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Zotac Zbox Magnus EN1060K-U Barebones Mini PC Review

Synthetic & Productivity Benchmarks

We pitted the Zotac Zbox Magnus EN1060K-U against our H270 test bed, which is equipped with an Intel Core i5-7500 processor, an Asrock H270 Performance motherboard, 16GB of DDR4-2133, and a Zotac GeForce GTX 1060 6GB mini graphics card. The rig is powered by a 650W EVGA Supernova G3 PSU and housed in a Thermaltake Versa H22 mid-tower case.

Comparison Products

Test System Configuration

We also tapped into the data from our reviews of the MSI G25 Vortex 8RD and Gigabyte BRIX Gaming VR barebones PC. The Vortex features an Intel Core i5-8400 processor, 16GB of single-channel DDR4-2400, a 256GB SATA M.2 SSD for primary storage, and a GeForce GTX 1060 6GB MXM graphics card. The BRIX sports a mobile Core i7-7700HQ with a custom GTX 1060 6GB MXM module, but we tested it with the same components that we put inside the EN1060K-U (a 256GB Toshiba RD400 M.2 NVMe SSD, a 1TB 7,200RPM Western Digital hard drive, a two-4GB-stick/8GB kit of G.Skill SO-DIMM DDR4-2133 memory with a CAS latency of 15-15-15-35).

3DMark

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The Zotac Zbox Magnus EN1060K-U fails to impress in the 3DMark Fire Strike and Time Spy synthetic gaming tests. The Core i5-7500T under the hood is to blame, as it just can’t compete with higher-clocked CPUs (our test bench and Vortex) with more processing threads (the BRIX). However, the EN1060K-U keeps up with its competition in the Combined tests, which are the best indicators of real-world game performance (it pushes both the CPU and GPU). It also manages a Graphics win against the BRIX in the Time Spy test (helped by exceptional thermals, observed at 69C).

Cinebench R15

Shifting focus to the CPU, the Cinebench R15 results paint a similar picture. The Core i5-7500T inside the EN1060K-U is simply not as powerful as a mobile Core i7 and its higher-clocked counterpart, the -7500 (which resides in our H270 test rig). However, it manages to upend the Gigabyte BRIX Gaming VR in the OpenGL test, falling just behind the MSI G25 Vortex 8RD and portending that the Zbox may make up for its CPU performance with some GPU horsepower.

CompuBench

The Compubench results give us a glimpse of the EN1060K-U's graphics proficiency, with the Zbox narrowly outperforming the Vortex with the GPU-intensive Bitcoin test and trailing it by only 0.05 FPS in the Video Processing benchmark. The Zotac offering also takes a lead on the BRIX, largely due to the thermal performance of each device. The BRIX trails the pack due to higher temperatures. (It topped out at 85C and would throttle slightly.)

PCMark 8

The Zbox Magnus EN1060K-U returns to the bottom of the heap in the PCMark 8 application tests; that is directly attributed to CPU performance. The Core i5-7500T inside the Zotac barebones offering just isn't as fast as the other systems in the field that sport higher-clocked processors. This is especially apparent when compared to the Gigabyte BRIX Gaming VR barebones mini-PC, in which we used the same storage and memory configuration as the Zbox.

PCMark 10 Extended

The PCMark 10 Extended benchmark shows much of the same results as our other synthetic productivity tests, with the EN1060K-U falling behind the pack thanks to its T-series processor. The Zbox comes close to catching up with the H270 test bed in the Productivity segment of the test, but the weaker CPU puts it behind the other systems in the field by several hundred points in all of the other benchmarks.

VRMark

As a VR-ready device, the Zotac Zbox Magnus EN1060K-U is able to perform well above the Oculus Rift's minimum requirements in the Orange Room test. However, it still falls slightly behind the rest of the pack due to the CPU. The Blue Room results push all of the GTX 1060-equipped systems to the limit, and none of them could handle VR with ultra-high textures and effects enabled.

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  • atomicmonitor
    Very nice review. This is a very attractive SFF pc for living rooms and I can definitely see myself recommending it to users not prepared to build a "power house desktop pc"
    Reply
  • Pailin
    wonder how noisy this thing is?
    Reply
  • Tarc Novar
    That USB-C port would be better served by having Thunderbolt 3 available.
    Reply