MINISFORUM have launched their EliteMini H31G which combines a desktop CPU with a discrete graphics card in a mini PC form factor. It supports various Intel 9th and 8th gen desktop processors combined with an NVIDIA Geforce GTX1050 Ti graphics card and targets both gamers and content creators. Available as a barebones device and in various configurations MINISFORUM sent a fully configured model for review. Hardware overview The MINISFORUM EliteMini H31G is a remarkably small mini PC for what it offers and physically consists of a 154 mm x 153 mm x 62 mm (6.06 x 6.02 x 2.44 inches) rectangular plastic case with a metal base. It is an actively cooled mini PC that uses Intel’s LGA 1151 socket and supports desktop processors up to a maximum TDP of 65W. The review model came with an Intel Core i5 9500F Coffee Lake processor pre-installed which is a six-core 6-thread 3.00 GHz processor boosting to 4.40 GHz. The included and […]
MINISFORUM have recently launched their X35G mini PC on Indiegogo which differentiates itself from the many Gemini Lake mini PCs by using a 10th generation Intel “Ice Lake” Core mobile processor with Gen11 graphics. Available as a barebones device and in various configurations MINISFORUM sent a fully configured model for review. MINISFORUM X35G Hardware overview Also known as DeskMini X35G, the MINISFORUM X35G is a slightly larger mini PC physically consisting of a 136.5 mm x 121.5 mm x 40.5 mm (5.37 x 4.78 x 1.59 inches) rectangular metal case with a plastic base. It is an actively cooled mini PC that uses Intel’s second-generation 10 nm+ Core i3-1005G1 processor which is a dual-core 4-thread 1.2 GHz processor boosting to 3.4 GHz with Intel’s Gen11 UHD graphics. The front panel has a power button, a Thunderbolt 3/Type-C USB port that supports video, and two 3.1 USB ports. Also on the front panel on either side are two small pin-holes with […]
I’ve previously written about Intel’s (relatively) new NUC 9 range of mini PCs and now I am following up with my experiences of having bought one. Whilst I’ll cover some performance metrics from both Windows and Ubuntu I’ll also discuss the benefits and drawbacks of using either OS together with a comparison of gaming, thermals, and power usage as well as a brief look at overclocking potential and implications together with highlighting the issues encountered. NUC9i9QNX Hardware Overview The model I purchased and will be reviewing here is the NUC9i9QNX from Intel’s Ghost Canyon lineup and is formally known as the Intel NUC 9 Extreme Kit – NUC9i9QNX. It contains a “Compute Element” with an i9-9980HK which is an eight-core 16-thread 2.40 GHz processor boosting to 5.00 GHz with Intel’s UHD Graphics 630. The full specifications of the NUC9i9QNX include: The NUC9i9QNX is sold as a kit which essentially means barebones as it consists of a case containing a baseboard, […]
Whilst Windows mini PCs have traditionally used Intel processors similar small form factor (SFF) devices using AMD based processors have recently been announced and Beelink is amongst the first manufacturers to deliver one with their newly released GT-R mini PC. Available as a barebones device and in various configurations Beelink sent a fully configured model for review. Hardware overview The Beelink GT-R is a slightly larger mini PC physically consisting of a 168 mm x 120 mm x 39 mm (6.61 x 4.72 x 1.54 inches) rectangular metal case with a plastic top. It is an actively cooled mini PC that uses a (previous generation) Zen+ microarchitecture 12 nm Ryzen 5 3550H mobile processor which is a quad-core 8-thread 2.1 GHz processor boosting to 3.7 GHz with Radeon Vega 8 Graphics. The front panel has a power button, two 3.0 USB ports, a headphone jack, and a Type-C USB port that supports video. Also on the front panel is an […]
No sooner had I written ‘Beelink T45 Review with Windows and Linux, and Tweaking BIOS Power Limits’ than Beelink announce they wouldn’t in fact sell that configuration but an ‘updated’ version. And it is significantly different because this new version is now actively cooled and uses an Apollo Lake N4200 processor. It also still has the same name: the Beelink Gemini T45. I’ve now reviewed this new version and you may experience déjà vu on reading the following as in keeping with Beelink’s philosophy I’ve basically reused the same text as before and just updated where appropriate. Beelink have further extended their ‘Gemini’ range of mini PCs by adding the T45. This is an actively cooled mini PC that uses the slightly older Apollo Lake Intel Pentium N4200 CPU which is a quad-core 4-thread 1.10 GHz processor boosting to 2.50 GHz with Intel’s HD Graphics 505. The T45 is a ‘NUC’ style mini PC physically consisting of a 119 x […]
Intel’s NUC mini PC range is familiar to anyone who has looked for a very small compact and functional PC. But they, and similarly sized mini PCs in general, have a notable limitation when compared to desktops and also many high-end laptops in that the graphics performance is somewhat restricted because it is typically provided by the processor’s integrated graphics. Whilst these integrated graphics are suitable for browsing, video playback, and the office style applications that the devices have been marketed towards, they are normally insufficient for gaming as only low framerates are obtainable. Intel initially tried to address this gaming shortfall through the introduction of the Intel Skull Canyon (NUC6i7KYK) NUC which came with a 6th-gen Skylake Core i7-6770HQ that included Iris Pro Graphics 580 and at the time with their 72 EUs (Executions Units) was Intel’s most powerful integrated GPU. Additionally, the Skull Canyon also featured a (USB-C) Thunderbolt 3 port which created the possibility of connecting an […]
Intel’s low-cost chip shortage has been so bad that Beelink has had to demothball some Atom chips when creating their new mini PC the Beelink BT4. This is one of the cheapest new mini PCs recently launched and uses the somewhat now old Cherry Trail Intel Atom x5-Z8500 CPU which was launched at the start of 2015 and is a quad-core 4-thread 1.44 GHz processor boosting to 2.24 GHz with Intel’s HD Graphics. The BT4 is the same form factor as the more recent Beelink mini PCs being a half-thick ‘NUC’ style device physically consisting of a 120 x 120 x 22 mm (4.72 x 4.72 x 0.87 inches) plastic rectangular case. This is not a passive device as it contains a small fan that stays on after the device has been shut down. The front panel has only a blue ‘power’ LED and the rear panel includes the power button, power jack, VGA port, HDMI port, a gigabit Ethernet […]
[Update December 23, 2019: We’ve been informed by Beelink that the T45 has been updated to the 6W Celeron N4200 processor instead, and the system is now cooled with a fan. The model reviewed in this post is the fanless version with a 10W Intel J4250 processor, which was never sold] [Update January 30, 2020: We’ve now posted a review of the new model at Beelink Gemini T45 Pentium N4200 Mini PC Review] Beelink have further extended their ‘Gemini’ range of mini PCs by adding the T45. This is a passively cooled mini PC that is effectively a companion to the J45 as it again uses the slightly older Apollo Lake Intel Pentium J4205 CPU which is a quad-core 4-thread 1.50 GHz processor boosting to 2.60 GHz with Intel’s HD Graphics 505. Although the T45 is a ‘NUC’ style mini PC physically consisting of a 119 x 119 x 17.7 mm (4.69 x 4.69 x 0.70 inches) all-metal (and surprisingly […]
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