ASRock has been at the forefront of the small form-factor (SFF) PC revolution right from the Sandy Bridge days. Starting with the Core HT series in the early 2010s, the company moved on to the Beebox (NUC clones) , and recently settled on the DeskMini lineup (based on mini-STX boards). At the 2022 CES, the company is introducing a new SFF PC - the DeskMeet. It is meant to be a step up from the DeskMini - allowing for a custom motherboard, more RAM slots, and space for discrete GPUs.

ASRock is delivering all this in a chassis with a 8L volume with two configurations - one based on the Intel B660 platform, and another based on the AMD X300 chipset (AM4 socket). The key specifications of the two systems are summarized in the table below.

ASRock DeskMeet SFF PCs - 2022 Lineup
  DeskMeet B660 DeskMeet X300
CPU Intel 12th Gen Core Processors AMD AM4 Socket Ryzen Desktop APUs / CPUs (Ryzen 2000/3000/4000/5000) (up to 65W)
Cooler Stock coolers / up to 54mm in height
Chipset Intel B660 AMD X300
Memory Dual-Channel DDR4
4x DDR4 DIMM Slots (up to 128GB)
non-ECC, un-buffered
Dual-Channel DDR4
4x DDR4 DIMM Slots (up to 128GB)
ECC / non-ECC, un-buffered
Discrete GPU Support Up to 200mm in length
Networking 1x RJ-45 Gigabit LAN (Intel I219V)
M.2 2230 Slot for Wi-Fi + BT Module
1x RJ-45 Gigabit LAN (Realtek RTL8111H)
M.2 2230 Slot for Wi-Fi + BT Module
Storage 3x SATA III 6Gbps
1x Hyper M.2 2280 (PCIe Gen 4 x4 / SATA III 6Gbps)
1x Hyper M.2 2280 (PCIe Gen 4 x4)
2x SATA III 6Gbps
1x Ultra M.2 2280 (PCIe Gen 3 x4)
Expansion Slots 1x PCIe 4.0 x16 1x PCIe 3.0 x16
Audio Codec Realtek ALC897
Front I/O 1x Headset
1x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-C
2x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A
2x USB 2.0 Type-A
Rear I/O 1x DP 1.4a
1x HDMI 2.0a
1x D-Sub
2x USB 2.0 Type-A
2x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A
1x RJ-45<
HD Audio Jack (Line In / Speaker / Microphone)/td>
1x DP 1.4a
1x HDMI 2.0a
1x D-Sub
2x USB 2.0 Type-A
2x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A
1x RJ-45<
HD Audio Jack (Line Out)/td>
Power Supply 500W (80+ Bronze / 550W Peak)
Dimensions 168mm x 219.3mm x 218.3mm

While the absence of high-end I/O ports like Thunderbolt 4 and USB 3.2 Gen 2x2 or high-end wired networking is a tad disappointing, ASRock is making up for that by supporting PCIe expansion cards and quad-DIMM configurations for up to 128GB of RAM. ASRock calls these boards -ITX, but they are not truly mini-ITX in size.

The space inside the chassis allows for multiple configurations - with or without a discrete GPU, ability to mount multiple 3.5" drives etc. The DeskMeet aims to provide as many features and flexibilities as possible within the constraints dictated by the chipsets.

In other ASRock SFF PC news, the company has also released a new mini-STX platform using the Intel B660 chipset for Alder Lake. The DeskMini B660 retains the chassis design of the previous generations.

Thanks to the use of the B660 chipset, the front Type-C port is now USB 3.2 Gen 2x2 (20 Gbps). The rear Type-C port supports 10 Gbps data transfer alone with DP 1.4a, and 60W PD. The other interesting aspect is the availability of a PCIe 5.0 M.2 2280 SSD slot, in addition to a PCIe 4.0 M.2 2280 one. A M.2 2230 slot for Wi-Fi, and a gigabit Ethernet slot are the regular features retained from the previous DeskMini units.

After a couple of years of staid SFF PCs with rather unimpressive updates, ASRock is promising interesting offerings in 2022. No specific launch prices or retail availability timelines were provided for the new systems.

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  • TheinsanegamerN - Tuesday, January 18, 2022 - link

    Swing and a miss. Let's create a new mini ITX box and:

    *Use a full ATX power supply when 1000w SFX supplies exists and wuld allow for better cooling
    *Use a standard ITX I/O layout then push a proprietary motherboard
    *Use a X300 chipset that only has PCIe 3.0 and restricted USB availability
    *Doing ANY of this when aftermarket B450/B550 ITX boards have existed for years
    *Releasing this in 2022, when intel is offering PCIe 5.0 and AMD wil offer the same at the end of the year with AM5.
  • FreckledTrout - Tuesday, January 18, 2022 - link

    Not using a SFX supply seems odd. There must be a reason. I wonder if they can get a full ATX power supply for cheaper?
  • edzieba - Tuesday, January 18, 2022 - link

    ATX supplies are indeed cheaper. Looks like the case dimensions also meant that an SFX supply would not save any volume without lowering available GPU Z-height. Same with the extended motherboard (looks like a short DTX): with case volume constrained by desired GPU length support, you can either waste that board area or add components to it (the board need to go all the way to the front for the front panel connectors).

    If they'd gone the Deskmini route and moved the GPU slot to the rear of the board, that would have enabled a back-to-back packaging that could have reduced volume, but not by all that much. once you accommodate a standard cooler or relocate the PSU.
  • TheinsanegamerN - Wednesday, January 19, 2022 - link

    "wasting' that area would allow for the use of standard ITX components isntead of creating a product that will be e-waste if anything happens to the board. No better then the garbage sold by dell and HP.

    The SFX supply would allow for a greater CPU cooler height, and there is notable room above the GPU brackets. There are already pelnty of cases that use ITX, ATX PSUs, and have enough z height for kingpin style cards. It'd be nice to have a case that is actually small and uses normal Z height and SFX parts for thsoe of us that want a small box.
  • edzieba - Wednesday, January 19, 2022 - link

    The board mounting holes are standard ITX, if the board dies and for whatever reason you decide you simply MUST keep the case, then you can swap in an ITX board and only lose the stock front panel connectors (you could use the extra space to add independently wired front-panel port connectors if you wanted, those are readily available).
  • jtd871 - Tuesday, January 18, 2022 - link

    Agree. Seems mostly pointless as motherboards, components and cases for SFF/ITX builds with better AMD chipsets are seemingly readily available.
  • artk2219 - Tuesday, January 18, 2022 - link

    An SFX power supply isn't just slightly more expensive, on the consumer end a decent one is usually double the price of a standard ATX. I can't believe they would be spending double on each unit, but 25 to 50% more wouldn't be unimaginable. Why spend more and either have to pass on the cost or eat it, when you could just use a regular ATX PSU and have slightly less space or make it slightly bigger.
  • TheinsanegamerN - Wednesday, January 19, 2022 - link

    It makes sense for a niche product. There are a ton of 10+L mini ITX cases on the market already, but very few sub 10L. In a case this small using full ATX PSUs makes no sense.

    Not sure where you are seing double either, where are you seeing price gaps that big? a 600w 80+ gold PSU, for instance, costs $85 average for ATX and $99 for SFX. The gap is even smaller if you want 80% platinum, where a SFX platinum can be had for $140 and ATX at best is $125. And these are consumer prices, not OEM prices, which would be even closer.

    Why spend more? Well in a case like this the PSU is right above the CPU. Using SFX would allow more clearance for a larger quieter CPU cooler, and part of why SFX PSUs ar eexpensive is they are niche, if more case makers used them the price would come down.
  • meacupla - Tuesday, January 18, 2022 - link

    It's a confusing product, for sure, but...
    Find me a mITX mobo and case that is under 8L in size, supports four DDR4 slots, and still uses an ATX or SFX PSU.
    It is, probably, cheaper than what you can build with B660 mITX or B450 mITX, thanks to using cheaper ATX sized PSU, and proprietary mobo.
    And it still has a PCIe X16 slot for a graphics card upgrade, if you can ever find one.
    You can even use an SFX to ATX PSU bracket, if you want to use a taller CPU air heatsink

    With that said, their Jupiter lineup is the better, and more interesting product line.
    This DeskMeet line feels like it is more suited for businesses, and the used upgradable business PC market.
  • TheinsanegamerN - Wednesday, January 19, 2022 - link

    The ITX standard onyl allows for 2 memory slots. Do you really need 128GB of RAM in your ITX build? 2 slots can handle 64 GB.

    you want a case that can fit an ITX board with a SFX PSU? It's the one in the article.

    I dont see hwo designing a proprietary motherboard is cheaper then using one that ALREADY EXISTS.

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