Braswell NUCs follow established formula

— 6:00 AM on May 26, 2015

Official PDFs detailing Braswell NUCs have appeared on Intel's website. The Technical Product Specification and Integration Guide describe a pair of mini-PCs based on the Celeron N3050 and Pentium N3700, low-power SoCs built on the latest 14-nm fabrication tech. The Celeron offers dual Atom-class cores clocked up to 2.16GHz, while the Pentium doubles the cores and cranks the peak frequency up to 2.4GHz.

Source: Intel

Despite Braswell's dual memory channels, the NUCs employ a single SO-DIMM slot each. And, despite the SoC's modest 6W thermal envelope, the technical brief shows an active blower rather than passive cooling. Ugh.

Storage is handled by a single SATA bay that can accept SSDs and mobile hard drives up to 9.5 mm thick. There's an M.2 slot, as well, but it comes pre-loaded with an 802.11ac Wi-Fi card. Although Intel supplies the wireless, Gigabit Ethernet is farmed out to a Realtek chip.

The internal storage is complemented by an SD slot tucked into the left side of the chassis. Dual USB 3.0 ports are available at the front and rear, complete with fast charging support for one of the front-facing units. Audio and video can be piped through the HDMI out, and the rear audio jack supports both analog and optical output. Not bad for a budget system squeezed into a 4" x 4" footprint.

According to FanlessTech, the new NUCs will make their formal debut on June 8. Amazon already has the Celeron-based version listed for $129 with an ETA of three to six weeks.

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