Probably not as well-known as Gigabyte or even Zotac this side of the Pacific, Shuttle is a Taiwan-based PC manufacturer that’s been dishing out small form factor computers since way before the Raspberry Pi became a thing.
Now, they’re at it again, and bringing the aging DS47 and DS437 “slim PC” barebone systems to 2015 standards. Meet the fanless, fifth generation Intel-based Shuttle DS57U. That’s right, fifth gen, as in Broadwell. And fanless, as in passively cooled and quiet as a mouse.
“Officially approved for 24/7 permanent operation,” this baby doesn’t waste any power and promises to stay silent no matter what. Obviously, the Broadwell chip is no force of nature then, capping off at a 1.5GHz clock speed on a Celeron 3205U dual-core.
Shuttle refrains from calling the DS57U a mini-PC in its marketing materials, and one look at the product dimensions is enough to figure out why. At 7.9 x 6.5 x 1.5, it isn’t quite as compact as the new Gigabyte Brix models with Broadwell inside, or Intel NUC machines.
But the DIY kit still squeaks its way into the one-litre class (1.3, to be specific), and offers an abundance of ports and connectivity options to make amends for its size. Six, count’ em, six USB hubs, including a 3.0 pair, HDMI 1.4, DisplayPort 1.2, dual gigabit LAN, 802.11n Wi-Fi, an SD card reader, and a couple of RS232 interfaces.
Primarily meant for POS assembly, cloud computing, digital signage and other professional applications, the Shuttle Slim-PC Barebone DS57U can also be used as a home desktop PC. Once you add a 2.5-inch hard disk or solid state drive, an operating system and up to two DDR3 modules with a maximum of 8GB capacity each, that is.
A monitor can also be used as a mount, as this fanless SFF box is VESA mountable. Priced at a little under €200 on the old continent, the DS57U should debut stateside before long for around $200. Which, incredibly enough, is less than what Amazon currently charges for the age-old Celeron 847-powered DS47.