Thanks to the advances in the APU space, namely with low-power mobile Ryzen processors from AMD. And with that, we've seen a recent resurgence in mini-PCs that can be used for a lot more than just basic network tasks, from being able to handle complex content creation apps to serving as portable media platforms and servers to even little game boxes that can sit next to a TV or monitor for compact PC gaming on a device a lot smaller than even an Xbox Series S.
AYANEO is a company known for making some of the most powerful and capable PC gaming handhelds on the market (recently covered the impending launch of the company's new AYANEO Slide), but its latest release is a mini-PC. More specifically, the AYANEO Retro Mini PC (AM01) - sets itself apart from the pack with a retro design that makes it look like a miniature classic Macintosh. And ti comes with interchangeable decorative magnets and a set of stickers to help you make your AYANEO Retro Mini PC your own.
Outside of the gorgeous retro look, the AYANEO Retro Mini PC design features a 35W silent heat dissipation system, so there's none of that loud, tiny fan sound found in many other mini PCs. The retro beige shroud encloses some decent hardware, with the AYANEO Retro Mini PC's entry-level ($150 early bird price) variant equipped with an AMD Ryzen 3 3200U, 8GB of DDR4 Dual Channel Memory, and 256GB of storage.
Based on the retro look and the fact that modern mini-PCs are awesome little emulation boxes for playing retro games (and current indie releases), the AMD Ryzen 7 5700U model with either 8GB of memory and 256GB of storage ($269 early bird price) or 16GB of memory and 512GB of storage ($299 early bird price) would be the way to go if you plan on slotting this next to a display and use it for gaming with.
AMD Ryzen 7 5700U on 7nm process clocks up to 4.3 GHz across 8 cores and 16 threads and comes equipped with Radeon Vega 8 integrated graphics. Each AYANEO Retro Mini PC also comes with Windows and access to the company's AYASpace software for system monitoring and managing game libraries across various platforms.
Port-wise, it's pretty stacked for such a small device, with HDMI 2.0 and DisplayPort 1.4 for 4K 60Hz output on the back alongside four USB ports and an Ethernet port. On the front, there's USB-C and a headphone jack for audio. Internally, there's also room to expand the storage with the M.2 2280 PCIe Gen3 interface supporting up to 8TB capacity. Plus, there's Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.2.
If you've been considering picking up a mini PC for gaming or home usage for yourself or as a gift, the AYANEO Retro Mini PC should be on your list. Check out the Retro Mini PC's Indiegogo page for the early bird prices, with shipping expected in December 2023.