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Iwill ZMAXap SFF Review (Page 9)

Shawn Baker | Sep 26, 2004 at 11:00 pm CDT - 2 mins, 0 secs reading time for this page
Rating: 80%Manufacturer: Iwill

Conclusion

The ZMAX as we expected wasn't quite as fast as the PowerColor 9100IGP for gaming when using onboard graphics as it is quite commonly known that ATI have got one of the best (if not the best) integrated graphics engines on the market. You can see though when it comes to synthetic memory and CPU scores, the ZMAX system from Iwill holds itself extremely well and when we placed an ATI Radeon X800PRO inside both systems under 3DMark2001 SE, the Iwill ZMAX was well ahead as the numbers showed.

With this said, if you are really wanting to get the maximum performance out of your small form factor, you need to add in your own external AGP graphics card which can be done with great ease - even with the 250 watt power supply, the ZMAX had no problem powering the X800PRO, Western Digital Raptor hard drive and DVD burner.

While we did have intentions to overclock the system we didn't have much luck since we had problems booting over 205MHz, like the ZEN small form factor system from Shuttle. You can't buy these systems expecting to reach insane overclocking speeds; they just aren't designed for overclocking. You want a small form factor that has the ability to handle a high-end AGP card, have the ability to use the latest processors and run 100% stable at default operation. The ZMAX is able to do this and more which makes it an excellent choice for users interested in upgrading their old small form factor or just want to enter into the small form factor realm.

One thing we did notice which was missing was entertainment connectors on the back I/O plate such as S-Video and RCA video out for a home entertainment setup. And as we mentioned earlier in the review, the inclusion of the faster 802.11g standard would have been nicer than 802.11b but at least some form of wireless is included.

All in all we have a good first attempt from Iwill with just a few minor cons but we hope that they decide to stay on the Small Form Factor bandwagon with some more and exciting models in the future.

- Pros

Good gaming performance with X800PRO

Great looking case

Excellent features

Well designed cooler

Quiet operation

Air filters

- Cons

802.11b wireless, 54mbps 802.11g would have been nicer

Very slim package

Installation wasn't simple

Poor overclocking

Poor onboard graphics performance

Not many video output options

Rating - 8 out of 10

Last updated: Dec 13, 2019 at 07:15 pm CST

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Shawn Baker

ABOUT THE AUTHOR - Shawn Baker

Shawn takes care of all of our video card reviews. From 2009, Shawn is also taking care of our memory reviews, and from May 2011, Shawn also takes care of our CPU, chipset and motherboard reviews. As of December 2011, Shawn is based out of Taipei, Taiwan.

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