MSI Cubi 2 Plus Review: Close to the perfect mini PC

By Steve · 7 replies
Apr 29, 2016
Post New Reply
  1. Intel has been a real champion for small form factor computing with its NUC family of tiny computers. More recently, the company introduced three new types of mini PC designs in the Compute Stick, Mini Lake and 5" × 5", or mini-STX as it is now commonly referred to.

    While much smaller, the Compute Stick and Mini Lake are non-upgradable and therefore lack the kind of flexibility that enthusiasts and power users desire. This is where the mini-STX steps in, offering a more barebones approach to PC building. The platform supports a standard CPU socket, SO-DIMMs, multiple storage options and various I/O ports.

    One of the first companies to adopt the new mini-STX form factor is MSI with its new Cubi 2 Plus, a tiny 1.3L computer that not only supports a desktop Skylake Core i7 processor but also accept up to 32GBs of DDR4 memory and a high-speed NVMe SSD for good measure.

    Read the complete review.

  2. Theinsanegamer

    Theinsanegamer TS Evangelist Posts: 860   +874

    Looks like a nice mini rig, too bad there is no AMD version (perhaps using their 35 watt mobile chips). The non-iris intel chips have such lackluster GPU performance.
  3. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 3,346   +1,987

    Also sounds like once you build it out it could be a little costly ...... no?
  4. Steve

    Steve TechSpot Editor Topic Starter Posts: 2,869   +2,037

    No not really...

    "After factoring in the cost of an 8GB DDR4 SO-DIMM memory kit for $35 and an M.2 120GB SSD for $50, you have a rather capable little PC for less than $450. Of course you still need to purchase software, so keep that in mind."

    If they do go on sale for $210 that is a great buy. For that money you are getting a case, power supply, motherboard, wireless card and CPU cooler.

    Compared to a traditional ATX desktop PC you would pay at least $50 for a pretty trashy case and power supply combo, $50 for a basic H110 motherboard and $30 for a M.2 WiFi card. So that’s $130 for a basic desktop barebone. Yes, the MSI Cubi 2 Plus costs $90 more but you can expect to pay that kind of premium with any SSF system. The build quality of the Cubi 2 Plus is also considerably better than any budget case/power supply combo and it's 20x smaller ;)
    Julio Franco likes this.
  5. Oscar G

    Oscar G TS Rookie

    No Thunderbolt? LAME. WTF.
  6. Phr3d

    Phr3d TS Guru Posts: 404   +84

    All fine until no front USB 3 (all) chipset hamper SSD and,

    any more word on Microsoft Win7 and skylake? Hard to put a group of these out in a sebben environment unless I missed a memo..

    now if I must requisition the i5 to get a chipset and USB 3.0, I'd be More than willing to do so, but no sebben will be a deal-breaker for us..
  7. Godel

    Godel TS Booster Posts: 76   +27

    Regarding power consumption, how many cores were running on the AMD chips?

    They have four cores compared to the I3's two cores. AMD chips will never be seen as economical on power, but a fair comparison may mean they're not quite as bad as pictured.
  8. Steve

    Steve TechSpot Editor Topic Starter Posts: 2,869   +2,037

    It is a 100% load test so all four cores on the AMD chips were working flat out. That said AMD's power efficiency on these chips is horrible, that has been well known for years now. They consume more power than a Core i5 so enough said. Hopefully Zen can be a massive improvement in efficiency for AMD.
    cliffordcooley likes this.

Similar Topics

Add your comment to this article

You need to be a member to leave a comment. Join thousands of tech enthusiasts and participate.
TechSpot Account You may also...