We used to have office desktops big enough to sit under our desks and palm-sized personal digital assistants with 3-inch displays that could handle basic web browsing and email but weren’t designed for productivity .
To this day we have smartphones with screens that are larger than six inches that hardly fit in a pocket and are not intended for productivity either. However, we have palm-sized desktops that are still good enough for almost any office workload. Some of them are pretty cheap too.
These ultra-compact form factor desktop PCs include the Liva Q1D and Liva Q1L recently announced by ECS, which come in cases measuring 74 x 74 x 34.6 mm but still have important office functions such as two display outputs and two Provide GbE connections.
The ECS Liva Q1D and Liva Q1L systems are based on Intel’s ‘Apollo Lake’ Celeron N3350 (2C / 2T, 1.10 GHz – 2.40 GHz, HD Graphics 500, 6 W TDP) or Pentium N4200 (4C / 4T, 1, 10 GHz – 2.50 GHz). System-on-Chips from HD Graphics 505 (6 W TDP) paired with 2 GB or 4 GB LPDDR4 memory and an eMMC module with a capacity of 32 GB or 64 GB.
On the connectivity side, the ECS Liva Q1D and Liva Q1L offer Wi-Fi 5, Bluetooth 4.1, three USB Type-C ports (two USB 3.0, one USB 1.0) and a micro SD card slot. The main difference between the two systems is the different display and network connectivity:
- The Liva Q1D has two display outputs (DisplayPort 1.2, HDMI 2.0), but one GbE port.
- The Live Q1L has an HDMI 2.0 display port and two GbE ports.
Using Intel’s Apollo Lake SoCs, which were introduced for systems in late 2020, looks a bit strange, but shouldn’t come as a complete surprise. Many companies use Apollo Lake PCs and would continue to deploy a familiar platform instead of switching to something new. To this end, PC makers like ECS will continue to offer Apollo Lake powered systems as there is a demand for them.
One of the particularly good features of the LFF Q1D and Liva Q1L UCFF PCs from ECS is their price. The cheapest configuration with the Intel Celeron N3350 SoC is $ 210, while the more advanced Intel Pentium N4200 PC is $ 240.