This is a review of a small system that you may remember from a previous article. This is the Intel i225-V fanless unit that has 4x 2.5GbE NICs. Over 2022, we have tested a number of AliExpress-sourced 2.5GbE units for use as firewalls and virtualization nodes. There is a newer revision of these units, and we wanted to discuss some of the pros and cons in our standard review format for these.
New Fanless 4x 2.5GbE Intel N5105 i225-V Node Overview
The video for this review has already been released for some time now on the YouTube channel, so check that out below to see it. We combined the video with an extremely similar product, the i226-V version.
We suggest opening this video in its own browser or tab for a better viewing experience. While you are there you can also join the channel membership to help fund future projects like this.
This article is going to focus on the i225 V4 version, and you can find the newer 4x Intel i226-v version here. We just wanted to be complete and show the i225 version as well.
These units were configured with 16GB of memory and a 256GB NVMe SSD. This unit was purchased for $307.68, but our DHL shipping brought the total to $344.44.
You can get these units barebones for under $200, so if you want to save money it is cheaper to get your own SSD and RAM for these systems. This comes with the added benefit that if you have any issues with those components you can much more easily return them. We had not bought a preconfigured unit in a while, and we thought it would be good to see what they look like now so that is what we did with these.
This unit comes with a Heoriady 16GB 2666 LO-DIMM (that is what it says, not SODIMM.) Note that some vendors downclock the memory in these units, and as such, this unit came clocked at 2000MHz. We also got a Charm-Store 256GB NVMe SSD.
We ordered the Intel Celeron N5105 models because they were a good value for the performance and power consumption that they presented.
For about $300 we got a preconfigured OPNsense unit that was ready to go. Installing your own operating system is always recommended especially since it does not come from the OS vendor. We also recommend buying your own storage and memory as those components are not always reliable.
Now, it is time to get to the hardware.