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Configuration Table, Continued

13 Barebones Reviewed Are Anything But Square
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Manufacturer / Model Asus Pundit AB-P 2800 Shuttle XPC SB81P Shuttle XPC ZEN ST62K Shuttle XPC SB83G5
Dimensions 360 x 94 x 295mm 330x 220 x 220mm 190 x 165 x 285mm 332x 190 x 200mm
Connectivity & Operation
Front
USB 2x USB 2.0 Type A 2x USB 2.0 Type A 2x USB 2.0 Type A 2x USB 2.0 Type A
Firewire IEEE 1394 1x 4-pin, 1x 6-pin 1x 6-pin no 1x 6-pin
Audio 1x mic, 1x headphones, 1x SPDIF 1x mic, 1x headphones 1x mic, 1x headphones, 1x Line-Out 1x mic, 1x headphones
Card reader SD, MMC, SM, MS SD, MMC, SM, MS, CF no no
PC-Card (PCMCIA) 1x no no no
Function buttons Power On Power On, Reset Power On, Reset Power On, Reset
Drive bays 1x 5.25 " & 1x 3.5 " 1x 5.25 " & 1x 3.5 " 1x 5.25 " & 1x 3.5 " 1x 5.25 " & 1x 3.5 "
Display
Display included no no no no
Info shown in display n/a n/a n/a n/a
Back
PS/2 2x 2x 2x 2x
Monitor-out 1xVGA, 1x DVI 1xVGA, (no DVI) 1xVGA, (no DVI) 1xVGA, (no DVI)
USB 2x USB 2.0 Type A 2x USB 2.0 Type A 2x USB 2.0 Type A 2x USB 2.0 Type A
Firewire IEEE 1394a no 1x 6-pin 2x 6-pin 1x 6-pin
Serial/ Parallel ports 1x / 1x 1x / no 1x / no 1x / no
Audio 3x (can be used for 5.1) 5x (als 7.1 nutzbar), 1x Coaxial 3x (can be used for 5.1) 3x (can be used for 5.1), 1x Coaxial
LAN 1x (10/100) 1x (10/100/1000) 1x (10/100) 1x (10/100/1000)
S-Video / Composite (Cinch) yes / yes no / no yes / no no / no
Modem no no no no
Motherboard
Chipset
Northbridge/ Southbridge ATI RS300 / IXP200 Intel 915G (Grantsdale) / ICH6R ATI RS300 / IXP200 Intel 915G (Grantsdale) / ICH6R
CPU Socket PGA 478 LGA 775 PGA 478 LGA 775
CPU Support Intel Pentium 4, (incl. Prescott) Intel Pentium 4 (Prescott / Teyess) Intel Pentium 4, (incl. Prescott) Intel Pentium 4 (Prescott / Teyess)
FSB Clock 400, 533, 800 MHz 533, 800 MHz 400, 533, 800 MHz 533, 800 MHz
Memory
Type DDR SDRAM DDR SDRAM DDR SDRAM DDR SDRAM
Classification DDR266 - DDR400 DDR333 - DDR400 DDR266 - DDR400 DDR333 - DDR400
Mode Dual-Channel Dual-Channel Dual-Channel Dual-Channel
Slots 2 2 2 2
Max. memory 2 GB 4 GB 2 GB 4 GB
On-board Graphics
Manufacturer/ chipset ATI RS300 Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 900 (i915G) ATI RS300 Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 900 (i915G)
Graphics memory used Framebuffer 8, 16, 32, 64, 128 Framebuffer 1,4,8, 16, 32 Fixed Memory 64 oder 128 MByte Framebuffer 8, 16, 32, 64, 128 Framebuffer 1,4,8, 16, 32 Fixed Memory 64 oder 128 MByte
Internal I/O Components
Hard disk controller ATI IXP200 ICH6R ATI IXP200 ICH6R
IDE Channels 2x UltraATA/100 1x UltraATA/100 2x UltraATA/100 1x UltraATA/100
S-ATA Channels no/no 4x S-ATA 150 no/no 2x S-ATA 150
RAID Support no yes, only via S-ATA no yes, only via S-ATA
Floppy Controller yes yes yes yes
Network Controller RTL 8801BL Broadcom Gigabit RTL 8100C Marvell 88E8001 Gigabit
Expansion Slots
PCI slots 2x 32 Bit PCI 2.3 1x 32 Bit PCI 2.3 1x 32 Bit PCI 2.3 1x 32 Bit PCI 2.3
PCI Express no 1x (16 Lanes) no 1x (16 Lanes)
AGP no no no no
On-Board Audio
Type AC97 2.2 AC97 2.2 AC97 2.2 AC97 2.2
Surround Support 5.1 Channel 7.1 Channel 5.1 Channel 5.1 Channel
Power Supply
Manufacturer Delta Electronics unknown Shuttle (external) Shuttle
Model DPS-200PB-138C unknown PC32B180HR PC40
Watt max. 125 Watt unknown max. 180 Watt max. 250 Watt
Fans
CPU 1x 70mm 1x 70mm, 1x 80mm n/a 1x 92mm
System n/a 2x 60mm 1x 80mm n/a
Chipset n/a n/a n/a n/a
Power supply 1x 80mm 1x 80mm n/a 2x 40mm
Accessories
User Manual English English English English
Cables S-ATA, IDE, Floppy S-ATA, IDE, Floppy IDE, Floppy S-ATA, IDE, Floppy
Remote control no no no no
Software drivers, bundled software drivers, InterVideo Home Theater drivers, bundled software drivers, InterVideo Home Theater
Other screws cable ties, thermal paste, screws cable ties, thermal paste, screws cable ties, thermal paste, screws

This Is How We Tested

For this test, we looked at the loudness and heat generation and not the speed measurements of the motherboards. We used an Intel Pentium 4 3.2 GHz for the Socket 478 or alternatively a P4 3.6 GHz for the Socket 775. For the AMD versions, we used an Athlon 64 3400+.

The assembly of the hardware and barebone was also evaluated as well as the cable routing and the edges on the mini PCs.

To measure the sound level, we used the SL-4001 from Lutron, held at 50 cm from the barebone. The distance was set to 50 cm because the barebone is usually put on the table and is consequently not more than 50 cm away from the ears. Two measurements were taken. One was taken when the barebone was in idle mode and one was taken after approximately 30 minutes with the CPU under a full load.

We used the FAN-O-Matic from Innovatec for the temperature measurements. Many heat sensors were attached to the barebone for the temperature measurements. A sensor was placed in the cooling fins of the CPU fan, one on the hard disk, one on the DVD drive and one outside on the power supply. For each barebone, the measurements took three hours, during which the onboard graphics was used. With the test program Prime95, the CPU and the motherboard were heated up or alternatively loaded.

The scope of delivery and the configuration of the barebone were also included in the evaluation.

Test Equipment

We equipped the barebones with the hardware shown below. This included an AGP and a PCI Express graphics card to replace the onboard graphics. To ensure that the graphics card fans didn’t affect the decibel measurement, the noise measurements were only taken with the onboard graphics. If the barebone didn’t have onboard graphics, like the Soltek QBIC for example, a passively cooled graphics card was used.

Small fan : makes noise like a large one

The operating system is on a Seagate S-ATA disk

The Corsair dynamic duo : Should be 2 x 512 megaBytes

5.25" drives have different depths. Things that are unimportant in a midi tower can cause installation problems in a barebone. Therefore, another item on our checklist was how well the hardware installed and where the weak points were. In the process, two additional items were checked : how is the cabling and the workmanship of the barebone case ?

Every centimeter can save space for the cabling

Summary
  1. Searching For The Quiet Barebone
  2. The Way It Should Be
  3. The Way It Should Be, Continued
  4. Test Candidates With AGP Graphics Slot
  5. AOpen XC Cube AV (EA65): The Multi-talent
  6. Under The Hood
  7. Pros And Cons
  8. AOpen XC Cube EX65: Design Is A Matter Of Taste
  9. Under The Hood
  10. AOpen XC Cube EY65: A Lot Of Intel Platforms
  11. Under The Hood
  12. ASUS Terminator 2 T2 Offers An Arnold Double Team
  13. Under The Hood
  14. Pros And Cons
  15. MSI MEGA Barebones: Two Unequal Brothers
  16. PC Alert 4: Monitoring of the temperature and fan speed
  17. MSI MEGA180: The AMD Version
  18. Pros And Cons
  19. MSI MEGA865: Suitable For Intel Pentium 4 CPUs
  20. Pros And Cons
  21. Jetway MiniQ Twin: Two Users Simultaneously
  22. Under The Hood
  23. Pros And Cons
  24. Soltek QBic EQ3801A: AMD64 Power Barebone
  25. Under The Hood
  26. Pros And Cons
  27. Test Candidates Without An AGP Graphics Slot
  28. Under The Hood
  29. Pros And Cons
  30. Shuttle XPC ZEN: Smallest Barebone With External Power Supply
  31. Under The Hood
  32. Pros And Cons
  33. Test Candidates With A PCI Express Slot
  34. Under The Hood
  35. Pros And Cons
  36. Shuttle XPC SB83G5: VW Meets Barebone
  37. Under The Hood
  38. Pros And Cons
  39. Noise Measurements: All Candidates At A Glance
  40. Configuration Table
  41. Configuration Table, Continued
  42. Configuration Table, Continued
  43. Test Equipment, Continued
  44. Accessories: Useful, Useless And Comical
  45. Shuttles TFT In An XPC Design
  46. Shuttle XP17, Specifications
  47. Shuttle PC40: Upgrade To Quiet Power Supply
  48. Lights Go On In The Peripheral Connectors
  49. Molex Connector: Let There Be Color
  50. RAM Freezer From Revoltec
  51. Area 51 Is Everywhere: The Aliens Have Landed
  52. Conclusion
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