AnandTech Reviews ASRock CoreHT 252B
I love reading Ganesh's work because he's one of the few reviewers (not on Missing Remote of course) that really gets HTPC. They are always incredibly detailed and this look at ASRock's CoreHT 252B is no exception. You'll have to read it through to get his thoughts, but I am pleased to see that this generation of CoreHT's is much less PC (although still a bit too much for my taste) than the previous.
The DIY HTPC crowd has a marked preference for mini-ITX motherboards and cases. However, the excessive TDP of desktop CPUs resulted in complicated thermal designs and noisy results. Thermal designs for systems with mobile CPUs with 35W TDPs are fairly straightforward and not very noisy. In fact, it is even possible to create systems which are fully passively cooled.
ASRock has three HTPC families catering to the entry level, mid-range and high-end markets. While the ION based HTPCs form the entry level, the Core series serves the mid-range and the Vision series caters to the high-end. Today, we will be looking in detail at the CoreHT 252B, the second generation Core series HTPC from ASRock. First off, let us take a look at the configuration of the review unit sent to us by ASRock