MINIX NEO Z83-4U Review – Ubuntu 18.04, Kodi 18, and Xibo Digital Signage

MINIX NEO Z83-4U Review

MINIX NEO Z83-4U is a Cherry Trail mini PC pre-loaded with Ubuntu 18.04. I received a sample a little while ago, and in the first part of NEO Z83-4U review I checked out the specifications and hardware that appears to be exactly the same a MINIX NEO Z83-4 Pro mini PC, except for the eMMC flash capacity that has increased from 32GB to 64GB. Since the mini PC comes with an older Atom X5-Z8350 processor, and is designed for commercial applications, I’ve decided to make a slightly different review. We already now how the system is supposed to perform thanks to benchmarks with NEO Z83-4 mini PC running Windows 10 Pro, so I’ll just check the main features are working as expected in Ubuntu 18.04, test audio & video support in Kodi 18.1, and try out Xibo Linux open source digital signage CMS and player on the mini PC. MINIX NEO Z83-4U Initial Setup I connected various USB peripherals, an …

MINIX NEO Z83-4U Review – Part 1: Unboxing and Teardown

MINIX NEO Z83-4U Package

MINIX NEO Z83-4U Ubuntu mini PC was unveiled just a few days ago as the first mini PC from MINIX HK running a Linux operating systems, namely Ubuntu 18.04. The company has sent me a sample for evaluation, so as usual, I’ll first have a look at the hardware in the first part of the review, before reporting my experience with the mini PC in a few weeks. MINIX NEO Z83-4U Unboxing The company has done away with the black and green package for their Android TV boxes and Windows mini PC, and instead went with a purple and (Ubuntu) orange package. I already wrote the specifications in the announcement post, but here they are again on the back of the package. The main difference, in terms of terms, against MINIX NEO Z83-4 Pro (Windows 10 Pro) mini PC is that the storage has been upgraded to 64GB flash since we don’t need to bother with Windows retail license terms …

MINIX NEO Z83-4U Ubuntu 18.04 Mini PC Launched for $180

MINIX NEO Z83-4U Ubuntu Mini PC

Introduced in 2016, MINIX NEO Z83-4 was an Intel Cherry Trail Windows 10 (Home) mini PC powered by Intel Atom x5-Z8300 processor coupled with 4GB RAM and 32GB flash, which was followed by MINIX NEO Z83-4 Pro the next year with basically the same hardware specifications but based on Atom X5-Z8350 processor running Windows 10 Pro instead. The company has now launched another version with MINIX NEO Z83-4U model that comes with 64GB storage, and more importantly comes pre-loaded with Ubuntu 18.04, a rarity in today’s low power mini PC world. MINIX NEO Z83-4U Ubuntu mini PC specifications with bold highlights showing differences against NEO Z83-4 Pro model: SoC – Intel Atom x5-Z8350 “Cherry Trail” quad core processor @ 1.44 GHz / 1.92 GHz (Turbo) with 12 EU Intel Graphics HD graphics 400 @ 200 / 500 MHz (2W SDP) System Memory –  2 or 4GB DDR3L Storage – 64 GB eMMC 5.1 flash + micro SD slot Video Output …

PIPO X3 Windows Mini PC / PoS Integrates a Thermal Printer

PIPO X3 POS Thermal Printer

PIPO has launched several Windows 10 mini PC with a built-in touchscreen display suitable for PoS (Point of Sale) applications. You just had to connect your own thermal printer and/or barcode scanner. It now appears the company has taken their Atom x5 based PIPO X12 model and redesigned a case around the main board to integrate a thermal printer to print receipts. Meet PIPO X3. PIPO X3 specifications: SoC – Intel Atom x5-Z8350 “Cherry Trail” quad-core processor @ 1.44 GHz  / 1.92 GHz (Turbo) with Intel HD graphics 400 System Memory – 2 GB DDR3 Storage – 32 GB flash, and micro SD slot up to 64GB Display – 8.9″ PLS display with 1920×1200 resolution Video Output – HDMI 1.4a output Audio Output – HDMI, 3.5mm audio jack, built-in stereo speaker. Connectivity – 10/100M Ethernet ports, 802.11 b/g/n WiFi 4 and Bluetooth 4.0 with external antenna USB – 3x USB 2.0 host ports, 1x USB 3.0 port Printer Print Paper …

ATOMIC Pi Intel Atom x5 Board Goes for $34 and Up (Crowdfunding)

Following Raspberry Pi form factor, AAEON Up Board powered by an Intel Atom x5-Z8300 processor launched in 2015 for 89 Euros and up via a crowdfunding campaign. Since then, the company switched to Atom x5-Z8350, and now offers for the board for $99 US and up, with for example the 2GB RAM / 16GB flash version going for $109 excluding taxes and shipping. I’m mentioning this board, as there’s now a crowdfunding campaign for a larger board with similar specifications (x5-Z8350, 2GB RAM, 16GB flash) called ATOMIC Pi, and being offered for just $34 plus shipping by “Team IoT”. This looks too good to be true, but that’s intriguing so let’s have  closer look. ATOMIC Pi specifications: SoC – Intel Atom x5-Z8350 quad core processor @ up to 1.92GHz with Intel HD graphics System Memory – 2GB DDR3L-1600 Storage – 16GB eMMC flash, slot for SD expansion up to 256GB Video Output – HDMI port Connectivity Gigabit Ethernet via Realtek …

Qotom Q180P/Q190P Mini PC Comes with Four RS-232 DB9 Connectors

Earlier today, I covered Beelink KT03 “Client Computer”, an Apollo Lake barebone mini PC with two COM ports . But as you must already know, people on the Internet are hard to please, so some readers may have thought “meh, no Thunderbolt”, “lol, Apollo Lake… so old”, “where’s the NVMe socket?”. I won’t be addressing those concerns in this post, and instead I will focus on the “meh, only two COM ports, I need four!” crowd. So I went a little web search, and found another low power compact mini PCs with not two, but four COM ports. Qotom Q180P/Q190P are Cherry Trail mini PCs based on Intel Celeron J1800 / J1900 dual/quad core processor respectively. Qotom Q180P/Q190P specifications: SoC (one of the other) Intel Celeron J1800 dual core processor @ 2.41 GHz (base) / (turbo) 2.58 GHz with Intel HD graphics; 10W TDP Intel Celeron J1900 Quad core processor  @ 2.0 GHz/ 2.41 GHz with Intel HD graphics; 10W …

Mi Mini PC is a $150 Pocket-Sized Windows 10 Mobile PC with a 5″ Touchscreen Display (Crowdfunding)

Mi-Mini-PC

Around 2 years ago, I reviewed GOLE1 mini PC running Windows 10 and Android 5.1, powered by an Intel Atom x5-Z8300 Cherry Trail processor with 4GB RAM and 64GB SSD. It also came with a 5″ 1280×720 display and a battery, so you could use it on the go. I discovered several issues related to WiFi, USB 3.0, Windows 10 on a 5″ display, among others, but still found it was an interesting concept. Mi Mini PC – unrelated to Xiaomi Mi products – looks very similar to GOLE1, but comes with better specifications including an Atom x7 processor, 8GB RAM, and a 128GB SSD. Mi Mini PC specifications: SoC – Intel Atom x7-Z8750 quad core Cherry Trail processor @ 1.60 / 2.56 GHz with 16EU Intel HD Graphics; 2W SDP System Memory – 8 GB RAM Storage – 128 GB SSD (upgradeable to 256 or 512 GB) + micro SD card slot Display – 5″ touchscreen display with 1280×720 …

AAEON Releases an Intelligent Vending Machine Development Kit based on UP Board

Vending-Machine-Reference-Design

UP board is a low cost development board powered by an Intel Atom x5-Z8350 Cherry Trail processor with 1GB to 4GB RAM, and 16 to 64GB eMMC flash that mostly follows Raspberry Pi 3 form factor. AAEON is now offering an “intelligent vending development kit” featuring UP board together with a vending machine controller (VMC) board, a motor for the machine’s internal mechanisms, a camera, a QR Code device, and all the necessary cables, as well as optional WiFi and Bluetooth modules. Some details about AIOT-MSSP01 Mini SSP Vending control board: “Intel Intelligent Vending Based” Motor Control – 24V or 12V, Supports GPIO, DC, PWM Type, Supports up to 160 DC Motors Support LCD and Keypad Feature I/Os Vending machine specific interfaces / standards 1x MDB (MultiDrop Bus) 1x DEX (Digital EXchange) 1x Protocol A (EXE) 1x 1-WIRE 4-channel ADC x 1 4-channel Relay GPIO for 12V & 5V by switch x 1 2x 16 Bit GPIO 1x 8 Bit …