KAMRUI AK1 Plus Mini PC
While this PC is compact and affordable, it is lacking when it comes to performance. I noticed that it lagged quite a bit when doing simple tasks. It seems to be well constructed and it's easy to get started.
- EASE OF USE
Create a compact, efficient workspace with this Mini PC.
Even though macOS is my main operating system of choice, I do still use Windows machines from time to time. My fiancé likes to keep one on hand in case she needs it for work and I think it’s just a good practice to have technical diversity in your working/living environment. I personally have two big issues with PCs though – 1) Bloatware and 2) Machine Size. Since it’s not something I use often, I want it to take up as little space as possible. That’s why I really enjoy Mini PCs. They are designed to take up as little space as possible and to run as efficiently as possible, too. The most recent Mini PC I’ve had the pleasure of using is the AK1 Plus from KAMRUI.
About AK1 Plus Mini PC
The KAMRUI AK1 Plus Mini PC is an efficient, space-saving solution for those who want a powerful computing experience without the bulk of a traditional desktop. This sleek and compact device can easily fit into any workspace, making it ideal for small offices or even home use. Its powered by an Intel(R) N95 1.70 Ghz Alder Lake Quad-Core processor, which offers smooth multitasking capabilities and quick responsiveness.
What sets the KAMRUI AK1 Plus apart from other mini PCs in the market is its affordability. With a price tag that won’t burn a hole in your pocket, this mini PC offers great value for money. Additionally, this mini PC comes equipped with many connectivity options such as HDMI, USB 3.0, Ethernet, and Wi-Fi support. The built-in storage capacity of 256GB can be further expanded using an external hard drive or micro SD card slot if additional storage space is needed.
- Brand/Manufacturer: KAMRUI
- Name: Mini PC
- Model: AK1PLUS
- Processor: Intel(R) N95 1.70 Ghz (Alder Lake Quad-Core; up to 3.4 Ghz)
- Installed RAM: 8.0 GB (7.78 GB Usable)
- Storage: 256GB M.2 SSD (expansion up to 2TB available – DIY 2.5-inch SSD/HDD(NOT INCLUDED))
- System Type: 64-bit operating system, x64-based processor
- Operating System: Windows 11, 64 Bit, Professional Edition (build 22621)
- 6 Cores, 12 Threads, 16 MB Cache
- 10 x I/O Ports
- 3.5mm audio port
- USB-A 3.0 x 4 → Data port: 5Gbps
- USB-C x 1 → Data port: 10Gbps+, Display port: 4K 60Hz
- DisplayPort x 1 → 4K 60Hz
- HDMI 2.0 x 1 → 4K 60Hz
- Gigabit Ethernet → 1Gbps
- 2.4GHz + 5GHz Dual Band WiFi
- Gigabit Ethernet
- Bluetooth 4.2
- UHD Graphics (4096×2160@60Hz); Supports dual display setup
- Weight: 3.27 pounds
- Dimensions: 5.04 x 5.04 x 2.05 inches
- VESA bracket included
- Supports Linux, PXE, Wake On LAN, RTC Wake, and Auto Power On
Pricing & Availability
The KAMRUI AK1 Plus Mini PC has a list price of $249.99 but can be found discounted to $159.94 on Amazon (at the time of publishing).
The Mini PC arrived in a simple retail-style box. It has the brand “Kamrui” printed on the top corner and the name “Mini PC” stamped in the bottom corner. The back of the box as basic product information included (model, color, etc.). When you open the box, you’ll find the PC housed within some styrofoam packing. It is shipped with a power cable and a USB-A to USB-A cable. I found it odd that an HDMI cable wasn’t included since that is the main method by which the PC connects to an external monitor.
Once I got it connected to my monitor and power, I hit the power button. The Mini PC comes with Windows 11 preinstalled on it and so it takes you through a standard set of set up prompts (name, system password, security questions, keyboard type, etc.). After making my way through the prompts, the PC finished its set up and was on its home screen within a couple of minutes. One of the really nice things about this system is that it doesn’t come with a lot of additional bloatware. That makes the PC very lightweight in terms of technical debt.
The next thing I did was connect the PC to my WiFi network. You have the option to hardware into Ethernet, too. As soon as I connected, I ran Windows Update to make sure the operating system was on the latest software. There were quite a few system updates detected as shown in the screenshot below. I ended up running into an error when I attempted to install the updates (Download Error – 0x80248007). The update manager got stuck as a result. This is something I am still trying to troubleshoot. I paused the updates so I could finish my initial testing of the system. I wasn’t too concerned about doing this since the build version the PC got to was 22621.2428 and the current version is 22621.2506.
The specs of the AK1 Plus Mini PC suggest that it’s a good mid-range PC and that it would be a good option for standard home/office work. It can also work as an entertainment server for a user’s home, but I don’t think it could do both purposes simultaneously. With 8GB of built-in RAM, it’s equipped to handle most applications. This is the amount of RAM that is typically installed on entry-level laptops and it’s good for gaming at lower settings, but this system would get bogged down quickly with any graphic-intensive games.
As far as storage goes, the AK1 Plus Mini PC doesn’t have much to start with. Again, depending on your intended purpose of this machine, it might be plenty, but by the time I had installed Chrome, Notion, and the benchmark software noted below, I only had 187 GB left. The good news is that this PC supports up to 2TB of storage natively. And, a user could always attach an external HD if needed.
One thing I noticed in the process of getting the system setup was that the top of the Mini PC got warm. I used an infrared thermometer and an infrared camera to take temp readings. I found that it would run as hot as 110º. Considering that one of its features is a cooling fan that helps to dissapate heat, I was surprised that it got this warm. I could hear the fan running constantly while the PC attempted to complete updates.
In the process of setting things up, I opened Task Manager so that I could monitor where CPU and Memory was being spent. I didn’t have anything other than a System Window and Task Manager open and 45% of the memory was being spent.
I ran several benchmarking tests including Novabench and Geekbench to determine what kind of performance someone could expect from this unit. The screenshots are included below. I usually run Cinebench, too, but given the slow down I was noticing, I opted to skip that benchmark test this time around.
Pros & Cons
After using the AK1 Plus Mini PC for some time I identified some pros and cons that might help others decide if they want to add this computer to their workstation. In addition to my personal experience, I read that other users had some issues with the machine’s longevity but the majority of users were very happy with the PC and how well it replaced older computers.
- Automatically recognized my wireless peripherals via their USB dongle.
- No bloatware preinstalled.
- Can be mounted on back of monitor using VESA mount bracket.
- Easy to setup.
- Took a while to unpack and install Cinebench (~10 minutes)
- Bluetooth version is a few steps behind current (5.3 at the time of publishing)
- Got hung up on ‘heavy’ tasks and there was a noticeable slow down in performance.
- Some system applications take up a lot of memory; can’t get rid of them.
- No USB-C port.
The KAMRUI AK1 Plus Mini PC provides an efficient and space-saving computing solution at an affordable price point. While the specs show that this PC can be used for productivity or multimedia, I think that lighter users will enjoy it more. Given the heat I noted, I wouldn’t use this as a server or for any other purpose that would keep the fans running constantly. It’s a good beginner PC and will work really well for basic tasks.
For more information, visit kamrui.store.