Shuttle's XPC DH270 is a versatile barebones micro-PC


— 2:00 PM on September 27, 2017

Here at TR we don't generally have much call for embedded system. We do know that some of you gerbils out there need ruggedly reliable mini-PCs that can run for ages. Shuttle is one provider of petite PCs, and the company's newest model is the XPC DH270. This 1.3-liter barebones has an LGA 1151 socket ready for any Skylake or Kaby Lake CPU with TDP up to 65 W. The machine packs in dual Intel-powered Gigabit Ethernet connectors, an HDMI 2.0 port for displays up to 4K resolution, and a pair of old-school serial ports.

As a barebones, the DH270 doesn't include its CPU, memory, or storage. The 65 W TDP limit isn't much of a restriction—after all, that's enough for any CPU up to a Core i7-7700. You can stick in a pair of DDR4 SODIMMs up to 2400 MT/s and 16 GB apiece, totaling 32 GB at the maximum. There's an M.2-2280 socket with type M keying for NVMe SSDs, but if those drives are too rich for your blood you can instead opt to fill the machine's single 2.5" bay with a SATA drive. The DH270 doesn't include Wi-fi by default, although Shuttle does offer a module for it. There are two holes stamped in the rear casing for the antennae, and the adapter itself would go into the mini-PC's M.2-2230 socket.

We reckon you should be able to connect a ton of peripherals to a DH270. There are three USB 3.0 ports on the front, one of which is Type-C. Also on the DH270's face, you'll find a set of audio jacks. Around the machine's backside, there's a plethora of plugs: three HDMI connectors (one version 2.0, two version 1.4), four USB 2.0 ports, the aforementioned Ethernet jacks, and two serial ports. One of the serial ports even supports the slightly-obscure RS-422 and RS-485 protocols. If you need a VGA connector, there's a header onboard for that, and you can swap out one of the serial ports on the back panel for it. There's a curious 4-pin connector back there too, for external power and reset switches.

A machine like this could serve almost any purpose short of serious gaming or high-performance computing. Shuttle offers a VESA mount and a vertical stand for the DH270, as well as a 19" rack mount kit. If you need a versatile barebones system, Shuttle says the XPC DH270 should be available soon for €235, or around $230 without VAT.

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