One of the best-kept networking secrets is cheap 10Gbase-T. We purchased this Marvell AQC113C Adapter for only $64 after two promotional codes/ coupons on Amazon. The NICGIGA 10Gbase-T adapter is certainly not the fanciest, but it is cheap and a relatively modern desktop adapter, so we now have a few of them. Their construction is extremely simple, so we wanted to show what they are made of.
Cheap NICGIGA 10Gbase-T Adapter with Marvell AQC113C
Looking at the adapter, this is a low-profile card. We have the full-height bracket installed, but this also came with a low-profile bracket.
Underneath the heatsink, we can see the tiny Marvell AQC113C. The AQC tells us this is a 10GbE NIC from Marvell’s Aquantia acquisition. One may know the AQC113 line since it is used in systems like the 10GbE Apple Mac Mini M1 we looked at some time ago.
The back of the card does not have much.
Here is the port.
Here is the heatsink view with the heatsink on. The AQC113C we have seen use under 4W in most of our testing, so it is not generating a ton of heat.
Next, let us get to the performance.
Cheap NICGIGA 10Gbase-T Adapter with Marvell AQC113C Performance
Overall, we got 10Gbase-T speeds as we would expect using iperf3:
This is a fairly well-known consumer NIC that launched in the 2021 timeframe to update the AQC107.
You may have seen this in our recent Minisforum MS-01 review. As a super low-power card, this is one where we could add it to the system with a minimal impact on thermals. If you want to see specific OS compatibility, it is easy enough to look up AQC113 which is what this card is using. We can see the standard Marvell drivers in the Windows Device Manager.
For $200 this would not be our choice in a card. For $65-75, this might be an easy way to add 10GbE for folks who want faster networking. It also uses a relatively low-power modern chip unlike some of the other cards that are out there using ancient 10Gbase-T chips that cannot support things like 2.5GbE speeds.
For our longtime readers, you may have noticed the background color. Our studio team was using this as a test for a new feature in the studio on the third set there. The brand name for this one is always strange, but we have seen their other products before such as in this NICGIGA 8x 2.5GbE 1x 10GbE switch.
We also have a quick 30-second short with a few more angles on the new STH Labs YouTube channel.
Where to Buy
We purchased our unit from Amazon. Here is an affiliate link.
Note we participate in a number of affiliate programs, so we may earn a small commission if you buy one through this link. That helps us purchase more cards to review.