GEEKOM A8 (AMD Ryzen 9 8945HS) AI mini PC review – Part 1: Specs, unboxing, teardown, and first boot

GEEKOM A8 is an AI mini PC based on the powerful AMD Ryzen 9 8945HS (or Ryzen 7 8845HS) AI processor with AMD Radeon 780M Graphics, up to 64GB DDR5 memory, up to 2TB M.2 NVMe SSD support for up to four display up to 8K resolution, and comes preloaded with Windows 11 Pro operating system.

The mini PC is equipped with two HDMI 2.1 ports, two USB-C ports with DisplayPort Alt mode, 4x USB 3.2 Type-A ports, 2.5GbE, a WiFi 6E and Bluetooth 5.3 module, and a stereo headset jack. GEEKOM sent us a sample of the A8 Mini PC with an AMD Ryzen 9 8945HS 8-core/16-thread processor, 32GB DDR5, and a 2TB M.2 NVMe SSD with Windows 11 Pro for review this time. We’ll start by listing some specifications, doing an unboxing, going through a teardown, and booting Windows 11. In the second and third parts of the review, we will test the performance and features on Windows 11 and Ubuntu 24.04 respectively.

GEEKOM A8 AI mini PC review

GEEKOM A8 specifications

  • SoC (one or the other)
    • AMD Ryzen 9 8945HS
      • CPU – 8-core/16-thread processor up to 4.0GHz / 5.2 GHz (Turbo)
      • Cache – 16MB
      • GPU – AMD Radeon 780M Graphics
      • AI – NPU performance: 16 TOPS, total: 39 TOPS
      • TDP: 45W
    • AMD Ryzen 7 8845HS
      • CPU – 8-core/16-thread processor up to 3.8GHz / 5.1 (Turbo)
      • Cache – 16MB
      • GPU – AMD Radeon 780M Graphics
      • AI – NPU performance: 16 TOPS, total: 38 TOPS
      • TDP: 45W
  • System Memory – Dual-channel DDR5-5600 SODIMM, up to 64GB
  • Storage
    • M.2 2280 SSD socket (PCIe Gen4 x4 up to 2TB or SATA III up to 1TB)
    • Full-size SD card reader
  • Video Output
    • 2x HDMI 2.0 ports
    • USB4 and USB 3.2 Type-C ports with DisplayPort Alt mode
    • Up to 4x independent displays
  • Audio – 3.5mm stereo headset jack; digital audio output via HDMI and USB-C
  • Networking
    • 2.5GbE RJ45 port via RealTek RTL8125BG-CG controller
    • WiFi 6E and Bluetooth 5.3
  • USB
    • 3x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-A
    • 1x USB4 Type-C port with DisplayPort Alt mode, USB PD support
    • 1x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C port with DisplayPort Alt mode, USB PD support
    • 1x USB 2.0 Type-A port
  • Misc – Power button
  • Power Supply – 19V power supply adapter (120W) with geo-specific AC cord (IEC C5)
  • Dimensions – 112 x 112 x 37 mm

The GEEKOM A8 is also one of the first mini PCs from the company to implement “IceFlow 1.5 Technology” which should deliver better cooling performance than in earlier models such as the GEEKOM A7 mini PC and consists of a CPU cooling fan, a large sink, dual heat pipes, and thermal grease. As with all other GEEKOM mini PCs so far, the A8 ships with Windows 11 Pro.

GEEKOM A8 unboxing

The GEEKOM A8 mini PC ships in a retail package with a new design (previous models used to ship in a mostly black box).

GEEKOM A8 package

You may want to double-check the basic specifications on the bottom of the package to make sure you received the model you ordered. In our case, we received an A8 mini PC with an AMD Ryzen 9 8945HS, 32GB DDR5 SO-DIMM memory, and a 2TB M.2 SSD as expected.

GEEKOM package AMD Ryzen 9 8945HS mini PC specifications

The package includes the A8 mini PC itself, a 19V/6.32A (120W) power supply, a power cord, an HDMI Cable, a VESA mount with a screw set, a user guide, and a Thank You card.

GEEKOM A8 mini PC unboxing accessories power supply

The front panel features two 10 Gbps USB 3.2 ports including one with power deliver, a 3.5mm audio jack, and a power button.

GEEKOM A8 mini PC front panel

The rear panel includes a 19V DC jack, two HDMI 2.0 ports, a 40 Gbps USB4 port with DisplayPort Alt mode, another 10 Gbps USB-C port with DisplayPort Alt Mode, a 2.5GbE RJ45 port, another 10Gbps USB 3.2 Type-A port, and a USB 2.0 port. We’ll also find some ventilation holes at the top.

GEEKOM A8 mini PC rear panel

One side comes with a full-size SD card reader and more ventilation holes. There’s nothing on the remaining side, except for more ventilation holes.

mini PC ventilation holes full size SD card reader

Teardown

GEEKOM mini PCs used to be designed to be opened easily with large screws and easy access to the memory, M.2 SSD, and wireless module. Their new designs since the A7 can still be opened to change RAM, storage, or wireless, but it’s a little more cumbersome, and damage can potentially occur doing so…

GEEKOM A8 mini PC bottom

Opening the GEEKOM A8 requires used to remove four sticky rubber pads before accessing the screws, but the bottom cover would not come that easily. Finally, we found out that squeezing the sides would make a small opening and we could take out the bottom cover. Note you need to be extra careful here because one of the antennas is connected to the cover.

GEEKOM A8 mini PC teardown

But we can’t access the mainboard just yet, and we need to remove four more screws to lift a metal plate and get access to the top of the motherboard with the memory and SSD sockets.

AMD Ryzen 9 8945HS motherboard

Our GEEKOM A8 comes with two 16GB Crucial CT16G56C46S5 DDR5-5600 (1.2V) memory sticks, an ACER N7000CN-2TB SSD, and the same Azurewave AW-XB591NF WiFi 6E and Bluetooth 5.3 module found in the A7 and XT12 Pro that work fine in Windows 11, but sadly I can already claim with 99.99% certainty that Bluetooth won’t work in Linux.

GEEKOM A8 motherboard AW-XB591NF WiFi 6E module

We can also see unpopulated M.2 2242 socket and SATA connector, as well as GL3590 USB 3.1 Gen 2 hub controller on the mainboard. I previously mentioned you had to be cautious when opening the device, and we were not careful enough since you’ll notice the wire to the “MAIN” antenna is broken and we’ll have to have that fixed although WiFi is still working.

First boot to Windows 11

We’ve then connected the GEEKOM A8 mini PC to HUION Kamvas Pro 16 (2.5K) drawing tablet through a USB-C cable and an RF dongle for a wireless keyboard and mouse combo, before inserting the power supply cord and pressing the power button to boot the system.

GEEKOM A8 review Windows 11 Pro

We went through the usual Windows 11 setup wizard and soon reached the Windows desktop with a working WiFi connection despite missing one of the antennas.

GEEKOM A8 Ryzen 9 8945HS Windows 11 System About

Going to System->About we can confirm we have an A8 mini PC with an AMD Ryzen 9 8945HS processor @ 4.0 GHz (base frequency) with AMD Radeon 780M Graphics, and 32GB RAM running the latest version of Windows 11 Pro 23H2.

After installing a new WiFi antenna, we will be reviewing Windows 11 Pro in detail in the second part of the review, and then test Ubuntu 24.04 to see how the GEEKOM A8 performs in Linux in the third part.

We’d like to thank GEEKOM for sending us the A8 mini PC for review with an AMD Ryzen 9 8945HS, 32GB DDR5, and a 2 TB SSD. The model reviewed here can be pre-ordered on the GEEKOM store for $899, and the Ryzen 7 8845HS model with 32GB RAM and a 1TB SSD goes for $749 on the same page with shipping scheduled to start by the end of the month. Unless you’re in a hurry, you may want to wait a few days or weeks, as Discount coupon codes are now available, see comments section. The AMD Ryzen 9 8945HS and Ryzen 7 8845HS mini PCs are also listed GEEKOM’s Amazon store.

CNXSoft: This article is a translation – with some additional insights – of the original review on CNX Software Thailand by Suthinee Kerdkaew.

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10 Comments
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malimali
malimali
13 days ago

Is there any Ryzen 7945hx powered 16core 32thread miniPC on the market?

Anonymous
Anonymous
12 days ago

MINISFORUM BD790i is a Mini-ITX board with the 7945HX. It could be made into a relatively small system if you eschewed a graphics card.

When Strix Halo comes out sometime in 2025, I think that’s when we’ll see (relatively) compact 16-core mini PCs since Halo is bringing its own powerful graphics along for the ride.

Vall
Vall
13 days ago

> We can also see an unpopulated M.2 2242 socket and SATA connected

From the pics, it seems that socket is missing the connector, just like in the A7, and therefore it’s not actually useable…

So, compared to the A7 it’s basically better cooling and more TOPS on the NPU, right?

Alex
Alex
13 days ago

So how many storages can be connected? 3? 2242, 2280, 2.5″?

I wonder if there are such variants of mini-computer cases (in sub-mini-ITX format) that allow to increase the number of components, for example, disks due to the extension of the computer in height?

Alex
Alex
12 days ago

We can also see unpopulated M.2 2242 socket and SATA connector” – so there is no place for 2.5″ drive, M.2 2242 used for Wi-Fi + 1 place for M.2 2280?

Khadas VIM4 SBC