Intel's Evansport storage platform and their Berryville STB platform are, for all practical purposes, the same. Given this, it is only logical to expect an Evansport NAS to double up as a media streamer. The Evansport NAS units currently in the market (such as the Thecus N2560, Asustor AS-602T and the Synology DS214play) all come in the standard NAS tower form factor. This looks pretty out of place in the living room / entertainment center. To address this concern, Lenovo is coming out with the BEACON, a product based on the Intel CE 5315. The unit's industrial design is a work of art, as shown in the gallery below.

Gallery: Lenovo BEACON

Two hard disks can be installed and configured in either RAID-0 or RAID-1. An XBMC app is available for media playback through the unit's HDMI port. Evansport's transcoding engine is taken advantage of to stream media to mobile devices. Currently, Android and Windows Phone are supported, with iOS support slated to come later (understandable, since Lenovo sells Android and Windows Phone devices). It must be noted that the product is from Lenovo, and not LenovoEMC. The latter concentrates on traditional-looking NAS units for home consumers as well as SMB / enterprise customers.

The Lenovo BEACON is slated to hit shelves in April at a price point of $199 for a diskless unit.

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  • Ryan Smith - Wednesday, January 08, 2014 - link

    You know it's late when you read the title twice, and both times you initially read it as "bacon". Reply
  • creed3020 - Wednesday, January 08, 2014 - link

    I seriously did the exact same thing. So confused why Lenovo would be selling bacon...yumm Reply
  • nathanddrews - Wednesday, January 08, 2014 - link

    JBOD?

    Either way 8TB isn't a lot when you start backing up Blu-ray discs.
    Reply
  • DanNeely - Wednesday, January 08, 2014 - link

    If you're accumulating that level of data you'd be better served with a NAS located somewhere else and just a small media streamer in the entertainment center. Reply
  • bobbozzo - Wednesday, January 08, 2014 - link

    Hi, since it has HDMI out, does it also have an IR sensor for a remote, or the ability to add a USB IR sensor?

    Also, the networking speed wasn't stated... gigE?

    Thanks!
    Reply
  • mhungry - Wednesday, January 08, 2014 - link

    I prefer the Thecus N2560 simply because it has an actual dedicated optical spdif output separate from the HDMI. HDMI won't pass through 5.1 to the optical output on my Samsung TV, so I need a separate audio output, which my Boxee Box has.

    That said, it's half the price, and if I can add an external $25-$30 spdif output to it easily via USB, I'll be all over it.
    Reply

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