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'Jack PC' Mimics Wall Outlet, Looks Awesome

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 42 comments

Here's a good way to conserve space by mounting a compact PC in a wall, desk, or in the floor.

Chip PC offers a rather unique approach to thin client PCs by creating the "Jack PC" rigs which can mount in a wall like an electrical socket. Even more, the compact computers can be mounted in a desk or in the floor, creating a less cluttered, less geeky environment.

"The Jack PC's patented technology enables converting a standard LAN jack into a fully managed desktop PC, offering VDI support and connectivity to any type of popular Terminal, Citrix or Legacy server," the company explained. "The thin client is designed to be powered by standard Power-over-Ethernet and can also be powered externally."

The company offers three models--one entry-level PC and two high-end solutions. The Jack PC EFI-6700 is the VGA-only, low-end model sporting the Alchemy Au 1550 CPU clocked at 333 MHz (equivalent to x86 800 MHz), 32 MB of Disk-On-Chip (DOC) memory, 64 MB of RAM, 4 MB of dedicated video memory, 10/100 Fast Ethernet, optional wireless capabilities, 4 USB ports and audio jacks. It also has a max resolution of 1260 x 1024 @ 16M

The higher end VGA-only Jack PC EFI-7800 is somewhat similar, using the same processor but at a higher 500 MHz clock (x86 1.2 GHz). As expected, its hardware is a bit beefier providing 256 MB of DOC, 128 MB of RAM, and 8 MB of dedicated memory. It also has 4 USB ports, audio jacks, and offers a max resolution of 1600 x 1200 @ 64k.

The Jack PC EFI-7900 is the only PC-in-a-faceplate rig in the group to provide dual display support. It actually sports the same hardware specs as the EFI-6800, however DVI-I replaces the standard VGA jack. The device also provides a max resolution of 1920 x 1200 when using only one display, and a max resolution of 1024 x 768 when using dual displays.

All three Jack PC models run Windows CE 6.0, measure just 2.78 x 4.56 x 1.58-inches and weighs around 12 ounces. Power consumption is a mere 5W maximum while active and 0.35W while asleep.

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  • 16 Hide
    Darkerson , November 3, 2010 11:10 PM
    Hmmm. Not really sure what good use those could have.
    Not dissing on them, per say, but I don't really see any practical application for them. Im sure someone might have a use for them, though.
    Just because you can make something really really small, doesnt mean you should. But to each there own I guess.
  • 13 Hide
    Mr Pizza , November 3, 2010 10:58 PM
    Wow..
Other Comments
  • 13 Hide
    Mr Pizza , November 3, 2010 10:58 PM
    Wow..
  • 16 Hide
    Darkerson , November 3, 2010 11:10 PM
    Hmmm. Not really sure what good use those could have.
    Not dissing on them, per say, but I don't really see any practical application for them. Im sure someone might have a use for them, though.
    Just because you can make something really really small, doesnt mean you should. But to each there own I guess.
  • 5 Hide
    Darkv1 , November 3, 2010 11:16 PM
    This gives new meaning to the term "small form factor"
  • 7 Hide
    molo9000 , November 4, 2010 12:06 AM
    Since when is a thin client a PC?
  • 6 Hide
    hellwig , November 4, 2010 12:21 AM
    blazeorangemanjust get a cloud and get over it...this is like running CAT6 cable throughout your house to realize that Wireless is right around the corner

    What are you going to connect to the cloud to? This is a terminal client, it doesn't run anything locally. Nothing says the server you connect to has to be in the building, it could be remote, and you connect over the internet. That's kinda the whole idea of cloud computing, isn't it?

    And don't forget, Cat6 gets you gigabit, you'll be lucky if you get 400mbps with your Wireless-N router sitting a foot from your computer.
  • 3 Hide
    victorintelr , November 4, 2010 12:24 AM
    Quote:
    It also has a max resolution of 1260 x 1024 @ 16M

    Either That's a mistake or... the resolution is 20 pixels off o_O
  • -2 Hide
    Flameout , November 4, 2010 12:34 AM
    "All three Jack PC models run Windows CE 6.0" = fail
  • 2 Hide
    fellskrazykayaker , November 4, 2010 12:42 AM
    hellwigWhat are you going to connect to the cloud to? This is a terminal client, it doesn't run anything locally. Nothing says the server you connect to has to be in the building, it could be remote, and you connect over the internet. That's kinda the whole idea of cloud computing, isn't it?And don't forget, Cat6 gets you gigabit, you'll be lucky if you get 400mbps with your Wireless-N router sitting a foot from your computer.
    Not to mention there are certain security implications you have to worry about with wireless.
  • 4 Hide
    rubix_1011 , November 4, 2010 12:43 AM
    You guys aren't trying to see that the real application here is something like an office building where users don't require much computing power, or a retail store whose current terminals are bulky and slow. This isn't necessarily for the home user, but it could be a great solution for the grandparents who only need to book vacations, send emails and look at pictures of the grandkids.
  • 1 Hide
    kelemvor4 , November 4, 2010 12:43 AM
    Might be an interesting choice for businesses looking to switch back to 1970's client/server (buzzword: cloud computing). Nice power numbers; even with a few big beefy servers on the back end you could probably save some serious dough on power in a call center with say 1000 machines.

    How expensive are they? I'd say it'd be OK if they're in the ~$100 price range (given the specs).

    As much as I prefer DVI over hdmi on my pc, I think the form factor screams for mini hdmi instead of DVI.
  • 0 Hide
    cammmy , November 4, 2010 1:14 AM
    I remember reading about this when I was in school...
  • 2 Hide
    warmon6 , November 4, 2010 2:31 AM
    kelemvor4Might be an interesting choice for businesses looking to switch back to 1970's client/server (buzzword: cloud computing). Nice power numbers; even with a few big beefy servers on the back end you could probably save some serious dough on power in a call center with say 1000 machines.How expensive are they? I'd say it'd be OK if they're in the ~$100 price range (given the specs).As much as I prefer DVI over hdmi on my pc, I think the form factor screams for mini hdmi instead of DVI.


    You dont want to know......

    http://www.cdw.com/shop/search/results.aspx?key=Jack+PC+EFI&searchscope=All&sr=1&Find+it.x=35&Find+it.y=14
  • 1 Hide
    warmon6 , November 4, 2010 2:34 AM
    rubix_1011You guys aren't trying to see that the real application here is something like an office building where users don't require much computing power, or a retail store whose current terminals are bulky and slow. This isn't necessarily for the home user, but it could be a great solution for the grandparents who only need to book vacations, send emails and look at pictures of the grandkids.


    well said. Could also be used if you're looking into max power saving along high amount of computers like kelemvor4 mentioned.
  • -5 Hide
    mman74 , November 4, 2010 2:35 AM
    But you still need a monitor - wait there are PCs built into those as well.
    Then there is the keyboard - wait Asus already built a PC in one of those as well.
    Whatever next, a PC in a mouse? A PC in your clothes? A PC embedded in your body
  • 0 Hide
    thechief73 , November 4, 2010 2:35 AM
    Old or new, this is a very creative design, kudos to the inventor. But with those low specs it seems that this will run word or some other business application, and some light surfing or checking email. I have no experience with Win CE, but this just seems to be a litte lacking under the hood.

    [Edit] HOLY COW!!! I just followed the link on Warmon's post a few up, seems that these were priced far to high to justify the small form-factor. You can get many different styles of compact desktops at a far more reasonable price and with much higher processing power. I fail to see the advantages outweighing the cons of this product.
  • 0 Hide
    gsacks , November 4, 2010 3:06 AM
    Quote:
    Even more, the compact computers can be mounted in a desk or in the floor, creating a less cluttered, less geeky environment.

    You mean MORE geeky environment. That is good thing, BTW.
  • -6 Hide
    wotan31 , November 4, 2010 3:06 AM
    mman74Whatever next, a PC in a mouse? A PC in your clothes? A PC embedded in your body

    No. What's next, is you realize that peecee's suck, and you get a Mac.
  • 0 Hide
    f-14 , November 4, 2010 3:23 AM
    rubix_1011You guys aren't trying to see that the real application here is something like an office building where users don't require much computing power, or a retail store whose current terminals are bulky and slow. This isn't necessarily for the home user, but it could be a great solution for the grandparents who only need to book vacations, send emails and look at pictures of the grandkids.

    +1 dude, great idea to use as a point of sale device
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