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Slew Of Zotac Zbox Mini PCs Includes One VR-Ready GTX 980 Option

Zotac had a pile of Zboxes to announce ahead of Computex. Zotac’s Zbox line consists of mini PCs that cover a variety of uses, ranging from productivity to gaming, and the company announced a refresh on its M and C lines with 6th generation (Skylake) Intel Core processors. Furthermore, Zotac revealed three new Zboxes, two of which are pocketable; one is equipped with an Nvidia GTX 980.

C-Series

Zotac’s C series is designed to deliver efficient productivity while remaining silent. The new Zbox CI523 nano, CI543 nano and CI545 nano are receiving the Skylake treatment, with the CI545 nano featuring Intel AMT technology.

Zbox CI523 nanoZbox CI543 nanoZbox CI545 nano
ProcessorIntel Core i3-6100U Processor (dual-core, 2.3 GHz) Intel Core i5-6200U Processor (dual-core, 2.3 GHz, up to 2.8 GHz)Intel Core i5-6300U Processor (dual-core 2.4 GHz, up to 3.0 GHz)
GraphicsIntel HD Graphics 520Intel HD Graphics 520Intel HD Graphics 520
Memory2 x 204-pin DDR3L-1600 SO-DIMM (up to 16GB) 2 x 204-pin DDR3L-1600 SO-DIMM (up to 16GB) 2 x 204-pin DDR3L-1600 SO-DIMM (up to 16GB)
Storage2.5-inch SATA 6.0 Gbps HDD/SSD2.5-inch SATA 6.0 Gbps HDD/SSD2.5-inch SATA 6.0 Gbps HDD/SSD
Display OutputsHDMI 1.4a (4096x2160 @ 24Hz), HDCP compliantDisplayPort 1.2 (3840x2160 @ 60Hz)HDMI 1.4a (4096x2160 @ 24Hz), HDCP compliantDisplayPort 1.2 (3840x2160 @ 60Hz)HDMI 1.4a (4096x2160 @ 24Hz), HDCP compliantDisplayPort 1.2 (3840x2160 @ 60Hz)
Audio OutputsDigital 8 Channel Loss-less Bitstream (via HDMI)Analog Stereo In / Out Digital 8 Channel Loss-less Bitstream (via HDMI)Analog Stereo In / OutDigital 8 Channel Loss-less Bitstream (via HDMI)Analog Stereo In / Out
Front PortsPower Button3-in-1 card reader (SD/SDHC/SDXC)USB 3.02 x USB 3.1 Type-CWiFi LEDHard drive LEDPower buttonPower Button3-in-1 card reader (SD/SDHC/SDXC)USB 3.02 x USB 3.1 Type-CWiFi LEDHard drive LEDPower buttonPower Button3-in-1 card reader (SD/SDHC/SDXC)USB 3.02 x USB 3.1 Type-CWiFi LEDHard drive LEDPower button
Rear Ports-Wi-Fi antenna connector-2 x USB 2.0USB 3.0-10/100/1000 Ethernet (RJ45)-Power connector-Wi-Fi antenna connector-2 x USB 2.0USB 3.0-10/100/1000 Ethernet (RJ45)-Power connector-Wi-Fi antenna connector-2 x USB 3.0-2 x USB 2.0-10/100/1000 Ethernet (RJ45)-Power connector
Software CompatibilityMicrosoft Windows 8.1 / 10 (32/64-bit) Microsoft Windows 8.1 / 10 (32/64-bit) Microsoft Windows 8.1 / 10 (32/64-bit)
Mini PC Dimensions5.76 x 4.98 x 2.38  inches (WxDxH)5.76 x 4.98 x 2.38  inches (WxDxH)5.76 x 4.98 x 2.38  inches (WxDxH)
Box Dimensions9.25 x 9.25 x 3.46 inches (WxDxH) 9.25 x 9.25 x 3.46 inches (WxDxH) 9.25 x 9.25 x 3.46 inches (WxDxH)
Inside The Box-Zotac Zbox CI523 nano-Power adapter and cable-VESA monitor mount (w/4 screws)-Wi-Fi antenna-USB Flash Drive with OS drivers -Support DVD-User Manual-Quick Guide-Zotac Zbox CI543 nano-Power adapter and cable-VESA monitor mount (w/4 screws)-Wi-Fi antenna-USB Flash Drive with OS drivers -Support DVD-User Manual-Quick Guide-Zotac Zbox CI545 nano-Power adapter and cable-VESA monitor mount (w/4 screws)-Wi-Fi antenna-USB Flash Drive with OS drivers -Support DVD-User Manual-Quick Guide

M-Series

The second refreshed line is Zotac’s M series. The M series’ goal is efficient green operation, more than silence, but even so, the specifications between the M and C line are virtually identical save for their size and use case.

Zbox MI523 nanoZbox MI543 nanoZbox MI545 nano
ProcessorIntel Core i3-6100U Processor (dual-core, 2.3 GHz) Intel Core i5-6200U Processor (dual-core, 2.3 GHz, up to 2.8 GHz)Intel Core i5-6300U Processor (dual-core 2.4 GHz, up to 3.0 GHz)
GraphicsIntel HD Graphics 520Intel HD Graphics 520Intel HD Graphics 520
Memory2 x 204-pin DDR3L-1600 SO-DIMM (up to 16GB) 2 x 204-pin DDR3L-1600 SO-DIMM (up to 16GB) 2 x 204-pin DDR3L-1600 SO-DIMM (up to 16GB)
Storage2.5-inch SATA 6.0 Gbps HDD/SSD2.5-inch SATA 6.0 Gbps HDD/SSD2.5-inch SATA 6.0 Gbps HDD/SSD
Display Outputs-HDMI 1.4a (4096x2160 @ 24Hz), HDCP compliant-DisplayPort 1.2 (3840x2160 @ 60Hz)-HDMI 1.4a (4096x2160 @ 24Hz), HDCP compliant-DisplayPort 1.2 (3840x2160 @ 60Hz)-HDMI 1.4a (4096x2160 @ 24Hz), HDCP compliant-DisplayPort 1.2 (3840x2160 @ 60Hz)
Audio OutputsDigital 8 Channel Loss-less Bitstream (via HDMI)Analog Stereo In / Out Digital 8 Channel Loss-less Bitstream (via HDMI)Analog Stereo In / OutDigital 8 Channel Loss-less Bitstream (via HDMI)Analog Stereo In / Out
Front Ports-Power Button-3-in-1 card reader (SD/SDHC/SDXC)-USB 3.0-2 x USB 3.1 Type-C-Power Button-3-in-1 card reader (SD/SDHC/SDXC)-USB 3.0-2 x USB 3.1 Type-C-Power Button-3-in-1 card reader (SD/SDHC/SDXC)-USB 3.0-2 x USB 3.1 Type-C
Rear Ports-Wi-Fi antenna connector-2 x USB 2.0-USB 3.0-10/100/1000 Ethernet (RJ45)-Power connector-Wi-Fi antenna connector-2 x USB 2.0-USB 3.0-10/100/1000 Ethernet (RJ45)-Power connector-Wi-Fi antenna connector-2 x USB 2.0-USB 3.0-10/100/1000 Ethernet (RJ45)-Power connector
Software CompatibilityMicrosoft Windows 8.1 / 10 (32/64-bit) Microsoft Windows 8.1 / 10 (32/64-bit) Microsoft Windows 8.1 / 10 (32/64-bit)
Mini PC Dimensions5.03 x 4.98in x 2.0in (WxDxH)5.03 x 4.98in x 2.0in (WxDxH)5.03 x 4.98in x 2.0in (WxDxH)
Box Dimensions9.25 x 9.25 x 3.46 inches (WxDxH) 9.25 x 9.25 x 3.46 inches (WxDxH) 9.25 x 9.25 x 3.46 inches (WxDxH)
Inside The Box-Zotac Zbox M523 nano-Power adapter and cable-VESA monitor mount (w/4 screws)-Wi-Fi antenna-USB Flash Drive with OS drivers -Support DVD-User Manual-Quick Guide-Zotac Zbox MI543 nano-Power adapter and cable-VESA monitor mount (w/4 screws)-Wi-Fi antenna-USB Flash Drive with OS drivers -Support DVD-User Manual-Quick Guide-Zotac Zbox MI545 nano-Power adapter and cable-VESA monitor mount (w/4 screws)-Wi-Fi antenna-USB Flash Drive with OS drivers -Support DVD-User Manual-Quick Guide

Shhh; Zbox P-Series

Zotac’s Zbox PI322 and PI330 feature a fanless cooling system, leaving them with no moving parts. The Zbox PI330 has an additional DisplayPort, raising the number of connected displays to two. The "P" in P series stands for "pico," and indeed these PCs are small enough to fit in your pocket.

Zbox PI322Zbox PI330
ProcessorIntel Atom x5-Z8300 processor  (quad-core 1.44 GHz, up to 1.84 GHz)Intel Atom x5-Z8500 processor (quad-core 1.44 GHz, up to 2.24 GHz)
GraphicsIntel HD GraphicsIntel HD Graphics
Memory2GB LPDDR3 onboard memory 2GB LPDDR3 onboard memory
Storage32GB eMMC onboard storage32GB eMMC onboard storage
Display OutputsHDMI 1.4a (1080p @ 60 Hz) -HDMI 1.4a (3840x2160 @ 30 Hz)-DisplayPort (2560x1600 @ 60 Hz)
Audio OutputsLoss-less Bitstream (LPCM / bitstream via HDMI)Analog Stereo In / OutLoss-less Bitstream (LPCM / bitstream via HDMI)Analog Stereo In / Out
Left Ports2-in-1 card reader (Micro SDHC / SDXC) 2-in-1 card reader (Micro SDHC / SDXC)
Right Ports-Analog Stereo In / Out-2 x USB 2.0-10/100/1000 Ethernet (RJ45) -USB 3.0 Type-C-DisplayPort HDMI-Analog Stereo In / Out-10/100/1000 Ethernet (RJ45)
Front PortsPower ButtonPower Button
Rear Ports-USB 3.0-HDMI-Power Connector-Power Connector-2 x USB 3.0
Software CompatibilityMicrosoft Windows 10 Home pre-installed (32-bit)Microsoft Windows 10 Home pre-installed (64-bit)
Mini PC Dimensions4.55 x 2.60 x 0.81 inches (WxDxH) 4.53 x 2.99 x 0.81 inches (WxDxH)
Box Dimensions7 x 6.89 x 2.09 inches (WxDxH)7 x 6.89 x 2.09 inches (WxDxH)
Inside The Box -Zotax Zbox PI322 with Windows 10 Home-Universal Power Adapter-Mounting Bracket (w/2 screws)-O/S Recovery DVD (optional) -CTIA / OMTP Adapter-Quick Start Guide-User Manual-Zotac Zbox PI330 with Windows 10 Home-Universal Power Adapter-Mounting Bracket (w/2 screws)-O/S Recovery DVD (optional) -CTIA / OMTP Adapter-Quick Start Guide-User Manua

And Of Course, Something VR

The most surprising announcement from Zotac was undoubtedly the Zbox Magnus EN980, a mini PC with VR-ready specifications, and it’s considerably more powerful than the Magnus EN970 released last year. The Magnus dispels the Nvidia GTX 980 GPU’s heat via water cooling, which is absolutely necessary in a system this small. Zotac’s intention is for the Magnus to run VR applications; at this size, the Magnus can easily be strapped into a backpack and worn during VR sessions, reducing the fear of tripping on cables.

ProductZBOX Magnus EN980
ProcessorIntel Skylake Core i5-6400 (quad-core 2.7 GHz, up to 3.3 GHz)
GraphicsNVIDIA GeForce® GTX 980
Memory2 x 204-pin DDR3L-1600 SO-DIMM slot (up to 16GB)
Storage-M.2 SATA 6.0 Gbps SSD slot (2242/2260/2280) -2.5-inch SATA 6.0 Gbps HDD/SSD bay
Display Outputs-2 x HDMI 1.4-2 x DisplayPort -1.2HDCP compliant
Audio Outputs-Lossless Bitstream via HDMI-Analog output
Front Ports-Analog Input / Output-3-in-1 card reader (SD/SDHC/SDXC UHS II)-USB 3.1-USB 3.1 Type-C-Power button
Rear Ports-2 x WiFi antenna connector-4 x USB 3.0 ports-2 x 10/100/1000 Ethernet (RJ45)-2 x Power Input
Software CompatibilityMicrosoft Windows 8.1 / 10 (32 / 64-bit)
Mini PC Dimensions8.86 x 7.99 x 5.03 inches (WxDxH)
Box Dimensions11.41 x 11.41 x 9.37 inches (WxDxH)
Inside The Box-Zotac Zbox Magnus EN980-2 x Power brick & cable-2 x Wi-Fi antennaUSB flash drive with O/S driverDriver diskQuick Start GuideUser Manual

Alexander Quejado is an Associate Contributing Writer for Tom’s Hardware and Tom’s IT Pro. Follow Alexander Quejado on Twitter. 

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  • David Dewis
    A GTX 980 even with water cooling in this case is going struggle surely. The radiator alone is going to have to be tiny. I'm guessing boost clocks won't be a common thing.
    Reply
  • James5mith
    Why do they still insist on using DDR3L instead of DDR4?
    Reply
  • AndreiJeff
    I can surely see the usefulness in playing VR adventure and puzzle games, with HTC Vive and a Nano PC in a backpack. Full (room) freedom. But powered with energy from what? A battery from a laptop would barely last an hour.
    Reply
  • ragenalien
    Why do they still insist on using DDR3L instead of DDR4?
    Because it's cheaper, and for these industrial pc's the small benefit of ddr4 is wasted.
    Reply
  • AndreiJeff
    No low voltage processor in the Magnus EN980, probably also not a mobile GTX 980 inside... It also says "2 x Power brick & cable inside the box"...
    Reply
  • norseman4
    Why do they still insist on using DDR3L instead of DDR4?

    204 pin DDR3L is easier to place than 260 pin DDR4, maybe.
    Reply
  • darcotech
    So it is small, you can put it in your backpack, but what about the power cord?
    How do you do that?
    Reply
  • photonboy
    Desktop GPU liquid coolers are currently overkill (i.e. 50degC for 12cm rad/fan) so a smaller liquid cooler could do a great job.

    Also, some laptops with far less room have a full GTX980 at reasonable performance so its very possible to do great in this form factor.

    A GTX1070 will be nice too. Like the size but not the overall design of these PC's.
    Reply