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AOpen miniPC MP915-B Super Multi System Review

AOpen miniPC MP915-B Super Multi System Review - PCSTATS
Abstract: AOpen mini PC MP915-B (Super Multi) system is based on the Intel 915GM chipset and supports Socket 479 Pentium M 400/533 MHz processors.
 80% Rating:   
Filed under: Computer / SFF PCs Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: Aopen May 30 2006   Colin Sun  
Home > Reviews > Computer / SFF PCs > Aopen miniPC MP915-B

Exterior Features

The front of the AOpen Mini PC MP915-B (Super Multi) is very clean and smooth. The chassis is one-piece cast aluminum, with a coating of aluminum paint on top. There are only two buttons on the front of the machine, the power and the DVD writer's eject button. Under the power button is the microphone port, although a separate mic can be attached as well. The power button shines a bright blue when the system is powered up, and the circular LED that runs around the circumference of the button blinks blue when the HDD is being accessed.

There are no noticeable features on the side of the AOpen Mini PC MP915-B (Super Multi) although on the top there is a dot grid. On the bottom is a large rubber pad which keeps the AOpen Mini PC secure on the table, and slightly elevated so the cooling vents along its bottom perimeter are not obstructed.

There is a lot more action at the back of the PC. Starting on the left, there is a Kensington lock, 12V DC power connector, DVI and video output connectors, and above that the exhaust vent for the processor fan (it looks like a PCI or AGP slot, but it is not). To the right of these jacks we also find the RJ45 network port, two USB ports, one IEEE 1394 Firewire and microphone and speaker jacks. Above the RJ45 port is a circular hole for the miniPCI wireless antenna which is sold separately. Note the AOpen PC MP915-B also comes with a DVI to analog converter so CRT monitors can be used with the system.

The cast aluminum shell gives the AOpen Mini PC MP915-B (Super Multi) a very cool look, but the metal painting it receives is soft and scratches easily. The best advice we can give you is to treat the AOpen Mini PC system with care, the last thing you want is a large scratch on its shinny aluminum surface.

Insufficient USB Ports

As we move in for a closer look at the AOpen Mini PC MP-915B (Super Multi), I just want to touch on the one big issue we feel it falls short on. USB ports. With only two available, there is a good likelyhood that there will be nothing left after connecting the keyboard and mouse. If you have a printer, a digital camera, an MP3 player, anything that uses a USB port you'll quickly find yourself shopping around for a USB hub.

Realistically there should be at least three or four USB slots on the rear I/O of any computer, but since that isn't the case you'll soon learn to make due with just two. PCSTATS recommends the Vantec NexStar GX combination external hard drive and 4-port USB hub for use with this AOpen Mini PC - not only will it add USB ports, but you can slap a nice fat 500 GB hard drive in there and store movies, music, or whatever!

Now, let's crack the shell open and nose around inside the SFF PC.

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Contents of Article: Aopen miniPC MP915-B
 Pg 1.  AOpen miniPC MP915-B Super Multi System Review
 Pg 2.  — Exterior Features
 Pg 3.  Inside the AOpen mniPC
 Pg 4.  Photo Walk through - Disassembly
 Pg 5.  Photo Walkthrough - Memory / Processor
 Pg 6.  Photo Walkthrough - CPU Heatsink
 Pg 7.  Photo Walkthrough - MiniPCI
 Pg 8.  The Mini PC BIOS
 Pg 9.  Benchmarks: SYSMark 2004
 Pg 10.  Benchmarks: SiSoft Sandra, Super Pi, PCMark04
 Pg 11.  Benchmarks: PCMark05, 3DMark2001, 3DMark05
 Pg 12.  Benchmarks: X2: The Threat, UT2003, UT2004, Doom 3
 Pg 13.  Alternative SFF media PC?

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