Intel has started an interesting trend of miniature computers with NUC (Next Unit of Computing) series, which served as inspiration for other manufacturers to further improve the concept. Gigabyte has its own series of the PC named Brix, and there have been several versions.
The adapter is very small, as we expected. It’s the same as the one you can find in a netbook and ultrabook models or less demanding laptops. Bearing in mind that it is declared to 65W, frankly we find it that perhaps even pre-sized for this device.
We really like what Gigabyte is further reduced case size compared to Intel’s reference solution. The miniaturization of computers itself as two packs of cigarettes is certainly a success and we should congratulate the manufacturer. Width of only 108 mm and a length of 114 mm ensure minimal “footprint” when the device is placed, so that in this position would not mind wherever you save it. Height of 29 mm made ??us wonder if Gigabyte has not forgotten any of the hardware.
While the build quality is very high, especially when you take into account the price target device. The frame is made of metal, while the upper and lower surface of the plastic. The same remark as Intel goes to the account of de upper surface is bright and very easy to scratch. Therefore, you have to be careful and to get used to frequent dusting.
Further reduction in size had its price, and of course we are talking about the number of available connectors. Number of USB’s only two, so we advise you to get a wireless peripherals that can work through a receiver, as is the case with the Logitech Unifying receiver, and the same can be achieved by buying a kit. Alternatively, you can pair it with Brix monitor that has USB ports, which would also help. In addition to two USB, there is one full-size HDMI that will most likely be used, or alternatively you can use the Mini DisplayPort except that you will need an adapter when using a standard DP cable. Finally there is a Gigabit LAN connector and power adapter. Audio connections are omitted, so you have to use the digital transmission of audio signals via HDMI or Display Port interface.
Visually, the exterior hides one more detail, and that is key for switching on and off. Illuminated by the LED, and is made of silver plastic, which contrasts with the rest of the body.
When you remove the four adjusting screw passing through the legs and remove the bottom plate, clearly visible components and organizations that Gigabyte took from Intel. Very thoughtful and practical, so that the utilization of space fantasy. Components that will probably not change the first and the most affordable. These are the memory and SSD, and as expected, the RAM is installed in the SO-DIMM slots. SSD takes mini PCI-Express slot, and everything is subject to miniaturization, so that both components are taken from mobile devices.
Below is a small cooler processor based on the Ivy Bridge architecture. Since this is a budget minded device, the decision was made on the Celeron 1007. This processor is relatively fresh, and appeared earlier this year on the market. The suffix “U” suggests that it is energy-saving version which proved to be true. This 22-nanometer CPU has declared the current consumption of only 17 W. It is very similar to the Pentium, possesses two core without HyperThreading technology, as well as several other features that characterize the Core range. Clock speed is lower than that which we have seen with Core i3 processor from Intel NUC’s, so Celeron 1007 runs on 1500 MHz.
The inside of the chassis is located the antenna is soldered to the metal surface in order to maximize the quality of the signals which are a very smart move .. Unfortunately, the built-in WiFi module does not support Bluetooth, which is a major omission, considering that the owners BT peripherals, made a saving USB port.
While Intel memory selected well-known manufacturer named Patriot, the Gigabyte in the decision fell to Transcend. Of course, it is the a lonely “value” module 4GB. Declared it to operate at a frequency of 1600 MHz. If you is not enough, you can always just add another module of the same or larger capacity, and over 8 GB feel it is totally insane installed in this little boy. Celeron processor will always be a bottleneck before it becomes RAM.
Specifications Brix Gigabyte GB-XM1-1007
Processor Intel Celeron 1007 1.5 GHz (17W)
Chipset Intel Express Chipset
RAM 1 x 4 GB Transcend 1600 MHz
VGA Intel HD Graphics
SSD 64 GB
Optics n / a
Wireless connection WiFi 802.11 b / g / n
Operating System Windows 7 32 bit
Dimensions (L x W x H in mm) 116.6 x 112.2 x 29.9
- Quieter and cooler than Intel NUC’s
- Absence of audio connectors
- Only two USB ports
- Lack of USB 3.0
- Lack of Bluetooth