The BKi5A-7200 is possibly the first "desktop" to use the Kaby Lake microarchitecture since it utilizes a Kaby Lake-U mobile processor. The BRIX lineup of mini PCs is GIGABYTE's custom iteration of Intel's Next Unit of Computing form factor, which is basically a laptop in desktop form. I have reviewed many generations of BRIX mini PCs, and they have proven to be quite formidable desktop replacements.
With the recent proliferation of NGFF M.2 x4 PCI-E 3.0 SSDs, the bottleneck that once was storage speed has been alleviated. These days you can find thin ultrabooks that are just as snappy as powerful desktops because of newer SSD technologies, and the BRIX takes full advantage of this technology. Some of you may have heard the news that you will need to use a Kaby Lake CPU to stream Netflix in 4K on the PC, and the BKi5A-7200 has an i5-7200U Kaby Lake CPU.
So, what's in Kaby Lake that would make it a requirement for 4K Netflix Streaming? Well, there are both performance improvements as well as security improvements inside the integrated graphics processor, but the security improvements are what I think Netflix really cares about. Kaby Lake does have new dedicated fixed function media engines that are designed to significantly improve 4K (UHD) playback and but it also supports HDCP 2.2, PlayReady 3, and Widevine, which are designed to protect 4K content from pirates.
The BKi5A-7200 uses an Intel i5-7200U, which is a little faster than the i5-6200U with a base clock of 2.5GHz (200MHz higher) and Turbo of 3.1GHz (300MHz higher). The i5-7200U has two cores and four threads, a 15W TDP, and the new Intel HD Graphics 620.
The device also supports USB 3.1 type-C and type-A, HDMI 2.0, mini DisplayPort 1.2, 1Gbit NIC, and Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 3168.
GIGABYTE informed us that the MSRP is roughly $390.
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- Page 1 [Introduction, Specifications, and Pricing]
- Page 2 [Packaging and System]
- Page 3 [Teardown of the BKi5A-7200]
- Page 4 [BIOS]
- Page 5 [Test Setup and Benchmarks]
- Page 6 [Temperature and Power Consumption]
- Page 7 [What's Hot, What's Not & Final Thoughts]
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