ASRock Unveils Mini PCs With AMD Ryzen 8040 Hawk Point APUs Firepower

hero asrock 4x4 box hawk point
AMD's latest APUs combining Zen 4 CPU grunt with serious RDNA 3 graphics firepower have been very popular in handheld gaming machines, but they're arguably best-suited for deployment in mini-PCs because, in our testing, the silicon serves best when spec'd for higher power limits than handheld devices can really support. That's why we're excited about ASRock's new 4×4 BOX motherboards and mini-PCs sporting AMD's Hawk Point processors.

Hawk Point, if you missed the announcement last week, is the codename for the Ryzen 8040 series. These chips are fundamentally identical to the Ryzen 7040 "Phoenix" APUs in terms of CPU and GPU specs, differing from those parts only in that their XDNA-based Neural Processing Unit (NPU) is 60% faster than the original recipe. That's hardly a bad thing, though; Phoenix was damn fast, and Hawk Point promises to be likewise.

motherboard topbottom
The top and bottom of the bare motherboard with included cooler.

ASRock already sells motherboards for mini-PCs based on Phoenix, but the Hawk Point revision of these systems looks to be a straight improvement, with all the same features plus an additional M.2 slot. That means you get your choice of a six-core Ryzen 5 8640U with Radeon 760M graphics, or an eight-core Ryzen 7 8840U with an integrated Radeon 780M GPU, the difference being four versus six RDNA 3 workgroup processors (WGPs).

Whichever you choose, you'll have a pair of DDR5 SO-DIMM slots, dual M-key M.2 slots, and an additional E-key slot for wireless adapters. External I/O includes two RJ-45 Ethernet connections, one of which supports 2.5 GbE, dual HDMI 1.4b connections, dual USB 4 ports with DisplayPort mode, and three more USB Type-A ports. The Hawk Point APU's integrated graphics can run both HDMI ports and both DisplayPort connections simultaneously for quad displays.

The front and back of the barebones version with included enclosure.

Fully-outfitted, one of these systems could sport up to 96GB of DDR5-5600 memory, dual 8TB M.2 SSDs, and a 30-watt power limit for the AMD APU. While 30W may not sound like much, it's definitely enough to let six Zen 4 CPU cores and four RDNA 3 WGPs stretch their legs a bit thanks to the efficient TSMC N4 process on which Hawk Point is fabricated. You'll likely be held up by memory bandwidth in games, in any case.

As with ASRock's other 4×4 BOX offerings, you can pick up both of these systems either as a bare motherboard for which you can provide your own enclosure, or as a barebones mini-PC with a case and provided power supply. ASRock hasn't confirmed pricing or availability, but we expect that these parts will become available in the first quarter of next year.