoded in HEVC is indeed working, and smoothly at that.
Power Consumption and Temperature
The LIVA Q’s power consumption was measured during the benchmark test on PCMark 10. Temperature is monitored during the benchmark test in a room with a 30C room temp.
Idle – 6.1W
Load – 8.5W
Idle – 49°C
Load – 63°C
ECS set out to deliver a 4K-capable mini PC, and does so in great fashion in the form of the LIVA Q. While it’s tagged as a 4K mini PC, it being a full-fledged Windows 10 PC gives it so much potential. But of course, you’ll need to keep your expectations real here – it’s equipped for what it’s designed for. While it can work as one, it’s not going to be your daily workhorse. First off, the paltry 32GB onboard storage is so debilitating, and to make matters worse more than half of it is already occupied by Windows 10 and some of the bloat that comes with it. You can work around on it with adding more storage, but your options will be limited, and expensive.
The LIVA Q’s workload is reserved and focused on multimedia consumption, and it performs quite well on it, and efficiently, too. So keep it at that. As far as the price goes, the version with 32GB storage and 4GB RAM currently costs Php10,950, which makes it a bit expensive if you’re going to compare it with the LIVA Z2V that we also just reviewed recently, which sports a decent specs sheet and upgradability options but without the super compact form factor the LIVA Q boasts.
With that said, it’s a matter of preference for you. If you’re looking for something to kickstart your 4K experience in the living room, something super compact and classy, the LIVA Q would definitely make a fine choice.