Palm-Sized Chuwi LarkBox Mini PC Packs a Celeron N4100 Processor, 6GB RAM, and 128GB Storage

One of the smallest Intel mini PC we’ve seen so far was ECS LIVA Q2 Micro PC which Ian reviewed last year with an Intel Celeron N4000 Gemini Lake processor, 4GB RAM, and 32GB eMMC flash housed into a 70 x 70 x 33.4 mm (163.66 cm3) enclosure.

CHUWI LarkBox is a similar mini PC with an Intel Celeron N4100 SoC, 6GB RAM, 128GB, and various ports into a 61 x 61 x 43 mm enclosure, that’s a bit taller but marginally smaller with a volume of 160 cm3.

CHUWI LarkBox
Click to Enlarge

CHUWI LarkBox (preliminary) specifications:

  • SoC – Intel Celeron N4100 quad-core Gemini Lake processor @ 1.1 / 2.4 GHz with Intel UHD Graphics 600; 6W TDP
  • System Memory – 6GB LPDDR4
  • Storage – 128GB eMMC storage, MicroSD card slot
  • Video Output – HDMI up to 4K resolutions
  • Audio – 3.5mm audio jack, digital audio via HDMI
  • Connectivity – Bluetooth 5.0, and I suppose 802.11ac WiFi 5
  • USB – 2x USB 2.0 ports, 1x USB Type-C port
  • Misc – Power button
  • Power Supply – TBD via USB-C port
  • Dimensions – 61 x 61 x 43 mm

Palm-Sized Mini PC

At this size, passive cooling is challenging, and just like ECS LIVA Q2, CHUWI LarkBox mini PC includes “an ultra-silence [sic] cooling fan”.

There’s no word about the operating system, but I’m pretty sure CHUWI will ship the computer with Windows 10 Home 64-bit. But if you’d been reading Linuxium reviews about Gemini Lake mini PCs you’ll know those can also run Ubuntu 18.04 and other Linux distributions fairly well. 4K video playback in Kodi and YouTube does work, but usually a bit better in Windows where results also vary depending on your web browser and video codec.

The company is just teasing people right now, so the mini PC has not been released nor its price, but the company has started a global giveaway where it plans to send a LarkBox to four randomly selected winners.

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32 Comments
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Jqpabc123
Jqpabc123
1 year ago

Best example yet of a PC that is too small to provide a reasonable complement of interface ports. Sure you can add a hub but that increases the overall size.

If size is that important and you can live with only Wi-Fi and 2 USB, why not just go with a stick PC which is even smaller?

Willy
Willy
1 year ago

I also found it uninteresting due to the impressive lack of connectivity. I think the size is not an excuse, others manage to do better. The two USB ports should have been placed on the front where the power button is, not the back, so that it’s possible to connect two USB sticks and other random consumer devices, including the ability to use them as a charging plug for any device. The back should have permanent cables such as power, screen, USB and network.

That one requires too many external devices to become usable.

domih
domih
1 year ago

I agree, who is going to use this and for what. What the point of using an N4100 while not leveraging the 6 HSIO lanes?

Oh I get it, use a bracelet and it becomes a watch. Add a 12v battery in a light backpack or armband, hack the board to add 4G and voilà. You can watch YouTube on head front mounted LCD while doing your jogging. Great! I’ll buy two, one for each wrist for AI enhanced stereoscopic 3D viewing.

Dan
Dan
1 year ago

You guys do not seem to like it. So what alternative device can you recommend if I want the wireless connectivity (I suppose 802.11ac WiFi 5; most Chinese boxes lack this) but I don’t require 6GB LPDDR4 and 128GB SSD storage? I’m content with something like 4GB RAM, and 32GB eMMC flash. I prefer fanless. I’m not sure what’s a reasonable price point for this, though. Where can you even buy the ECS Liva box mentioned in the article?

TLS
TLS
1 year ago

Try contacting these guys, they offer them on a “white box” basis https://www.actpower.com.tw/

Jqpabc123
Jqpabc123
1 year ago

Take a look at Chuwi HeroBox or Kodlix GN41, both of which are bigger but much better interface wise.

There are a number of miniPCs based on N4100

Drone
Drone
1 year ago

@Dan said: “Where can you even buy the ECS Liva box mentioned in the article?”

This one is similar but better (N4100 vs. N4000):

* LIVA Z2 N4100 032BB ECS Z2 Mini PC with N4100 (No RAM) 32GB eMMC $179 & FREE Shipping:

https://www.amazon.com/LIVA-Z2-N4100-032BB-Noram/dp/B07KTLH9K3

The problem with the ECS Liva PCs is the non-upgradeable eMMC storage, 32GB is too small. In comparison, the Chuwi LarkBox being discussed here has 128GB.

Dan
Dan
1 year ago

@TLS “Try contacting these guys, they offer them on a “white box” basis…” Is Act Power really the maker of ECS mini PCs? From their home page they do not seem to be a consumer facing business, even less so than ECS. And many people complain they can’t find many or any ECS resellers wherever. Do you suggest Act Power will ship me a single “white box” mini from Taiwan more competitively to Europe/North America than any ECS regional reseller, even at their MSRP prices? Interesting. @Jqpabc123 “Take a look at Chuwi HeroBox or Kodlix GN41, both of which are… Read more »

Dan
Dan
1 year ago

A curious question. Who makes this one?

https://www.csl-computer.com/mini-pc-csl-narrow-box-ultra-hd-compact-v3-win-10.html

You seem to know everything. This pretty much covers my needs regarding processing power, design, size and weight, fanlessness, port selection, and internal storage. They even include a useless Windows license (for my purposes). They question is, should I be satisfied with the 200 euro asking price or do you know anything better? European prices include sales tax.

Dan
Dan
1 year ago

Thanks for pointing it out. I’ve probably found the specs sheet of an older revision. But the other one, the Kodlix GN41 sure doesn’t state it has AC Wi-Fi on its home page. Do you know it Chuwi makes OEM PC’s for other brands, perhaps with a more refined design? I prefer sleeker boxes to Chuwi’s gamer aesthetics. B) Something else. Who makes the MiniPC under the German Trekstor brand name? https://www.trekstor.de/products/minipc/detail-minipc/product/MiniPC-WBX5005.html This is interesting. A slightly older, 5th generation Intel i5 processor, so no AC Wi-Fi here, but it has a bunch of ports and the page says it… Read more »

joseph R
joseph R
1 year ago

My Odroid-N2 with 4Gb Ram and 256Gb SSD does the job as a replacement PC connected to my Samsung 75″ QLED TV, with a dual boot Linux Ubuntu 64bit and Kodi(Coreelec) working as a DLNA media server.

Jay
1 year ago

Questions:

1. Type-C port version?
2. HDMI version? 2.0?
3. Power supply voltage and current?

The ECS Liva Q2 has details clearly laid out. Or have you missed mentioning?

Drone
Drone
1 year ago

It says “128GB”. Is that non-upgradeable (soldered-down) eMMC, or is it a real user upgradeable SSD (M.2?)

Jay
1 year ago

He mentioned 128GB SSD. Am assuming that should be a drive!

Jadam
Jadam
1 year ago

At 61x61x43mm the dimensions are too small to accept an SSD, see link for Intel SSD form factor sizes
https://www.intel.co.uk/content/www/uk/en/support/articles/000006346/memory-and-storage.html#8
This is a stick PC in a different form?

Jadam
Jadam
1 year ago

Thanks for the correction, M.2 SATA would be great

theguyuk
theguyuk
1 year ago

Not as tiny but available and diy upgradable. Available direct and on Amazon.
Video Output

HDMI 2.0 (4K/60Hz), Mini DP (4K/60Hz), USB-C port 1 (4K/60Hz)
https://www.cnx-software.com/2019/01/28/pepper-jobs-glk-uc2x-review-windows-10-ubuntu-18-10/

Fossxplorer
Fossxplorer
1 year ago

Notice the downvotes ppl are getting. Very obvious where those come from!

theguyuk
theguyuk
1 year ago

Do share !

Willy
Willy
1 year ago

Noticed as well.

At least it shows the vendor is listening to the criticism and is getting aware of competing designs. Sometimes some are smart enough to improve their own design based on such a feedback even if it’s never pleasant to see your product not well received after having worked months on it, of course!

With this said I found the critics pretty constructive, nobody criticized the aspect or quality, just the lack of connectivity. This is understandably a concern for many potential buyers.

tkaiser
tkaiser
1 year ago

> it shows the vendor is listening

Huh? This comment mentioning another Chuwi thingy also got downvotes. I guess it’s just the usual downvoting crap that happens here all the time…

willy
willy
1 year ago

Ah yes you’re right! Thus probably someone who fears this could compete against an RPi 🙂

domih
domih
1 year ago

Well… it looks like it is a badge of honor to be down voted for this particular article discussion 🙂

Dan
Dan
1 year ago

If I were the community manager/owner of this blog I would disable downvoting. I mean why have it enabled at all? It’s so negative.

Dan
Dan
1 year ago

My comment is awaiting for moderation. For something like almost two days? It’s a normal comment for this blog. I suppose.

willy
willy
1 year ago

I never had this happen however from time to time I experience an error (once a month or so). You might simply have faced a technical error and should repost it, even though I admit it’s never pleasant. I tend to Ctrl-A/Ctrl-C my long posts before clicking, just in case.

Dan
Dan
1 year ago

Success! Now it’s published, but as it’s already a 2-days old post. I hope someone notices it (https://www.cnx-software.com/2020/04/18/palm-sized-chuwi-larkbox-mini-pc-packs-a-celeron-n4100-processor-6gb-ram-and-128gb-ssd/#comment-572034). I bet what triggered the moderation were the links.

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