Herobox - SSD and other questions

Hi,
I am looking to buy couple of Herobox mini pc’s but before I do I have some questions.

180GB Intel SSD is soldered to the board or I can change it with bigger SSD?

There is an aditional M.2 SATA 2242 and 2280 for second SSD? Is it limited to any disk size?

Micro SD is limited to 128GB or I can use 256GB or 512GB micro SD card?

Thank you!

The product’s standard storage is an eMMC that is welded on the motherboard. The laptop has a slot to put an M2 SATA NGFF 2242 or 2280 SSD and does support 500GB.

Example: https://www.amazon.es/dp/B077SQ8J1V/ref=cm_sw_r_other_apa_i_fIxmEbRNDJY96

IMG_20200130_191705_994|690x487

Thank you for your reply.

180GB integrated disk is not SSD it’s eMMC? Why do they advertise it as “We equip Herobox with Intel 180G SSD”? There is a significant difference between eMMC and SSD.

I’m sorry, I responded automatically, I thought he meant the herobook

No problem, I did see that you wrote “laptop”. :slight_smile:
Do you know the answers for Herobox, that I asked?

Can we have subforum for HeroBox?

The Herobox is powered by the Intel N4100 CPU and 8GB of RAM - the same internals as its non-Pro UBook. It also has a small solid-state drive, which may just be there to make sure its Windows 10 OS runs as fast as possible. However, it also has a bay for SATA drives of up to 2TB in capacity.

Alternatively, it also supports microSD cards that can hold up to 128GB of your content. It also has 4 USB type A ports, 2 of which are 3.0 and 2 2.0. There are also HDMI 2.0 (which supports up to 4K video at 60fps), VGA and Ethernet ports - as well as 1 USB type C port.

For the images that I have seen of the HeroBox the SSD would be replaceable with another one, but it does not indicate, although I believe that there will be no problem until 512GB, if it is compatible.

You can ask at service@chuwi.com

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Haven’t disassembled my Hero Box down to MB to check internal SSD mount, but should be 22mm socket.
Existing drive identifies as Intel SSD SCKKF180H6 which lists as a M2 2280 TLC module using SATA 3 interface. It should be possible to replace with a larger capacity M2 up to 2280 length.
Crystal DiskMark yields average reads for a TLC drive, but a little slow on writes.

There are some settings in the Hero Box BIOS referring to NVME drives and the N4100 CPU is capable of NVME/PCIe, but only way to know for sure ChuWI implemented it is to try one.

There is a bay on bottom to take a SATA 3 SSD or HDD. I installed a Samsung EVO 1TB SSD, but with extended video watching (2+ hours of HD playback), the Hero Box CPU temps went too high. Even had a couple thermal shutdowns. Turns out the hottest area of the motherboard is directly above the SSD area and the warm SSD covering that area locks the CPU heat in. The “Silent” passive cooling thru tiny openings around the top and bottom is just not up to it.

Micro SD slot is not worth the bother. It’s down in a recess in the faceplate and hard to pull out without tweezers. Also very slow transfers. Using a SDXC Class 10 chip in my other computer transfers of 3GB of files are steady 90-95 Mb/s. In the Hero Box, same Class 10 chip barely reaches 25 Mb/s copying to the 180GB drive - often dropping below 10 Mb/s

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Thank you!

Then I can have two SSD SATA M.2 drives set in a mirror RAID?

Not to happy with the overheating issue, is there enough place to set additional cooler? This is now the biggest issue for me as I will use it as a small file and web server, just for testing purposes.

I was planning to use a micro SD as a backup option, but if the speed is that low and if it’s limited to 128GB I don’t think it will work for me.

NO… not 2 M2 drives. 1 M2 stick drive and one 2 1/2" SATA drive. Doubt any way to HW RAID 1 mirror - would have to be software raid program.

Hero Box has many small holes around top & bottom edges of case. Cooling is solely by convection in the tiny bottom holes and out the tiny top holes. Since the CPU and cooler fins are in the center of MB, the air path would seem to be in the bottom edge up the insides wall of case and out the outer top edge holes. To reach the fins, the air would have to take a longer path across the center where the fins are and out the other side at the top.
With my unit, the CPU temp starts out in 40s C, but when I stream HD video the CPU/GPU generates more heat than the cooling arrangement can keep up with. The CPU spends most time at 800MHz, but the GPU is still doing it’s work. The temps will slowly rise, eventually reaching the 80s C.
When I installed the Samsung 1TB EVO 2 1/2" SSD and played video off that, it put even more heat into the case as well as blocking an area of the under case that already gets warm from radiation off the bottom of the motherboard under the CPU. This was enough to eventually drive the CPU/GPU temp over 100C and into thermal shutdown & crash.
Sadly, no way to add a fan or improve airflow without case surgery, which I may do eventually (cut the top open & mount a 120mm fan above running off a USB 2 port) should be just as quiet and WORK!

A much better storage/backup option would be to use a USB portable HDD or SSD. USB 3x will give pretty much same speed as internal SATA and keep the heat load out of the Hero Box case.

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Intel does not make EMMC (soldered SSD) chips :wink:

I was thinking to replace 1xM2 180GB that is already provided with the PC and to add another M2 SSD to additional port.

But that heating is a real problem, my box will be on 24/7 and I don’t won’t problems with heating. I will not use it for videos, mostly for file storage and web/database server, so maybe it won’t heat that much but I am not ready to take that risk. I will rather pay 100$ more.

Don’t wanna use an external storage, I like this small boxes and to keep it plain and simple. I already have Intel NUC with 32GB RAM, 512GB SSD and 512GB microSD and it works great. But now I need some low budget solution.

I know, but I don’t trust their product description. :slight_smile:
Official documentation will be great. For my Dell computers I can get Owner Manuals where I can see all technical data and for Chuwi products I have to waste 2-3h on internet search.

ZoDiaC9797: I agree spending 3 hrs internet searching is a waste - why did you do it?
It only takes 10 secs to run a freeware hardware id program like HWInfo64 to see what your components are without opening the case.

  1. HWInfo64 reports the SSD in the Hero Box is an Intel Pro 5400s 2280 socket mounted M2 model SCKKF180H6. Visual inspection confirms & shows Hero Box MB has screw posts for both 2280 and 2242 sizes.
    You can get the Intel spec sheets and Intel SSD Toolbox from Intel site (hopefully in <3hrs)

  2. eMMC storage memory can be generically called a solid state drive, but it not really. It is more like the guts of a flash drive soldered to the MB. Slow reads & very slow writes. A true “SSD” operating over SATA 3 or PCIe busses will run rings around eMMC. A Crystal DiskMark score for an average SSD will be ~450-500 Mb/s for both read & write. A typical eMMC storage used in cheap mini pcs will be more like 120 Mbps read and 25 Mbps write.

Well, it’s a simple answer, I don’t have Herobox so there is no way that I can use HWInfo64 or some other software to check configuration.

I am familiar with the difference between eMMC and SSD, but anyways thank you for additional info, specially regarding Intel Pro 5400s.