ZOTAC, a computer hardware company based in Hong Kong is the world’s largest channel manufacturer of graphics cards, motherboards and mini-PCs. I know most of you aren’t familiar or haven’t heard about the company but I’m sure you’re gonna like their latest line of mini PCs which was released a few days ago.
HTPCs or Home Theater PCs in past years didn’t have Blu-ray support but all of that will soon likely change with ZOTAC leading the way with their ZBOX mini PC series. The ZBOX Blu-ray HD-ID33 and HD-ID34 both come with integrated slot-load Blu-ray drives, making them the first mini PCs with integrated Blu-ray drives.
Here’s the official Press Release:
ZOTACÂ® Announces World’s First mini-PC with Integrated Blu-ray Drive
New ZOTACÂ® ZBOX Blu-ray series combine stylish looks with energy-efficiency, high-performance and integrated slot-load Blu-ray drive
HONG KONG — Sept. 8, 2010 — ZOTACÂ® International, a leading innovator and the world’s largest channel manufacturer of graphics cards, motherboards and mini-PCs, today announces the new ZOTACÂ® ZBOX Blu-ray series mini-PCs — the world’s first shipping mini-PCs with an integrated slot-load Blu-ray drive and slim and stylish design. The new ZOTACÂ® ZBOX Blu-ray mini-PCs combine a powerful graphics processor with an energy-efficient system processor, premium integrated features and class-leading expansion capabilities to form mini-PCs capable of deliver premium high-definition video playback online and offline.
Next-Generation NVIDIAÂ® IONâ„¢ graphics technology with 16 unified shaders and 512MB of DDR3 memory enables the ZOTACÂ® ZBOX Blu-ray series to deliver stunning high-definition Blu-ray video playback at resolutions up to 1080p. Hardware-accelerated AdobeÂ® FlashÂ® video support enables smooth playback of streaming high-definition content.
A new dual-core IntelÂ® Atomâ„¢ D525 processor delivers a performance punch for daily use while sipping minimal amounts of power for energy-efficient computing with the ZOTACÂ® ZBOX Blu-ray series. IntelÂ® HyperThreadingâ„¢ technology enables the ZOTACÂ® ZBOX Blu-ray series to process up to four threads for superior responsiveness for everyday use.
A built-in slot-load Blu-ray drive capable of 4x Blu-ray, 8x DVD and 24x CD speeds enables playback of Blu-ray and DVD movies and ability to write to DVDÂ±R/RW and CDÂ±R/RW discs with the ZOTACÂ® ZBOX Blu-ray series. A Blu-ray ready copy of Cyberlink PowerDVD 8 is included with the ZOTACÂ® ZBOX Blu-ray series to let users instantly take advantage of high-definition Blu-ray playback with MicrosoftÂ® WindowsÂ® 7 and Vista operating systems.
“The ZOTACÂ® ZBOX Blu-ray series is more than just a system for playing games and watching movies. The ZOTAC ZBOX Blu-ray series is the ultimate multimedia hub for all your entertainment needs and replaces the function of multiple electronics devices. With the ZOTACÂ® ZBOX Blu-ray series, we are bringing the ability to view Blu-ray movies, streaming Internet video, downloaded videos, store and access your music collection, listen to Internet radio, browse the web, play games and even manage your social networking profiles into a single device,” said Carsten Berger, marketing director, ZOTACÂ® International.
Two USB 3.0 ports are available on the ZOTACÂ® ZBOX Blu-ray series for external expansion and enables connection to external storage, video peripherals and other devices at speeds up to 10-times faster than USB 2.0. Internal expansion capabilities of the ZBOX Blu-ray series include one mini-PCI Express slot, two 200-pin DDR2 SO-DIMM slots and room for one 2.5-inch SATA hard drive or SSD drive.
Integrated dual-stream 802.11n WiFi technology enables lightning-fast network transfers up to 300Mb/s without the hassle of wires when networking the ZOTACÂ® ZBOX Blu-ray series. When using wired networking, the ZOTACÂ® ZBOX Blu-ray series supports speeds up to 1000Mb/s.
“Mini-PCs typically have limited upgrade capabilities, but we have addressed these limitations with the ZOTAC ZBOX Blu-ray series. With a combination of mini-PCI Express, USB 3.0 and eSATA expansion capabilities, the ZOTACÂ® ZBOX Blu-ray series is in a league of its own.“
The ZOTACÂ® ZBOX Blu-ray series are shipping in two models — the ZBOX Blu-ray HD-ID33 and HD-ID34. The ZOTACÂ® ZBOX Blu-ray HD-ID33 is a customizable media mini-PC that lets users install their own memory, hard drive and operating system to build the perfect mini-PC while the ZOTACÂ® ZBOX Blu-ray HD-ID34 ships with 2GB of DDR2-800 memory and a 250GB 5400RPM hard drive preinstalled — the user only needs to install an operating system.
It’s time to play with the ZOTACÂ® ZBOX Blu-ray series.
The ZOTAC Zbox HD-ID33 and HD-ID34 are both drool-worthy HTPCs or Home Theater PCs that comes with Windows 7 preinstalled, provides USB 3.0 support, Gigabit Ethernet, onboard WiFi, HDMI output, a 6-in-1 card reader, 7.1 channel audio and lots of bundled Blu-ray related software.
Both units, the Zbox HD-ID33 and HD-ID34 basically have the same specs except that the HD-ID33 is customizable so users can install their own memory, hard drive and OS while the HD-ID34 ships with 2GB of DDR2-800 memory and a 250GB 54000RPM hard drive. So far, there’s still no word regarding how much the ZOTAC Zbox HD-ID33 and HD-I34 will retail for or when they’ll be available in the market. For those interested, you can check out the ZOTAC website.
[image source: ZOTAC USA]