ZOTAC ZBOX EI730 PLUS

ZOTAC ZBOX EI730 PLUS
ZOTAC ZBOX EI730 PLUS

$570
In stock

Product description:
Small form factor PCs have come a long way in the last couple of years, mostly thanks to the rise of the mini-ITX mobo. But it also needed some bright spark to think of supporting those boards with decent, up-to-date desktop/ laptop components, instead of the old mobile bits they were once saddled with.

ZOTAC ZBOX EI730 PLUS –
by Binh Phan Duc,
June 29, 2014

4.5/
5stars

Small form factor PCs have come a long way in the last couple of years, mostly thanks to the rise of the mini-ITX mobo. But it also needed some bright spark to think of supporting those boards with decent, up-to-date desktop/ laptop components, instead of the old mobile bits they were once saddled with.

A mini PC sporting the all-new Intel Iris Pro integrated graphics.

Price $570
Manufacturer Zotac
CPU Intel Core i5-4570R
Memory capacity 8G 81,600MHz DDR3L
Graphics Intel Iris Pro 5200
Storage 1TB HDD SKU Zbox-EI730-P

Small form factor PCs have come a long way in the last couple of years, mostly thanks to the rise of the mini-ITX mobo. But it also needed some bright spark to think of supporting those boards with decent, up-to-date desktop/ laptop components, instead of the old mobile bits they were once saddled with.

Zotac is one company that kept faith with the concept, even through the dodgy component years, and its range of ZBoxes have become more powerful and feature-rich with each new launch. The last one we checked out was the Haswell-equipped ID92, and we were pretty impressed.
Not one to rest on its laurels, Zotac has recently launched a ; brand new series of ZBoxes, so how well do the new kids stack against the ID92?

ZOTAC ZBOX EI730 PLUS

Currently, the E range I offers two Haswell processor j choices. There’s the EI750 | with an Intel Core ¡7-4770R j (3.2GHzupto3.9GHzwith i Turbo) and this EI730 powered i by an Intel Core ¡5-4570R (2.7GHz Turbo up to 3.2GHz) on Intel’s HM87 chipset.
 ZBoxes normally come in two flavours: the barebones version and the Plus version, which includes memory and a hard drive. Our EI730 Plus came with 8GB of 1,600MHz DDR3L RAM, upgradable to 16GB with a pair of SODIMM slots, and a 1TB 5,400rpm HDD installed. The E series’H87M board supports 2.5-inch SSDs and mSATA drives too, and is easy to access if you want to upgrade its components.
ZOTAC ZBOX EI730 PLUS
But the star of the E series is the graphics subsystem. The ¡5-4570R has an integrated Intel Iris Pro 5200 (Haswell GT3e) chip with 128MB of
eDRAM. Intel’s integrated ! graphics have been the butt of many a joke, but that’s all changed with Iris Pro. The improvement can be seen when comparing the 3DMark ; scoresoftheEI730andthe ID92 (which uses the HD4600 graphics). We’ve only seen Iris Pro in expensive mobile ¡7 ; form so far, so it’s refreshing to see it in i5 silicon.

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Bring the noise

The consequences of stuffing ; a very small box with a 65W TDP CPU and impressive hardware becomes apparent when the system is pushed hard. The cooling fan goes j from being practically silent to really letting you know it’s working for a living. At 66°C it’s not crazy-hot, but the fans need to be roaring to keep it that way under heavy load.

The rest of the EI730’s features show just how much ; hardware can be crammed i onto a very small mobo. You get dual Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0, plus dual DisplayPort and
single DVI. You also get four USB 3.0 ports, two audio ports and a four-in-one card reader thrown in for good measure.

If you want to tuck your ZBox out of the way, there is a VESA mount too.
ZOTAC ZBOX EI730 PLUS
The new E series is light years ahead of the ID92, and its graphics performance stands out in particular thanks to Iris Pro. Unfortunately the price of this performance is a very audible fan when the system is pushed hard. It’s also i rather costly when you fill out the rest of the component list.
That said, it’s still one of the most impressive wee boxes I we’ve seen.

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