Zotac Intel Core i7-4770R 3.2GHz/ 8GB DDR3L/ 1TB HDD/ Wi-Fi/ A&V&2GbE/ Mini PC Barebone System ZBOX-EI750-PLUS-U
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ZOTAC ZBOX-EI750-PLUS-U Intel Core i7-4770R 3.2GHz/ 8GB DDR3L/ 1TB HDD/ Wi-Fi/ A&V&2GbE/ Mini PC Barebone System
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Need to replace this unit now!
The CPU and GPU are fast and run my kids games without hiccups (Minecraft, Far Cry, Trains, TF, and others) at high resolution and high settings. Currently, the device is attached to a 24 inch monitor, but I have also used it with a Vizio UHD television. When not being used for play, it also serves nicely as a fast development box (Visual Studio, Eclipse).
The form factor is nice (about the size of a Pizza Hut personal pan pizza box). I hides nicely behind the monitor and makes little noise.
Devices this size are often limited as far as expandability, but you can up the memory and add another drive (2 total drives - 1 2.5" sata and an msata). Keep in mind though that the video can't be updated like on full-size PCs/motherboards so at some point this will balk on games. That's true with full-size systems, but you can usually swap video and/or cpu on those to extend their life.
The drive that comes with it is rather slow (my daytime work laptop has an SSD), but I swapped it for a Samsung EVO 840 1TB drive and have been happy since.
Overall I am very happy with this purchase.
01. Extremely easy and fast access to the ports for installing the ram, msata drive and other SSD - case opens with thumb screws
02. Small footprint and energy efficient
03. Fairly quiet operation
04. Mounting bracket included for mounting to the back of your monitor
05. Can run on an msata drive exclusively (not included), no need for another hard drive unless you want one
06. Includes all needed drivers on a usb key (install them after you install the operating system)
07. Aesthetically pleasing - For those who appreciate good design, this is nice to see on the desk
08. Start up from msata drive is blazing fast if you use it as your main boot drive (highly recommended)
09. Includes the msata screw already in the motherboard, just be careful unscrewing it, because it's fragile
10. Has enough USB ports - you will likely need all of them for installing your operating system (for keyboard, mouse, external DVD drive for installing operating system, etc) - Not sure if wireless peripherals work while doing a system build, because the drivers aren't installed until after the operating system is installed
01. Msata mounting screw too fragile, snapped while trying to unscrew it, leaving half of the unremovable screw in the motherboard
02. USB ports are all around the machine, which seems convenient, until you have cables sprouting off in all directions, lol
03. Outer shell is somewhat flimsy plastic and fingerprints are extremely easy to get and even harder to remove, worse than a stainless steel fridge
Ok, so here is my configuration which is compatible with this system:
01. Msata drive - Samsung 840 EVO - available from 120GB to 1TB: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00HT2RNSO?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o01_s01
02. RAM - Crucial Ballistix Sport: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00DSGLM50?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o01_s01
03. External DVD drive for installing operating system - Samsung TSST Ultra-Slim - http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00MLXA1HG?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o01_s01
04. Operating System - Full Windows 8.1 Disk which installs directly to 8.1, nice and easy - since it's not the OEM version (it's the full version), it's not tied to specific hardware, making reinstallation easier (definitely worth the extra $15): http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00EDSI7QO?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00
05. Keyboard: Corsair K70 Gaming Keyboard - the highest quality keyboard I've ever seen (aluminum top, fabric wrapped usb cables, programmable illumination of your choice of keys...wow): http://www.amazon.com/Corsair-Mechanical-Keyboard-Backlit-CH-9000076-NA/dp/B00M5DUJQ0/ref=sr_1_3?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1437276948&sr=1-3&keywords=corsair+keyboard
One more thing to consider - the rainbow effect, lol. Many of these components illuminate with a certain color while in use. I didn't think about this. They can be turned off of course, but maybe you enjoy having your keyboard illuminated, etc. Well, then you may want to consider the color coordination of all of these devices' illuminations. I am planning to change my mouse for this reason - it illuminates blue. So now I have a computer with an orange illuminated ring, a keyboard with red illuminated keys and a mouse with blue illumination. Clashing colors is unpleasant to see, especially on a daily basis, so you should think about this when planning your assembly if this is important to you. Ok, that's all! Just wanted to get the info out there that I was looking for when I made my purchase. Good luck to all of you!
anyhow, it runs blazing fast, sleeps and awakes in a second or two (never worked before). there are no delays anymore while working. big archives unpack factors faster then on my old 2x2.2ghz i3 laptop. and there is no hearable fan while working. it's almost eerie :-)
i dont use it for games, so far, only Rocksmith 2014, wich of course runs without problems. best inversion ever for working efficiently.
Con: it's almost not visible or hearable. not for people that like to show off tech :-)