The MeLE Overclock 3C is a pocket-sized computer from MeLE that stands out from most other mini PCs in a few ways. For one thing, it’s one of the slimmest mini PCs we’re aware of that features user-upgradable memory. It’s also one of MeLE’s first mini PCs to be powered through a USB Type-C port.

And then there’s the “Overclock” in its name… which may be a little misleading for this first-generation model, but could be more meaningful in upcoming members of the MeLE Overclock family.

MeLE first introduced the MeLE Overclock 3C in July, and it’s currently available from Amazon for about $180 and up.

The company sent an Overclock 3C to me for review, however this article is neither sponsored nor paid for nor modified nor approved by MeLE and the device was provided free of charge without any requirement to return it.


The Overclock 3C is slightly bigger than a couple of stacked mobile phones, as it measures 7.0 x 3.7 x 0.8inches (178 x 94 x 21mm). It is made of plastic but has a metal base. The top, whilst covered in very fine raised bumps, is still reflective and also attracts fingerprints.

The front has a MeLE logo and an illuminated power button.

On the left side there is a Kensington security slot. The right side has three USB Type-A ports.

Testing showed that the first two are USB 3.2 Gen 2×1 (10Gbit/s), with the third one being only USB 3.2 Gen 1×1 (5Gbit/s), and unfortunately none of the ports are labelled which would assist in distinguishing their speeds.

The rear does have annotated ports, and from left to right they include:

  • 1 x fully functional USB Type-C 3.2 Gen 1×1 port capable of data (5Gbit/s), video (DisplayPort Alt Mode) and Power Delivery (3.0)
  • 1 x 3.5 mm headphone jack
  • 1 x microSD card slot (SD Host Ver 3) above the headphone jack
  • 2 x HDMI 2.0 ports
  • 1 x reset/clear CMOS pin-hole between the HDMI ports
  • 1 x USB Type-C power port (for use with the included 12V power adapter or USB PD 3.0 power supplies)
  • 1 x Gigabit Ethernet port

The Overclock 3C is an actively cooled mini PC that uses Intel’s slightly older 10nm Intel Celeron N5095 processor based on Jasper Lake architecture. It’s a 4-core, 4-thread processor with a base processor frequency of 2GHz and support for boost speeds up to 2.9GHz.

The processor also features Intel UHD integrated graphics with a 450MHz base frequency, 750MHz boost speeds, and 16 GPU execution units.

Internally there is a single SO-DIMM slot and the review model included a 16GB DDR4-3200MHz stick of memory which is configured to run at 2933MHz, as that is the maximum speed supported by the processor.

Storage is provided by a soldered-on 256GB eMMC drive and a M.2 2280 NVMe SSD slot, which was populated with a 256GB drive in the review unit MeLE sent me.

Wireless connectivity is supplied by a 6252C-PUB module which is soldered to the motherboard. It features a Realtek RTL8852BE chip and provides 2T2R Wi-Fi 6 (or 802.11ax) and Bluetooth 5.2. Its antennas are attached to the inside of the case.

One of the things that makes the MeLE Overclock series possible is the combination of a fan for active cooling and a pure copper heat pipe. The fan will blow air through a fine copper fin stack to cool the heat pipe.

While the fins are painted black, I scratched the paint to confirm they are indeed copper.

There is an IT5570E-128 chip with an Embedded Controller that oversees the cooling fan’s speed control, and there’s no way for you to adjust its settings. You will find fan speed settings in the UEFI (BIOS) menu, but changing those settings has no effect on the fan speed.

The metal plate on the bottom of the mini PC has plenty of air vents which are covered by a fine mesh to filter out dust. Four rubber feet slightly raise the device off the surface to allow airflow.

Also included with the Overclock 3C are a VESA mounting bracket together with screws, a 12V (3A/36W) USB Type-C power adapter and cord, a thermal pad for the M.2 2280 NVMe SSD drive and a quick start guide.

What can you use it for?

Having support for up to three 4K displays makes the mini PC viable for industrial usage such as a Warehouse Management System or a Manufacturing Execution System especially as the air vents are protected by fine dust covers.

Commercial usage might include digital signage or office work, but since the Overclock 3C has a relatively low-performance processor, consumer or personal usage is likely to be limited to basic workloads such as browsing, email, word processing and spreadsheets etc. as it is not really suitable for gaming.

I ran a series of benchmarks to help determine its suitability for a variety of different applications.

The MeLE Overclock 3C comes with a licensed version of Windows 11 Pro preinstalled on the eMMC drive (version 22H2 build 22621.819), and I was able to successfully update to the current latest version of 22H2 build 22621.2070 before testing.

I also installed Ubuntu 22.04.03 LTS onto the M.2 2280 NVMe SSD drive for dual booting. Note that only the Linux kernel 6.2 or greater will support the RTL8852BE Wi-Fi on Ubuntu or other Linux-based OS, however Bluetooth will work with earlier Linux kernels. After installing all available updates to Ubuntu, the kernel version was 6.2.0-26-generic.

Prior to testing, the power mode was set to “High performance” on Windows, and the CPU Scaling Governor was set to “performance” on Ubuntu.

Initially I gathered some basic information about the device using HWiNFO64 and GPU-Z on Windows, and by running some commands on Ubuntu. Unfortunately, GPU-Z doesn’t “know” about the integrated graphics so provides little useful information.

Ubuntu information (click to read more)

A note on “overclocking”

Personally I think having “overclock” in the name of a device implies that either it is already overclocked or that it can be overclocked in some way.

The UEFI (BIOS) settings has options that allow you to adjust the memory frequency and an “OverClocking Performance Menu” that shows a number of other options. But you can’t increase the memory frequency to match the installed memory which is 3200MHz, as the Celeron N5095 processor only supports a maximum frequency of 2933MHz. Also there is no way to modify the CPU frequencies because Intel does not provide support for its Adaptix technology for the Celeron N5095. So changing the overclocking settings in the UEFI (BIOS) menu has no actual effect on CPU frequencies.

What is supported, however, is “overclocking” through changing the processor’s Power Limits. While increasing the power limits won’t increase the maximum CPU or graphics frequencies, it should allow the processor to run at maximum boost frequencies for a little longer, which could lead to improved sustained performance.

When MeLE first announced the Overclock 3C, the company said it would be released with a sustained power limit (PL1) value set to 18W, which is 3W higher than the default 15W value recommended by Intel. MeLE had validated that their new cooling solution was capable of dispersing the heat from this power increase and that’s where the “overclock” in the name comes from.

However the company subsequently decided to release the mini PC with the default value unmodified at 15W.

Initially I was somewhat confused with the power limit settings in the UEFI (BIOS) as both the “platform” PL1 setting is “disabled” and the “turbo” PL1 override is “disabled”, yet the PL1 value is displayed as 10W.

But when I ran two different Windows applications (HWiNFO64 and Throttlestop), they both reported that the PL1 is actually 15W.

There also seems to be a “bug” in how the value for PL4 is controlled as in HWiNFO64 it shows “Thermal Design Current (TDC)” as “40.0 A” (sic), Throttlestop shows “Power Limit 4” as “40” and the UEFI (BIOS) has a “Power Limit 4 Override” option which is set to “disabled”.

Setting this to “enabled” and then specifying a value for “Power Limit 4” is never reflected in either HWiNFO64 or Throttlestop. However when changed directly in Throttlestop it is then reflected in HWiNFO64 by an updated Thermal Design Current (TDC) value.

It is possible to increase the Overclock 3C’s power limit values for PL1 and PL2 in the UEFI (BIOS), but you will need to rely on third-party software to change the PL4 value. Or you can just stick to third-party software to change all of the PL values.

Benchmark performance

I’ve performed a lot of testing by running well-known benchmarking tools to get a sense of CPU, graphics, and overall performance. I’ve run each test at the default Power Levels and I’ve also tested “overclocking” with various Power Level settings.

On Windows the benchmarks I’ve run included:

  • UL’s 3DMark (CPU and graphics) and Procyon (office productivity)
  • Maxon’s Cinebench (CPU)
  • PassMark Software’s PerformanceTest (general performance)
  • Primate Labs’s Geekbench (CPU and graphics)
  • Unigine’s Heaven (graphics)
  • Crystal Dew World’s CrystalDiskMark (storage)

When I tried running PerformanceTest version 11.0, during the 3D Graphics Mark test the graphics gradually froze and the test errored with “No DirectX 10 capable video device found”. So I installed the previous version, PerformanceTest 10.2, which worked as expected.

Initially I ran each benchmark at the default Power Levels (with PL1 set to 15W, PL2 set to 25W and PL4 set to 40W).

(PL1=15. PL2=25, PL4=40)
PerformanceTest 10.2
PassMark Rating1323.5
CPU Mark4406.7
2D Graphics Mark171.2
3D Graphics Mark651.9
Memory Mark2022.4
Disk Mark1250.8
Office Productivity score2662
Word score2600
Excel score2723
PowerPoint score2797
Outlook score2417
Night Raid Score2733
Graphics score3017
CPU score1783
Fire Strike Score637
Graphics score653
Physics score5477
Combined score254
CPU (Multi Core)2207
CPU (Single Core)624
Geekbench 6.1.0
Single-Core Score519
Multi-Core Score1516
OpenCL Score1799
Unigine Heaven 4.0

On Ubuntu the testing has been more limited. The benchmarks I ran included:

  • PassMark Software’s PerformanceTest (CPU and memory)
  • Primate Labs’s Geekbench (CPU)
  • Unigine’s Heaven (graphics)
  • Thomas Kaiser’s “sbc-bench” (server performance)
(PL1=15. PL2=25, PL4=40)
PerformanceTest 11.0
CPU Mark4772
Memory Mark1961
Geekbench 6.1.0
Single-Core Score540
Multi-Core Score1596
Unigine Heaven 4.0

You can find “sbc-bench” results online at

When looking at the Heaven results it must be noted that by default Windows render uses Direct3D 11 graphics (Direct3D11) whereas Ubuntu uses Open Graphics Library (OpenGL) so a direct comparison cannot be made.

However the frame rate achieved in both Heaven benchmarks indicates that this mini PC is not suitable for playing “AAA” games on either OS. So for real-world testing of the graphics, I played various videos in Youtube on Edge on Windows, and there were no significant issues encountered when playing videos up to 4K 60FPS although at this resolution the occasional frame was dropped.

I also repeated these tests on Ubuntu using Firefox, however 60FPS could only reach 1080p resolution to play smoothly and even then frames were repeatedly dropped. At 30FPS the minimum resolution when frames were not dropped was 1440p.

Turning to storage where there are three device options: eMMC storage, an M.2 2280 NVMe SSD drive, and a microSD card. One thing to note is that while the mini PC’s M.2 slot is PCIe Gen 3, it has only two lanes, meaning throughput is limited to a maximum of 1.969GB/s.

To test the microSD card slot, I used a microSD card I had available (Sandisk Extreme Pro V30) to confirm that it could come close to achieving the highest speeds supported by that card (100MB/s read and 90MB/s write).

Here are the CrystalDiskMark scores for each type of storage:

NVMe readNVMe writeeMMC readeMMC writeSD readSD write
SEQ1M Q8T1 Read / Write1671.71MB/s1433.66MB/s302.40MB/s217.31MB/s88.23MB/s78.54MB/s
SEQ1M Q1T1 Read / Write1346.86MB/s1164.97MB/s277.85MB/s209.92MB/s87.66MB/s77.94MB/s
RND4K Q32T1 Read / Write342.58MB/s254.87MB/s22.49MB/s50.10MB/s13.37MB/s3.34MB/s
RND4K Q1T1 Read / Write51.11MB/s105.68MB/s24.48MB/s45.84MB/s13.71MB/s3.15MB/s

Obviously the NVMe drive is much faster than the eMMC whose slowness has impacted the benchmark results. Prior to using the device it would improve performance if Windows was reinstalled to the NVMe drive and removed from the eMMC drive. Given Windows is licensed with a digital key, once activated on the eMMC it will automatically activate after reinstallation on the NVMe drive.

I used “iperf3” on both Windows and Ubuntu to measure network connectivity throughput

The Gigabit Ethernet port performed as expected at 948Mb/s for both download and upload on Windows. However on Ubuntu whilst download performed as expected at 942Mb/s, upload only averaged 801Mb/s.

The 2.4GHz Wi-Fi band had a link speed of 286.5Mb/s and performance was consistent across both operating systems with download averaging 145Mb/s and 151Mb/s for Windows and Ubuntu respectively, upload averaged 141Mb/s and 199Mb/s.

For the 5GHz Wi-Fi band whose link speed was 1.2Gb/s, Windows download was slightly slower than expected averaging 429Mb/s and upload was significantly slower averaging only 202Mb/s. Ubuntu however performed as expected with download averaging 617Mb/s and upload averaging 670Mb/s.

I repeated the networking tests several times over several different days to rule out network traffic congestion as a possible cause for poor performance, but the results were consistent.

While the Overclock 3C’s fan and heat pipe system keep the processor cool, unfortunately the fan is slightly audible during normal use. At idle, the fan is off and the temperature of the mini PC was stable at around 46°C in an ambient room temperature of 17°C.

When the fan first ramps up it registers around 33dBA on my sound meter next to the device.

However when the CPU is under load and reaches 70°C the fan becomes noticeably louder registering around 45dBA. But it doesn’t take long to cool and as the temperature drops the fan consequently slows down and becomes quieter again.

The top of the device also remains safe to touch, never getting excessively warm at around 32°C. The effectiveness of the cooling can be seen in Windows while running Cinebench R23 where the CPU temperature repeatedly rises, at times reaching a maximum of 71°C, and then drops back down due to the cooling with no significant drop in the core clock speeds.

When running “sbc-bench” on Ubuntu, after the test completed the results stated that “Throttling occurred”.  The results log shows that this didn’t lead to a very big reduction and was similar to when running Cinebench on Windows as the average CPU clock speed dropped from a maximum of 2900MHz to 2800MHz.

I also ran a stress test on Ubuntu which saw similar results with the CPU temperature rising and then averaging at 69°C with the CPU maintaining a frequency of 2800MHz.

Power consumption was measured as follows:

  • Powered off (shutdown) – 0.0W
  • UEFI (BIOS) – 11.9W (no fan) and 12.4W (fan running)
  • GRUB menu – 11.4W (no fan) and 11.7W (fan running)
  • Idle* – 5.7W (Windows) and 4.9W (Ubuntu)
  • CPU stressed** – 21.3W (Windows “cinebench”) and 20.0W (Ubuntu “stress”)
  • Video playback*** – 12.3W (Windows “Edge” 4K 60FPS) and 13.5W (Ubuntu “Firefox” 1440p 30FPS****)
  • Fully stressed (CPU & GPU)** – 24.3W (Windows “cinebench” and “GPU-Z” running simultaneously)

*Fan not running.
**Maximum power reading observed.
***The power figures fluctuate so the value is the average of the median high and median low power readings.
****Browser performance on Ubuntu is worse than on Windows so the video quality was dropped to maintain equivalence.

For the overclocking testing, I started by using Throttlestop to set the value for PL4 at 75W which is a 35W increase over the default value. This wasn’t an arbitrary choice, but rather it replicates the setting I’ve seen previously on other mini PCs with Celeron N5095 processors.

I then monitored the core clock speeds and CPU temperatures in HWiNFO64 whilst running Cinebench R23. Given there was neither a noticeable drop in clock speeds nor increase in temperatures, I gradually increased the values for PL1 and PL2 until I reached 20W for PL1 and 30W for PL2.

I then dropped the value for PL2 back to the default of 25W while keeping PL1 at 20W and PL4 at 75W.

On Ubuntu I could not find a way of modifying the value for PL4 so I simply incremented PL1 and PL2 similar to Windows but running “stress” and monitoring the clock speeds and temperature using a simple script.

Afterwards I similarly set PL1 to 20W and left PL2 at the default of 25W.

With the overclocking values configured I then ran all the benchmarks however the overclocked results were very similar to the results using the default settings.

Consequently I repeated the benchmarks with the default settings, experimented with new PL setting combinations and also repeated the benchmarks using the overclocking PL values defined above. For Ubuntu the overall result was that I could not establish a pattern when overclocking as the results simply reflected testing variations and showed neither a consistent improvement nor reduction when averaged.

However for Windows, despite the testing variances, a pattern did emerge of a very small performance gain of between one and two percent for the more general benchmarks of PassMark, Office Productivity and Night Raid.

(PL1=15, PL2=25, PL4=40)
(PL1=20, PL2=25, PL4=75)
PerformanceTest 10.2
PassMark Rating1323.51360.72.81%
CPU Mark4406.74429.70.52%
2D Graphics Mark171.2181.05.72%
3D Graphics Mark651.9653.50.25%
Memory Mark2022.42027.30.24%
Disk Mark1250.81246.7-0.33%
Office Productivity score266226901.05%
Word score26002574-1.00%
Excel score27232701-0.81%
PowerPoint score279728562.11%
Outlook score241725877.03%
Night Raid Score273327600.99%
Graphics score301730460.96%
CPU score178318041.18%
Fire Strike Score6376380.16%
Graphics score653652-0.15%
Physics score547755290.95%
Combined score2542571.18%
CPU (Multi Core)22072198-0.41%
CPU (Single Core)6246240.00%
Geekbench 6.1.0
Single-Core Score519518-0.19%
Multi-Core Score151615180.13%
OpenCL Score179918010.11%
Unigine Heaven 4.0

Having said that, given PL1 has been boosted by 33%, the boost in power merely flattened an already pretty flat line of CPU clock speeds.

Comparing monitored Cinebench runs both with and without the overclock shows that without the boost the CPU clock speed “wobbles” around 2800MHz whereas with the boost it stays at 2800MHz.

Analyzing the Ubuntu data from running “stress” shows that over a thousand data points, the average CPU clock speed without the boost was 2800.00034MHz and with the boost it was 2800.00081 MH or a 0.00002% (two hundred-thousandths percentage) increase. So with such a minor improvement there really isn’t anything to gain vs any potential unknown long term effect from applying such an ineffective overclock.


As a mini PC, the Overclock 3C performs as well as any other actively cooled Celeron N5095 mini PC although its small form factor makes it more expensive than some other models with the same processor.

There is a slight drop in graphics performance that’s likely attributable to single-channel memory. And since the OS is installed on eMMC storage by default rather than a faster NVMe drive, this also contributes to a slight decline in overall performance.

You probably won’t notice either performance degradation very much when using the mini PC for everyday activities like email and browsing unless you’re saving large documents or unzipping large files etc.

Graphics performance probably could have been improved a little bit if this mini PC had the Celeron N5105 processor that MeLE uses for the Quieter 3Q/3C mini PCs, since that processor has a slightly better integrated graphics with 24 execution units (compared with 16 in the Celeron N5095). But it’s also possible that any benefits would have been cancelled out by the use of single-channel memory in this model.

The MeLE Overclock 3C is an impressively small and reasonably capable little computer. But it’s not very powerful, has a previous-generation processor, and only supports a single stick of memory. The top of the mini PC is shiny and a fingerprint magnet despite not being completely smooth. It’s also not a silent mini PC: the fan can be noisy at times and the fan curve cannot be controlled.

It would have been nice to see how MeLE’s new cooling system manages with a newer processor like the Intel Processor N100 based on Alder Lake-N architecture.

But it’s still nice to see upgradable memory in such a thin form factor, especially if MeLE decides to sell the Overclock 3C in barebones configurations in the future. Currently the company offers the mini PC in three configurations:

The new cooling system is effective and, coupled with the small form factor, it makes the mini PC look minimalistic when mounted on the back of a monitor using the included VESA mounting bracket.

Probably the most attractive features are the two USB Type-C ports that both support Power Delivery allowing this mini PC to be connected to an appropriate monitor using just a single cable.

I’d like to thank MeLE for providing the Overclock 3C for review.

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  1. Typo: “At 30FPS the minimum resolution when frames were not dropped was 1440p.”, correct should be “the maximum resolution”?

  2. I have recently acquired a MeLE Overclock 3C. The fan does kick in and is audible, but more so on some OSes than others. I have not tried Windows 11 Pro, the OS with which it was shipped. I have,however, used Fedora 38, Linux Mint 21.2, Manjaro 22.1 and GhostBSD 23.06.01.Fan activity is greater under Linux Mint and very quiet under GhostBSD.
    So far I am very pleased with the product. The facility to expand RAM and swap-out an M.2 2280 NVMe SSD is what made me commit. In addition to that, the product is generously equipped with ports, unlike some “premium” brands.

  3. MeLE please make the same miniPC but with an AMD 7840U for better graphics instead of junky Intel. I would buy so many to set up as gaming and media center for all my family members and friends.

    1. I’ve been looking for a miniPC with a 7840U, or an N300, for awhile now – looking for a low-energy gaming device. The closest I’ve gotten is an announcement by Minisforum stating they’ll build a 7840U, some day.

  4. Celeron N5095 is much slower than n100 (at least 25% slower on single-core) and produces more heat (10th gen Intel vs 13th gen Intel). With n100 systems being the same price or cheaper in similar size form-factor, the slim shape of this box is it’s best (and maybe only) feature.

  5. Excellent review. I’ll definitely be picking up one of these. This has a lot of features that you don’t see together often. User replaceable RAM and storage, Windows 11 Pro license, slim design, configurable TDP.

    I’ve owned lots of Chinese Mini PCs, and tablets over the years, and getting bad RAM is something I’ve experienced on more than one occasion. It’s definitely easier to buy a Mini PC when I’m assured that I can swap out bad RAM.

  6. Thanks for the review, I’ve wondered if an “overclocked” Celeron 5095 with active cooling might be a good fit for some of my needs.
    I’ve got a couple of 3Q systems in service, they’ve been totally reliable – one as an HTPC fed through the nvme & USB ports, the other stressed 24/7 crunching data. Using the stock power config on the Win11Pro installation, I only ever see 9W power consumption, even on the stressed system, with an nvme drive installed. Will likely be “upgrading” the HTPC to a 3H in coming months, just to move a 2.5″ drive in side of the box, tidy up the space around the TV, eliminate the external drive feeding it through a USB port.
    I’m happy with Mele’s quality, they’ve been totally reliable so far. Hoping they bring an N200/N300 + DDR5 system to market. The replaceable RAM in the 3C would’ve been nice, but so far, it hasn’t been an issue.