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Pros: - nice looking with black heat sinks and lots of VRMs
- no on board video
- can handle 125w CPUs
- has a PCIe 4x slot
- 2 PWM fan headers
- up to 64GiB of RAM
- USB3 support
- still supports PS/2!
Cons: - wacky uefi bios with apparently no classic mode
- odd PCIe layout. Wish that the PCIe 16x slot covered a 1x instead of PCI but it's not a big deal.
- may need a fan to blow across VRMs to avoid overheating
Other Thoughts: I needed a home of a Hexacore Phenom II I had lying around and this was the only uATX board that I could find still in production. The board isn't quite full uATX length and I ended up using a couple of plastic posts in the outer most screw holds to hold up the board.
I have an older 7850 installed and can easily play 2048x1150 in Rebel Galaxy with all the settings turned up. It's very smooth and looks great. If you need a uATX AM3+ board this is probably the only game in town, but it seems like a reasonable one. Need to burn the system in a bit more, but very promising so far.
This review is from: SUPERMICRO MBD-A1SAM-2550F-O uATX Server Motherboard FCBGA 1283 DDR3 1600/1333
Pros: - low power
- 4 gig ports built in (Intel NICs)
- server grade
- lots of expandability
- full size DIMM slots
Cons: - pricey
Other Thoughts: I've had this in service since May. Running VyOS this has been an incredibly stable platform. I've pumped 54 terabytes of data through this no problem. My internet connection is via Fiber To The Node, and I can easily sustain over 5MiB/s with 6iMB/s peaks.
I had some spare Buffered ECC DIMMs lying around from previous server upgrades, Booting from a budget SSD this thing is incredibly reliable. I would consider using this to build a low power ZFS server too as it has plenty of SATA and it would be trivial to add a PCIe SAS controller.
This review is from: Acer Chromebox CXI-2GKM Celeron 2957U (1.40GHz) 2GB DDR3L 16GB SSD Google Chrome OS
Pros: - good value for money on sale
- upgradeable (m.2 SSD and Memory)
- easy to take apart, though many many screws
- 2 SODIMM slots for DD3L - potentially up to 16G of RAM
- CoreBoot so they boot very quickly
- somes with mounting bracket
- Good for streaming content (h.264)
- upgrades handled by google
- comes with 5GHz 802.11n (way better than chromecast over crowded 2.4)
Cons: - slightly noisy compared to ASUS
- chromeOS (though to some might be an advantage)
- annoying to take apart but no glue or weird clips
- keyboard and mouse are poor and wired
- power LED is horrendously bright
Other Thoughts: I got mine on sale. I have other chromeboxes which I've repurposed as small quiet and useful general purpose linux boxes. This one is staying a chrome box. I specifically bought this to stream video to a 1080p TV. It does this job admirably with Chome OS 42.
If you like ChromeOS, then you already know what to expect. Low maintenance, regular updates and the ability to nuke it from orbit quickly and easily using a built in factory reset mode. Streaming content via a browser is a snap.