Kangaroo pc a potential inexpensive Endpoint/Remote solution?

Reading through the discussions i have seen Raspberry Pi’s mentioned as a possible endpoint solution in the future. I stumbled across an article this morning on engadget on the Kangaroo PC that i thought might make a decent cheap alternative as an endpoint and wanted to see if any others shared my opinion.

From the source article BGR:

nFocus bills the Kangaroo as the world’s smallest portable desktop PC. The device weighs just 200g and measures 124mm tall, 80.5mm wide and 12.9mm thick, making the Kangaroo roughly the size of some of the larger phablets currently on the market. There are even one or two phablets that are far bigger than the Kangaroo. A removable base unit adds an HDMI port, two USB ports and a DC power port to the Kangaroo, and it’s just 46.9mm tall.

In terms of specs as they might compare to a traditional tower desktop, the ultrabook vs. notebook comparison is absolutely apropos. InFocus currently offers one version of the Kangaroo and it is powered by an Intel Cherrytrail (Atom Z8500) processor clocked at 2.24GHz. This class of Intel processor requires no fan, enabling a design that is as compact as possible. The Kangaroo also includes 2GB of LPDDR3 RAM and 32GB of eMMC storage, and it can be expanded by as much as 128GB at a time thanks to microSDXC support.

Dual-band wireless AC ensures a speedy Wi-Fi connection, which is important since the device does not have an ethernet port, just as most ultra-portable notebook computers no longer include ethernet ports. Bluetooth 4.0 cuts back on even more wires by letting the user connect a wireless keyboard and mouse rather than hogging the USB ports on the included base. Only two cables are necessary with the Kangaroo, an HDMI cable to connect to a display and the power cord. The device does pack a battery though, and it will last for about four hours of what InFocus calls “casual use.”

A conversation with InFocus ahead of today’s announcements revealed a team that is excited to be breathing new life into the desktop PC space. InFocus also says that this first Kangaroo model is only the beginning, and it has big plans for the future. Higher-end models will be made available, but the company has plans to release additional base units that can be docked with the Kangaroo to add new functionality.

Link to Newegg

Hi Kevin,
Let’s leave a notification for @brian to see what he thinks. Not sure whether it could be a remote (2Gb RAM is light on), but I can’t see why it couldn’t run Windows or Linux RoonSpeakers (when released) as a network endpoint.

It is more than ample for an endpoint. No concerns there.

It’s probably not a great server (eMMC and sdxc are generally pretty slow, despite being solid-state, and Atom is atom, and 2gb of RAM is on the small side. For a small library it might be ok as a headless server).

It’s probably fine as a remote. I don’t have a good feel for the graphics performance of that Atom Z5800, but our remote runs on 2yr old iPads and android devices, so it’s probably just fine.

Neat price point at $99. Nice to see Intel joining the party.

Thanks for the responses gentlemen. Once Roon Speakers is released i think i will pick one of these up and try it out. What interested me was the price and the fact there are no moving parts.

Interestingly enough a review i just read online stated the graphics are on par with the A7 which was in the first iPad Air. CPU wise it looks to be a bit more powerful than than the junk celeron processor i have in a cheap laptop which i first set Roon up on as a server, though honestly for my library (11k songs, 95% are 16/44.1) it functioned perfectly fine.

I bought one, it arrived on Friday, put a 128 gb Sd card in it and installed Roon and added some music.

Initial testing as a core with no problems using bluetooth for the audio. Have a DAC arriving on Wednesday to utilize USB out for audio.

Picked it up to use for music in my office through an older Carver amp I have running 4 speakers spread throughout the office.

Don’t plan to use the Kangaroo for anything but music. Once I get the DAC and finish cherrypicking music for the SD card from my 2TB plus collection at home, will give it some more serious testing.