As with all SFF cases, expandability is limited to a few core components. The 210P has two memory slots, a single AGP and PCI slot and unusually a mini PCI slot as well. The mini PCI slot can be used for a wireless network card option, and there is a place in the rear of the case for an aerial to be mounted. Biostar will have this available as an option in the UK in about a month. There is also an internal connector for a parallel port as this doesn’t come as standard.
The CPU cooler has retained the same design as the one in the iDEQ 200A, but the socket has been moved inwards to create a gap between the cooler and the rear case fan.
Biostar seems to have covered for any eventualities and the floppy cable as well as a floppy power connector is present if you’d prefer to swap the card reader for a floppy drive. There is even a spare power connector for graphics cards that needs extra power to operate. The 250W PSU should be plenty as long as you don’t try to fit a GeForce 6800 Ultra.
The manuals have been improved and the pictures in the installation guide now come in full colour, which is very helpful especially for beginners.
The benchmarks scores are very good considering that I only had an Athlon 64 3400+ at hand. The overall SYSMark 2004 score of 179 places the iDEQ 210P among the faster Socket-754 boards we have tested. The PCMark 2004 were also quite high, but as the iDEQ 210P only supports single channel memory the memory score is lower than what you would see in a Socket-939 system.
The Biostar iDEQ 210P yet again proves that Biostar is here to stay in the SFF market. The design change to the exterior is only a minor upgrade, but the 300 series will bring around much bigger changes for those willing to wait. However, if you’re looking at getting a well built affordable SFF system the iDEQ 200P is definitely worth a look. It might not have all the latest features but at an affordable £146 it comes with everything you would expect.
The iDEQ 210P is yet another great SFF barebone from Biostar. It might not be cutting edge, but it’s none the less a good solution for anyone looking for an affordable, fast and compact PC.