The Sony VAIO PCV-MXS was a desktop PC component system released by Sony in 2001. It was the successor to the PCV-MX series. It included a NET-MD (MiniDisc) drive, FM radio, DVD drive, speakers, remote, media reciever, memory stick slot and loads more multimedia features. It can be bundled with either a 15" or 17" TFT LCD display for viewing pleasure.
It looks a lot like a media server and was intended to be one, with its audio-like design. Below the MD drive, there is a small LCD which displayed music info and allowed the unit to be used without the PC turned on, with the pause, play etc... buttons located under the LCD. The included remote made this handy for example when you wanted to play music from your sofa. The concept of this unit is to "store", "listen to", and "take out" music. You could get your old CDs and transfer them over to the computers storage and copy them onto MD, then listen to them or take out the MD and listen to it on the go. That is presumably what Sony was aiming for with this machine. You could also record FM radio and TV audio onto MD/CD and play it back later. The device had a optical input and line input to be able to record from external devices. It was bundled with a bunch of sony software, including DVgate, DVDit! for VAIO and SonicStage, which was used to control the MD player over PC and transfer songs onto MD.
A pair of high-quality speaker is bundled with the machine, which produces a good sound with good all around frequencies. The machine is also capable of different audio outputs including RCA ports, same as its predecessor did.
Processor: Intel Pentium 4 (1.70 GHz → 2.4GHz, Willamette architecture)
Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce2 MX (PCV-MXS1 and MXS2 only) / SiS intergrated graphics
Chipset: Intel 845 chipset (PCV-MXS1 and MXS2 only) / SiS650 chipset (MXS3 only) / SiS651 chipset (MXS5 and MXS7 only)
Memory: 256MB (standard) /1-1.5GB (Maximum) (DDR SDRAM, DDR266 / DDR333 DIMM) [Number of slots] 2 (PCV-MXS1/2) or 3 (other models)
Display: 15" or 17" TFT LCD optional
Storage: 80GB - 160GB IDE HDD, DVD-ROM/-RW depending on model
MSRP: 300 000 yen, 2000€ - 3000€
Original OS: Windows XP Home Edition SP1
Daily Usage today
The PCV-MXS is powerful enough for word processing, basic internet (as long as the site doesnt have any animations) and (of course) media playback. It is still very useable for media playback and as a media server, even today although it is reccomended that one upgrades the HDD to an SSD, upgrades the RAM and maybe even the Processor depending on the unit.
They were sold worldwide so can be found in the US, UK and Europe, but are so rare that it is almost impossible to find one for sale online. They can be found very rarely on Yahoo! Auctions Japan or Mercari Japan. You will need a Japanese proxy service such as Buyee for this though.
Disassembly is as with any normal desktop PC but be aware of the aged ABS plastic casing.