Three Slim Atom/Ion 2-Based Nettop PCs Compared

Test Systems And Benchmarks

The Giada, Jetway, and Zotac nettops perform similarly because they’re all built on the same Ion 2 platform and have Intel Atom D500-series CPUs. To make things more interesting, we are adding ASRock’s Core 100HT-BD to the mix, a nettop that employs Intel’s Core i3-330M CPU and offers desktop-class performance. A key differentiator is that the Core 100HT-BD offers Intel-based HD Graphics, and we’re looking forward to seeing how it stands up against Nvidia’s Ion 2. The Core 100HT-BD can be purchased for $749.99 on Newegg, as tested, without an operating system.

ASRock Core100HT-BD
Giada Slim-N20Jetway Mini-TOP
Zotac ZBOX HD-ID34
Intel Core i3-330M (Arrandale), 2.13 GHz, QPI-2400 MHz, 3 MB L3 Cache
Intel Atom D510
1.6 GHz, 667 MHz FSB, 1 MB L3 Cache
Intel Atom D525
1.8 GHz, 800 MHz FSB, 1 MB L3 Cache
Intel Atom D525
1.8 GHz, 800 MHz FSB, 1 MB L3 Cache
Realtek RTL8111E Gigabit Network Adapter (LAN)
Atheros AR9287-BL1A wireless card
Realtek RTL8111C Gigabit Network Adapter (LAN)
Atheros AR9285
Atheros AR3011 (Bluetooth)
Realtek RTL8111DL Gigabit Network Adapter (LAN)
Atheros 802.11 b/g/n
PCIe card
Realtek RTL8111DL Gigabit Network Adapter (LAN)
Atheros AR9285
Nanya PC3-10700, 2 x 2048 MB, 533 MHz, CL 7-7-7-20-1T
Samsung PC2-6400
1 x 2048 MB, 332 MHz,
CL 5-5-5-15-1T
Hyundai PC2-6400
1 x 2048 MB, 332 MHz,
CL 5-5-5-15-1T
Samsung PC2-6400
1 x 2048 MB, 332 MHz,
CL 5-5-5-15-1T
Intel HD Graphics
Nvidia Ion 2
Nvidia Ion 2
Nvidia Ion 2
Via VT2020 8-channel HD audio codec
with THX TruStudio Pro
Analog & Optical:
Realtek ALC662
Nvidia LPCM digital audio
C-Media CM108AH
Nvidia LPCM digital audio
Analog & Optical:
Realtek ALC888
Nvidia LPCM digital audio
Hard Drive
500 GB Seagate
Momentus 5400.6

500 GB, 5400 RPM, 8 MB cache, SATA 3Gb/s
320 GB Seagate Momentus 7200
320 GB, 7200 RPM, 16 MB cache, SATA 3Gb/s
250 GB Samsung
Spinpoint 5400

250 GB, 5400 RPM, 8 MB cache, SATA 3Gb/s
250 GB Samsung
Spinpoint 5400

250 GB, 5400 RPM, 8 MB cache, SATA 3Gb/s
Delta Electronics

90 W, 19 V, External AC adapter
Great Wall

19 V, 3.42 A, External AC adapter
Channel Well Tech

12 V, 5 A, External AC adapter
Delta Electronics

19 V, 4.74 A, External AC adapter
Software and Drivers
Operating System
Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit
DirectX versionDirectX 11
Graphics Drivers
Intel Win7Vista_64_15177, Nvidia 260.99
Benchmark Configuration
PCMark Vantage x64
Version: Professional 64-bit edition, Total System Score, Memories, TV And Movies, Gaming, Music, Communications, Productivity, Hard Disk
SiSoft Sandra 2010
Version: 2010.1.16.11, Network Bandwidth benchmark, Network Latency benchmark
HD HQV Benchmark
Blu-ray, Version 1.0
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  • reprotected
    Nettops fail.
  • DjEaZy
    ... it may be a good mac mini hackentosch...
  • hmp_goose
    Retest the N20's playback with a RAM drive for the temp files; I suspect the drive system is the issue . . .
  • dEAne
    Overall it is good. The benchmark is fair enough - And it is presentable too.
  • cushgod
    SHould test results with a SSD complared to a "mechanical" HDD to see how much that can help an Atom move along :)
  • fullcircle_bflo
    So if I wanted a computer simply to stream internet videos to a television via HDMI(such as Hulu or CBS website), would any of these be a good candidate?
  • kriminal
    ^^ guess so.. fullcircle
  • mchuf
    For $150 - $200, you can buy a used Pentium D or C2D pc off of craigslist. Add a $50 HD5450 gpu and a $40 wireless KB/M combo and your all set. That would be a more capable box than one of these things and at a lower price (even if you upgrade to Win 7 HP). Hell, even a used Mac Mini (old model) might be a more cost effective solution. Unless you're extremely tight for space, I don't see the appeal for an overpriced "net" device.
  • nonameworks
    ^^ Only if you ignore the cost of electricity
  • tipoo
    Zino HD review, please! At close to the cost of many of these nettops, it blows them away in performance and is almost as small and consumes almost as little power.
  • azcoyote
    I would love one of these for only one reason. To get rid of the clunky box I let my kids play games on. Not sure they have enough guts for the pig that is Flash though.
  • Anonymous
    The last page seems to imply that the Zotac box is the only one of the group lacking TrueHD. Is that correct?
  • gs92110
    Recently connected my Gateway 17" laptop to TV by HDMI, it works fine, but a large footprint, might be interested in one of these little Nettops, "IF" they would let me surf/email/streaming videos to TV[without pixelation messing up the videos]...I don't expect much, but need these features...
  • ethaniel
    Good read, and a good thing that you opened all of them.
    I'll pass on Nettops until they can easily handle games like Metro 2033 and Crysis with the highest settings.
  • ProDigit10
    Jetway mini has slower readings because it's harddrive is massively slower!
    I'd replace it with an SSD, and do the tests again, and see how it'll outperform the other nettop platforms..
  • Sandburner20
    Interesting that the D510 system can't play Flash video fullscreen. I have run into the exact same problem with the Shuttle D510 system. Even more interesting that the D525 can. Could this be a timing issue with the D510 since the FSB is apparently different?
  • JohnMD1022
    We can scratch the Giada immediately.

    Why you ask?

    A Seagate drive.

    Can anyone remember the Yugo? That's Seagate.
  • naturalandtech
    ASRock always rock! especially Vision 3D Series coming with:
    # Intel® Core™ i7 / i5 / i3 Mobile Processor Family
    # 2 x 2GB DDR3-1066MHz
    # NVIDIA® GeForce GT425M Graphics, NVIDIA® 3D Vision, 3DTV Play Capable
    # 2T2R WiFi 802.11b/g/n
    # 3 x USB 3.0
    # 7.1 CH HD Audio with THX TruStudio Pro™
    soon it will be on my hand,,, muhaha
  • teeth_03
    Your USB port totals are a bit off when you are forgetting the eSATA combo ports. So the Giada actually has 3, not 2, and so fourth.