The Zotac ZBOX CI331 nano is a small fanless desktop PC with a low-power Intel Celeron N5100 quad-core processor based on Jasper Lake architecture. The little computer offers silent operation and support for up to three displays, making it an option for home theater, digital signage or kiosk, or entry-level home or business computing.

First unveiled last summer, the ZBOX CI331 nano is now available from Amazon, B&H, and the Zotac Store for $260

That’s the price for a barebones model, so you’ll need to supply your own memory, storage, and operating system. The ZBOX CI331 nano supports up to 16GB of DDR4-2933 RAM and has a 2.5 inch drive bay for a hard drive or SSD (but now support for PCIe NVMe storage).

The computer has dual Gigabit Ethernet ports, support for WiFi 5 and Bluetooth 5, and a set of I/O ports that includes:

  • 1 x USB 3.0 Type-C (front)
  • 1 x USB 3.0 Type-A (front)
  • 2 x USB 3.1 Type-A (rear)
  • 1 x USB 2.0 Type-A (rear)
  • 1 x 3.5mm mic input
  • 1 x 3.5mm audio output
  • 1 x HDMI 2.0b (3840 x 2160 @ 60 Hz)
  • 1 x DisplayPort 1.2 (4096 x 2160 @ 60 Hz)
  • 1 x VGA (1920 x 1080 @ 60 Hz)

While the computer’s 1.1 GHz – 2.8 GHz quad-core processor with 350 MHz – 800 MHz Intel UHD graphics probably won’t be much use for hardcore gaming, it should be good enough to play video or display other content across up to three displays at once. And thanks to a passive cooling system that includes a heat sink and well-ventilated chassis, the system shouldn’t make any noise during operation (unless you equip it with a noisy hard drive rather than a solid state drive with no moving parts).

The ZBOX CI331 nano is also a fairly energy efficient device – it comes with a 40W power adapter. The computer about 5.3″ x 5″ x 2.2″ and comes with a VESA mount kit that you can use to attach the mini PC to the back of a display or to a wall mount or other location.

via FanlessTech

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  1. Wow, too high price. $260 without RAM nor storage is kinda useless thinking that you already can get Jasper Lake stuff for $230 with 8GB/128GB.

  2. How’re the thermals of Zotac fanless PCs now? Ignoring that one time they forgot to remove the plastic between the thermal pad and CPU or heat sink, I’ve read users having thermal issues in the past.

    1. I recall reading on Anandtech that the redesigned Zotacs could handle 15 watt TDP chips just fine and that the previous thermal deficiency was that their cooling system was adequate for about 12w TDP when they were using 15w chips. I have an older Zotac with a Core M 5y10C which is only 4.5w and it runs with no issues and no throttling that I’ve detected. This N5100 is only 6w so I don’t think it would have any issues at all.

  3. Seems like it would be a decent home theatre PC, as long as you don’t want Dynamic HDR (not possible with HDMI 2.0b or DP 1.2), and also if you don’t think you’ll need AV1 video decoding soon, as Intel doesn’t offer AV1 decoding on this GPU.

    It will work great for most users expectations, but it’s not exactly future-proof for home theatre use if you’re the kind of person that will want top quality. For example, Netflix is already requiring AV1 for 4K high-frame-rate content.

    Once again, ARM SOCs were way ahead of the pack with video decoding technology, with entry-level PCs lacking support when a streaming service starts adopting it.

    1. I wonder if it might be deliberate. A general purpose computer with hardware AV1 decoding might be able to break DRM, while a locked down streamer box that can’t even install software outside of maybe a small repository, and will never run an operating system other than what it shipped with, can’t.
      I’ve noticed that the new low end graphics cards, which are STILL getting scalped out of existence, don’t even have much in the way of hardware video decoding.

    2. For example, Netflix is already requiring AV1 for 4K high-frame-rate content.

      Can you recommend an ARM box at a similar price that has this support? Particularly one that isn’t running Android?

      1. Nope. What are you expecting to find when you disclude Android?

        Maybe you can look for something running one of the better models of Amlogic S905 (one with AV1 performance rated for at least [email protected]), and install Linux on it, and run Kodi?

        Im not sure how hard it is to find one these days with community support for unlocking the bootloader and running Linux.