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News ASRock show-off Micro-STX system with MXM & TB3 @CES 2017

Hi All

ASRock are happy to display our new model - Deskmini RX/GTX @CES 2017.
You can get more picture in :https://www.cool3c.com/article/116315/CES-2017-華擎展出具可擴充-MXM-獨立顯示卡的-micro-STX-主機板原型主機


This is prototype of Deskmini RX/GTX
Considering there are so many SFF enthusiasts still need more powerful 3D graphics performance, why don't we extend Mini-STX to larger board: based on 5x5 screw holes but implement MXM, more video outputs, m.2 connectors, even Thunderbolt 3!

And that is world's firsts' MICRO-STX system:
  • Support up to Intel® Core i7 7700K CPU
  • Support Intel box cooler
  • Intel Z270 (B250) Chipset
  • Support MXM Type B, up to 120W
    • RX = AMD RX480/470/460
    • GTX = NVIDIA GTX1060
  • Intel® Thunderbolt 3 with Type-C
  • 3 x M.2 2260/2280 slots
  • 1 x M.2 2230 Wi-Fi slot
  • AURA RGB LED connector!
  • Support Intel® Optane™ Technology
  • 2.x Liter!
  • 19V/220W adapter
ASRock planned sell barebones (include motherboard, MXM card, MXM cooler, chassis and adapter) and open mind corporate with system builder to develop new mini PC in micro STX motherboard. It should be launched on 2017 Q2.
 
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QuantumBraced

Master of Cramming
Mar 9, 2017
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Nice! It's too bad the 8700K, 8700, and 8600K can't be cooled in the DeskMini GTX chassis. I think hardly anyone bought the Kaby Lake version, so I hope they make the product more appealing this iteration. Maybe improve the GPU cooler and make the case a bit nicer. I'd love to see them ditch 2.5" drive support for a smaller case -- it does have 3 M.2 and at this premium the only thing it has going for it is tiny size.

Even then, I'm not sure this concept will ever work with MXM GPU prices being what they are. You could buy a laptop for the same price, people who want something truly portable will just do that. People who don't want something ultra-portable will just build in the S4M or A4-SFX, etc. So this product is kind of in a dead space. It may just be better to do another Mini-STX DeskMini with Coffee Lake and Thunderbolt 3 support. Then you can connect an external GPU, maybe Gigabyte's small one. Much cheaper and better performance.

/philosophizing
 

Kmpkt

Innovation through Miniaturization
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I was pretty excited for this, but seeing it now I feel like Intel kinda missed the mark. While impressive that they fit the GPU onto the die with a 4c/8t CPU, it definitely is not VR capable (Premium Rift and Vive anyhow) and is only going to handle 30-40 FPS medium detail on most current games. Great if you want to MOBA on the go I guess but there are so many other small options that do this adequately that I don't know if this really ekes itself out a niche.
 
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QuantumBraced

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Mar 9, 2017
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Yeah Linus said it performed on par with a 1060 MaxQ. Which is about 10-15% slower than the mobile 1060. Which is about 20% slower than the desktop 1060. So basically a little better than a desktop 1050 Ti. But that is still almost 3 times the performance of the Iris Pro 580 in the old high-end NUC. So a significant improvement, but not exactly VR-worthy, no.

But the price is good, it costs as much as the ASRock Deskmini GTX 1060, and it comes with a quad-core CPU and a slightly worse GPU. It's also less than half the size and has a lot more connectivity, including Thunderbolt 3. The new cooling solution also seems pretty good. You cannot change the CPU/GPU though, so that's the one disadvantage, but I still think it's a very competitive product for people looking for this type of thing -- which granted is not a lot as the vast majority would just get a laptop.

Anyway, don't want to derail the thread, only meant this as a point of reference for the DeskMini.
 

ASRock System

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QuantumBraced

Thanks for your feedback about new Intel Hades Canyon NUC.
DeskMini series - the STX form factor is based on DIY, therefore ASRock try to implement more possibility into STX.
We know embedded system can offer smaller size as well, but most components can't be upgraded.

I can understand that price always be concert, so ASRork offered a great combo sale:

https://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboBundleDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.3728236

DeskMini GTX1060 with Intel Core i5-7400 = $799.99

:D
 

Boil

SFF Guru
Nov 11, 2015
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I can understand that price always be concert, so ASRork offered a great combo sale:

https://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboBundleDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.3728236

DeskMini GTX1060 with Intel Core i5-7400 = $799.99

Might we see some bundles with the forthcoming Z370-series of DeskMini kits...?

I could see a few bundle opportunities:

DeskMini GTX1060 with Intel Core i3-8350K = $799.99

DeskMini GTX1080 with Intel Core i7-8700K = $1499.99

And would you official ASRock folks ask Silverstone what is up with the RVZ04 they previewed at Computex 2017...?
 
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QuantumBraced

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Mar 9, 2017
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I'd bet on Digitalstorm's 'Spark' using ASRock's upcoming Z370 mini-STX board.

I just saw Linus' video on it. I noticed it had 4 USB on the back, so it is a new board, probably the Z370.

The Spark seems useless though. The large size negates the advantage of Micro STX. And I'm not sure a single 92mm rad for the CPU and GPU is better than air cooling them. Just get any 5-8L SFF case, stick a 1080 Ti in it and you get more power for a lot less money.
 

Boil

SFF Guru
Nov 11, 2015
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I'd bet on Digitalstorm's 'Spark' using ASRock's upcoming Z370 mini-STX board.

The large size negates the advantage of Micro STX. And I'm not sure a single 92mm rad for the CPU and GPU is better than air cooling them.

It looks like the radiator is up top, along with a reservoir & pump...

Looks like plenty of room for a thick radiator (the Hardware Labs 92mm radiator is 54mm thick...) and a 92mm x 25mm fan...

I LOVE the reservoir fill port on top...!
 

ASRock System

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I'd bet on Digitalstorm's 'Spark' using ASRock's upcoming Z370 mini-STX board.

EdZ

Yes... it is Z370M-STX MXM motherboard. :p
It is super! And i will visit Digital Storm few hours later.

The Spark seems useless though. The large size negates the advantage of Micro STX. And I'm not sure a single 92mm rad for the CPU and GPU is better than air cooling them. Just get any 5-8L SFF case, stick a 1080 Ti in it and you get more power for a lot less money.

QuantumBraced

Maybe you are correct.
Micro STX is very expensive
Micro STX is not powerful as Full size deskop
Micro STX is bit bigger than Hade Canyon

But these can't stop ASRock to break the limit. And Digital Storm shows the possibility of Micro STX platform. Right?
 

Boil

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Nov 11, 2015
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The linked article states the Spark is 4" x 6" x 12" (W x D x H), which is basically 100mm x 150mm x 300mm, which is about 4.5 liters...

4 & 1/2 liters, not bad for something that could house an i7-8700K CPU, 32GB DDR4 3200 RAM, 10TB of SSD storage (three 2TB M.2 NVMe 960 PROs & one 4TB 2.5" 850 EVO), & a GTX 1080 GPU, with the CPU & GPU under a custom hard-tubed water cooling solution...!
 
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QuantumBraced

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Mar 9, 2017
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In my view, the biggest/only advantage of MicroSTX is tiny size. I think MicroSTX cases have to be sub-2L. Otherwise, I don't see how the huge price premium and lesser performance of MXM cards can be justified.

Indeed, the Spark is 4.5L. You can build a much cheaper system in the S4M. Or go a bit bigger and build in the A4-SFX or Lazer3D or Ghost S1, etc. with internal power. I know those are 7-8L, but still a tiny footprint that you can fit in a backpack or carry-on.

Granted, you do get dust management and a nice window to show off the watercooling parts in the Spark, but the price premium will be enormous for a 1080 that performs worse than the desktop equivalent. The 1080 system be at least $2000 with an 8700K without storage or RAM, probably closer to $2500. And again, I question the performance of that 92mm cooler, even if it's a really thick rad. Certainly would not be able to OC the 8700K, which would have been a nice advantage to justify some of the price premium.

Of course the vast majority of people don't know about any of the boutique SFF cases that we discuss on these forums every day, so this will be a nice way to bring USFF performance builds to the mainstream, and the looks may be worth the price premium for some. For me, a 4.5L MicroSTX build is a bit paradoxical.
 

Phuncz

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May 9, 2015
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I just saw Linus' video on it. I noticed it had 4 USB on the back, so it is a new board, probably the Z370.

The Spark seems useless though. The large size negates the advantage of Micro STX. And I'm not sure a single 92mm rad for the CPU and GPU is better than air cooling them. Just get any 5-8L SFF case, stick a 1080 Ti in it and you get more power for a lot less money.
Yeah, a lot of volume is wasted because only half the case is occupied with hardware. It's one of those builds where watercooling seems to have been a bad idea.

STX + MXM really needs to be cooled by air with a good copper heatsink and heatpipes, not watercooling, hard line tubing, huge fittings, pump and res squished somewhere.
 

QuantumBraced

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Mar 9, 2017
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Sweet bundle. Any chance you'll bring back the DeskMini + SoDIMM combo.

Also smaller air cooled case inc (KMPKT x NFC ;) )

@Kmpkt, first you blow my mind with your internal AC-DC project. Then just when my mind had begun to recover.... mind blown again. I hope to get more details on this soon! :) Can you tease anything else? Are you skipping 2.5" drive support?