In the past, we’ve checked out MINIX NEO C Plus USB-C Adapter, an M.2 SSD card pre-loaded Windows 10 Pro for N42C-4 Mini PC, and another USB-C hub with integrated 120 or 240GB SSD. The company has now unveiled four new accessories with three USB-C hubs, including one with a 480GB or 960GB SSD, and one compact 100W USB charger using the latest Gallium Nitride (GaN) technology.
This morning, I received two pairs of USB-C hubs with different colors and two 100W USB chargers. The model I did not get – MINIX NEO Storage Pro – is specifically made for Apple MacBook Air and MacBook Pro with built-in SSD storage, HDMI 2.0 up to 4K @ 60 Hz, Thunderbolt 3 and USB 3.0 ports. But that’s all good since I don’t own any Apple hardware.
The USB charger comes with US plug with also ships with UK and EU plug adapter, and two pouch bags to transport everything.
MINIX NEO P2 specifications:
- Power Input – 100-240V AC 50/60Hz 2.4A
- Max Power Output – 100 Watts
- 2x USB-C ports with 100W USB PD 3.0 support (5 to 15V/3A, 20V/5A)
- 2x USB-A ports up to 12W (standard) or up to 18W with Quick Charge 3.0 (5V/3A, 9V/2A, 12V/1.5A)
- Dimensions – 85.3 x 60.8 x 28.9 mm
- Weight – 208 grams
I don’t have devices that draw a lot of power from a USB-C port, but a 100W charger would be able to charge a laptop, a few smartphones, and tablets comfortably. It should also be usable as a power supply for single board computers. In the meantime, I’ll use it as a USB extension to my power extension, as with phones, smartwatches, bicycle lights, and mosquito traps, the four USB ports get used pretty quickly.
Granted that’s over the top to use such a beefy charger with a smartwatch, but I’m sure that eventually, I’ll get products that can make use of the extra power.
The multiport USB-C comes with a black pouch bag and a separate male to male USB-C cable.
- 480GB SSD with up to 400MB/s read and write speeds
- USB – USB-C port for host connection + 2x USB 3.0 ports
- Gigabit Ethernet
- HDMI 2.0 port capable of 4K @ 60 Hz output
- USB-C port (PD only) for optional external power supply
The company says the USB Hub supports macOS, iPadOS and Windows 10 OS. So I tried in Windows 10 in an AMD Ryzen Embedded SBC I have lying around…
Close enough to 400MB/s. MINIX did not mention Linux support, so since I’m dual-booting Windows and Ubuntu on the SBC, I switched to Ubuntu 20.04.1 and could see the drive mounted with exFAT file system:
/dev/sda1 on /media/jaufranc/NEO Storage type exfat (rw,nosuid,nodev,relatime,uid=1000,gid=1000,fmask=0022,dmask=0022,iocharset=utf8,namecase=0,errors=remount-ro,uhelper=udisks2)
So I ran iozone to check the performance:
jaufranc@CNX:/media/jaufranc/NEO Storage$ iozone -e -I -a -s 1000M -r 4k -r 16k -r 512k -r 1024k -r 16384k -i 0 -i 1 -i 2
Iozone: Performance Test of File I/O
Version $Revision: 3.489 $
Compiled for 64 bit mode.
random random bkwd record stride
kB reclen write rewrite read reread read write read rewrite read fwrite frewrite fread freread
1024000 4 47113 47130 50249 50213 22894 46644
1024000 16 110977 111199 124593 124034 67325 108600
1024000 512 320709 319080 361163 361184 296724 301020
1024000 1024 330659 328491 366708 366714 312255 223015
1024000 16384 245689 241836 379937 379930 374789 236272
iozone test complete.
Around 379MB/s for sequential read speed, but relatively slower 240+MB/s sequential read speed. The random read/write numbers look a bit high though. Anyway, sequential performance is a bit slower than in Windows. Formatting the drive to EXT-4 might improve write performance. The USB Ethernet port was detected in Ubuntu as well. The board’s USB-C port does not support video output, so I did not try HDMI output.
MINIX NEO Storage Plus is available in two variants with NEO SG4 and NEO SG9 models with 480GB and 960GB SSD sold for respectively $129.99 and $179.99 shipped.
The last accessory I received from the company is a more traditional multiport USB-C adapter with a built-in USB-C cable to connect to the host, two USB 3.0 ports, Micro SD and SD card sockets, Gigabit Ethernet, HDMI 2.0 up to 4K @ 60 Hz, and another USB-C port to connect an external USB-C power supply if more power is needed such as when connecting a USB hard drive.
Without external power supply, USB output is limited to 5V/1A, against 5V/2A when a power supply is connected. The output is limited to 5V/900mA when using a USB 3.0 device, and charging output is limited to 5V/500mA max.
MINIX NEO C-G USB-C is sold for $59.99 on Aliexpress including worldwide shipping.