Zotac is launching a new line of tiny desktop computers with passive cooling. That means they’re no noisy fan spinning, which could make the new Zotac ZBOX C-Series boxes good choices for folks looking to build a media center PC.

The Zotac C-series nano-PCs measure just 5″ x 5″ x 1.8″, have ventilated cases, and come with a choice of AMD or Intel processors.

Prices start as low as $150.

Zotac C Series

Like most Zotac PCs, the new fanless models will be sold in two configurations: there’s a barebones model which lacks a hard drive or storage, or a Plus model that includes both. In this case, the Plus models have 4GB of RAM and a 64GB solid state drive. You’ll still need to supply an operating system yourself.

All models feature 2.5 inch drive bays, 1 memory slot, Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11ac WiFi, Bluetooth 4.0, and HDMI and DisplayPort. But there are a few differences between individual models.

Here’s  quick overview (prices are for the standard and “plus” models):

  • Zotac ZBOX CA320 nano – AMD A6-1450 CPU / DDR3-1066 memory / SATA 3.0 Gb/s interface, 2 USB 3.0 ports, 5 USB 2.0 ports ($150 /$260)
  • Zotac ZBOX CI320 nano – Intel Celeron N2930 CPU / DDR-1333 memory / 1 SATA 3.0 Gb/s + 1 eSATA  / 4 USB 3.0 ports, 2 USB 2.0 ports ($180 / $290)
  • Zotac ZBOX CI520 nano – Intel Core i3-4020y CPU / DDR3-1600 memory / 1 SATA 6.0 Gb/s + 1 eSATA / 4 USB 3.0 ports, 2 USB 2.0 ports ($310 / $410)
  • Zotac ZBOX CI540 nano – Intel Core i5-4210y / DDR3-1600 memory / 1 SATA 6.0 Gb/s + 1 eSATA / 4 USB 3.0 ports, 2 USB 2.0 ports ($370 / $480)

Each model includes integrated graphics, so don’t expect any of these systems to make a great gaming rig. But most models should be able to handle HD video playback and internet audio and video streaming, among other tasks.

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23 replies on “Zotac ZBOX C-Series is a line of silent, fanless mini PCs for $150 and up”

  1. Support for only 1 internal hard drive? I’d like an SSD for system drive and a large HD for media storage. 🙁

  2. Will wait to see what the power consumption is like on the AMD version. It should support 6gb/s SATA, not 3gb/s.

  3. Your website seems to imply these do not come with CPUs. Is this correct?

    1. They all have CPUs… but the Plus models have no operating system and the standard models have no RAM or hard drive/SSD. You’ll need to install your own operating system and on some models you’ll have to install memory and storage.

  4. Good news!
    PSU voltage ? can it work with 12v ? 19v ?
    ubuntu compatible ?
    which network modules ?
    where we can get “lshw” output?

    1. They’re shipping out soon, should be available in the US by August at the latest

  5. What a horrible naming scheme.
    CiA = A6
    Ci3 = celeron
    Ci5 = i3
    Ci5 = i5

    1. Regardless, this is a fantastic pricepoint. The celeron model looks great. I’ve been waiting for something like this for running Xubuntu on my TV

    2. Our naming scheme is first letter denotes the series, so C = passive. Second letter is AMD or Intel, so CA = AMD, CI = Intel. We use 3, 5 and 7 to denote the positioning, entry, mainstream and high end.

      1. Understood. The confusion lies in the similarity to Intel’s own naming scheme.

        I’m happy to see a product in this segment using the cheaper Y cpus, instead of the U cpus. But I’m a little confused about your choice of i3 and i5 chips. The i3-4020y, and the i5-4210y are virtually identical CPUs (performance-wise). infact the i3 scores higher in a few benchmarks.

        I understand your i5 model is almost $100 cheaper than your competitor’s (Gigabyte Brix) even though they use the higher end U chips, but why even offer an i5? Why not add $100 to the price and sell me an i7-4610y?

        Don’t get me wrong, your lineup looks so much better than the Gigabyte Brix, or the Intel NUC. The amount of ports is amazing. I will certainly buy one of your Celeron models

          1. I doubt it. The only device I know of with the 4610y is the Sony Vaio Tap, and it has a fan.

    1. Yeah, I can’t remember Zotac *ever* including those in a press release. I’d keep an eye on Newegg. That’s one of the first places where Zotac boxes usually show up.

      1. CI540: $369.99/479.99


        CI320: $149.99/259.99

        CA320: 179.99/289.99

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