Monday, July 7, 2014

Silent NUC alternative from Gigabyte for XBMC use

This is not really a NUC, but it's a low cost out-of-the-box fanless NUC-sized PC - Something that many would like to see in the NUC lineup. Gigabyte has released an interesting NUC-sized miniature computer with a bit more punch than the Intel DE3815TYKHE packs, but still keeping it fanless! Enter Gigabyte BRIX GB-BXBT-2807.

It's already available from Amazon for around $130/€120. Click here to check the latest price!

This tiny PC has a rather nice feature list:

  • Features dual-core 2.16 GHz Intel Bay Trail Celeron N2807, max. TDP 4.3 watts
  • Supports a single 2.5 inch hard drive or SSD (1 x 3Gbps SATA2)
  • Ultra compact design – 0.69 liters (56.1x 107.6 x 114.4mm)
  • 1x SO-DIMM DDR3L Slots (1333 MHz)
  • Preinstalled 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi / Bluetooth 4.0 Mini-PCIe card
  • Supports dual displays via a VGA and a HDMI port
  • 1 USB 3.0 port and 2 USB 2.0 ports
  • Gigabit LAN (Realtek)
  • Audio jack (Headphone/MIC)
  • VESA mounting bracket (75 x 75mm + 100 x 100mm)

First user reports confirm that OpenELEC runs well on the BRIX as is expected. However, the same limitations that still apply to all Bay Trail systems also apply here:
  • More sophisticated upscaling methods will exhaust the GPU, don't expect anything but Bilinear upscaling to work. Not an issue if you just watch HD content.
  • More sophisticated deinterlacing methods are too demanding for the GPU. Not an issue mainly if you don't need live TV content.
When the Intel graphics drivers will support certain hardware accelerated deinterlacing and scaling features, some of these limitations might go away. Or might not.

Comparison with Bay Trail NUC DN2820FYKH

You can't help but to notice that the specs are very similar to Intel DN2820FYKH NUC. The two boxes are very similar, but some differences remain. Most notably the Gigabyte is fanless, but has a slightly less powerful CPU and lacks an IR receiver. The two models are prices almost identically! The Gigabyte box wins in the looks department though. :)

FeatureGigabyte GB-BXBT-2807Intel NUC DN2820FYKH
CPUIntel BayTrail Celeron N2807Intel BayTrail Celeron N2820 (N2830 later)
CPU cores22
CPU clock speed1.58 GHz2.13 GHz
CPU burst frequency2.16 GHz2.39 GHz
CPU max TDP4.3 W7.5 W
Maximum memory4 Gb8 Gb
GPU base frequency313 MHz313 MHz
GPU burst frequency750 MHz756 MHz
Supports Intel Quick SyncYesNo
2.5-inch drive supportYesYes
WLAN and BlueToothYesYes
Infrared ReceiverNoYes

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