The King Fanless Intel Core i5 6x 2.5GbE CWWK System Internal Hardware Overview
Inside the system, we have a fairly familiar layout. There are M.2 slots on the top, SODIMMs on the opposite edge, and then the NICs on one side of the chassis. Below the M.2 SSD slot is another M.2 slot for WiFi NICs.
The NICs are Intel i226-V “SRKTU” chips. Something that is a bit different is that these NICs are on the SODIMM/ M.2 side of the chassis, not the CPU side. In many of the more recent fanless E-core only boxes we have seen them on the CPU side with a block to transfer heat to the chassis. The Intel i225-V was a 1.95W NIC while the Intel i226-V is 1.3W. Still, there are six of them so that is 7.8W TDP of NICs on the bottom side of the chassis.
The included SSD was the Fanxiang drive that we have seen before such as in the Fanless 4x 2.5GbE Intel N5105 i226-V firewall we tested. The RAM was YueTiger 16GB DDR4-3200.
Since these systems can be picky on memory, these modules used the SK hynix H5AN8G4NAFR UHC 712A chips.
Here is the unit configured.
The Intel Core i5-1235U is on the opposite side of the motherboard. This chip has two P-cores with Hyper-Threading (2 cores/ 4 threads) plus eight E-cores (8 cores/threads) for a total of 10 cores and 12 threads.
Contact between the chassis and the CPU was accomplished via a copper plate.
Overall, the cooling solution was making contact with the CPU in our unit, so temperatures were reasonable.
Our unit did not come with WiFi, but it is something we wished this unit had.
Adding WiFi 6/ 6E and BlueTooth
Adding WiFi on these is easier than when we first got them. The original BIOS on these was CNVio2 only. So we had an Intel AX210 WiFi 6E kit that we installed but it did not work. This was a feature added to the BIOS several weeks ago.
Still, we had the luxury of having an Intel AX201 CNVio2 WiFi 6 NIC handy, so we installed this using the antennas included in the PCIe bracket kit we purchased with the AX210.
We routed the WiFi antenna leads through the plugs on the USB and display side of the chassis, and everything worked. The hardest part was getting the small MHF4 IPEX connectors attached to the WiFi. If you have good fine motor skills, then this is probably 1-2 minutes to install. If you have less than stellar fine motor skills, this will require more time and potentially a beverage.
Once this was installed, we have our six Intel i226-V 2.5GbE NICs and a WiFi 6 + Bluetooth NIC working in our fanless machine.
Next, let us talk about the performance.