In early 2015 the Raspberry Foundation announced a Raspberry Pi which will be compatible with a special version of Windows 10 (IoT). Since then, many companies have created small computers compatible with Windows from Microsoft. As always, most of these manufacturers come from China, however, we should not relate that to poor quality or underpowered, since there are some Mini PCs that are real gems.
Here at XiaomiToday we tested one of them, the Wintel W8, a Mini PC Box or TV equipped with Windows and Android and a very interesting hardware in a truly compact enclosure.
Design and Build
It doesn’t matter if a device is very powerful or if filled with innovative features, the first thing that we will value before buying is the design and quality of materials. There are brands that carry this idea very strictly, the best example is Apple, from their computers to their iPods we work quality and abundance.
Luckily, Wintel also takes into account the quality and that is reflected on the device as well, with premium materials which are better quality than most of the companies that make these type of boxes.
The Wintel CX-W8 remains very small, being only slightly larger than the famous Raspberry Pi, in fact if the RPI is in a housing it would be even more compact. These measures as adjusted make the Wintel W8 the perfect TV Box as a device like this can use the VESA mount your television or monitor and make this mini PC is completely hidden, note that this configuration is not the easiest to switch USBs or memory cards. Moreover, its low weight makes the Wintel easy to carry and if we choose VESA configuration not find many problems because its just 250 grams (approx.) Are more or less the same standard weight of devices like this.
There are 3 different materials in W8. First we have the top, made ??of a matte plastic material; It covers the top of the device where the logo of the brand resides. Second, the edge of the Mini PC, this time is a glossy plastic, with holes cut out for different connections, on the front we find the power button and a status LED. Finally, the back is made with a rubbery material and perforated to improve ventilation. The Wintel W8 has no fans, ie it removes excess heat passively, this avoids noise and It consumes less power but is less effective. All materials scream the feeling of quality and seem to be very resistant to damage.
- Brand-Model : W8 Wintel (Wintel CX-W8) manufactured by Sunstech.
- Processor : Intel Bay Trail-T Z3735F, Quad-Core CPU, 1.3GHz
- GPU : Intel HD (Gen7)
- BIOS : InsydeH20
- RAM : 2GB 1333MHz (4 x 512)
- Storage : 32GB (Hynix HBG4e) expandable with a MicroSD up to 64GB
- Operating System : Android 4.4.4 + Windows 8.1 / Windows 10 (32 bit)
- Wireless connectivity : Wi-Fi b / g / n, Bluetooth 4.0. Chipset rtl8723bs
- Physical Connectivity: MicroUSB, HDMI, 2x USB 2.0, Ethernet and 3.5mm Jack
- Weight : 250g
- Dimensions: 20.5 x 12.0 x 0.9 cm
When making a Mini PC with as much low power consumption as possible, manufacturers will normally opt for an Intel Atom , namely the Bay Trail-T series is having great success. As happened with the tablet, 2GB of RAM are the most that can this processor. The integrated GPU is not comparable to an nVidia or AMD, but will be enough to issue a FullHD UI without problems and even allow us to play certain games, nothing too demanding, League of Legends, Minecraft etc.
Thanks for the ethernet port, you can access files from another computer or network hard drive, and USB ports without loss of speed . This, together with the possibility of expanding storage using a MicroSD lets the Wintel PC Mini have many possibilities. Finally, you can also use Bluetooth mice, keyboards, speakers etc with this device.
A quality of this device that I value very highly is it’s compatibility with several operating systems like Android, Windows, Linux. It’s something I appreciate and which is also among the features of this Mini PC.
Although the default Wintel W8 ships with a dual-boot with Windows and Android, we can play with system changes and install any OS we like. The x86_64 processor architecture opens up an infinite range of possibilities . We can choose Windows, in any version, Android or any distribution of Linux, whether Ubuntu, Debian, Mint, etc. However, before installing systems like crazy, remember several important problems, for example, only having 32GB of internal storage (although the Live versions, using an SD or USB is a very valid option) and make sure that the chipset supports Bluetooth wireless + or if there are drivers for the OS you are trying to install.
By default, the BIOS if the Wintel cx-w8 is 32 bit, if you want to opt for a system 64b will have to change the BIOS. This architecture is not complicated, however, stay calm, XiaomiToday will teach you quickly how to change and how to install a different system .. To get there you have to press ESC (Escape) while turning on the Mini PC, that is where we will choose how the system starts by default.
Who is this for?
At this point in the article you must be thinking, “The device is interesting, but would it really would be helpful?”. Obviously only you can answer that question.
The first use to come to mind is to use this as a TV Box, and it is the most obvious conclusion because it is a small device with many connections. To do this, we could use the VESA support and just put it away from the TV. One of the best ways to carry out this configuration, based on media playback, would be to insyall Kodi on Wintel W8. One of the biggest advantages of Kodi (formerly known as XBMC) is that it is cross-platform, can be installed on Windows, Android and most Linux distributions. Another advantage of this software is its compatibility with Yatse software as a mobile application for Android that lets you control a device with Kodi and even send content, making totally flexible to connect a keyboard or mouse. Finally, the enormous and growing number of Kodi Addons makes this the most versatile system, they will make your Mini PC compatible with Netflix, Youtube and Twitch including thousands of streaming sites.
Without making this a TV, a very valid option is to make this a multi-platform retro Mini PC console . For this purpose, my recommendation is to stay in Windows, but the software I use and recommend EmulationStation which is available on multiple systems, however Windows compatibility with USB control is far superior, the best controller to use would be the Xbox 360’s controller. In addition, the Wintel W8 has enough graphics power to run some Windows games, that is why Windows is probably the best option. It’s also a good idea to revive an old tube TV, but would have to use an HDMI adapter, retro games are designed for such displays, plus it makes it more realistic .
Another interesting use for this device is as computer initiation for young and old. Its low price makes the Wintel W8 suitable to serve as a springboard to move up , once that happened the Mini PC could be used for any other purposes. For this configuration you would require only a keyboard and mouse and screen, the latter could be recycled from an old TV or simply use the TV from home.
For more advanced users option would use the Wintel W8 as NAS or networked hard drive , as I said, the USB port and MicroSD slot makes it possible to achieve large capacities. For this purpose a Linux system would be a great choice, since Windows and multisystem network connection do not get particularly good. Do not forget that the Wintel CX-W8 has RJ45 port to ensure faster data transmission. (And compatible drivers for linux).
The Wintel W8 is also a good choice for a second home, a holiday home for example, because it will allow us to conduct a light use and even take a little work as long as it is of office type, no rendering video. To do a standard software like Office and a browser will suffice.
I would conclude by recommending certain things, first, despite the improvements it has been doing in their latest versions, Google Chrome remains a RAM hog, with the W8 having only 2GB RAM, this must be taken into account, it is not recommend using Chrome browser in the Wintel W8 and would be more appropriate to use Opera browser or other light browsers. Finally, if in the end you choose to use the Wintel W8 as a media player, an interesting device would be an external DVD drive, so we could use this as a substitute for a DVD Player.
Conclusion and Availability
It is no doubt that the Wintel W8 is a very well designed and built computer. If you want a compact and powerful device to use as TV Box, NAS or any of the options that I mentioned above, this should be more than enough. Its small price makes the device within reach of almost any budget and it’s features and versatility will stand as a valid option for both novice and expert users. A Note, Visit GbWhatsApp for getting an awesome version of WhatsApp to download!
Source & Reference : GizLogic