Intel NUC nicked by NIC heat quirk

In our recent review of Intel’s “Next Unit of Computing” barebones box, we explained a snafu we encountered with large network file transfers causing the system to lock up. At the time, we were working with Intel on resolving the problem and suspected it was confined to our particular review unit. After further testing, we have a clearer sense of the nature of the problem, and potential NUC buyers should read carefully from here.

First, our own testing has convinced us that this issue is indeed thermal in nature. The system usually locks up somewhere before reaching the 5GB mark in a large network file transfer. However, we were able to eliminate the lock-ups, to the point where we succeeded in transfering over 40GB without issue, by doing either of two things: 1) removing the cover of the device, exposing the closely-sandwiched Wi-Fi NIC and SSD cards to open air, or 2) changing the system cooling policy in the BIOS to run the fan at 100% speed constantly.

Neither of these measures is a true remedy, of course. You’re going to want to have the case screwed together when using the system, and the usually silent NUC is much, much louder and rather annoying when its fan is running at its peak speed. Still, the fact that these measures stabilize the system confirms that the problem is thermal, in our view.

We continue to believe the Wi-Fi card is heating up, causing the SSD situated alongside it to overheat and become unresponsive.

Next, Intel informs us that it has now reproduced the network file transfer problem in its own labs when the DC3217BY model NUC is equipped with the exact same Wi-Fi and SSD cards that we used in our testing. (Both of these mini-PCIe cards are Intel products, supplied to us alongside the NUC for use in our review.) Apparently, reproducing the issue took longer than expected because Intel’s initial tests didn’t duplicate our hardware config exactly. We understand the problem doesn’t appear when the NUC is equipped with a Gen 2 mSATA device, only Gen 3.

The other NUC model, the DC3217IYE with Gigabit Ethernet rather than Thunderbolt, apparently isn’t affected by this problem.

Intel tell us it’s working on a fix, potentially via a BIOS update. We’re rooting for them to succeed, but we have our reservations. If the issue is entirely thermal in nature, then the design of the NUC system and enclosure may make a true fix difficult to implement via software. The NUC’s thermal solution is on the other side of the motherboard from the Wi-Fi and SSD cards, since it’s primarily intended to cool the CPU and the platform controller hub chip. An especially aggressive fan speed profile might drastically reduce or eliminate lock-ups, but it could also transform an unobtrusive, virtually silent system into a fairly noisy affair—unacceptable for this sort of product, in our view.

Intel may very well resolve the problem without compromising the NUC’s acoustics, so don’t make too much of our worries just yet. We simply recommend waiting until we can confirm that Intel has fixed the problem via a BIOS update before buying a BY-model NUC. We’ll keep you posted as we learn more.

Comments closed
    • clone
    • 7 years ago

    couldn’t they design the cover to serve as a heatsink and then position the hottest parts on top?

    before I get pummeled for suggesting this understand we aren’t discussing an FX 8350…. were talking about an ethernet chip that doesn’t use any type of cooling at all, and the problem is only because their is no cooling going on at all which is allowing the heat to build and built until it eventually gets unstable…..moving the hotter chips to positions where they can passively cool off the case would seem an obvious option and likely result in little more than a warm cover to the touch not scalding.

    guess it wouldn’t be pretty enough and the marketing boys would have a heart attack if it had to be finned so let’s make it a box and put a noisy fan into it.

    • anotherengineer
    • 7 years ago

    Man I must have played to much MK when I was younger, cause when I hear toasty, I hear this.

    [url<]http://www.orble.com/images/screenlg171.jpg[/url<]

    • HisDivineOrder
    • 7 years ago

    Sounds like the fix is to run the Gen 3 mSATA device as a Gen 2 device. What you wanna bet they stealth that in?

    • vargis14
    • 7 years ago

    Since the problem is remedied by removing the top of the unit how about intel replacing the current lids with a honeycomb lid ” like the honeycomb on coolermaster HAF cases ” for the units. Some slots in the plastic on the ssd side of the unit along with the lid would be perfect. the heat rising from the ssd area would probably pull cool air in from the slots on the side if it had them along with a free flowing lid of some kind.

    Honeycomb is the strongest but most free flowing grill design i can think of………Even a steel speaker grill of a coarse screen design to give it some strength would be good.

    Sounds like it is easily fixed by my above idea though i would not want to have to run my fan at full speed just to watch a streaming bluray file of 50 gb 🙂 even though that is not possible over wireless. I still think it was so stupid not to include a gigabit wired connection on the device along with usb3.
    Like i said in the original article the persons who designed this were not very bright at all…..1st no gigabit connection or usb3 now they have a heat problem on what could have been a much more attractive product!!
    If they had gigabit, USB3 and did not overheat i would rec them for tiny HTPC’s like crazy but they lost me and i am sure a lot of other people not including those 3 things in the design.

      • Chrispy_
      • 7 years ago

      Unfortunately your idea will cost more than $0 to implement, therefore it is of no interest to Intel no matter how sensible or well-explained it is 😉

    • Machupo
    • 7 years ago

    Scott — did you log the temperature directly from the mSATA SSD during this process (does the SSD you’re using have a thermal sensor?)

    Wonder if just using a longer screw on the mSATA drive would help (tilt the drive slightly up away from the NIC) with some convection / added airspace between the two components.

      • OdinsBalls
      • 7 years ago
        • rgreen83
        • 7 years ago

        um wtf?

          • OdinsBalls
          • 7 years ago
            • RobbyBob
            • 7 years ago

            What I imagine user OdinsBalls to look like in real life:
            [url<]http://24.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m9i0ul7hnu1rc8dguo1_500.jpg[/url<]

            • RenatoPassos
            • 7 years ago

            ROFLMAO !!! 😀

        • NeelyCam
        • 7 years ago

        Every time something is moderated out, I become curious as to what was said..

    • turboborked
    • 7 years ago

    Those who had intended on using their own case might be able to improve airflow to the wifi card, still a shame that there is the sceptre of doubt with this hardware config though.

      • Farting Bob
      • 7 years ago

      Why would you buy this if you are going to use your own case?

        • NeelyCam
        • 7 years ago

        It’s the smallest system of this caliber available. Dump the case, keep the mobo, make your own system.

        • turboborked
        • 7 years ago

        To use in a scenario where relatively high power is required in a small space. I’d read elsewhere that NUC boards might be sold sans enclosure, even if they aren’t the majority of the costs are the cpu so I wouldn’t feel too bad ditching that little red plastic box.

        • turboborked
        • 7 years ago

        [url<]http://www.logicsupply.co.uk/intel-d33217gk-golden-lake-nuc-compact-motherboard/?___store=co_uk_en[/url<]

      • derFunkenstein
      • 7 years ago

      It’d be a custom-designed case. It’s not like this uses a mini ITX board or anything.

      • Scrotos
      • 7 years ago

      Sceptre of doubt? Did you mean spectre of doubt? I was just picturing a physical item and it scared and confused me.

        • NeelyCam
        • 7 years ago

        Sceptre of Doubt +3 is an awesome weapon, but doesn’t work against Applecolytes

        • turboborked
        • 7 years ago

        Yup – finger dyslexia.

    • shaurz
    • 7 years ago

    Have you tried putting a little RAM heatsink on the SSD?

    • Jingles
    • 7 years ago

    Someone didn’t think “hmmm maybe some ventilation holes might be a good idea to let heat escape and keep the system at a cool enough operating temperature”? Seriously?

      • ludi
      • 7 years ago

      It has ventilation, just not near these particular components.

      Heat issues of this sort can get you in strange and unexpected places. Way back in the AthlonXP days, I had a board that started locking up on me after I added a custom-fabricated shroud to improve the airflow and exhaust to and from the CPU heatsink. This was the exact opposite of the expected result.

      Turned out a nearby chipset component was running at a marginal temperature, and the loss of spillover airflow from the CPU heatsink caused it to go unstable. I modified the vent ducting so that some air was diverted toward that chipset component, and voila — everything was fine once again.

      • Bensam123
      • 7 years ago

      Sorta makes you wonder why they don’t make these out of a steel/aluminum mesh style case.

        • yogibbear
        • 7 years ago

        Probably because Apple has a patent for that.

          • rrr
          • 7 years ago

          Odd that they aren’t already suing Intel for sort-of similar shape.

          Though guess I’ll be rendered wrong in a few days.

    • mockingbird
    • 7 years ago

    The obvious solution here is to switch the order of the cards. Mount the SSD on the bottom and the WiFi on top so that the dissipated heat doesn’t rise towards the SSD.

    Yes, it will require some re-engineering, as the bottom slot is meant for a half-height mini PCIe card only.

    • squeeb
    • 7 years ago

    All I can think of when I see these articles is nuka cola…

    • Chrispy_
    • 7 years ago

    1. Intel crams big hardware into tiny space by ignoring their cooling requirements.
    2. Intel boasts about how awesomely tiny it is
    3. Tiny PC overheats.
    4. Derp.

      • odizzido
      • 7 years ago

      haha, I liked it.

      • vargis14
      • 7 years ago

      Perfect Chrispy 🙂

      • Wirko
      • 7 years ago

      5. Profit.

      I’m sure that these little red boxes will sell well. With a little revised hardware if it turns out necessary.

    • Duck
    • 7 years ago

    Intel’s validation and testing is not so great, eh?

      • indeego
      • 7 years ago

      Who sends out unvalidated hardware to the press?
      Scary!

    • NeelyCam
    • 7 years ago

    This is a bit of a concern to me… not too much, though. I was never gonna use a wifi card anyway.

    I’ve been trying to figure out how much power mSATA SSDs consume when active; I’m particularly interested in Crucial m4 256GB. The only reviews I’ve seen say that the non-SATA m4 consumers only about 1W when active, but the mSATA m4 is 4W! Doesn’t make sense to me.

    I wonder how much the upcoming Intel 525 mSATA SSD consumes..

      • NeelyCam
      • 7 years ago

      I started making moves to get this. Today I bought 256GB Crucial m4 (if Intel 525 ends up being a much better option, I’ll return the m4) and 2x4GB of DDR3 1600 (1.35V, in hopes of keeping things cooler). I already have a copy of Windows 7 sitting on the shelf, waiting to be used. Wireless keyboard/mouse will be reused from my current HTPC. Only the NUC itself remains.

      So, once these are available, I’ll compete the deal. It’ll be my christmas present

      • derFunkenstein
      • 7 years ago

      so how were you going to do networking? Or is this a totally offline client for you?

        • NeelyCam
        • 7 years ago

        Using the Gigabit ethernet

    • Bensam123
    • 7 years ago

    I wonder what would happen if you tried playing some light gaming with this thing…

      • chuckula
      • 7 years ago

      OOH OOH I KNOW!! It would perform substantially better than any AMD system at that power envelope, including those so-called 17-watt Trinity parts that AMD has never had the time to send over to TR for review because they are just that… uh.. “Xtreme”… yeah….

        • NeelyCam
        • 7 years ago

        -10? Truth really hurts some people

      • dmitriylm
      • 7 years ago

      Shouldn’t have any issues since the thermal issue is caused by the wifi card.

        • Bensam123
        • 7 years ago

        Creating more heat inside would exasperate this issue? How do you know it’s the only cooling related issue too? That’s really what I was getting at.

          • NeelyCam
          • 7 years ago

          The CPU has a cooler on it, so most of the heat generated by it will be taken out. Who knows; maybe loading the CPU would actually [i<]help[/i<] with the WiFi thermal issue, as the CPU fan running would improve airflow inside the case

            • Bensam123
            • 7 years ago

            Or it could cause the memory to heat up and turn the inside of the case into a broiler. Neither of us know for certain and we both could be right, that’s why it’s important to test these things…

      • paulWTAMU
      • 7 years ago

      I’d like to know as well. I’m not thinking playing BF3 but like CS:Source maybe?

        • NeelyCam
        • 7 years ago

        I can test something when I get mine, but I don’t really have any 3D stress games.. Civ4 doesn’t count, does it?

        Maybe I should buy Skyrim for PC (black friday: $30)

          • Bensam123
          • 7 years ago

          Skyrim would do it… Blacklight Retribution is free, not sure if you like FPS’s.

          PS gamer chicks are hawt.

    • UberGerbil
    • 7 years ago

    Nuking NIC knocks NUC

      • FireGryphon
      • 7 years ago

      NICe !!!!

      • paulWTAMU
      • 7 years ago

      You win the thread.

      • Wirko
      • 7 years ago

      See, this is the guy we were looking for, he knows for sure how to pronounce NUC, Asus and the verb GIF.

        • Meadows
        • 7 years ago

        UberGerbil is legend.

    • Deanjo
    • 7 years ago

    [quote<]We simply recommend waiting until we can confirm that Intel has fixed the problem via a BIOS update before buying a BY-model NUC.[/quote<] Or just buy a Mac Mini and get a far more capable solution for just a bit more.

      • Bensam123
      • 7 years ago

      $600 isn’t slightly more.

      Or you could get a rPI for $40, a Roku for $50-100, or build your own PC for $150. Newegg also offers a lot of all-in-one PC builds for under $300.

        • Deanjo
        • 7 years ago

        It is slightly more by the time you populate the NUC with ram and ssd, plus you get a heck of a lot more connectivity with the Mac Mini, bluetooth, firewire, USB 3, SD card reader, wireless and ethernet, IR, faster i5 processor and OS with software. Plus if you are handy, add a second drive to it and you are not dealing with a powerbrick.

          • NeelyCam
          • 7 years ago

          If you equip this with a 256GB SSD, the price starts from $500, and RAM is super cheap.

          Mac Mini with a 256GB SSD: [i<][b<]$1,099[/b<][/i<]. That $599 Mac Mini "Starter" price is with a POS HDD. Did you notice how [i<]small[/i<] the NUC is? Mac Mini is huge compared to the NUC.

            • MadManOriginal
            • 7 years ago

            Yeah, if you’re stupid enough to buy upgrades from Apple, or any OEM for that matter. They aren’t directly comparable in a number of ways and both has an advantage somewhere, it’s true, but when considering a small system the Mac Mini should be on the list.

            • NeelyCam
            • 7 years ago

            Even if you buy it elsewhere and install it yourself (risking an eternal wrath of Ghost Jobs), Mac Mini starts from $800 vs. $500 for NUC

            • Bensam123
            • 7 years ago

            I believe it also voids your sacred Apple warranty if you open it up too, which is a huge part of buying a Mac.

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            Nope. Apple just covers the apple supplied parts in that case.

            • Bensam123
            • 7 years ago

            Dude, at $600 that is ridiculously expensive for what it offers. The only shopping list its on is hipsters. Buying cheap parts is too mainstream now days or what?

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            But ~$500-550 is not ridiculously expensive for a lot less capable of a machine?

            • derFunkenstein
            • 7 years ago

            Not sure why you’re getting modded down, because I agree here. A base Mac Mini + an 8GB (or even a 4GB) RAM upgrade is not a whole lot more if you’re buying a NUC to run a commercial OS (Windows, in this case).

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            [quote<]Not sure why you're getting modded down[/quote<] Because haters have to hate and can't see past their bias.

            • Bensam123
            • 7 years ago

            Because there is more to this then simple storage. Ram is about $20 for 4GB, $40 for 8GB (that’s on the expensive side).

            I mentioned other storage options in my post and if you’re going to limit the NUC to a msata SSD you have to like the mini to the absurdly expensive SSDs Apple offers… if you want to keep your warranty.

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            No you don’t, stop trying to say it voids your warranty because it 100% absolutely does not void your warranty. You can upgrade your mini just fine without worry of warranty. Apple will only cover the Apple supplied parts by their warranty. JUST LIKE ANY OTHER PC VENDOR! I still carry my certification for Apple repair and know what is and what isn’t covered.

            • Bensam123
            • 7 years ago

            [url<]http://www.apple.com/support/macmini/service/faq/#warranty4[/url<] Unauthorized service and unauthorized modification. [url<]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fXMDE_Oi3uc[/url<] [url<]http://www.dslreports.com/forum/r22081196-Will-opening-a-Mac-Mini-void-warranty[/url<] Basically if they tell you opened the case, it voids your warranty. So when you break it you have to put your old hard drive back in and make sure they can't tell you opened it.

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            Replacement of the hard drive is not unauthorized modification. Trust me I have serviced a lot of Macs over the last 9 years and it does not void your warranty. There is a reason why they do not have tell tale stickers on the minis. Nothing in Apple’s warranty says that opening the case voids your warranty. You are not modifying the hardware, you are adding expansion. The same disclaimer can be found in pretty much every OEM warranty.

            BTW that youtube is especially hilarious, as opening an old mac mini never voided your warranty either. The only thing that would void your warranty was replacement of the processor which had a tell tale removal sticker warning you of the fact.

            [url<]http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=397094[/url<]

            • sweatshopking
            • 7 years ago

            [quote<] Trust me I have serviced a lot of Macs over the last 9 years [/quote<] you know i love, you deanjo, i do, but you didn't even know the LENGTH of warranties when we were discussing it the other day. I'm sure you HAVE done tons of repairs, but if you were willing to admit when you were wrong, rather than saying stuff like "dell has crap service so their warranty doesn't count" people would be more inclined to trust you. also, macrumors is a dumb site.

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            I did know the length of the warranties of Apple. It was you that did not. Nor did you know about Apples onsite.

            • sweatshopking
            • 7 years ago

            I THINK YOU SHOULD RECHECK THAT. YOU CLAIMED THEY WERE THE SAME, BUT APPLE OFFERED 1 YEAR, DELL OFFERS 3 WITH ADDITIONAL SUPPORT. I THINK YOU NEED YOUR MEMORY CHECKED. I’D LOOK UP THE PAGE, BUT I DON’T KNOW AN EASY WAY TO FIND IT.

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            So I didn’t know what the Dell optiplex offered as a base warranty. NEWS FLASH THE MAC MINI IS NOT MADE BY DELL NOR SUBJECT TO DELLS WARRANTY!

            • sweatshopking
            • 7 years ago

            i’m not sure what your point is. we were discussing business class machines, and you argued that they were equal. i said they weren’t. dell offers 3 years on almost all of their business stuff, same as toshiba, etc.
            my point is that if you were more reasonable, people would trust you more. you’re like an apple l33t. you’re interested in trust, i’m interested in lols so idc like you do.

            • Bensam123
            • 7 years ago

            Yup… A quick google shows people getting denied for chipping the side of their case while opening it. Really this is a huge gray area and mac service personal can simply turn you down if they feel like it. The text is very vague as to what it covers as well. A hard drive upgrade CAN be considered a modification.

            [url<]http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mac_Mini#Design[/url<] "While opening the case does not actually void the Mac Mini warranty, anything broken while the case is open is not covered.[12] Other modifications include hard disk upgrades, overclocking the processor (G4 only),[13] and upgrading the wireless networking (for older models) to 802.11n." [url<]https://www.google.com/search?q=opening+macmini+voids+warranty&oq=opening+macmini+voids+warranty&aqs=chrome.0.57j0j60l2j0l2.3902&sugexp=chrome,mod=7&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8[/url<]

            • Bensam123
            • 7 years ago

            If you’re comparing similar components. That would be a SSD too, which would driveup the costs of mac-mini.

            You could run a NUC off an external hard drive or simply a flash drive if you wanted to too. Which wouldn’t be any more then a extra $40 on the price tag. $20 for memory and $20 for a flash drive.

            Personally both options suck though and that’s why I mentioned the other three in my original post.

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            [quote<]You could run a NUC off an external hard drive or simply a flash drive if you wanted to too. [/quote<] Ya sure if you want to be limited to a whopping 25 MB/s transfer rate.

            • Bensam123
            • 7 years ago

            That’s what you have ethernet for and 25MB/s isn’t slow when it comes to a HTPC. That’s plenty fast enough for recording as well, but you can do that over the network.

            Of course you’re excluding the TB adapter as well?

            You’re also capable of buying a smaller SSD, like around a 60GB mark. Anyone who buys one of these and sets it up will be more then savvy enough to stream over the network though.

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            Dude, 25 MB/s is slow even for a HTPC but this isn’t only a HTPC now is it. With a Mac mini or even this NUC you can use it as well for general computing tasks quite easily and that is where 25 MB per second (and remember that is total bandwidth on the USB ports as the ports on the NUC are likely to share a single channel).

            And no I’m not excluding the TB adapter as well (which gets omitted if you want a NIC). But we also already know that TB devices are more expensive then USB 3 devices.

            If all you were after was a media player then yes there are plenty of cheaper options but your Roku and Rasp Pi are not going to be up to the task for items like recording with the currently available tuner solutions.

            • Bensam123
            • 7 years ago

            I will disagree… Bandwidth generally doesn’t limit the speed of your OS, random access does. A SSD would change that as would a flash drive. It would boot slow, but I’m guessing you aren’t going to be booting a HTPC on and off constantly.

            You still can browse the internet easily and plenty of memory would make up for a crappy HD to a certain extent. You aren’t going to be using a HTPC as a standard desktop with typical desktop loadouts. Email and internet aren’t going to be HD intensive tasks, the only ones that would be is recording, but that can still be done at 25MB/s…

            The TB option was to point out that other options are available. You also excluded LAN storage. A computer for $150 is still cheaper then this, you also excluded that.

            • BlackStar
            • 7 years ago

            Indeed. I’ve been running Linux from USB sticks for 3 years now, and 20MB/s is plenty fast for browsing, watching movies and playing light games. The secret lies in setting up a ramdisk or two, disabling the swapfile and avoiding random writes to the stick (downloading a torrent is a no-no unless you download it to a network share, or put it in the ramdisk first).

            On a USB 2 Transcend Jetflash (20MB/s read, 10 MB/s write), Ubuntu boots just a tiny bit slower than a 5400 hard disk and works pretty smoothly afterwards.

            The boot speed depends on the initial USB mode set by the BIOS: a few motherboards initialize USB 1, which slows down initrd loading dramatically (speed gets updated to USB 2 once the linux kernel takes over). USB 2 is something like 5 secs initrd followed by 20 secs boot; USB 1 is ~20 secs initrd followed by 20 secs boot. (Should try with a USB 3 stick one of these days.)

            In either case, it’s perfect for a low-power HTPC, esp. if you have a network share to stream stuff to and from.

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            Put that power supply in the NUC and see how much larger it is. And you are still dealing with a slower, plastic, connection limited machine. Hell the only way you can get hook up some speedy storage space on it is to go with the TB connection.

            • Bensam123
            • 7 years ago

            What part of the NUC is connection limited? :l

            There is a gigabit model… You can buy a USB to Gigabit adapter… Wireless isn’t all that slow now days…

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            [quote<]You can buy a USB to Gigabit adapter.[/quote<] LMFAO, a USB 2 to Gigabit adapter..... ya tell me how good of speeds you get out of that. Oh ya, YOU ARE STILL LIMITED TO THE USB 2 transfer speeds. Nothing like a good old bottleneck eh? Hell USB 2 can't even keep up to a wireless N300 connection.

            • yokem55
            • 7 years ago

            USB 2 has a theoretical limit of 480mbit/second. In real life that works out such that I can transfer data out to a usb 2 hard disk at about 25-30MB/sec. In theory, gigabit ethernet would be limited to the same level, which, while not full gigabit speeds, is still 2-3 times faster than 100mbit ethernet.

            As for 300n wifi being limited by USB 2.0’s bandwidth? I call bullocks. Wifi has a ton of overhead and then some. You’re lucky if you get 50% of the rated bandwidth when your machine is sitting right next to the router, even the wifi nic is a mini-pcie card. Factor in a crowded 2.4 ghz spectrum, a couple of walls, and before you know it your real life wifi speeds on your 300n connection are slower than 100mbit ethernet.

            • Bensam123
            • 7 years ago

            You can also get internal WiFi adapters as per the article. Those are pretty cheap and can be found on Newegg.

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            [quote<]USB 2 has a theoretical limit of 480mbit/second.[/quote<] In theory yes, but the overhead on USB is so high it does limit it to 25-30 MB/s. A true and good gbit connection easily gets you 120 MB/s. [quote<]As for 300n wifi being limited by USB 2.0's bandwidth? I call bullocks. Wifi has a ton of overhead and then some. You're lucky if you get 50% of the rated bandwidth when your machine is sitting right next to the router, even the wifi nic is a mini-pcie card. Factor in a crowded 2.4 ghz spectrum, a couple of walls, and before you know it your real life wifi speeds on your 300n connection are slower than 100mbit ethernet.[/quote<] I easily get 30 MB/s on a PCE-N53 adapter and on a BCM4321 mPCI-e card that is installed on a old Mac Mini connecting to a Asus RT-N66U. Plug in a multitude of USB 2 wireless 300n adapters in those same machines and their speeds drop to about 20-22 MB/s. So I call bullocks.

            • yokem55
            • 7 years ago

            [quote<]A true and good gbit connection easily gets you 120 MB/s.[/quote<] Hmm. The thoretical max on GigE is 119Mb/sec (1000mbit/8/1024/1024) Taking tcp overhead into account, I have never seen gigabit go above 107Mb/second. 120? Unlikely. Maybe on a UDP transfer with with jumbo frames you might get 115-ish. [quote<]I easily get 30 MB/s on a PCE-N53 adapter and on a BCM4321 mPCI-e card that is installed on a old Mac Mini connecting to a Asus RT-N66U.[/quote<] Nice goalpost shifting there. The RT-N66U is from what I can tell a bonded dual band (clients get a bonded connection on both the 2.4ghz and 5 ghz bands) "N600" device. Not N300 as you described in your original post. So, yes for that configuration, USB2 is the limiting factor. For "N300" as you described in your original post, which is usually, single 2.4 ghz band, 40mhz channel, USB2 isn't the limiting part of the chain - the crappy wireless link is.

      • NeelyCam
      • 7 years ago

      Too big and too expensive.

      • internetsandman
      • 7 years ago

      I’m a Mac guy and I know that’s a stupid suggestion. The Mini is twice the cost of the NUC, and I’m pretty sure no matter what market or price point you’re talking about, very rarely do people consider things that cost twice as much when their intended purchase turns out to have an issue with a relatively simple (if not ideal) fix

      • Hattig
      • 7 years ago

      This is the best solution by far, but because it’s Apple you’re going to get an automatic -20 from certain people here.

      OTOH, it is Apple, and they’re a big bunch of cnuts these days. But as other companies have proven totally incapable of making a comparable, competitive product, it’s pretty much the only choice if you want a small compact desktop PC.

        • sweatshopking
        • 7 years ago

        yeah, cause zotac doesn’t make tiny systems or anything. not like TR has ever reviewed them and said they were great.

          • Deanjo
          • 7 years ago

          Zotacs only i series based system, the ZBOX-ID82 (and is an older SB part) starts @ $469 barebone.

            • sweatshopking
            • 7 years ago

            that’s true, i guess if you need the additional integer performance. if not, the brazos ones are pretty great.

    • UberGerbil
    • 7 years ago

    I have to say, I have the same thought with this that I had with the Dell Zino: if they’re going to do jazzy, alternate-colored covers (the Zino actually offered a choice of various colors and even patterns) why not offer one that’s just a mesh?

      • BiffStroganoffsky
      • 7 years ago

      Oops! Spilled my beer on it. It’s under warranty…call Intel! (Intel really doesn’t like to do warranty work, as I found with their chipset debacle.)

    • Bauxite
    • 7 years ago

    Nyuk Nyuk Nyuk, wiseguy eh?

      • Grigory
      • 7 years ago

      Beat me to it! 🙂

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