HTPC

Zotac is one of the major players in the SFF PC space, having marketed ultra-compact form-factor machines even before the NUCs took off. The growth in that segment has broadened the available market for their mini-PCs, allowing them to experiment with a wide variety of models for different use-cases. The passively-cooled SFF systems from Zotac are marketed under the 'C-series' tag. These 'nano' units used to adopt a NUC form-factor (100mm x 100mm) with similar chassis dimensions, which provided performance and thermal efficiency commensurate with their size. Starting with the Kaby Lake-Refresh series, the company started adopting a larger form factor and added some platform features. We had reviewed the Zotac ZBOX CI660 nano in that generation in early 2019. Today, we are taking a look...

HDPLEX Unveils 2nd Generation H5 Passive PC Chassis

The advent of CPUs with low TDPs (but having enough power to handle HTPC duties) has resulted in passive HTPCs becoming more and more popular. There are a number...

16 by Ganesh T S on 9/15/2015

The Streacom F12C Aluminum Desktop Case Review

Very few companies design high performance desktop cases and, to the dismay of HTPC enthusiasts, such releases are infrequent. Due to the limited volume, the design of a mechanically...

45 by E. Fylladitakis on 9/14/2015

Intel's Skylake GPU - Analyzing the Media Capabilities

At IDF in San Francisco last week, Intel provided us with lots of insights into Skylake, the microarchitecture behind the 6th generation Core series processors. Skylake marks the introduction...

37 by Ganesh T S on 8/26/2015

ECS LIVA x2 Review: A Compact & Fanless Braswell PC

The popularity of the NUC form factor has led to a resurgence in the nettop category. Thankfully, the core computing performance of the new systems have been miles ahead...

30 by Ganesh T S on 8/24/2015

ASRock Beebox Review: A Fanless Braswell UCFF PC

ASRock had taken an early lead in serving the mini-PC market, thanks to its Core / Vision series units. Based on motherboards meant for the notebook market (smaller than...

45 by Ganesh T S on 7/14/2015

4K Displays for HTPCs: A Consumer Checklist

Getting a HTPC setup right for the 4K era has become a very confusing exercise for the consumers. We tried to clarify some aspects in our Future-proofing HTPCs for...

68 by Ganesh T S on 6/4/2015

ASRock Releases Cherry Trail Mini-PC: The Beebox

The mini-PC revolution has passed a lot of regular computer users as something that happened but might not be that interesting, especially if you are used to the lights...

30 by Ian Cutress on 5/15/2015

Interacting with HTPCs: Logitech and Perixx Options Reviewed

We have reviewed a number of HTPC keyboards from vendors such as IOGEAR, SIIG and Adesso in our 'Interacting with HTPCs' series. All of them were compared with the...

76 by Ganesh T S on 5/11/2015

Intel NUC5i7RYH Broadwell-U Iris NUC Review

Over the last couple of years, mini-PCs in the ultra-compact form factor (UCFF) have emerged as one of the bright spots in the troubled PC market. Intel's NUC systems...

66 by Ganesh T S on 4/20/2015

Future-proofing HTPCs for the 4K Era: HDMI, HDCP and HEVC

4K (Ultra High Definition / UHD) has matured far more rapidly compared to the transition from standard definition to HD (720p) / FHD (1080p). This can be attributed to...

98 by Ganesh T S on 4/10/2015

Intel NUC5i5RYK Review: A Broadwell-U UCFF PC for Enthusiasts

The Intel NUC category has been an interesting product line to analyze, as it provides us with insights into where the traditional casual / home use desktop market might...

83 by Ganesh T S on 2/20/2015

GIGABYTE GB-BXi7H-5500 Broadwell BRIX Review

Over the last couple of years, the ultra-compact form factor (UCFF) has emerged as one of the bright spots in the troubled PC market. Intel's NUC and GIGABYTE's BRIX...

53 by Ganesh T S on 1/29/2015

ASRock VisionX 471D Review - Evolutionary Upgrades for a Powerful mini-PC

ASRock has been one of the few motherboard vendors to focus on mini-PCs targeting the HTPC and portable gaming markets. Starting from the ION-based nettop days, they have consistently...

30 by Ganesh T S on 1/26/2015

Zotac ZBOX CI320 nano Review: A Fanless Bay Trail-M mini-PC

Over the last couple of years, mini-PCs in the ultra-compact form factor (UCFF) have emerged as one of the bright spots in the troubled PC market. Zotac is no...

44 by Ganesh T S on 1/6/2015

Zotac ZBOX CA320 nano PLUS Review: A Fanless AMD mini-PC

Over the last couple of years, mini-PCs in the ultra-compact form factor (UCFF) have emerged as one of the bright spots in the troubled PC market. Zotac is no...

31 by Ganesh T S on 11/26/2014

Zotac ZBOX CI540 nano Review: A Fanless Haswell-Y mini-PC

Over the last couple of years, mini-PCs in the ultra-compact form factor (UCFF) have emerged as one of the bright spots in the troubled PC market. Zotac is no...

48 by Ganesh T S on 10/31/2014

Logitech K480 Multi-Device Bluetooth Keyboard Capsule Review

We have been doing round-ups of various input devices fit for HTPC purposes. Some of the vendors have started shipping with Bluetooth instead of using a proprietary communication mechanism...

7 by Ganesh T S on 10/28/2014

GIGABYTE BRIX GB-BXBT-1900 Review: A Bay Trail UCFF PC

Over the last couple of years, the ultra-compact form factor (UCFF) has emerged as one of the bright spots in the troubled PC market. Intel kickstarted the category with...

35 by Ganesh T S on 10/24/2014

Interacting with HTPCs: Adesso Keyboard Options Reviewed

There are many options in the market for users wanting to interact with HTPCs and media streamers. In this short piece, we review the keyboard / trackball / touchpad...

40 by Ganesh T S on 10/22/2014

Zotac Launches Fanless ZBOX C-Series mini-PCs

At Computex 2014, Zotac has launched four new passively-cooled mini-PCs. All of these C-series units are sized the same as Zotac's existing ZBOX nano lineup (127 mm x 127...

6 by Ganesh T S & Mahendra Lodha on 6/2/2014

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