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Asrock Dishes New Details On DeskMini Mini-STX PC

At CES, Asrock told us about a new SFF PC in the works that uses Intel's mini-STX form factor. After a few more months of development, Asrock has new details to share on this system, which it has named "DeskMini."

The design doesn't appear to have changed much from what we were shown before. The 1.82L case is large enough to just barely fit in the motherboard, Intel stock cooler and two 2.5-inch storage drives. There isn't enough space for any PCI-E devices, but there are two M.2 slots, one configured for M.2 SATA devices and the other an M.2 Key E.

Although this system isn't the first to be sold in such a small form factor, Asrock is relying on the performance of socketed desktop CPUs to beat out the competition. Most if not all other systems produced at this size use soldered CPUs, typically mobile or ultra-low power chips in order to keep the heat production inside of the case down.

Asrock, however, feels confident that it will be able to keep desktop Skylake CPUs cool. This makes the design more user-friendly for enthusiasts that may want to upgrade the CPU later. It also keeps end users' options open, as they aren't limited to a handful of SKUs.

Asrock has not set a price nor release date yet for its DeskMini products. We expect to learn more at Computex in June.

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  • TechyInAZ
    Finally a better version of the NUC!! The NUC and Gigabyte BRIX are nice, but they always have overheating issues. At least you get good cooling with this kind of form factor.
    Reply
  • gggplaya
    Will be interesting for a home built NAS server. Then someone needs to make a 2-4 bay case for miniSTX. A 90W brick power supply should be able to handle that.
    Reply
  • why_wolf
    Did they ever say if they were trying for an internal PSU or if it would be an external brick? I'm guessing external brick but an internal sure would be nice.
    Reply
  • bit_user
    Lol, that thing looks like a big dust trap.

    I'm still hoping for separate cases & mobos. Seems to me that's the whole point of having a standard form factor. Then, I can get a nice case to go with an ARM-based mini-STX board.
    Reply
  • robodan918
    This thing looks like a taller version of the Mini-box M350 (ITX case - possibly the smallest available). It's been out since at least 2009 and is still my favourite case. Waiting for next gen ITX boards with thunderbolt 3 so I can just run the board, i7, RAM, & M.2 SSD off a 120W pico PSU + eGPU case for graphics card.
    Reply
  • Lutfij
    This is a potential product for small living room,s, compact office spaces and ofc people who would like to make a small NAS provided they have a spare Skylake CPU in their spare parts bin :P

    Wonder what sort of network connectivity we're going to see on this little pug...?
    Reply
  • IInuyasha74
    I believe Asrock is opting for an external power brick on this system. With the space, I doubt there would be room for one internally.

    It might be taller than the Mini-Box M350, but it is still overall smaller. The M350 is a 2.5 L volume case, while this one is less than 2 L.
    Reply
  • norseman4
    Finally a better version of the NUC!! The NUC and Gigabyte BRIX are nice, but they always have overheating issues. At least you get good cooling with this kind of form factor.

    So, what conditions cause a NUC to overheat? So far mine hasn't, though it's just HTPC, media consumption and some light gaming. (Though the last wasn't a very long session.)
    Reply
  • robodan918
    I believe Asrock is opting for an external power brick on this system. With the space, I doubt there would be room for one internally.

    It might be taller than the Mini-Box M350, but it is still overall smaller. The M350 is a 2.5 L volume case, while this one is less than 2 L.
    2L without the external power supply (which is not pictured, funnily enough)

    Whereas the M350 can handle a Pico PSU up to 150W
    Assuming you're running a newer i7 at 65W, M.2 SSD and RAM on the mobo (along with maybe 1-2 USB peripherals assuming you haven't gone full bluetooth) your power draw will be comfortably below that.

    Both the ITX in M350 and STX in the asrock case will require a Thunderbolt 3 port for an eGPU to be mildly versatile and useful.

    I want to like STX, but it's not adding any value vs ITX so far
    Reply
  • bit_user
    17881896 said:
    I believe Asrock is opting for an external power brick on this system. With the space, I doubt there would be room for one internally.
    Right. I'm pretty sure the Mini-STX standard dictates an external PSU.

    Hopefully, the connector is standard, so that we can buy higher-quality / higher-power aftermarket PSUs.
    Reply