Gigabyte BRIX Pro Mini-PC Review

Others/All-in-one PC by leeghoofd @ 2014-04-22

Does size really matter? On some human levels it might, though a different trend has been observed in the PC market over the last year. Compact is the key word, featuring mITX sized motherboards and idem ditto enclosures. These compact PCs are playing a more and more important role in every manufacturers' lineup: Mini PCs, NUCs, they are all amongst us now. For most users the bundled power is more than plenty as the size maters the most. Nevertheless combining the raw power of a desktop setup inside a mini sized housing is a step in another direction. Gigabyte is having big success with their Brix boxes, time to step up one level. Today we are going to test one of these Gigabyte supercharged versions: the BRIX Pro.

  • next

Unboxing the Barebone

Gigabyte's high-end barebone is packed in a flashy cardboard box, one side allowing a clear view on the BRIX Pro's design, the other side highlighting the technical specifications of this Ultra compact PC kit.




The BRIX Pro is a barebone, meaning one needs to add a few more hardware components, before being able to enjoy blistering speed in ultra compact shape. The BRIX Pro we received from our colleagues at Gigabyte NL was based on the high end Intel Haswell i7-4770R processor, featuring 4 cores with Hyperthreading feature. Another BRIX Pro version is available with the 4 core Intel i7-4570R processor. The latter features no Hyperthreading, thus is also slightly cheaper. Nevertheless the strong point, besides the massive calculating power for both processors is the onboard Intel Iris Pro 5200 graphics. The i5-4570R equipped model comes in a red flavor, while the flagship 4770R is housed in a more classic black model. There is also an AMD model available with an APU A8-5557M Richland processor.



Here's a quick comparison between the two Intel R models and the desktop flagship the i7-4770K:



Intel also manufactures an i5-4670R model, boosting higher core clocks at 3 GHz (vs 2.7GHz) and Turbo speeds at 3.7GHz than the i5-4570R processor. The Iris Pro graphics core runs at similar speeds of 1.3GHz as the HD 5200 of the i7-4770R.

Before we go a bit deeper on the rest of the included hardware some more snippets of the outside of the Gigabyte BRIX Pro. The dimensions of the unit are 11 x 11 x 6.2cm (LxWxH) which is a considerable increase over the normal Brix models. Biggest difference is the added support for a 2.5" HDD or SSD and the beefier cooling which is required to keep the temperatures of the Intel i7-4570R and i7-4770R models under control.

So what does one need to get up and running, besides the BRIX Pro unit:

  • DDR3L SO-DIMM memory ( 1.35vDimm )
  • mSATA SSD and/or a 2.5" drive or SSD






The Gigabyte team achieved to pack a whole lot of power inside a stylish gorgeous design. One directly spots the numerous cutouts for extra ventilation.



One one side Gigabyte provided the end-user with two USB 3.0 ports and a SPDIF jack; the rear part houses another two USB3.0 ports, the Gigabit RJ45 LAN port powered by a Realtek RTL8111G chip, a HDMI and a mini-Display port. The HDMI port supports a 4K resolution output of 4096 x 2304 pixels.




  • next

No comments available.