Tegra K1 SoC pops up in PC Partner mini PC

PC Partner has developed a mini PC based on Nvidia's Tegra K1 processor. The inconspicuously named N258N1-F uses the quad-core, Cortex-A15 version of the SoC familiar from the Shield Tablet. Here, that chip is squeezed into a fanless chassis measuring 5" x 5" x 1.7".

Source: Ask Corporation

The Nvidia chip is joined by 2GB of memory and 16GB of eMMC flash. A full-sized SD slot provides expandable storage, while USB devices can be connected via Gen2 ports at the front and Gen3 ones at the back. Gigabit Ethernet is also included, but wireless connectivity is optional.

On the display front, the machine can crank out 4K images at up to 30Hz via the HDMI port at the back. 3200×2000 is the maximum resolution for 60Hz output, which seems like a reasonable limitation given the hardware involved.

PC Partner subsidiary Zotac uses a similar chassis for its Zbox C-series mini PCs. I like the look, but the prominent serial port on this particular model is a dead giveaway that industrial applications are the target market. It's unclear whether a more consumer-oriented version will eventually join the Zbox family. The C-series lineup already includes a range of low-power x86 CPUs, so perhaps there's room for an ARM alternative. I'd love to see one of these running Android—and with support for Nvidia's PC game streaming tech.

As far as I can tell, the only listing for the N258N1-F is at Japanese electronics vendor Ask Corporation. Pricing isn't provided, but units will apparently be ready in mid-December. Thanks to Hermitage Akihabara for the tip.

Comments closed
    • DPete27
    • 6 years ago

    So Zotac doesn’t own design rights to that case? Or is this a lawsuit waiting to happen.

      • phileasfogg
      • 6 years ago

      Zotac is a PC-Partner brand.

    • jeffcutsinger
    • 6 years ago

    I’m actually glad they included a serial port, but I wish they’d put it on the back or even one of the sides.

      • Farting Bob
      • 6 years ago

      Yea seriously, why is it at the front? power button, USB and SD slot i can see why youd have on the front, but a serial port? Rare to see these days anyway, and those that are still in use tend to have been plugged in and left alone for a decade.

    • HisDivineOrder
    • 6 years ago

    How far we’ve fallen when a PC enthusiast site doesn’t quote the speeds of the chip in a device. Woes for what has been lost.

    This looks like the perfect class of device to use as a Limelight add-on for your PC game streaming. Assuming the speeds and price are right.

      • Farting Bob
      • 6 years ago

      To be fair this TR article is pretty much the only english page on the internet about this thing, at least using the model number. So its safe to say, info is pretty sketchy right now unless you can speak japanese.

    • Deanjo
    • 6 years ago

    [quote<]I'd love to see one of these running Android—and with support for Nvidia's PC game streaming tech.[/quote<] Why when a pure linux distribution will yield better performance?

      • NTMBK
      • 6 years ago

      Because software support for “pure” Linux on ARM is a little… lacking. Especially in the gaming department.

        • Deanjo
        • 6 years ago

        Completely irrelevant if they are going to be streaming.

    • chuckula
    • 6 years ago

    Cortex-A15, meaning this is the 32-bit K1, not the Denver K1 (basically the same GPU though).

    I’m still very curious to see TR get its hands on a Denver part and see where their software translationy design works well & where it needs work.

      • Deanjo
      • 6 years ago

      [quote<]see where their software translationy design works well & where it needs work.[/quote<] What software would you be referring to?

        • chuckula
        • 6 years ago

        The big ugly recompilation from ARM to VLIW code with the accompanying 128MB RAM instruction cache. It might be more accurate to call it “firmware” than “software” since the translator tries to lie underneath the OS level for transparency, but it’s still there.

      • blastdoor
      • 6 years ago

      I would also like to see a thorough examination of the performance of Denver. It kind of seems more like an anandtech thing than a TR thing, but whoever does it, I will be curious to read it.

        • BryanC
        • 6 years ago

        Ryan Smith at AT tweeted that the Nexus 9 review should be out this week. So hopefully we won’t have to wait much longer for more information on Denver and its performance and efficiency. Meanwhile, Nexus 9 is on sale at Amazon, so I bought one this morning as an early Christmas present. I’ve always been interested in these JIT recompiliation devices and am looking forward to playing with one.

    • jjj
    • 6 years ago

    We should have seen some Android TV boxes with TK1 by now, wonder if they got canceled or just delayed. CES is 1 month away so maybe then.

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