Zotac Zbox EK- and ER-series mini-PCs fit full-size graphics cards


— 9:13 AM on September 14, 2017

Zotac has developed a fanbase around its tiny PCs and compact versions of typically-long graphics cards. The company's latest Zbox Magnus EK and Zbox Magnus ER machines aren't the smallest Zotac has ever developed, but they're the first in the Magnum series of compact gaming PCs armed with full-sized desktop graphics cards. The Zbox Magnus EK machines are built around the Intel Core i5-7300HQ processor and the Zbox Magnus ER PCs come packing AMD Ryzen 5 1400 chips.

The Intel and AMD models are both available with Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 3 GB or GeForce GTX 1070 graphics cards. Either way, the machine can drive up to four displays through the HDMI 2.0 jack, the dual-link DVI-D connector, or the three DisplayPorts. The display connectors are joined on the back of the machine by a pair of Wi-Fi antenna terminals, two Gigabit Ethernet jacks, and four USB 3.0 ports. The front of the Zbox has a card reader, audio jacks, and USB 3.1 Gen2 Type-A and Type-C ports.

All models come with 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.2 wireless connectivity. Zotac is offering barebones configurations without storage or memory for those that want to customize their build. The company is also selling "Plus" versions for every CPU and graphics card combination, preinstalled with 8 GB of DDR4 memory in one of the two SODIMM slots along with a 120 GB M.2 SATA SSD and a 1 TB 2.5" hard drive. Buyers that want a truly turn-key solution can opt for the "With Windows" variations that come with Windows 10 Home 64-bit pre-installed.

Despite the presence of desktop graphics cards, the measurements on both new Zbox Magnus families are still trim at 8.0" wide, 8.9" deep, and 5.0" tall (20 cm x 23 cm x 13 cm), which works out to a little less than 6 L of total displacement (not counting the power bricks). Zotac didn't provide any pricing or availability information for the Zbox Magnus EK and Zbox Magnus ER, though we figure they'll arrive in stores in short order.

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