This is a brief overview of the Qotom Q530G6 compute hardware to assist people who may want some real-world information on these family of devices. I have had mine for two years.
Like an Intel NUC the Qotom Q530G6 is a very small form factor PC. It is so small you can fit it (just) in 1U of rack space. Most are fanless and have multiple I/O connections and LAN ports.
Typically, these devices have been used in industry monitoring serial communications, but are equally well suited in the home to HTPC usage, light web browsing (they are so small you can mount one on a VESA plate behind your monitor!) or bespoke network applications like a virtualised firewall/router.
Q530G6 basic specification
- I3-6100U or i5-6200U (with Intel HD graphics 520 or 610)
- 1x DDR4 SO-DIMM (up to 16GB)
- 1x 2.5 SSD
- 1x mSATA
- 6x Intel I211-AT Gigabit LAN
- 1x HDMI port
- 1x Serial port
- 2x USB 2.0 + 2x USB 3.0
- 12v power brick adaptor, barrel style plug.
You will not set the world on fire with the spec. The CPU is a 15w TDP passively cooled unit, but they are enough. What is important is the CPU supports the AES-NI standard required by modern software to run securely.
Support for 16GB (single slot) RAM is most useful if you intend to virtualise multiple machines. A lot of the other Qotom devices are limited to 8GB of RAM.
Having Intel network adaptors can make life easier when looking for drivers.
Purchase & Support
I bought my unit via aliexpress from the Qotom store there https://qotom.aliexpress.com/store/108231
Having some RAM and a 2.5” SSD to recycle I went for the barebones. However, the unit turned out to have an issue and after trying three sets of RAM and another SSD I was forced to raise a support ticket. They were very helpful and happy for me to disassemble and ship just the motherboard back to China (the shipping was the hardest part!) and they sent a replacement which thankfully did not exhibit the same issue of rebooting every 2-3 minutes.
If buying again I would probably go for a pre-built system from them so that it can be tested before shipping
My Qotom Q530G6 spends its life as a virtual machine host for my home network. I would not want to let all those network ports go to waste!
Over the two years of ownership it has performed flawlessly inside my comms rack sandwiched between the patch panel and the switch. (see photo at top of page)
Temperature wise it gets slightly warm, not hot, certainly not hot enough to worry about thermal throttling, although I did re-paste the CPU when my replacement motherboard arrived.
This is probably because it is such a low power unit, which makes it perfect for always on firewall/router/DNS/HomeAutomation and other monitoring duties.