An Intel-based mini-pc (not even an Atom, but a fairly decent quad-core Celeron) with a case and power supply for less than the price of a Raspberry Pi. Can it be real?
[Update 11th March] — Looks as though these (assuming there ever was more than one) have sold out. 😦 Scroll down for some other, not quite as cheap, but still available mini-pc bargains. —
…and the answer is, probably not! Check the delivery cost very carefully before clicking the order button. As far as I can tell, this seller is hoping to charge you €999.00 for express delivery of the first item and €80.00 for each additional item. It’s not clear to me whether that is the default, or whether you can have it shipped “normal delivery” for €4.99; perhaps someone more familiar with on-line shopping in French can comment on that? — Reader “raspi” has confirmed that delivery in France is €4.99 (see the comments section, below), so it does look as though this is a bargain after all (but you should still check delivery costs and final price before confirming your order). — It looks like the Europeans get the best deal of the day (again), with CDiscout.com currently advertising a J3455 (quad core Celeron) with 4GB of main memory and 64GB of eMMC for a measly €28.26 (it might be a misprint, but they do say quite plainly “€190 Savings”). Unfortunately, as I’ve mentioned before, Cdiscount only sell/deliver to a small number of western European countries, so the rest of us are out of luck, but if you’re in France, Spain, Germany or Belgium …get them while you can (and let us know in the comments if you manage to snag one of these at the advertised price). [IMPORTANT – If you didn’t read the update at the top of the page, go back and read it now — verify the shipping cost before you buy!!]
At a somewhat more realistic price, Amazon.com is currently advertising a J3455-based, Coofun branded, mini-pc with a very respectable 6GB of memory and a 128GB M.2 SSD for $170. What appear to be identical units but with a different name are currently selling for $189.99. Amazon U.S. will also ship these units to selected countries outside of the U.S. for a very reasonable price (but you might end up having to pay a stiffer bill for postage back to the U.S. if you need to return it for any reason).
Silence is golden — Although the adverts are usually vaguely worded, you can safely assume that most of these thin, Celeron-based systems have a laptop-style fan hidden away somewhere inside (generally the earlier generation, Atom-based mini-pcs didn’t). The Coofun advertisment above very straightforwardly displays a photo of the heatsink and fan unit, so there’s no guesswork involved.
AMAZON N3150/J3160 BAREBONES
Currently (11th March 2020), most Amazon regions (including the U.S.) are advertising an N3150 or J3160 (virtually identical) based fanless model with 4 x USB3, 2 x USB2, 2 x HDMI and 2 x GbE. Note that this is the barebones price (no memory, no SSD/HDD). The price seems to be pretty much the same for Amazon US, Japan and UK at roughly $135 with free shipping:-
It seems that you’ll be shipped whichever CPU is at hand when your order is received (in other words, you can’t choose). It’s still very attractive, though; this is a Celeron machine at the current Atom-Z8350 price. From personal experience with similar machines, you can expect this beastie to run fairly hot; not hot enough to burn you, but hot enough to be uncomfortable to the touch.