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ZOTAC ZBOX CI320 nano Budget SFF Desktop PC Review (Page 1)

ZOTAC ZBOX CI320 nano Budget SFF Desktop PC Review

We're taking a look at a new ZOTAC ZBOX CI320 nano SFF desktop PC with passive silent cooling and a tiny footprint. Read on for Trace's full thoughts.

By Trace Hagan from Sep 17, 2014 @ 8:10 CDT
TweakTown Rating: 89%Manufacturer: ZOTAC



A quick note before we move to the new ZBOX: We've gone ahead and created a new set of charts for systems that are less than $750-1000, basically putting systems into two categories: budget and performance. Putting a sub $750 system through a 4K Ultra test on Battlefield 4 is pointless. For this new set of charts, we've reduced our gaming settings to better illustrate how these systems perform in their designed use cases.

On to the review: We've got in-house the new ZOTAC ZBOX CI320, a passively cooled small form-factor machine with a tiny footprint. The CI320 is NOT a gaming machine, and will only be able to play the lightest of games. But, it does have other great use cases that we will discuss in a bit.

One of the best features of the ZOTAC ZBOX line is its tiny size, something that the CI320 continues on with. Other great features include equally tiny power consumption and the ability to mount it to the VESA mount on the back of a monitor.

Without further ado, let's dive into the meat of this review.

Specifications, Configurations and Pricing

The ZBOX CI320 comes with the low-power Intel Celeron N2930 CPU. The N2930 is a quad-core part with a nominal clock of 1.83GHz and a boost speed of 2.16GHz. It's based upon the Intel Silvermont architecture, a low-power architecture designed for SoCs. It has a TDP of just 7.5W with an SDP of 4.5W.

Cooling the low-power Celeron N2930 is a passive cooler, making the system effectively silent. How well will this hold up to a heavy load? We'll have to hold off just a bit to see.

The design of the system is basically an Intel NUC, and utilizes a custom motherboard that includes gigabit Ethernet, 802.11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, and 8-channel digital audio via HDMI. In terms of I/O, the ZBOX CI320 comes with HDMI, DisplayPort, mic/headphone/S/PDIF, four USB 3.0 ports, two USB 2.0 ports, and an eSATA port.

Unfortunately, the system features just one SO-DIMM slot, which is populated with a 2GB Crucial DIMM. Graphics are provided by Intel's built-in "HD Graphics" clocked at 313MHz with a boost speed of 854MHz.

Windows 8.1 64-bit with Bing is installed upon the 64GB SSD. The SSD is from Foresee, an SSD manufacturer that I've never heard of, so I'll be interested to see how it performs. The CI320 nano will set you back around $236, which is really a pretty darn good deal for a complete system, including an SSD.

PRICING: You can find the ZOTAC ZBOX CI320 nano Desktop Computer for sale below. The prices listed are valid at the time of writing but can change at any time. Click the link to see the very latest pricing for the best deal.

United States: The ZOTAC ZBOX CI320 nano Desktop Computer retails for $142.88 at Amazon.

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