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Zotac announces ZBOX MI551 mini PC with Intel Skylake processor and USB 3.1 (Updated)

By Koh Wanzi - on 14 Dec 2015, 10:25am

Zotac announces ZBOX MI551 mini PC with Intel Skylake processor and USB 3.1

The Zotac ZBOX MI551 Plus is a mini PC with a wide range of connectivity options. (Image Source: Zotac)

Updated on 14 Dec 2015: Added information on US price and availability.

Originally published on 11 Dec 2015:

Intel Skylake is making its way into a wider range of PC hardware. Zotac has just announced the ZBOX MI551 and MI551 Plus mini PCs, both of which will come equipped with Intel’s latest sixth-generation processors.

Measuring 330 x 325 x 83mm, the ZBOX MI551 mini PCs are not the most compact machines in their class out there. Still, it is quite compact for what it brings to the table and you should have no problem making space for it on even a small desk.

The ZBOX MI551 Plus features a quad-core Intel Core i5-6400T processor (2.2GHz, 6MB cache) that operates at a TDP of just 35 watts, a single stick of 4GB of DDR3L-1600 RAM, and a 120GB M.2 SATA SSD.

There are actually two DIMM slots available, so you have the option to upgrade to 16GB of RAM. There’s also an additional 2.5-inch slot if you wish to add a second drive for more storage.

For display outputs, there are two DisplayPort 1.2 outputs and a single HDMI 1.4 port. There’s also support for the connectivity options with a USB 3.1 Type-C and Type-A port at the front, and two USB 3.0 ports and dual Gigabit Ethernet ports at the rear.

The ZBOX MI551 Plus comes with dual Gigabit Ethernet ports. (Image Source: Zotac)

The USB 3.1 Type-A port has actually been combined with the SD card reader – from the looks of it though, it doesn’t seem like you’re going to be able to plug in both an SD card and USB 3.1 Type-A device at the same time.

The front USB 3.1 port shares space with the SD card reader. (Image Source: Zotac)

According to Zotac, the ZBOX MI551 Plus also offers native support for 4K displays and can run up to three displays simultaneously. On top of that, it supports Intel Wireless Display technology, so you can play content wirelessly on the ZBOX and watch it on a bigger screen. And thanks to the new Skylake processor, you can stream wirelessly in 4K as well.

The ZBOX MI551 is basically the same machine, but it comes lacking the pre-installed RAM sticks and SSD on the MI551 Plus. So while the ZBOX MI551 Plus is for those who want to be able to get going right out of the box, the MI551 allows users to opt for a more barebones machine and install components of their own choosing.

Both mini PCs will ship with Windows 10. The ZBOX MI551 will retail for US$459.99, while the ZBOX MI551 Plus will retail for US$559.99. They are slated to be available on Amazon and Newegg in the coming weeks.

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