HP’s new mini-PCs may look almost identical, but they’re very different beasts beneath the surface. While the Stream Mini Desktop focuses on cloud storage and a low price point, the Pavilion Mini offers capable specs and Quad HD output support.
First up is the Stream Mini Desktop, a low-end machine powered by an Intel Celeron 2957U processor backed up by 2 GB RAM. Like Google’s Chrome OS-powered Chromeboxes, the miniature Windows 8.1 machine relies on cloud storage, complimenting its 32 GB SSD with 200 GB Microsoft OneDrive Storage for two years.
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While there’s not a lot of processing power on offer here, the biggest draw of the Stream Mini Desktop is its price point, with the machine coming it at just US$180. That figure will also get you a $25 Windows Store gift card, meaning you’ll instantly be able to load it up with apps, music and other content.
Alongside the Stream Mini, HP is also launching the more capable Pavilion Mini Desktop. The system is a heavier hitter than the company’s Chromebox competitor, offering a choice of Intel Pentium and Core i3 processors, as well as either 4 or 8GB RAM. Unlike the Stream, the more premium mini-PC opts for an internal storage solution, offering users a choice of either a 500 GB or 1 TB HDD.
Design-wise, the Pavilion Mini is identical to the low-cost Stream Mini, albeit with a more understated white finish. That’s not all the systems have in common – port selection is identical, with four USB 3.0, Gigabit Ethernet and a 3.5-mm headphone jack. HP has included both an HDMI and DisplayPort, with the Pavilion Mini Desktop featuring Quad HD output support.
HP is currently listing two versions of the Pavilion Mini Desktop on its website, with prices ranging from $320 to $450 depending on configuration. Both the Stream and Pavilion Mini systems will be available from HP’s website on January 14, with wider availability expected February 8.
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