Open Labs MiKo: Watch Out, Oakenfold

People have been clamoring about the all-in-one digital hub for many years now, but if my impressions mean anything, Open Lab's MiKo could be well on its way to securing such status. In my all too brief encounter with the MiKo yesterday, I was pretty darn impressed with what it does (act as a true media hub, along with some features that'll please aspiring DJs) and how it does it (read: quite well). Perhaps the only knock against it is its size: it's a little on the bulky side, taking up the space of the standard coffee table, but considering how much hardware is packed into it, and that DJs often have huge sets where they roll out the buttery beats, it's fairly forgivable. In fact, I was told that Open Labs is already working on the evolution of the MiKo, so expect the size to decrease as component sizes decrease over time. For more detailed impressions, hit the jump.

The MiKo is a 64-bit Dual Core processor-powered media hub based on Windows XP. Open Labs basically went on a shopping spree, and included the top of the line everything into the MiKo, including its graphics card and the components that make up its rather beefy, 7.1-channel sound system. A 1TB hard drive includes enough space for plenty of multimedia files, and the built-in dual layer DVD burner assists with video authoring. Of course, it's got all the important network connections as well, with an Ethernet port and built-in Wi-Fi. For the more specialized parts, Open Labs says they've created the drivers from scratch, thereby improving reliability.

The 15-inch LCD touchscreen makes perfect sense for the MiKo. There's a customized GUI available, but the familiar Windows XP interface is only a click away should you prefer Fisher-Price. Since the MiKo is designed with an eye toward DJs, the touchscreen makes using all that crazy DJ mixing software all the more easy. Throw in the built-in, fully functioning musical keyboard (or any other MIDI instrument you plug in for that matter) and you're all set to create the next great Euro chart topper.

The MiKo's support of HD content is also impressive, as its able to handle multiple HD streams simultaneously (while mixing a song, editing sound loops, etc.).

In essence, the Open Labs MiKo is just really fun. I suppose it's nearly powerful enough to model the weather, but odds are you'll be too busy pretending to be Gabriel & Dresden (the current "it" guys in trance music) to do any of that. It's on sale now on Open Labs' Web site for $2,499.

Product Page [Open Labs]