Zotac Zbox HD-ID34 Blu-ray playing nettop reviewed, scores well for non-audiophiles
byTim Stevens||October 20th 2010 at 6:36amOctober 20th 2010 6:36 am
Little PCs are wonderful things, and those that can handle Blu-ray playback and do so while sucking down less than 45 watts are doubly delightful. Zotac's Zbox is such a machine, an Atom D525 and ION2 nettop with a Blu-ray all built into a lovely sliver of brushed metal. AnandTech found its performance to match its looks the majority of the time, able to play most HD footage without issue either from the network or straight from the optical drive. However, there's one problem: surround audio. The box cannot bitstream DTS-HD MA or Dolby TrueHD and comes with playback software that's not capable of delivering 5.1 channel surround over the box's HDMI output. So, it's perhaps not a home theater audiophile's dream, but at $399 without memory or storage, or $499 with 2GB of RAM and a 250GB HDD, it is at least a heck of a good bargain.