Elder Lake-P and Cezanne UCFF Faceoff

The previous few years have seen Intel and AMD ship new processors in a staggered method. Within the sub-45W class, Intel’s energy has allowed it to ship merchandise for each notebooks and ultra-compact type issue (UCFF) inside a couple of months of one another. AMD’s focus, however, has been on the high-margin pocket book market, with chips filtering into the desktop market in a yr or so. On this context, AMD’s Cezanne (most SKUs based mostly on the Zen 3 microarchitecture) and Intel’s Tiger Lake had been head-to-head within the pocket book market final yr, whereas Rembrandt (based mostly on the Zen3+) and Elder Lake-P are edging it out. yr. Within the desktop area, Cezanne-based mini-PCs began showing only some months in the past, coinciding with the primary wave of Elder Lake-P techniques.

ASRock Industrial has the repute of being one of many first distributors to launch UCFF techniques based mostly on the most recent out there processors from each Intel and AMD. We reviewed their NUC BOX-1165G7 as our first Tiger Lake-U mini-PC, and the 4X4 BOX-4800U was one of many earliest Renoir-based desktops. The corporate continues the custom with the NUC BOX-1200 collection for the Elder Lake-P and the NUC 4X4 BOX-5000 collection for the Cezanne, with product bulletins coming inside a month of one another.

The corporate despatched the flagship fashions in each lineups in for evaluation, giving us an opportunity to guage the efficiency and worth proposition of the NUC BOX-1260P and 4X4 BOX-5800U. The evaluation beneath supplies an in depth sensible comparability of the 2 fashions. It additionally brings out varied configurable points that may be tweaked by the seller and/or end-user to extract most attainable efficiency inside form-factor constraints. In that course of, we additionally get to know what helps ASRock Industrial to supply mini-PCs based mostly on the most recent processors, effectively forward of its opponents.

Introduction and Product Impressions

Intel launched heterogeneous computing to its product line final yr at Elder Lake with a mixture of efficiency (P) and effectivity (E) cores. Whereas the desktop line was out the door at first, Intel adopted in February 2022 with sub-35W processors. Inbuilt Intel 7, Elder Lake brings a multi-task focus to computing, offering cues to the OS the place totally different duties are wanted. to run. Total, it is going to convey a greater consumer expertise – and the Elder Lake-P collection goes to ship all of that throughout the 28W energy envelope. Then again, AMD’s Cezanne was introduced in early 2021, bringing the Zen 3 microarchitecture into the pocket book area. The 8C/16T configuration of homogeneous high-performance cores provides it an edge in multi-threaded workloads over Intel’s options.

Regardless of the introduction of options for greater than a yr, ultra-compact form-factor and small form-factor desktop techniques that use these processors are starting to hit the market across the identical time. Each the Cezanne and Elder Lake-P use an up to date microarchitecture, which guarantees a wholesome efficiency enhance in comparison with the earlier technology. The built-in GPU can be recorded excessive. On the system entrance, high-speed I/O choices are carried over from Renoir and Tiger Lake – Cezanne continues to retain the PCIe 3.0 lane for storage, and solely USB 3.2 Gen for high-bandwidth exterior peripherals. 2 (10 Gbps) ports. , In distinction, the Elder Lake-P presents 4 devoted CPU-connected PCIe 4.0 lanes for storage drives and two Thunderbolt 4/USB4 ports for exterior peripherals. Elements that have to be checked out in depth embrace system efficiency for several types of workloads and energy/power consumption profiles.

ASRock is a widely known vendor within the client PC market. In 2011, the corporate established the ASRock industrial enterprise unit to give attention to industrial motherboards. The division emerged in 2018 as an unbiased vendor with a particular give attention to B2B merchandise. The corporate has merchandise for deployment in small companies (places of work), automation, robotics, safety and different industrial/IoT functions. Primarily, the corporate develops motherboards, and sells them to numerous system integrators who could make their very own worth additions. As well as, the corporate additionally sells mini-PCs based mostly on motherboards developed within the retail channel.

ASRock Industrial samples its flagship fashions within the Alder Lake-P (NUC BOX-1260P) and Cezanne (4X4 BOX-5800U) lineups. It is uncommon that two main merchandise come up for evaluation directly – so we took the chance to guage them in parallel.

As a reminder, the NUC BOX and 4X4 BOX collection each use a chassis that traces its roots again to ASRock’s now defunct Beebox product line. The cooling resolution is time-tested inside that case design, and all that ASRock Industrial does is to barely change the I/O cut-outs to match particular person motherboards. Because the above image exhibits, it’s tough to tell apart between the 2 techniques at first look, because the cut-outs are precisely the identical (in reality, the earlier technology NUC BOX-1165G7 and 4X4 BOX-4800U are additionally equivalent) . Solely on nearer look does the presence of two black USB 2.0 ports within the rear I/O of the 4X4 BOX-5800U (in comparison with the blue USB 3.2 Gen 2 port within the NUC BOX-1260P) function a differentiating issue.

ASRock Industrial’s essential focus is on B2B prospects. It ought to come as no shock that their techniques are packaged in a non-descript method. Nevertheless, throughout the package deal, the corporate contains the whole lot an finish consumer would want – a VESA mount and related screws, 2.5″ drive and M.2 SSD set up aids, a geo-specific energy wire and a 90W energy adapter .

ASRock Industrial NUC BOX-1260P Package deal Contents:

ASRock Industrial 4X4 BOX-5800U Package deal Contents:

Since our pattern of the NUC BOX-1260P was an early engineering pattern, it didn’t have mannequin quantity markings on the underside (not like the 4X4 BOX-5800U). Each samples had been barebones – RAM and disk drives are left to the discretion of the tip consumer. For the apples-to-apples comparability, we opted to make use of the identical set of parts utilized in evaluations of the corporate’s techniques based mostly on the Tiger Lake-U and Renoir. The NUC BOX-1260P was outfitted with 2x 32GB of ADATA XPG GAMMIX S50 Lite and Kingston FURY Influence DDR4-3200 SODIMMs. A Patriot Reminiscence P300 SSD and 2x 32GB Patriot Reminiscence DDR4-3200 SODIMMs had been put in within the 4X4 BOX-5800U for analysis.

Past related development and industrial design, a better have a look at the NUC BOX-1260P and 4X4 BOX-5800U reveals many various points, each inside and exterior. They’re summarized within the desk beneath. The reasoning behind (BIOS 1.2E) and (Efficiency) is roofed within the subsequent part.

System Specs
(as examined)
ASRock NUC Field-1260p (BIOS 1.2E) ASRock 4X4 BOX-5800U (Efficiency)
Processor Intel Core i7-1260P
Elder Lake 4P+ 8E/16T, as much as 4.7 GHz (P) as much as 3.4 GHz (E)
Intel 7, 18Mb L2, min/max/base TDP: 20W/64W/28W
PL1 = 28W, PL2 = 64W
AMD Ryzen 7 5800U
Zen 3 (Ceizen) 8C/16T, 1.9 – 4.4 GHz
TSMC 7nm, 16MB L3, 10-25 W (15W)
Min / Max / Goal TDP: 10W / 54W / 25W-30W
Commemoration Kingston Fury Impact KHX3200C20S4/32GX DDR4-3200 SODIMM
20-22-22-48 @ 3200 MHz
2×32 GB
Patriot Reminiscence PSD432G32002S DDR4-3200 SODIMM
22-22-22-52 @ 3200 MHz
2×32 GB
graphics Intel Iris XE Graphics
(96EU @ 1.40 GHz)
AMD Radeon Graphics (Renoir) – Built-in
(8 cu @ 2 GHz)
Disk Drive) ADATA XPG GAMMIX S50 Lite
(2TB; M.2 2280 PCIe 4.0 x4 NVMe;)
(Micron 96L 3D TLC; Silicon Movement SM2267 Controller)
Patriot P300 SSD P300P512GM28
(512 GB; M.2 2280 PCIE 3.0 x4 NVMe;)
(Kioxia BICS4 96L 3D TLC; Silicon Movement SM2263XT Controller)
networking 2x 2.5 GbE RJ-45 (Intel I225-LM)
Intel Wi-Fi 6E AX211 (2×2 802.11ax – 2.4 Gbps)
1x 2.5 GbE RJ-45 (Realtek RTL8125)
1x GbE RJ-45 (Realtek RTL8168/8111)
Mediatek MT7922 (RZ616) Wi-Fi 6E (2×2 802.11ax – 1.9 Gbps)
Audio Realtek ALC233 (3.5mm audio jack on the entrance)
Digital audio with bitstreaming assist over HDMI and DisplayPort
Realtek ALC233 (3.5mm audio jack on the entrance)
Digital audio with bitstreaming assist over HDMI and DisplayPort
Video 1x HDMI 2.0b
1x Show Port 1.4
2x DisplayPort 1.4 on Sort-C Alt-Mode
1x HDMI 2.0a
1x DisplayPort 1.2a
2x DisplayPort 1.2a on Sort-C Alt-mode
A number of I/O Ports 1x Thunderbolt 4 Sort-C (Entrance)
1x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Sort-C (Entrance)
1x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Sort-A (Entrance)
2x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Sort-A (Rear)
2x USB 2.0 (Rear)
2x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Sort-C (Entrance)
1x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Sort-A (Entrance)
Working System Home windows 11 Enterprise (22000.832) Home windows 11 Enterprise (22000.778)
value ceiling (Road Pricing on July 24th2022)
US$650 (naked bone)
US$1090 (as configured, no OS)
(Road Pricing on July 24th2022)
US$630 (naked bone)
US$858 (as configured, no OS)
Full Specs ASRock Industrial NUC BOX-1260P Specs: ASRock Industrial 4X4 BOX-5800U Specs

The 110 mm x 117.5 mm x 47.85 mm chassis utilized by ASRock Industrial for each techniques is product of polycarbonate, though an inner metallic body is current. The underside panel is hooked up to 4 screws that have to be eliminated to entry the M.2 and SODIMM slots. The highest of the chassis is shiny and simply attracts spots and fingerprints, although it comes with a plastic movie that may be maintained with none lack of cooling effectivity. On each side there are perforated home windows for air consumption. The rear panel has a gap on the high in order that the inner blower fan can expel scorching air after passing via the warmth spreader.

A better have a look at the 2 instances and inside footage can be found within the galleries above. It may be seen that the ASRock Industrial supplies assist for mounting inside 2.5″ drives. This makes it tough for the M.2 SSD to accommodate thermal hole filler. The truth is, the parts are tightly packed onto the board. Packaged, and even mounting the M.2 2280 SSD requires a particular plastic tab that hangs over one of many USB-C ports on the board.

Within the subsequent part, we check out the BIOS choices together with an evaluation of the motherboard platform. After that, now we have a number of sections specializing in varied efficiency points earlier than concluding with an evaluation of the worth proposition of the system.

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