ASRock has introduced its new Mars series of ultra-compact form-factor (UCFF) barebones PCs. The Intel Core-based PCs come in a 0.74-liter chassis and can house up to 32 GB of memory as well as two storage devices. Like other UCFF PCs, ASRock is positioning Mars for use both as a traditional office PC, as well as applications like digital signage.

ASRock’s Mars PCs are based on Intel’s 8th Generation quad-core Core i5 or dual-core Core i3/Celeron processors. They are accompanied by up to 32 GB of DDR4 memory (using two SO-DIMMs), an M.2-2280 SSD (featuring a PCIe 2.0/3.0 x4 or SATA interface), and a 2.5-inch storage device. The CPU is cooled using a proprietary active cooling system that ASRock says is designed to allow the laptop-grade chip to turbo as frequently as possible.

Featuring lavish connectivity, ASRock’s Mars systems come with a GbE adapter, one USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-C connector, four USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A and two USB 2.0 ports, an SD card reader, two display outputs (HDMI 1.4 supporting a 4Kp30 resolution, D-Sub), and two audio jacks. Furthermore, the machines can be equipped with an M.2-2230 Wi-Fi + Bluetooth module.

ASRock's Mars Barebones UCFF PCs
Model Mars-i5-8265U
Mars-i3-8145U
Mars-C4205U
CPU Intel Core i5-8265U
(4C/8T, Turbo 3.9 GHz)
Intel Core i3-8145U
(2C/4T, Turbo 3.9 GHz)
Intel Celeron C4205U
(2C/2T, 1.8 GHz)
GPU UHD Graphics 620 UHD Graphics 610
DRAM Two DDR4 SO-DIMM slots
Up to 32 GB of DDR4-2400 in dual-channel mode
Motherboard proprietary
Storage SSD M.2-2280 (PCIe 3.0 x4 or SATA) M.2-2280 (PCIe 2.0 x4 or SATA)
DFF 1 ×  2.5-inch/9.5-mm SATA 6 Gbps
  SD Card Reader
Wireless Optional M.2-2230 802.11ac Wi-Fi + Bluetooth module
Ethernet 1 × GbE port
USB Front 2 × USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-A
1 × USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-C
2 × USB 2.0 Type-A
Back 2 × USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-A
Display Outputs 1 × HDMI 1.4 (4Kp30)
1 × D-Sub
Audio 2 × 3.5mm audio jacks
PSU External 65 W
Warranty Typical, varies by country
Dimensions Length: 150 mm
Width: 26 mm
Height: 191 mm
MSRP ? ?

While ASRock’s Mars offers decent performance for office applications and media streaming/playback, its lack of a 4Kp60 output clearly makes it less competitive among demanding users with modern displays. On the other hand, presence of a D-Sub makes Mars compatible with legacy monitors.

Expect ASRock’s Mars UCFF PCs to hit the market in the near future. Pricing of actual systems will depend on their configurations.

Related Reading:

Source: ASRock  

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  • imaheadcase - Thursday, November 28, 2019 - link

    Its not told old for its intended use. Reply
  • deil - Thursday, November 28, 2019 - link

    why the **************************** **************************** ****************************** *********** waste space for DSUB in 2019? Reply
  • milkywayer - Thursday, November 28, 2019 - link

    It's targeted for office use where they recycle vga monitors to this day. Reply
  • PeachNCream - Thursday, November 28, 2019 - link

    It looks a lot like those Atom n270-based nettops that were on the budget end of the spectrum years ago and about the same physical size so I'm not sure if case dimensions ought to be a centerpiece of marketing attempts. Also Intel had the Skull-whatever NUC for sale with similar interior volume. Size is unremarkable in this case and because of the good, but uninteresting hardware, I think the marketing department was forced to scab around a bit at the bottom of the barrel for something that might be eye-catching to send out in a press release. Reply
  • dromoxen - Friday, November 29, 2019 - link

    Its ok but lacks lacks chops in the gfx dept .. otherwise everything else is ok ..gotta get a deskmini 3400G instead .
    It also lacks a goats head skull in backlit leds on the front :TM: LOL
    Reply
  • Smell This - Friday, November 29, 2019 - link


    _/\_/\_/\_/\_/\_/\_/\_
    *A whole lot of this*

    A Ryzen 5 'Picasso' 3500U//3550H mobile with a 'Vega 8' graphics engine is likely to slobber-knock anything from 15_ to 35w.
    Reply

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