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::>Multimedia > 2014 > 04 > GIGABYTE BRIX GB-XM14-1037

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17-04-2014


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GIGABYTE BRIX GB-XM14-1037 compact PC review

At the mention of the combination “compact PC” many readers imagine laptop. And it's true. These computers make it easy to organize a workplace without the need to look for any additional accessories or equipment.

There are distinctly different classes of computers with representative GIGABYTE BRIX GB-XM14-1037. Today this model will be a hero of our review. It has ultra-compact format of barebone-system (nettop) which requires monitor, keyboard and mouse. As a result we save the workspace and obtain comfortable work in front of a big screen with the ability to connect all the necessary peripherals.

In this review we will examine in detail the design, ergonomics, kitting and specifications, as well as compare the performance with competitors. Let us begin with the table specification.

 The specs:

Producer

GIGABYTE

Model

BRIX GB-XM14-1037

CPU

Intel Celeron 1037U: 2 cores (2 streams), 1800 MHz, 3L cache memory– 2 MB, TDP – 17W

Chipset

Intel NM70 Express

Memory support

2 x DDR3 SO-DIMM-slot 1600 / 1333 MHz with memory support up to 16 GB

Graphics adapter

Intel HD Graphics: core frequency – 350 MHz (max up to 1000 MHz);

video memory capacity is expanded dynamically by RAM

Disk subsystem

1 х mSATA SSD

Optical drive

-

Card-reader

-

Expansion slots

1 х mini-PCIe (Wi-Fi module)

Interfaces

2 x USB 2.0

1 х HDMI

1 х Mini DisplayPort

1 x RJ45

1 x power socket

1 х Kensington

Multimedia

Speakers

-

Audio codec

Intel HD Audio into chipset Intel NM70 Express

Communication

Network adapter

10/100/1000 Mbit/s (Realtek RTL8111E)

Wi-Fi

mini-PCIe WiFi-module 802.11n

Bluetooth

-

HSPA

-

PSU

Output parameters: 19 V DC, 3,42 А, 65 W.

Input parameters: 100~240 V AC at 50/60 Hz.

Others

The availability to mount the device on the wall or monitor using supplied VESA 75/100 mm fastening

Dimensions

114,6 x 107,9 x 29,9 mm

Weight

-

Color

Black

OS

No (Windows 7/8 is supported)

Warranty

1 year

Producer’s website

Product website

GIGABYTE TECHNOLOGY CO., LTD

GIGABYTE BRIX GB-XM14-1037

The first thing we paid the attention was the presence of only two USB 2.0 ports. For users who have a large number of mobile gadgets and peripheral units it may cause some inconvenience.

Hardware platform

CPU information

 

RAM information

Chipset and motherboard information

Graphics adapter information

Compact GIGABYTE BRIX GB-XM14-1037 computer is supplied with preinstalled dual-core CPU Intel Celeron 1037U which operates at 1.8 GHz frequency. The package does not include memory modules that’s why so for testing we have used two strips TwinMOS 9DECBMIB-TATP with capacity 2GB each operating at a frequency of 1333 MHz.

mSATA SSD-drive Transcend TS128GMSA740 with capacity 128GB was used as disk subsystem. And it also is not included into package.

Integrated graphics accelerator Intel HD Graphics includes 6 universal shader processors, 2 texture units and 2 rasterization blocks. Basic GPU frequency is 350 MHz, and dynamic – up to 1000 MHz.


Packaging and content

Computer GIGABYTE BRIX GB-XM14-1037 is shipped in a small cardboard box of black color. On the front side there are: the image of the device, the manufacturer's logo, as well as the notes about presence of Intel processor, wireless module and an ultra-compact case.

On the reverse side of the package all internal and external connectors as specified. Also here you can find dimensions of device and its accessories.
Additionally, on one of the faces there is a small sticker with the serial number and a brief specification of the model.

Set of delivery of GIGABYTE BRIX GB-XM14-1037 includes:

• power cable;
• power supply unit;
• VESA fastening and screws and mounts;
• CD drivers;
• user's manual.

Due to the fact that the manufacturer has taken care of a complete universal VESA mount, it became possible to place the unit on the backside of monitor or TV and improve the ergonomics of the workspace. Also it can be used for wall mounting.

Design

The dimensions of mini-computer case are 114,6 x 107,9 x 29,9 mm. It is made of anodized aluminum painted in black color. The front panel is made of glossy plastic and is easily soiled.

Lower panel is made of aluminum and is held with four screws. Build quality of the device is at a high level and does not cause any complaints. Details are well adjusted and squeaks or gaps are absent.

Ergonomics, configuration

The only functional element of the top panel is the power button with blue LED in the centre.

Most connectors except one USB 2.0 port are centered on the backside of the case. Here are: HDMI, mini DisplayPort, USB 2.0, network interface RJ45, power socket and Kensington lock. Also here is a small ventilation grille used for hot air removal. As it can be seen GIGABYTE BRIX GB-XM14-1037 is not equipped with analog sockets for speaker and microphone connection. For these purposes you have to use HDMI, mini DisplayPort and USB 2.0 ports.

On the other backside there is one more perforated area intended to improve the ventilation inside the case.

On the bottom is a sticker with the serial number of the computer as well as information about compatible power supply unit with minimal power 65 W at voltage 19 V and current strength 3.42 A. Also there are four screws that fasten the secure cover and are the legs at the same time. Two small holes for VESA-compliant mounting allow to fix mini-computer on the back of your monitor or TV.

Internal composition

After removing the aluminum cover there is an opportunity to install the missing components. At the same time wireless Wi-Fi-module 802.11 n is already placed in mini-PCIe connector.

CPU turbine cooling system is fixed on the reverse side of the motherboard. It rejects the heated air outside the case and doesn’t effect on the temperature of other components.

Among the key elements it is important to note: Intel NM70 Express chipset, CPU Intel Celeron 1037U and chip ON Semiconductor NCP6131, which provides the control of four power phases (three for the CPU and one for GPU).

To support network connections there is GB LAN-Controller Realtek RTL8111E.

On the inner side of the case you can find installed antenna of Wi-Fi-module so you need to take into accounts this fact when placing the device on the desktop.

During testing of GIGABYTE BRIX GB-XM14-1037, we have used SSD-drive Transcend TS128GMSA740 with capacity 128GB equipped with NAND flash memory with multilevel cell structure (MLC) and two modules of RAM TwinMOS 9DECBMIB-TATP with frequency 1333 MHz and general capacity 4 GB.


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