Minisforum UM690 Mini PC Rocks A Ryzen 9 6900HX, Radeon Graphics And High-Speed I/O

Minisforum UM690 mini PC on a black desk.
Minisforum is adding a couple of new AMD-powered models to its Venus series mini PC lineup. They include the EliteMini UM590 with a Ryzen 9 5900HX processor underneath the hood, and the burlier EliteMini UM690 powered by a Ryzen 9 6900HX, both with integrated Radeon graphics. The latter config is arguably the more intriguing one, as only a $50 price separates the two configs in barebones form.

AMD launched its Ryzen 6000 series of mobile processors at CES earlier this year. Otherwise known as Rembrandt, these chips pair Zen 3+ CPU cores with RDNA 2 graphics. They're the fastest mobile CPUs on tap from AMD until it ports Zen 4 over to the mobile space.

Regarding the Ryzen 9 6900HX, it features an 8-core/16-thread design clocked at 3.3GHz (base) to 4.9GHZ (max boost). It also wields 16MB of L3 cache, 4MB of L2 cache, and 512KB of L1 cache, and a default 45W thermal design power (TDP) rating.

On the graphics side, the Ryzen 9 6900HX is infused with an integrated Radeon 680M GPU outfitted with 12 graphics cores clocked at up to 2,400MHz. You'll have to make some image quality compromises in more demanding games to maintain playable framerates, but in esports and less demanding titles in general, the Radeon 680M packs enough firepower to hit 60 frames per second at 1080p (depending on the specific game and settings, of course).

You can buy either the UM590 or UM690 in barebones form and add your own RAM and storage, or select from 16GB RAM + 512GB SSD, 32GB RAM + 512GB SSD, or 64GB RAM + 512GB SSD configs. These mini PCs sport a pair of SO-DIMM slots (DDR4 for the UM590 and DDR5 for the UM690), an M.2 connector (PCIe 3.0 for the UM590 and PCIe 4.0 for the UM690), and a 2.5-inch SATA bay.
Front and back ports on the Minisforum UM690 and UM590 mini PCs.

The port selection differs slightly but notably between the two models. On the UM590, you're looking at a 2.5Gbps LAN port, two USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-A ports, two USB 2.0 ports, a USB 3.2 Type-C port (supports DisplayPort 1.4) in the back another in the front (data only), two HDMI outputs, a clear CMOS button, 1x DMIC, and a 3.5mm combo jack.

For the UM690, Minisforum ups the ante with a USB4 connectivity (a single port on the front), along with a 2.5Gbps LAN port, four USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-A ports, a USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C port (data only), two HDMI outputs, a clear CMOS button, 1x DMIC, and a 3.5mm combo jack.

As for pricing, here's how it shakes out...
  • UM690 Barebones: $499
  • UM590 Barebones: $459

  • UM690 w/ 16GB RAM + 512GB SSD: $649
  • UM590 w/ 16GB RAM + 512GB SSD: $569

  • UM690 w/ 32GB RAM + 512GB SSD: $729
  • UM590 w/ 32GB RAM + 512GB SSD: $619

  • UM690 w/ 64GB RAM + 512GB SSD: $869
  • UM590 w/ 64GB RAM + 512GB SSD: $739
As you can see, the price gap widens when opting for a pre-configured setup. Whereas there's a $50 price difference for the barebone models, the disparity increases to $80 for the 16GB RAM configs, $110 for the 32GB RAM setups, and $130 for the 64GB models.
This is not funny business on the part of Minisforum, and instead it reflects that DDR5 memory is simply more expensive than DDR4. Fortunately, the situation has been improving. An $80 difference between the 16GB configs seems fair to us, considering you're also getting a faster CPU, faster graphics, and USB4 connectivity thrown into the mix.

Also note that these are discounted, pre-sale prices. If you're interested, all eight configurations are available to pre-order now and will ship in mid-December.