If R2D2 got crushed in the trash compactor, it would look like this Zotac mini PC

zotac reveals zbox id45 mini pc plus 12
If you live in a cramped place like a dorm or studio, and you’re not exactly a power PC user, maybe a small form factor setup is the best fit for your computing needs. If you think there’s any merit to that notion, then perhaps you should check out the Zotac Zbox ID45, which to us looks a bit like a droid that’s beloved by many.

Anyway, the Zbox ID45 ships in one of two varieties: a barebones kit as well as a fully outfitted system. The skeletal rig – which doesn’t include memory (RAM) or hard drive – includes an Intel Core i3 3227 U dual-core processor clocked at 1.9 GHz, Nvidia GeForce GT 640 graphics with 2GB of RAM, a pair of DIMM slots with support for up to 16GB of RAM, a 2.5-inch hard drive bay, 802.11ac Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth 4.0. Ports include HDMI, DVI, dual Ethernet, two USB 3.0 connectors, and a pair of USB 2.0 ports.

Meanwhile, the fully equipped Zbox ID45, dubbed the Zbox ID45 Plus, includes everything found in the barebones models while also adding in 4GB of RAM along with a 500GB 5400-rpm mechanical hard drive.

“Zotac has always married the capabilities of energy-efficient Intel processors with incredible Nvidia GeForce graphics since the first ZBOX shipped with Nvidia Ion,” said Carsten Berger, senior director, ZOTAC International. “The latest ZBOX ID45 series pushes that synergy even further with greater performance while maintaining excellent energy-efficiency.”

Though the ID45 is spearheaded by an Ivy Bridge processor as opposed to a newer Haswell chip, considering the ID45’s target audience (casual users/HTPC fans), we wonder whether that’d be an issue to begin with from a performance standpoint.

Pricing and release date information are currently unavailable. (Will it hit the list of best PCs under $100?) What do you think of the Zotac Zbox ID45? Sound off in the comments below.

Product Review

Long live the king! Dell’s new XPS 13 defends its throne with ease

The redesigned Dell XPS 13 doesn’t reinvent the laptop’s winning formula, but does offer much-needed tweaks including the latest Intel hardware and a thinner, lighter body. Is it enough to keep Dell’s laptop at the top of our ratings?

Here are the best laptop deals for November 2018

Whether you've started a new school year, are shopping for a student, or you just need a new computer, we've got you covered: These are the best laptop deals going right now, from discounted MacBooks to on-the-go gaming PCs.

The Mac mini's price has crept into iMac territory. So how do they compare?

Apple announced a long-awaited update to the Mac mini. Thanks to the updated specs and increase in price, it's begun to creep up to the base model iMac. In this guide, we now put up the specs on the newest refreshed Mac mini against the…

Having enough RAM is important, but stick to these guidelines to save some money

Although not quite as exciting as processors and graphics cards, RAM is one of the most important parts of your PC. Not having enough can hurt performance. So, how much RAM do you need?

Secure your Excel documents with a password by following these quick steps

Excel documents are used by people and businesses all over the world. Given how often they contain sensitive information, it makes sense to keep them from the wrong eyes. Thankfully, it's easy to secure them with a password.

Lost your router? Here's how to find its IP address to help track it down

Changing the login information for your router isn't always easy, that's why so many have that little card on the back. But in order to use it, you need to know where to go. Here's how to find the IP address of your router.

Crypto hangover could take blame for Nvidia’s potential GeForce RTX 2060 delay

Nvidia's delay in announcing a ship date for its GeForce RTX 2060 GPU could be due to a burst in the cryptocurrency mining bubble. Executives blamed the crypto hangover for an oversupply of inventory on existing GTX 1060 cards,

PDF to JPG conversion is quick and easy using these simple methods

Converting file formats can be an absolute pain, but it doesn't have to be. We've put together a comprehensive guide on how to convert a PDF to JPG, no matter which operating system you're running.

Save $900 on the ThinkPad X1 Carbon and more with Lenovo’s Cyber Monday sales

In the latest set of holiday sales, Lenovo is heavily discounting its fifth-generation ThinkPad X1 Carbon and other popular Windows laptops and 2-in-1s for the holiday shopping season.

Want to make one hard drive act like two? Here's how to partition in Windows

If you don't want all of your files stored in one place but only have one drive to work with, partitioning is your best way forward. Here's how to partition a hard drive in Windows 10, step by step.

Go hands-free in Windows 10 with speech-to-text support

Looking for the dictation, speech-to-text, and voice control options in Windows 10? Here's how to set up speech-to-text in Windows 10 and use it to go hands-free in a variety of different tasks and applications within Windows.

These cheap laptops will make you wonder why anyone spends more

Looking for a budget notebook for school, work, or play? The best budget laptops, including our top pick -- the Asus ZenBook UX330UA -- will get the job done without digging too deep into your pockets.
Smart Home

All the best Amazon Black Friday deals for 2018

Amazon may be an online-only retailer, but that doesn’t mean its Black Friday sales are anything to sniff at. In fact, due to its online status, Amazon has huge flexibility with the range of products and deals it can offer. Here's our…

Black Friday 2018: The best deals so far

Black Friday is the biggest shopping holiday of the year, and it will be here before you know it. If you can't wait until November 23 to start formulating a shopping plan, we've got you covered.