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In brief: Today's mini PCs are far from the office-designed, underpowered machines that they used to be. Just take a look at the Neptune HX90G from Minisforum, which packs a high-end AMD or Intel CPU, a Navi 23-based GPU, a massive heatsink, and even pre-applied liquid metal, all inside a tiny 2.8L chassis.
Minisforum announced the Neptune HX90G earlier this month, confirming that a model with a Ryzen 9 5900HX would arrive first followed by versions with Ryzen 9 6900HX and Intel Alder Lake processors.
It appears that all variants' GPUs are restricted to the Radeon RX 6650M, a Navi 23-based graphics card with 8 GB of VRAM and 1,792 cores (28 Compute Units) that's also an option in the HP Omen 16. The Neptune HX90G's small form factor means the graphics are soldered to the PCB, so it can't be replaced or upgraded.
The promo video for the Neptune HX90G suggests Minisforum is making sure the components stay cool in its tiny case. The vast heatsink has two fans that sit above the CPU and GPU, and there are seven heatpipes split between the two components.
Minisforum says the cooler and liquid metal allow heat dissipation without performance loss from the CPU and GPU operating at 100% load: 50W and 100W, respectively. The company has confirmed that the mini-PC will ship with a 260W power adaptor.
As with similar mini PCs, the Neptune HX90G comes without RAM or storage. You do get two SODIMM slots that support up to 32GB of dual-channel DDR4 and two PCIe 3.0 slots for up to 1TB of storage. It also boasts two HDMI ports, two DisplayPort outputs, an audio jack, one 2.5 Gbps Ethernet port, three USB 3.2 Gen 2, one USB 3.1 Gen 1, and one USB Type-C. No word yet on price.
In March, Gigabyte launched what it called the "most powerful" mini PC in the world: the Brix Extreme. It uses Intel's latest mobile Alder Lake CPUs and features PCIe Gen 4 connectivity but lacks a dedicated GPU, relying only on Intel Iris Xe graphics.