Now that the first Kaby Lake CPUs are out, everyone's got new versions of their toys to show off. Gigabyte is getting in on the fun by updating its popular Brix mini-PCs to the latest Intel processors. The company is debuting six new models based on three different Intel CPUs: the Core i3-7100U, Core i5-7200U, and Core i7-7500U. Each chip is getting a home in a corresponding pair of Brixes: one with room for a 2.5" storage device, and another, thinner version without.
Besides the processor used and the presence (or lack) of the 2.5" bay, the new Brix machines are all identical. They come as barebones machines with two empty DDR4 SO-DIMM slots and an M.2 2280 slot. Right up front on the new Brixes are a pair of USB 3.1 ports: one Type-A and the other a Type-C. Those ports are powered by an Asmedia controller, so don't plug your Thunderbolt devices into these machines and expect them to work. A pair of USB 3.0 ports live on the back of the machine alongside an Intel-powered Gigabit Ethernet jack. Another Intel chip delivers both 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.2.
Gigabyte says the new Brixes can drive up to three displays, but doing so will require using displays that support DisplayPort chaining. Besides the mini-DP 1.2 connection, the little PCs can hook up to monitors and TVs using HDMI 2.0. The Kaby Lake chips in the new machines support hardware playback of 10-bit HEVC, so a display-mounted Brix (using the included VESA mount) could make for a neat little HTPC.
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