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HP Desktop Computer Chromebox (J5N49UT#ABA) Celeron 2955U (1.4 GHz) 2 GB DDR3 16 GB SSD Google Chrome OS
  • Verified Owner
  • neweggOwned For: 1 week to 1 month

3 out of 5 eggs Supplied OS-Less ... Chrome OS Was NOT Installed, Restore Media Was NOT Supplied 05/08/2016

This review is from: HP Desktop Computer Chromebox (J5N49UT#ABA) Celeron 2955U (1.4 GHz) 2 GB DDR3 16 GB SSD Google Chrome OS

Pros: Economical for the function delivered

Intuitive to use.

Cons: OS was not installed, requiring me to laboriously read through various posts to find the source of a downloadable image of the emergency restore media.

I elected to use the USB stick method, and it worked the first time, but took some time.

Alas, VESA mount is an optional extra (but this can be re-purposed from an Intel NUC's VESA mount. or, possibly, a generic VESA mount.)

Other Thoughts: Mechanical design is very good, even for HP, which often skimps in that area.

I bought the Celeron 2955U version, which came with 2 GB of DDR3L-12800S RAM, and 16 GB of m.2 SSD.

I will very shortly be upgrading to 4 GB of RAM and 32 GB of SSD, which, of course, will require re-installation of the OS, but that is why I have the USB restore media, right?

So the best approach is to start with the USB restore media, and go from there.

05/08/2016 update ...

Now at 8 GB RAM and 64 GB of SSD.

Performance is certainly better, and probably because of the cooling fan, the box does not overheat, as competitive boxes are known to have done when upgraded.

So far, I have used the box with 2 (standard), 4 and 8 GB of PC3l-12800S RAM and 16 (standard), 32 and 64 GB of m.2 SSD, with all results being at least "good", and with the 8 GB/64 GB upgrade certainly much better than "good".

Incidentally, no crashes or hangs in any of these tests. The hp ChromeBox is solid as a rock, which is what one would expect and require from a network appliance.

I keep the removed RAM and SSD in a static-free "Zip lock" bag, along with the recovery media which is on a 4 GB USB 2.0 stick (an SD card is also an option).

The hp ChromeBox and its Chrome brower are fine, and I could see using this combo in a number of cases, but my main "Mac" remains a Shuttle SZ77R5 "Hackintosh", with a Core i7-2600K processor and 16 GB of PC3-12800 RAM, running OS X 10.9.5 with all updates and LOTS of applications which the hp ChromeBox CANNOT run.

ASRock Beebox N3000/B 2 x 204Pin SO-DIMM Mini / Booksize Barebone System
  • Verified Owner
  • neweggOwned For: 1 month to 1 year

5 out of 5 eggs 2.5" Drive Installation Hints 11/12/2015

This review is from: ASRock Beebox N3000/B 2 x 204Pin SO-DIMM Mini / Booksize Barebone System

Pros: The 2.5" drive option is indeed a tight fit, but the drive cables are intended to fit behind the RAM sockets, and not elsewhere.

When these cables are routed behind the RAM sockets, there is enough room for the cables there, and the cables are just long enough to reach the motherboard's connectors.

I have a 1 TB conventional (5,400 rpm) drive in my BeeBox and it works great, but cooling IS an issue.

This issue MAY be mitigated, somewhat, with a solid state 2.5" drive, but at a significantly higher cost.

Cons: None, one the proper routing of the cables was figured out.

Other Thoughts: The 2.5" cables must make an immediate 90 degree bend in order to comfortably fit and be successfully routed behind the two DDR3 sockets, but THEY WILL FIT.

Intel BOXDN2820FYKH0 1 x 204Pin SO-DIMM Intel HD Graphics Integrated by CPU Mini / Booksize Barebone System
  • Verified Owner
  • neweggOwned For: 1 day to 1 week

Pros: Conceptually, this is a fully-featured PC, sold less RAM (1 GB to 8 GB, in one SO-DIMM stick) and less drive (2.5" HD or SSD, your choice).

Very quiet.

Cons: Build quality is poor.

Item is shipped with a BIOS which is level 13, but the most current is level 34.

Level 13 will not recognize most SO-DIMM sticks (these are seen as having zero GB capacity). Level 13 also does not support legacy booting, only UEFI booting, and even that can be problematic. Level 13 also fails to recognize some keyboard escapes to get into the BIOS.

However, these significant defects are fixed by level 34, provided you can figure out how to get to level 35 without the keyboard working as expected and required. Hint: start with FY0034.BIO in the root of a FAT-32 USB stick and TRY to get the F7 keyboard escape to work.

My unit ran Ubuntu flawlessly for about 20 hours and then died. The Ubuntu screen went black and the unit was completely dead.

I transferred the SO-DIMM and HD to another NUC and those components ran flawlessly, so my conclusion is the basic box died. Infant mortality, I would say.

Finally, this model NUC uses the same dc power connector as other NUCs: 5.5x2.5mm. But, this NUC is 12 volts and the other NUCs are 19 volts. It is therefore possible to accidentally apply 19 volts to this 12 volt unit.

Other Thoughts: The NUC concept is great, and I have several of these, some in mission critical applications. Some running MacOS X Mavericks, some running various flavors of Linux.

Intel really should have spent a few extra pennies and included provisions for a second SO-DIMM stick and an mSATA stick.

Intel should not have used the same 5.5x2.5mm dc power connector, but should have used a 5.5mm variation which cannot accept a 2.5mm pin, to prevent applying 19 volts to this 12 volt model.


Peter H.'s Profile

Display Name: Peter H.

Date Joined: 03/19/08

  • Reviews: 37
  • Helpfulness: 25
  • First Review: 10/09/08
  • Last Review: 05/08/16
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