Unveiling the Asrock CoreHT

The Asrock CoreHT is a stylish book-sized computer that uses essentially same chassis design as the Core 100HT. The only noteworthy change is seen with on the façade, which has been slightly modified to fit a larger air-intake vent.

As with previous models, the glossy black exterior helps the system blend into any home theater setup, while its small footprint means it'll fit just about anywhere. The CoreHT comes exclusively in black unlike the Vision 3D which had a silver unit.

The system measures 195mm (W) x 186mm (L) x 70mm (H), it has an internal volume of 2.5L, while weighing 1.7kg when fully configured. It can be mounted horizontally or vertically, though Asrock only supplies a grip pad for horizontal use.

The CoreHT feels very polished and Asrock's attention to detail shows. The rear I/O panel has a coat of black paint, the optical drive has a glossy black finish to match the rest of the system, and all the ports are properly labeled.

Besides the Blu-ray drive, there are two USB 3.0 ports and two audio jacks on the front of the CoreHT. There's also a round power button that lights up blue and directly adjacent from that is a small amber hard drive activity LED.

Around back, you'll find a significant amount of connectivity for such a small computer. There are four USB 2.0 ports, two USB 3.0 ports, LAN, HDMI, VGA, a powered eSATA port, five audio jacks and an optical S/PDIF output.

This is the same configuration used by the Ion 330HT and Core 100HT, and disappointingly, that means DVI is missing. Although DVI might not be a critical output for most users we did appreciate the fact that the Vision 3D supported it.

There's also a small DC-in power connection for a Delta Electronics 19v AC/DC adapter. This is the same adapter employed by previous Asrock mini PCs and some of ours have been in action for two years now, so they appear reliable.

Although it's been reliable on our watch, after some quick research it appears this power pack can be purchased online for as little as $15. If yours happens to fail out of warranty, it should be pretty affordable to replace.

Considering it's geared toward "Home Theater" use, the CoreHT comes bundled with a Media Center Edition remote control, providing convenient way of watching movies or listening to music from the comfort of your couch.