I changed operating systems several times and came to the conclusion that in Mint 18.1, Plasma 5.x is useless on the BRiX, XFCE is not much better and Cinnamon works well, but without my 'different wallpapers on each workspace'.
The best performer in Mint 18.1 was defintely Cinnamon although once I found and enabled an extension to allow me to change workspaces by scrolling the mousewheel on the desktop, I started to get the off mouse cursor artefact left on the screen for a few bried moments.
Because I always have two root partitions on my drive, I am able to install a new Linux distribution without using VirtualBox and without messing up my original distro.
(Mint 17.3 KDE with kernel 4.8)
That meant it was easy to drop back into Mint 17.3 and look seriously at any advantages I saw in Mint 18.1, and honestly, there was only one.
The BRiX has a built in Micro SD card reader that didn;t work in Mint 17.1 or 17.3, but it was working in Mint 18.1. So I checked the Kernel.
So just out of curiosity I installed a later kernel in Mint 17.3 using the following commands in Terminal.