Zotac has been offering tiny desktop computers for a few years… but now the company is launching its smallest PC yet. The Zotac ZBOX PI320 pico measures 4.5″ x 2.6″ x 0.76″ making it about the size of a chunky smartphone. But it has the guts of a low-power desktop computer capable of running Windows 8.1 or other modern operating systems.

zbox pico_05

The ZBOX PI320 pico features a 1.33 GHz Intel Atom Z3735F quad-core Bay Trail processor, 2GB of RAM and 32GB of flash storage. Both the memory and storage are built into the system board and aren’t user upgradeable. But if you need more storage space there’s a micro SDXC card reader and 3 USB 2.0 ports.

It also uses passive cooling, which means there are no fans or other moving parts in the case. The PI320 pico should be silent while it’s operating.

Like some of Zotac’s other recently announced computers, the new PI320 pico will come with Windows 8.1 with Bing pre-loaded, but I don’t see why you wouldn’t be able to install a Linux-based operating system such as Ubuntu, Debian, Fedora, or even Android.

Other features include HDMI output, 10/100 Ethernet, 802.11n WiFi, and Bluetooth 4.0.

Zotac hasn’t yet unveiled the price for its first pocket-sized computer.

Update: Olivier from FanlessTech tells us that the system will sell for $199 in the US or 199 Euros in Europe when it goes on sale in September. 

via Zotac (1) (2)

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39 replies on “Zotac ZBOX PI320 pico is a pocket-sized Bay Trail desktop PC”

  1. I believe 199 USDollars does not equal 199 Euros. 199 USDollars equals 154.9597 Euros. 199 Euros equals 255.5568 USDollars. It seems one is being overcharge and the other is undercharged.

  2. This looks like a good device for those rare times that Windows-specific software must be run for whatever reason. For me, though, I don’t have any need for a Windows operating system, as I’ve long replaced my iPhone with a much more capable, albeit budget, Android smartphone. The Metro interface, I must admit, would actually probably function pretty well on a TV with a TV-style remote, though.

    1. On a related note, are there any Ubuntu variations or desktop interfaces with a tiled layout for use as a multimedia centre?

  3. Hi All, I am planning to purchase one of this and I am just curious If I could be able to install and run Visual Studio and MS SQL Server on it? Planning to get this as a portable development machine.

  4. The form factor seems too good (small) to be true. I’d be happy to be proven wrong.

    1. Why do you think that? the 3735 is the slowest/lowest power current Z-Atom, designed for the current wave of 150/200 bucks entry level windows tablets and used in some passively cooled devices as thin as 8 milimeters including a touchscreen. Here it’s used in a box that neither needs to house a screen nor a battery and the flash memory and ram are soldered onto the board, further elminating the need for extra space around the SoC to have these sloted.

      1. I didn’t know they were tablet bay trails. But I always fear underestimates in heat production.

  5. The intel 847 nuc is $149 barebone, gigabyte brix barebone is $199 both are very reliable and more upgradable, what sets this apart is the size however considering it is from Zotac the quality and heat dissipating is to worry

  6. A nice little ubtuntu/xbmc box… I would not use it for anything else. With Chromebox @$150, it is cheaper to just go with a Core cpu with a fan. When is HDMI 2.0 going to get here? I would love to build a media front-end box that is future-proof.

  7. @bradlinder:disqus unless Zotac is planning on providing a 64-bit UEFI or a standard Bios, I’ll be Linux will be very difficult.

  8. At $200 it seems over priced to me. This is basically using the Windows Tablet drive train it seems given the low storage levels. If I can buy actual tablets (with screens and whatnot) at the $200 level then I’d expect similar hardware in a box to be a little cheaper – even if it does offer the convenience of full sized ports.
    Speaking of those ports it would have been nice to see at least one USB 3.0 port.
    Zotac usually seems a bit high on pricing off hand. I wouldn’t be surprised to see similar stuff coming at better prices. $150 would be a lot more appealing. Wouldn’t be completely surprised to see some lesser-known-name-in-the-west stuff coming out of China at the $100 mark. There have already been stirrings of such Windows tablets at that price point.
    Just think of all those $49 Android sticks being joined by slightly larger $100 Windows boxes. They’d sell like hotcakes and infuriate Windows traditional OEM partners as they undercut their own sales on new computers and provide not a dime to them or to Microsoft.

  9. Man too bad no USB3 and Gigibit ethernet,
    This would be a great MAME box or a Steam streaming box. Or even a nice thin client. Any word on price?

    1. If you can then wait for the Braswell based updates coming out Q2 2015… They’ll get SATA 3, Gen 3 GPU with up to 16EU and burst technology support, better memory bandwidth, Gigabit Ethernet, up to 4 USB 3.0 ports and two USB 2.0 ports, and is suppose to be better optimized for costs…

      This box from Zotac offers a lot less with only a mobile SoC that means it only comes with slow eMMC storage and non-upgradeable LP-DDR2 RAM, Gen 7 GPU with only 4 EU’s… So, it’s a bit expensive at $199… Given that there’s no screen, etc with it…

      Even the Celeron/Pentium range Bay Trail’s only offer SATA 2, usually only a single USB 3.0 port or shared multiple ports and still defaults to usually offering USB 2.0 ports when they’re cutting costs and can easily cost more than the budget tablets we see coming out…

  10. Looks cool.
    Reads cool.
    Does it run cool?
    Does it run reliably??
    Pertinent questions for this manufacturer.

    1. Ya, Zotac has a history of overheating and thermal throttling and that’s with actively cooled boxes. I’d be even more hesitant about getting their fanless PCs especially small ones like this one.

      1. Well, the Z3735F is a mobile SoC that’s intended to run fan-less… So, Zotac would have to royally mess up the case design to have it have any serious heating issues…

        Though, questionable whether it’ll get a 64bit UEFI firmware to make it easier to run alternative OS like Linux…

      2. Given Zotac’s history with other products with low power chips, I
        wouldn’t be surprised if they royally messed up the case design. They’ve
        messed up on actively cooled designs with low power chips before.

        bet if they went with the Bay Trail chip and a fan, this box has a
        higher chance of not overheating. The Bay Trail chip helps them but
        their skills in designing a cooling system negates it by not having a
        fan. I would definitely have to wait on user reviews before buying
        anything from Zotac again.

        1. AFAIK my Zbox AD02 with the AMD Bulldozer doesn’t overheat at all, but then again I only use it as an HTPC upon occasion (it runs OpenELEC) so it’s not really under a heavy load.

    2. Thank you for being the voice of reason here… relative to Asus and Gigabyte, they have a horrible reputation for reliability.

  11. No USB 3.0? At least with that, you wouldn’t have to worry about storage expansion without take a hit on performance. Also no gigabit Ethernet.

  12. i know i say this on most micro/nano/pico PC pieces, but one of these with an optional AMD APU inside would be great, even the ultra low power Mullins one, though even though its an intel piece, i might even buy one

  13. If this is priced similar to the ECS LIVA (the specs are certainly similar), then this is a great deal. The included Windows 8.1 with Bing is also interesting. I would hope for this to be under $200.

    Any word on when it might be released?

  14. This sounds like just the ticket for my Bittorrent sync / Miro box! I am concerned about it being from Zotac. They don’t have the best reputation for quality. Guess I will have to wait for the reviews and pricing.

    1. Really? I have just the opposite impression of them from owning several products.

      1. Yeah it’s weird to read all these comments. I’ve owned 3 GPUs and one motherboard from Zotac without any problems. Rebates always went without a hitch too. I think I had an issue registering a product on their website once but not really a major product concern is it!

      1. That sounds like a fair price. All I need now is some hands on reviews. Any chance they may send you one?

      2. Great and when they do send you one, install android x86 4.4.2 r1 on it.

        1. Why not just buy an RK3188 box? There are several with Ethernet connections for half the price.

          1. I have a Radxa Rock running the RK3188 soc – over all I’ve been pretty happy with it. It runs Android and Ubuntu rather well. I used to use for general web browsing, Google Play Video and Netflix. I still use it for Netflix, Google Play and some other Android apps, but I’ve moved to x86 devices for most everything else.

            Depending on what you are going to use it for it, let’s say like general web browsing, etc., I think the Intel devices are better – x86 Linux as Adobe Flash and other programs you won’t find available on the ARM based distributions.

            If you are going to use it has a server – web, documents, etc., I think in that respect, you may find the RK3188 devices to be a better value.

            The $200 price seems fair, but I wouldn’t pay any more than that.

  15. This looks awesome.. I haven’t kept up with the Atom series for a few years now – would these be able to handle playing 1080p mkv files?

    1. I feel like I was running 1080 on some of the original dual core Atom’s when paired with the Nvidia ION. That was like 5 years ago? AFAIK all the modern Intel HD chips can do 1080 output.

  16. Okay, this is pretty cool. If my parents’ computer craps out, I may buy them this as a replacement.

    1. I was thinking about doing the same for my brother’s old piece of crap tower that still has XP on it.

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