With the collaboration Gearbest.com we present the review of fanless mini PC ACEPC T9, a small very compact computer that has 4 GB of RAM, integrates a dual-band AC Wifi adapter and has operating system Windows 10 installed and activated. This device very low consumption with small dimensions we can hide it on our desktop anywhere. Let’s see how it behaves in our analysis comparing it with the rest of similar models in the market.
|CPU||Intel Atom x5-Z8350 @ 1.44GHz / 1.92 GHz|
|GPU||Intel HD Graphics 400 Gen8 12UE @ 200MHz / 500GHz|
|OS||Windows 10 Home 64bit|
|Chipset||Intel Cherry Trail IMC|
|RAM||4GB LPDDR3L 1066 MHz Single Channel|
|Storage||32 eMMC integrated|
|WiFi||Broadcom SDIO 802.11ac SDIO 2.4/5GHz (AP6255)|
|Ports||1x USB 3.0|
1x USB 2.0
Jack audio IN/OUT
HDMI 1.4 / 4K@30fps
5V 2,5A (12,5W) power source
Weight: 0.4 lb
Dimensions: 4.41 x 4.41 x 0.59 inches
The miniPC ACEPC T9 is presented in a cardboard box with the basic data of the model. Inside we find the central unit in an upper compartment accompanied by a 5V 2.5A transformer, an HDMI video connection cable and a fairly simple manual.
The miniPC ACEPC T9 has a box made of aluminum and plastic, in the upper area we find the logo of the brand and in the front we have a black piece with a blue status LED, the external Wifi antenna stands out for its size.
In one of the sides we have a USB 2.0 port, another USB 3.0, microSD card reader and the power button.
In the rear area we find the round power connector, microUSB port, HDMI 1.4 connector that allows 4K@30fps video output, 10/100 Ethernet port, audio jack with microphone support and external antenna.
In the lower area we have four rubber feet that raise the box a little and hide the screws to remove this cover.
CONNECTING THE DEVICE
We start the ACEPC T9 by connecting it to the current and pressing the lateral power button, the system starts the configuration phase where we only have Chinese or English. As an unpleasant surprise as soon as you start the system we have a message from an installed worm, we recommend passing MalwareBytes to clean the device, after cleaning it it does not seem that of more problems.
Once we passed the installation and cleaning phase we observed the system data, as indicated by the specifications, we have Windows 10 Home 64bit correctly activated, we checked the list of devices and observed that none of them ran out of drivers. The system is updated only to the latest version of Windows correctly but it takes more than an hour.
- Startup time: 22 seconds
As we see the installed system is Windows 10 Home 64bit properly activated and perfectly detects the Intel Atom x5-Z8350 Quad Core with its speed of 1.5 GHz, the system comes with the previous version of Creators update with what we need to wait almost one hour to be updated completely, a process that has not given us any problem.
This passive ACEPC T9 mini PC we have the Intel Atom x5-Z8350 Quad core processor, a model that already has its time and that allows us to move Windows at user level in a basic way, with the 4 GB of RAM that we have installed we can navigate , use office software, play multimedia and play simple games. Outside of this basic use of the desktop the system already suffers and you can see that it falls short in scenarios that ask for resources.
It is possible to boot the BIOS from the system by pressing the ESC key repeatedly while restarting the miniPC, the system BIOS is quite limited and we can only change the boot system.
The ACEPC brand has a website with a forum dedicated to its products where we can find some information, unfortunately the T9 model we have almost nothing, drivers are not found anywhere.
From a USB we started Ubuntu 17 using the ISO of this system, an operating system that we can use with the ACEPC T9 but that has several limitations in the section of hardware acceleration by GPU, in the reproduction of video by the compatibility of the VPU and with some more elements of different drivres like the sound by HDMI. In this model, the Wifi adapter does not work, so we are quite limited, although the Ethernet adapter does work. If we do not have the necessary knowledge, it is better to keep Windows, which is what this hardware is designed for.
To remotely control the ACEPC T9 we can install Intel Remote Keyboard Host on the the mini PC, and then we can use our mobile or tablet to control it installing the Android or iOS app. We can use tactile gestures, virtual mouse or remote keyboard, we just have to have both devices on the same Wi-Fi network.
The fanless mini PC ACEPC T9 integrated the old Quad Core Intel Atom x5-Z8350 SoC a model that works at a normal speed of 1.44 GHz and a turbo mode can reach up to 1.92 GHz according to specifications but in our tests we have been able see that we did not pass the 1.6 GHz. This model integrates an Intel HD Graphics 400 Gen8 GPU with 12 Units of execution, includes partial support for hardware decoding of the H.265 codec and support 4K resolutions at 30fps. The normal working speed of the GPU is 200Mhz although it can arrive punctually up to 500MHz when more power is required.
In the tests we verified how the integraded LPDDR3L memory works only at 1066 MHz and works at Single Channel speed, something that implies performance limitations, if the memory worked at 1600 MHz we would have better figures.
The speed in Single Channel reaches correct figures and we verify that the integrated chips that it works work at 1066 MHz at a somewhat low speed, we do not recommend touching the BIOS to upload it, since we can get a bricked device.
Storage and ports
In the section of internal storage we have 32 GB in eMMC space integrated in the board, the speed is correct for this type of memory especially in writing, this aspect has an acceptable speed.
The results given by the 32 GB eMMC memory installed are correct, in 4K it is somewhat low but it is in tolerable values.
Temperature and noise level
We perform our thermal tests in the ACEPC T9 as we see the aluminum box fulfills its function adequately keeping the temperatures controlled in normal use.
- Average measurement temperature 25°C
In the extreme performance test with the CPU and the GPU at 100% and the system rises temperatures while it begins to limit the maximum speed of the processor, the system goes up to 80°C as a stop but the processor remains at a speed maximum of 1.67 GHz which is normal in the use of this type of Intel Atom. With 3D games we can get some quite high temperatures for its closed box design.
The upper and lower parts of the miniPC get quite hot but it is normal in a system with passive cooling, it is not worrisome in normal use. As we can see in the picture superficially we reached up to about 38ºC.
In the section of electrical consumption using the ACEPC T9 we obtain quite controlled consumption values in the line of similar models, in normal use the systems remain very contained and we only reach a maximum of 11 W when we put the GPU to work maximum.
Wi-Fi, Ethernet and Bluetooth
In our review we conducted a series of performance tests on the ACEPC T9 mini PC, we found that for the wireless connection we have a Broadcom SDIO 802.11ac SDIO 2.4 / 5GHz (AP6255) wifi chip that also integrates the Bluetooth 4.0 adapter. With this wifi adapter we have a speed of 37 Mbps in the 2.4 GHz band and 132 Mbps in the 5 GHz band, the range is correct but as we have seen the internal antenna does not allow us to get away from the router. The Ethernet 10/100 connector gives us results of 83 Mbps, correct figures in these adapters.
We also ran tests on the network adapters for streaming using the iPerf measurement tool with which we have the maximum connection speed in each type of network. With this figure we have how far we can reach using the available connections, the final performance will depend on our internet provider, the contracted speed, the distance of our Wi-Fi network and other factors. As we can see from the results we have good acceptable figures to play streaming content.
The ACEPC T9 has the Intel Atom x5-Z8350 processor an update of the previous x5-Z8300 that only improves the turbo speed taking it up to 1.94 GHz and corrects some small failures in video playback with its Intel HD Graphics 400 GPU. The performance is adequate within what this hardware can give and thanks to its 4 GB of RAM we can navigate by opening several tabs without many problems, a good system to use as a 1080p video player, simple games or office suite, all this with a very low consumption.
With this test we can see the performance of the device in an office environment and common desktop use.
Graphic performance test where we can see the gross performance capabilities in this environment and compare the performance of GPU’s historically.
This benchmark in SoC offers a fairly reliable numbers of CPU’s working in a single core or multiple cores ate the same time, it also has a section of GPU computing that gives us an overall result of the processing capacity.
A brute force tests on both CPU and GPU, this benchmark always help us to see a very clear reference of power.
We passed several performance tests for our analysis on the ACEPC T9 that integrates an Intel HD Graphics 400 Gen8 GPU with 12EU (Execution Units). The performance is correct to play very simple titles, as we have seen with this hardware we will be limited in most cases to 2D games and with basic 3D effects.
- GTA V, Low settings, 720p resolution
- Overwatch, Low settings, 720p resolution
- DOTA 2, Low settings, 1080p resolution
- Fortnite, Low settings, 720p resolution
- World of Tanks, Medium settings, 1080p resolution
As we see, with this hardware it is advisable to play simple titles such as those found on Android phones by downloading them from the Microsoft Store. Also indie 2D titles or have a basic load in 3D, emulators are also feasible but at most we are in some simple Wii titles.
VIDEO AND AUDIO TEST
Video format test
In the section of playback as we see in the tests of our analysis the miniPC ACEPC T9 has a GPU with partial hardware support for decoding the h.265 codec, but behaves very well with h.264 videos that are those that are used mostly in streaming or downloads, this model also has support for video output in 4K resolution at 30hz by its HDMI connector. As a mediaplayer works correctly with any 1080p h.264 video, where we are limited is with the very high bitrate files compressed in h.265 with 10bit color or HDR.
- If you are interested only in KODI you can try the LibreELEC system for PC
|H.264 format||Default player||KODI|
|BBB – H.264 8bit – 1080p@25fps – 7 Mbps||Correct||Correct|
|Birds – H.264 8bit – 1080p@24fps – 40 Mbps||Correct||Correct|
|Samsung Oceanic Life – H.264 8bit– 1080p@30fps – 40 Mbps||Correct||Correct|
|Anime – H.264 10bit – 1080p@24fps – 10 Mbps||Artifacts||Frame skip|
|Skyfall – H.264 8 bit – 4K@24fps – 10 Mbps||Correct||Correct|
|Timelapse – H.264 8bit – 4K@24fps – 43 Mbps||Correct||Correct|
|Tears of steel – HVEC 8bit – 1080p@24fps – 17 Mbps||Frame skip||Frame skip|
|Beauty – HVEC 8bit – 4K@120fps – 12 Mbps||Frame skip||Frame skip|
|Anime – HVEC 10bit – 1080p@24fps – 21 Mbps||Frame skip||Frame skip|
|Samsung UHD Dubai – HVEC 10bit – 4K@24fps – 51 Mbps||Frame skip||Frame skip|
|Life of Pi HDR – HVEC – 4K@24fps – 45 Mbps||Frame skip||Frame skip|
|TravelXP HDR HLG – HVEC – 4K@24fps – 20 Mbps||Frame skip||Frame skip|
|Planet Earth II – HDR HLG – HVEC 10L5 – 4K@25fps – 31 Mbps||Frame skip||Frame skip|
- The MKV, Blu-ray ISO and BDRemux formats are only containers, inside we can have different codecs, resolutions, audio channels, chapters or subtitles. To play the Blu-ray format menus we need KODI or a compatible program.
Audio format test
Testing the ACEPC T9 using a Yamaha RXV-577 AV receiver we check that the miniPC supports DD 5.1 sound and DTS pass through, is curious because the default hardware only supports stereo and does not have licenses for DD or DTS formats. We recommend, as always, to update all the drivers with Windows Update to the latest before connecting the device to our AV receiver.
|Dolby Digital 5.1||OK||–|
|Dolby Digital Plus 7.1||PCM||–|
|Dolby True HD 7.1||PCM||–|
|Dolby Atmos 7.1||PCM*||–|
|DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1||Core||–|
|DTS-HD High Resolution 7.1||Core||–|
- PCM – Stereo downmix from DD or DTS
- Core – Only the core of the format Dolby / DTS is played
- * Our AV receiver does not support these native formats but we check that it does downmix fine
We play streaming for test some content on the ACEPC T9 in the usual channels like YouTube or other sources and we verified that we have no problems when playing videos. In YouTube we can play content with the VP9 codec quite correctly up to 4K with a 50% CPU usage, although if we look for better performance it is best to use another codec like h.264.
Streaming services with subscription
We check the most common streaming services playback various contents and we verified that all work properly, the power of this device is more than enough to see any kind of content with them. In Netflix we get to FullHD quality without complications, in the rest of services we get the maximum resolution possible.
|Service||Video Quality||Audio Quality|
|Amazon Prime Video||HD (720p)||Stereo|
Once we have all passed our review mini PC ACEPC T9 we have been able to verify that we are facing a fanless mini PC that is correct but does not provide much new. We have a correct Wifi ac adapter, we have RAM up to 4 GB that is aprecciated in this range and the aluminum box dissipates the generated heat quite well.
The overall performance of the ACEPC T9 as a mini PC is correct for a general desktop use but we can not demand great boasts with powerful programs or 3D games. This small sorted serves us perfectly to play video content with 1080p resolution and with 5.1 sound. If the RAM were 1600 MHz we would have a better performance in general, a pity. In short, an interesting product if we look for an economical mini PC with Windows 10 by default.