Zotac’s mini PCs with GeForce GTX 1070 and 1060 cards pack a punch

Desktop-class performance in compact box.

Zotac is no stranger to the mini PC movement, but what's impressive is that it's been able to build incredibly compact gaming systems with competent hardware. That trend continues with its newest Zbox Magnus EK and ER PCs featuring desktop-class GeForce GTX 1070 and 1060 graphic card options.

For that to be possible, Zotac is using shortened versions of the GTX 1070 and 1060. Along with other parts, they're squeezed into a square-shaped chassis that measures just 225mm (8.86 inches) long by 203mm (7.99 inches) deep and 128mm (5.04 inches) tall.

There are two main versions of the Zotac's newest Magnus machines—the Magnus EK series outfitted with an Intel Kaby Lake processor and Optane Memory support, and the Magnus ER series with an AMD Ryzen processor.

Within these series are standard models that lack memory, storage, and OS; Plus models preinstalled with RAM and storage; and Windows models that are Plus configurations with Windows 10 Home 64-bit added to the mix.

The exact configuration varies by model. In the EK lineup, the top-end option is the Magnus EK51070 with Windows. It packs an Intel Core i5-7300HQ processor with a GeForce GTX 1070 graphics card, 8GB of DDR4 memory (expandable to 32GB), 120GB M.2 SATA SSD + 1TB HDD for storage, and Windows 10. If you need faster storage, there is a slot to add an M.2 NVMe SSD.

Zotac's highest-end AMD ER (Magnus ER51070) features a similar configuration, but with an AMD Ryzen 5 1400 processor, and of course no Optane Memory support.

The rear port selection on all of these systems offer up four USB 3.0 ports, two GbE LAN ports, and a Wi-Fi antenna. Front ports consist of a USB 3.1 Type-A port, USB 3.1 Type-C port, and a microphone input. Users will also find a 3-in-1 memory card reader, power button, and power, Wi-Fi, and HDD LEDs. Finally, there are three DisplayPort 1.4 outputs to go along with DHMI 2.0b and Dual-Link DVI-D.

Zotac did not say when these systems will be available or for how much. Looking at other Zbox Magnus systems on the market, we expect pricing to run north of $1,000.

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