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March 20, 2017

Zotac’s new Zboxes up performance with seventh-gen Intel CPUs and GTX 1000 graphics

by John_A

Why it matters to you

Zotac’s Zbox machines continue to be a powerful option for those looking for a small form factor to support living-room gaming and media viewing.

Zotac has announced a new generation of Zbox mini-PC adding new 7th-generation Intel CPUs and new graphics chips from Nvidia’s GTX 1000 range. The five new versions of Zotac’s tiny systems are being shown off this week at CEBIT 2017 in Hannover, Germany and take the Zbox to new heights of performance.

Long gone are the days when, if you wanted a living-room PC, you had to build a chunky desktop and hide it in the corner somewhere. Today, with Android set-top boxes and the rise of micro-PCs, you can have something much more impressive in a much smaller package. Zotac’s Zbox certainly encapsulates that, especially with the new generation, which can give you hardware as powerful as a Core i7 7700 CPU and a GTX 1080 graphics chip.

Those two particular pieces of equipment come as part of the double-height EN1080K Zbox, which also has the space for a pair of DDR4 SODIMM sticks, an M.2 solid state drive and a 2.5 inch hard drive or SSD.

More: Zotac will soon be joining the external GPU dock bandwagon

Alongside that new flagship model, the EN1060K and EN1070K update the processor from the previous generation Core i5 CPU, to a Core i5-7500T, which improves base frequencies by a full 500Mhz according to TechReport. As you might expect, they also include mobile versions of GTX 1060 and 1070 graphics chips.

At the lower end of the spectrum, we have the new CI549 and MI549. The former is designed as a fanless, silent version of the Zbox, while the latter saves the most space. They pack a Core i5-7300 dual-core CPU, support for two sticks of DDR4 SODIMM memory, and a single 2.5-inch storage drive.

All new Zboxes support 802.11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.2, and dual Gigabit Ethernet ports. The higher-end options come with dual HDMI 2.0 ports as well as two-displayport 1.3 connections and a single USB 3.1 Type-C connector. The CI549 and MI549 come with dual USB 3.1 connectors and Thunderbolt 3 support.

Zotac has yet to release pricing information for the new Zbox models, but we expect to learn more at CEBIT this week.

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