The Linux Mint team have announced that their next Mintbox mini PC is coming this summer.

The Mintbox Mini 2 is a fanless computer that measures 4.4″ x 3.3″ x 1.3″ and weighs about 12 ounces. It’s powered by a 10W Intel Celeron J3455 quad-core processor.

Prices are expected to start at $299 when the computers goes on sale this summer.

If the Mintbox Mini 2 looks familiar, that’s because it’s basically a top-of-the-line Compulab Fitlet2 computer with the Mint logo and Mint software.

But it’s also an interesting solution for anyone looking for a low-power, quiet desktop PC that’s guaranteed to support the latest version of this popular Linux distribution.

The computer features dual Gigabit Ethernet ports, 802.11ac WiFi and Bluetooth 4.2 support and support for up to two external displays, thanks to DisplayPort 1.2 (4K60Hz) and HDMI 1.4 (4K60Hz) ports.

It also has two USB 3.0 ports, two USB 2.0 ports, a microSD card slot, and mic and headphone jacks.

The Mintbox Mini 2 will come in two configurations:

  • Mintbox Mini 2: 4GB of RAM and 64GB of solid state storage for $299
  • Mintbox Mini 2 Pro: 8GB of RAM and 120GB of solid state storage for $349

The system supports up to 16GB of RAM if you want to open up the case and add more memory on your own.

The Mintbox Mini 2 should ship around the time that Linux Mint 19 is released, which is expected to be sometime around June.



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20 replies on “Mintbox Mini 2: Compact Linux desktop with Apollo Lake quad-core CPU”

  1. Hummm… I thought that the new crop of Celerons only addressed 8 GB of RAM. The latest NUCs and BRIXs will only address 8 GB even though they have two SODIMM slots.

    1. Wondering this too. I’ve seen motherboards with the J3455 from ASUS and ASRock that advertise up 16 GB of RAM as well.

      Not planning on getting the Mintbox though. The extra cost for a sealed fanless device is too much for me.

  2. Pretty much any modern x86 PC supports Linux Mint.

    You can get cheap Windows mini PCs new off Amazon for $100-$200 (usually with a quad core Atom processor and 2GB-4GB of RAM):
    https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=windows+mini+pc&rh=i%3Aaps%2Ck%3Awindows+mini+pc

    And you could build a Ryzen mini ATX PC with better performance for about the same price as these.

    A Ryzen APU: $100
    Cheap mini ITX case: $30
    Power supply: $30
    Motherboard: $80
    4GB/8GB DDR4 RAM: $50/$90
    Harddrive: $40

    1. The selling point is that this is a pre-built fanless sealed PC. There are some use cases where this is worth the premium price tag. Although, for me personally, I have no use cases that would justify me paying for it.

  3. Nice little box, but why the Mint co-branding? I mean, Mint isn’t a sensible choice as the team disable automatic kernel security updates for example. What the heck? Good luck with your Meltdown/Spectre fixes in Mint-land!

    1. It’s just the continuation of Mint and Compulab’s Mintbox partnership that’s been around for a few years now. No idea why they started the collaboration in the first place though.

    2. “as the team disable automatic kernel security updates for example”

      How much extra effort does it require to do

      apt-get update && apt-get upgrade

      on a daily basis (even better with a custom shell script) after logging in to the system? Using that method one gets to see the updates and with apt-listchanges also intstalled, a mail message with the changelog (most recent change after the first update) for each upgraded package.

      How sensible is it to rely on others to do your system administration for you regardless of which distribution you use? Yes in MinLand you can be safe if one works around Mint Team annoyances.

      1. Wait… Isn’t Mint aimed at Linux beginners, right? So most ‘normal’ distributions, including Ubuntu, which Mint is based on, have their kernel security auto updates turned on, expect for Linux Mint (aimed at beginners), because… logic? I think the simple reason is that the culture of Linux Mint is that they just don’t care.

        “on a daily basis (even better with a custom shell script) after logging in to the system?”

        Do you need such wizardry on a Windows system (aimed at normal people) or an Ubuntu system (aimed at normal people)? No. Do you need such wizardry on Linux Mint (aimed at beginners)? Oh, well.

        1. Umm, maybe because sometimes mistakes happen and “security” updates can break things? Not really a good idea to automatically handle stuff like that, at least if you handle it manually, you’ll know what got updated. And by extension, what might have broken things. *cough* Meltdown / Spectre microcode updates for Haswell / Broadwell problems,certain chipsets getting bricked because of not-ready-for-primetime code, etc. *cough*

          As a Linux “Beginner”, I’ve never had a problem with Mint’s update manager, nor has there been any issue with setting your update policies from it. First install of Mint, just click on the shield and select your update policy (you can change it from the edit -> Update policy menu), set up your update frequency from edit -> preferences menu, and you’re good to go. Very Convenient. (They also have a message telling you that you should do this, IIRC.)

          Plus, I don’t have to put up with gigantic update downloads shoved in my face first thing on bootup, when I need my computer NOW, not in a few hours from now… Unlike SOME “aimed at normal people” OS’es.

        2. I’m a Mint user and I like it. I also appreciate its approach to updates. Auto updates can have unintended consequences. I’ve had a few on various systems. I now dislike when updates are forced. But the nice thing about the world of Linux is choice. In Mint’s case, they prioritize stability over updates. I’d suspect it’s rare, but updates can break things. I think when people point to Mint as a good starting point, it’s mostly because things like video codecs and desktop compositing are already sorted upon installation. But besides that, I’m sure plenty of other distros are suitable for beginners as well.

        3. Theres some real BS in that reddit post.

          Here’s an example:


          By default, using the Update Manager, you won’t get updates for critical parts of the system(xorg, systemd, kernel), even security updates.

          Flat out BS. I know this from first person experience, as I’ve had xorg, systemd, and kernel updates come through just fine from the update manager. (Update policy set to “Let me review sensitive updates”, but even the lowly “Just keep my computer safe” setting will show security and kernel updates.)

          Here’s another:


          The use of old kernels means that newer hardware isn’t supported

          Yeah, because its built on an Ubuntu LTS maybe? 😉 Fortunately, I get my kernels from Ubuntu (which is default for Mint) so stuff gets backported.

          Considering how much ignorance (bordering on disingenuous) is on display in that reddit post, I can’t really recommend anybody take anything said there seriously unless you’ve personally verified it.

          Sorry if it sounds like I’m angry or something, but sheesh. People who haven’t actually used it, trying to pretend they’re experts with little more than stuff they’ve heard around the internets? Seriously? *facepalms*

          But anyway, that’s the beauty of so many other distros being in existence: Free Choice! 😉

        4. According to the Linux Mint folks, security updates (including kernel ones) are enabled by default:
          https://github.com/linuxmint/mintupdate/issues/274

          Security updates are shown by default for all policies and we encourage everyone to install them.

          https://blog.linuxmint.com/?p=3496

          Levels do not indicate the nature of the updates and certainly not whether they should be applied or not. Security updates are shown for all releases by default (no matter what level they are).

          Although, updating to a different kernel series is manual just like on most other Linux distros.

        5. Well, that pretty much destroys the “No Kernel Security Updates” BS right there.

          Now I’m wondering why people are still deliberately trying to spread this disinformation… O_o

  4. I’m a big fan of Linux Mint. I tried all the other distros, but always come back to Mint. It just works. If I want to try other distros, I can run them in Virtualbox without having to reformat my hard drive. The Mintbox Mini 2 Pro has enough horsepower to run Virtualbox. I built 3 of my own Mint PCs, and it always ends up costing more than $300 and none of them were fanless. Previous versions of the Mintbox were overpriced. I plan to buy one of these as soon as they are available.

    1. Depends if you are just going to be using a browser anyways or not. A Chromebox will do 90 percent of what you’d want to do on a computer not built for hardcore video editing so the question remains if you really need the extra functionality of Linux on a Celeron or not. You’ll still be able to play a decent amount of indie and older titles and Linux mint allows for cool customization chrome os doesn’t have.

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