Introduction and Setup Impressions

GIGABYTE's BRIX Pro (using an Intel Iris Pro part) has made a big splash in the market, particularly as a Steam machine. Enthused by its success, GIGABYTE has introduced a set of mini-PCs under the BRIX Gaming moniker. The lineup consists of mini-PCs in a form factor similar to the BRIX Pro (which itself had the footprint of an Intel NUC kit). The current flagship in the BRIX Gaming line is the BXi5G-760, a machine featuring a Core i5-4200H Haswell CPU and a NVIDIA GTX 760 discrete GPU. Given the paper specifications of the GTX 760, the machine promises to be a gaming powerhouse in its size class.

Similar to the BRIX Pro, the BXi5G-760 comes barebones. Users have to bring in their own DDR3L SODIMM sticks as well as an mSATA or 2.5" drive for completing the build. We configured the review unit to end up with the following components.

GIGABYTE BXi5G-760 Specifications
Processor Intel Haswell Core i5-4200H
(2C/4T x 2.80 GHz (3.40 GHz Turbo), 22nm, 3MB L2, 47W)
Memory 2 x 4GB DDR3L-1866
Graphics NVIDIA GTX 760 (NVIDIA GTX 870M)
6 GB GDDR5
135 MHz / 941 MHz (Turbo)
Disk Drive(s) ADATA SX300 128 GB mSATA SSD + Spare 2.5" Drive Slot
Networking 1x Gigabit Ethernet, 1x1 802.11ac mPCIe
Audio Capable of 5.1/7.1 digital output with HD audio bitstreaming (mini-HDMI / mini-DP 1.2)
Operating System

Retail unit is barebones, but we installed Windows 8.1 Pro x64

Pricing (As configured) $800 (barebones) + $195 (DRAM + mSATA SSD)
Full Specifications GB-BXi5G-760 Specifications

The BXi5G-760 kit doesn't come with any pre-installed OS, but we do have a USB key with Windows drivers. In addition to the main unit, the other components of the package include a 180 W (19.5V @ 9.23A) adapter, a US power cord, a splitter for the single audio jack, screws for installing a 2.5" drive, a mini-DP to DP cable and a mini-HDMI to HDMI cable.

The stand-out aspect of the BXi5G-760 compared to mini-PCs in a similar form factor include the presence of three video outputs (2x mini-HDMI and 1x mini-DP). The gallery below takes us around the hardware in the unit. In particular, the dimensions of the unit are compared to the BRIX Pro. The width turns out to be slightly more in order to accommodate the side fans for cooling the GPU.

We configured our unit with an ADATA SX300 128 GB mSATA SSD as a boot drive and put in two Corsair Vengeance 1866 MHz SODIMMs. All BIOS settings were left at default. The DRAM configured itself to run at 1866 MHz without any user inputs

In the table below, we have an overview of the various systems that we are comparing the BXi5G-760 against. Note that they may not belong to the same market segment. The relevant configuration details of the machines are provided so that readers have an understanding of why some benchmark numbers are skewed for or against the BXi5G-760 when we come to those sections.

Comparative PC Configurations
Aspect GIGABYTE GB-BXi5G-760
CPU Intel Core i5-4200H Intel Core i7-3720QM
GPU NVIDIA GTX 760 Intel HD Graphics 4000
RAM Corsair Vengeance CMSX8GX3M2B1866C10
10-10-10-32 @ 1866 MHz
2x4 GB
Super Talent W1333SB4GH
9-9-9-24 @ 1333 MHz
2x 4GB
Storage ADATA XPG SX300 AX300S3-128GM-C
(128 GB, PCIe Module mSATA 6Gb/s, 25nm, MLC)
Intel® SSD 330 Series
(60 GB, SATA 6Gb/s, 25nm, MLC)
Wi-Fi Realtek 8821AE Wireless LAN 802.11ac
(1x1 802.11ac - 433 Mbps)
N/A
Price (in USD, when built) $995 $1300

 

Performance Metrics - I
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  • flyingpants1 - Tuesday, September 16, 2014 - link

    Nooooope, they should have tested noise levels. Reply
  • bernstein - Tuesday, September 16, 2014 - link

    yeah kind of silly... the only thing i was interested to hear... but then i expect this little box to sound like a hair-dryer... i just dont understand why it's not passively cooled @ twice the size... Reply
  • The_Assimilator - Monday, September 15, 2014 - link

    I was hoping for some shots of the CPU and GPU. :( Reply
  • SleepyFE - Monday, September 15, 2014 - link

    I am also interested to see where the GPU sits. Reply
  • ganeshts - Monday, September 15, 2014 - link

    It is in one of the gallery pictures on the first page Reply
  • Gunbuster - Monday, September 15, 2014 - link

    Seems like lazy engineering. Why on earth would they use two of those little high RPM demon fans?

    Could have made a larger slower and quieter fan across the top or bottom of the case and used some type of shroud to direct the airflow...
    Reply
  • junky77 - Monday, September 15, 2014 - link

    Something about the gaming benchmark is a little strange, isn't it?
    Some result s look really strange - the M270/M275, even with GDDR5, should be considerably slower than a 870M.

    Moreover, in other tests, the 870M gets arounf 50FPS on bioshock highest settings benchmark @ 1080p (notebookcheck 870M tests and 860M too - like the GTX 750 Ti)

    Maybe some heavy throttling took place?

    That's true in other cases too.
    Reply
  • Pissedoffyouth - Monday, September 15, 2014 - link

    Wow, for that kind of money considering its a custom build why didn't they do laptop style heat pipes from the CPU, to underneith where the GPU is, and then to a heatsink instead where the little screamer fans are?? And then have a quiet 12cm fan on the top of it or under it?

    Considering it's supposed to be VESA mounted the screen would defend the low hum of a 12cm fan...
    Reply
  • Tikcus9666 - Monday, September 15, 2014 - link

    An laptop AMD FX 7600P APU,35W would surely be a better fit for a Box like this or even a 65W desktop A8 7600 (can be configured to 45W)

    no GPU needed (for almost 1080p gaming), and a fraction of the cost, however you wouldn't be able to fry an egg on it,
    Reply
  • PixyMisa - Tuesday, September 16, 2014 - link

    They have a model with an A8-5545M, and one with an A8-5557M and a Radeon R9 M275X. Reply

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