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Zotac ZOTAC ZBOX nano CI323 Barebone Computer - Celeron N3150 1.6 GHz - No HDD - Intel HD Graphics ($123.98) + Tax

Penguina 342 256 August 9, 2016 at 01:42 PM in Barebones Computers (5) More SuperBiiz Deals
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$123.98

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Last Edited by Shorted August 10, 2016 at 02:07 PM
Hi.

I am posting this for those of you who need an ultra-small mini-desktop or
a super duper pfSense firewall box. This is a barebone PC, but one runs on 6 watts. I first bought one at about $150 a few months ago, and I was very impressed with it as a pfSense box, I am buying another one as a mini-PC to use with Linux.

URL for the item:
http://www.superbiiz.com/detail.p...MB-CI323NU Price is $130.99

$10 off this item (New account only ) Use Coupon code: "JOLIN2110"
UPS Shipping is $2.99, There was no tax for me but you will have to pay pax in CA.

Out the door price for me was 123.98 (but you may have tax if they have warehouses in your state)

First some specs:

ZOTAC ZBOX nano CI323 Barebone Computer
- Celeron N3150 1.6 GHz
- No HDD
- Intel HD Graphics
DUAL gigabit NICS

ZOTAC ZBOX C Series Passive Cooling Mini PC, Intel N3150 Quad-Core CPU, Intel HD Graphics Barebones System (ZBOX-CI323NANO-U)
  • Barebones System. No Memory, No HDD, No Operating System. Processor: Intel N3150 (Quad-Core 1.6GHz, 2.08GHz with TurboBoost).
    Hard Drive: Support 2.5-inch SATA3 HDD:
    Dual Gigabit Ethernet; 802.11ac Wireless; Bluetooth 4.0.
    Ports: 2x USB 3.0 Ports (1 rear, 1 front Type C), 2x USB 2.0 Ports (2 rear).
    Three display capable: 1x HDMI Port, 1x DisplayPort, 1x VGA Port.
    1x Wi-Fi Antenna Connector, 2x RJ45 Ports, 1x 3.5mm Headphone Output, 1x Microphone Jack, Front SD/SDHC/SDXC card reader.

Package Contents: ZBOX-CI320NANO-U, 1 x AC Adapter. 1 x Power Cord. 1 x Antenna. 1 x Driver DVD. 1 x User Manual & Warranty Card. 1 x Quick Start Guide, 1x VESA Monitor Mount (w/ 4 screws) , Mini-Optical S/PDIF Adapter.

Has two memory DDR3L slots. Max mem is 16 GB (I have successfully test 2x 8GB) on this.
Actually, I think 2x16GB will work but I don't have another $400 for the 16GB sticks.

I found this deal by going to google search for the "Zotac N3150", and then click on shopping, and by following through the google shopping links (where it shows as a Google Trusted store"), after you complete the transaction, you're protected with $1000 with "Google shopping". If you wish to get that free additional protection, then you may have to take the same steps as well.

Now a few small notes for those of you who are not sure if this meet your needs, so I'll cite a few examples.

This computer is good for:

Excellent for pfSense firewall / Sophos UTM firewall (You will know what that is)
6 watts power for 24/7 usage for firewall.

VESA mountable small computer that goes to back of your monitor, excellent for web surfing, or small basic computer tasks, HTPC, of streaming videos , basic office tasks

Low grade level gaming.

Do not buy if

you expect i3 or higher level computing power -- this is not for that purpose.
you expect it to come with RAM, HD, or Windows operating system.

I hope you enjoy this deal

Penguina
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#2
For Linux just get a raspberry pi.
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#3
<$185 complete computer with 128 GB SSD and 8 GB sodimm ram. much more capable than a little but... caveat emptor : Linux has had major issues with bay trail chips and these quad core 3*** series chips continue to have issues...
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#4
Quote from elcubano View Post :
<$185 complete computer with 128 GB SSD and 8 GB sodimm ram. much more capable than a little but... caveat emptor : Linux has had major issues with bay trail chips and these quad core 3*** series chips continue to have issues...
That may had been true for Baytrail chips, but these are "Braswell", and I haven't encountered any trouble so far. and I have been using default BIOS.
So far, I have found that only using "legacy" boot mode (not UEFI) was only changed I needed to make.

I originally purchased 8 GB of RAM for $34.99 back in April/May, and recycled an old Sandisk "Readycache" 32GB SSD that I bought like 5 years ago to do pfSense. I purchased 8Gig because that was what I read from Intel ARK that it would support, but (later on) read others was able to install 16GIG memory. Incidentally, when I tested the 16GB (DDR3-1600) ram, they were tested and running at DDR3-1908?? BCLK 61MHz, RAM 954MHz, CAS 19-15-15-31. see: pic.twitter.com/gZPUOZiHj6

the pfSense ran fine (and would with only 2GB of ram) but I bought 8 not knowing how much I would need, and thought 8GB for $35 wasn't a bad deal. pfSense is based from BSD and I am really amazed how much hacking attempt is out there --- reading now from the firewall logs. I see a lot of persistent probing & hacking attempts like

block inbound PostgreSQL (port 5432)
Drop all inbound MSSQL port 1433
Drop all inbound mySQL traffic (port 3306)
SERVER-OTHER ASUSWRT infosvr remote command execution attempt
ET POLICY Suspicious inbound to MSSQL port 1433

Beside the excellent (Snort IDS) Intrusion Detection System, it also has good Ad blocking capability via pfBlockerNG, which I also use to block lots of the Microsoft & Google from phoning "home"

to places like:
vortex-win.data.microsoft.com
settings-win.data.microsoft.com


It was quite eye-opening to see all this, and I have now put my Google on-hub behind the pfSense box to do WiFi duties.

I was able to just quick latest live CD (on USB stick) Ubuntu and I had no trouble only using USB and the build-in WiFi for access, and it was very quick. This particular system is basically about as two-thirds capable (2/3) of a old Q6600 (Passmark) while using 6 watts, which was pretty amazing, when Q6600 uses about 100 watts.

I debated going to a J3710 Mini-ITX board, but that would entail buying a power supply (min $20-40), and a case (Mini-ITX) w/ or without Power supply (another $30-50).

Since I purchased 16GB to test out whether I could max out the memory, this system for $123 out the door is a good system for a very low power Linux box that I wanted to have.

Thx for your input.
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#5
Quote from Penguina View Post :
That may had been true for Baytrail chips, but these are "Braswell", and I haven't encountered any trouble so far. and I have been using default BIOS.
So far, I have found that only using "legacy" boot mode (not UEFI) was only changed I needed to make.

I originally purchased 8 GB of RAM for $34.99 back in April/May, and recycled an old Sandisk "Readycache" 32GB SSD that I bought like 5 years ago to do pfSense. I purchased 8Gig because that was what I read from Intel ARK that it would support, but (later on) read others was able to install 16GIG memory. Incidentally, when I tested the 16GB (DDR3-1600) ram, they were tested and running at DDR3-1908?? BCLK 61MHz, RAM 954MHz, CAS 19-15-15-31. see: pic.twitter.com/gZPUOZiHj6

the pfSense ran fine (and would with only 2GB of ram) but I bought 8 not knowing how much I would need, and thought 8GB for $35 wasn't a bad deal. pfSense is based from BSD and I am really amazed how much hacking attempt is out there --- reading now from the firewall logs. I see a lot of persistent probing & hacking attempts like

block inbound PostgreSQL (port 5432)
Drop all inbound MSSQL port 1433
Drop all inbound mySQL traffic (port 3306)
SERVER-OTHER ASUSWRT infosvr remote command execution attempt
ET POLICY Suspicious inbound to MSSQL port 1433

Beside the excellent (Snort IDS) Intrusion Detection System, it also has good Ad blocking capability via pfBlockerNG, which I also use to block lots of the Microsoft & Google from phoning "home"

to places like:
vortex-win.data.microsoft.com
settings-win.data.microsoft.com


It was quite eye-opening to see all this, and I have now put my Google on-hub behind the pfSense box to do WiFi duties.

I was able to just quick latest live CD (on USB stick) Ubuntu and I had no trouble only using USB and the build-in WiFi for access, and it was very quick. This particular system is basically about as two-thirds capable (2/3) of a old Q6600 (Passmark) while using 6 watts, which was pretty amazing, when Q6600 uses about 100 watts.

I debated going to a J3710 Mini-ITX board, but that would entail buying a power supply (min $20-40), and a case (Mini-ITX) w/ or without Power supply (another $30-50).

Since I purchased 16GB to test out whether I could max out the memory, this system for $123 out the door is a good system for a very low power Linux box that I wanted to have.

Thx for your input.
what a read.. "these quad core low power CPUs CONTINUE to have issues." just because you wrote me a book doesn't change the fact. the issue is with the igpu ramp up and ramp down as far as clock speed. causing complete and random full system lockup. the jury is still out on dual core but the quad cores are hairy at best. I would most likely use as a mini HTPC of client to Plex server, so failure to be able to ramp/down would fly.

thanks for your input.

* I'm sure they would do fine running a low media server type distribution.
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#6
Quote from elcubano View Post :
what a read.. "these quad core low power CPUs CONTINUE to have issues." just because you wrote me a book doesn't change the fact. the issue is with the igpu ramp up and ramp down as far as clock speed. causing complete and random full system lockup. the jury is still out on dual core but the quad cores are hairy at best. I would most likely use as a mini HTPC of client to Plex server, so failure to be able to ramp/down would fly.

thanks for your input.

* I'm sure they would do fine running a low media server type distribution.
What is your source for these "quad core issues"? Can you share a link? I don't see them.
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#7
Quote from Penguina View Post :
What is your source for these "quad core issues"? Can you share a link? I don't see them.
https://bugzilla.kernel.org/show_...?id=109051
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#8
Quote from Penguina View Post :
What is your source for these "quad core issues"? Can you share a link? I don't see them.
read through. it's affecting the 3700 and the 3150.... because.... surprise surprise it's the same chip. look don't get bent out of shape. I swear by my Linux distros reach for its own purpose. with 1 windows of from 2006 running w7 JIC. but...I build computers servers and workstations for fun and resolve kernel bugs for kicks... there is an issue with these chips. flat out fact. some kernels are better some are worse. and other intel chip is fine even the celerons. all amd are excellent for work purposes. but the j1800,1900, n3050, 3060, n3150, 3160, n3700, 3710 .... they got problems.
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#9
Quote from Penguina View Post :
What is your source for these "quad core issues"? Can you share a link? I don't see them.
and not just with igpu causing system freezes, there's audio issues, screen flickering issues, a host of other stuff. is it bearable most of the time... yes. but when it crashes and there is no log and data is corrupted... I'm pissed. I own a j1800 hardly ever freezes only use as a streaming client. returned a j1900 and a 3050 and 3700 for incessant freezes during initial configuring of my distros.
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#10
Quote from elcubano View Post :
and not just with igpu causing system freezes, there's audio issues, screen flickering issues, a host of other stuff. is it bearable most of the time... yes. but when it crashes and there is no log and data is corrupted... I'm pissed. I own a j1800 hardly ever freezes only use as a streaming client. returned a j1900 and a 3050 and 3700 for incessant freezes during initial configuring of my distros.
Ah, Thank you. I do appreciate you pointing me to the kernel bug link. -- I will read through it.

As my original application (pfSense), I love this box, although I have noticed that after enabling "PowerID" (BSD/pfSense's powerd utility monitors the system state and sets various power control options accordingly) it is not sensing the "AC power" mode, and I had to use the "Unknown power" mode to set the power consumption mode, which is a small minor annoyance.

As you also might imagine, the pfSense is not hooked up to a monitor once I ran through the setup process and only control via web and SSH interface remotely; it is also completely passively cooled, not that the build-in IGU is getting any sort of workout at all, but that may change in the future when I receive my new unit.

It is disheartening to hear people now having more trouble with Intel products, as I am starting to see this trend with:

1. Intel NUCs trouble with the power regulators earlier this year.
2. Disappointment with their recent SSD5's lack luster performance (say versus 730's or even older X-25)
3. Tick-tock to tick-tock-optimize cycle and 1yr delay of 10nm process to 2017 (should have been out now)

I deliberately avoided the Intel NUC (at least the Celeron/Pentium) because it only has 1 RAM slot and the Zotac has 2, and the recent Intel onboard voltage regulator incident led me to believe there is room for Intel to improve before I consider their products.

To me, Zotac is out innovating and has more choices compared to Intel on this NUC (MiniPC) type product. Low power consumption while providing a reasonable performance is very attractive. I was going to wait for Apollo Lake, but this was priced attractively enough for me to grab it.

Coming back about streaming, Braswell generation is nice, only thing it cannot do is 4K@60fps, but that issue is supposed to be rectified with the Apollo Lake/Goldmont core, along with an increase of Graphic core (EU) from 16 to up to 24 (from unconfirmed but reliable sources) and a slightly higher clock increases. I do not have experience on the Baytrail boxes, but Amazon had a sale on the MSI Cubi Intel Pentium 3805U 1.9 GHz (for $129.99) before $20 mail-in rebate, they ran out of the supply, but they may get some more soon, if you wanted to avoid Celeron

I might grab another Apollo Lake box when it's available -- at a reasonable price, I hope..

I am just ticked pink with these boxes running at 6 watts (TDP) with Apollo Lake anticipated to run at about 6.5 Watts at even higher performance.
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#11
good post. headless circumvents the igpu C state issue. good call. aggravating that intel has known about these bugs for years but since it doesn't affect MS windows they don't care. waiting patiently to test out a 10nm chip but excited to see what amd is going to bring to the table with Zen. and recent FP4 socket upgrade has quad core CPUs with 8 GCs operating at R7 levels with a passmark score of almost 6000 and wattage in the 15watt range. and supposedly the new Zen CPUs will bring single choose passmark scores above the 2000 mark. hoping this brings actual competition and forces intel to drop prices or really start making it worth the money with improved architecture.
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#12
This should have more than enough juice for a standalone MAME box, right? Thinking of putting in 4GB and a 120GB SSD, then building a small cabinet for it.

The alternative would be a used desktop, but I'd like to keep this portable enough to be able to bring it around to tailgates, etc.
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#13
Quote from Giantcrazy View Post :
This should have more than enough juice for a standalone MAME box, right? Thinking of putting in 4GB and a 120GB SSD, then building a small cabinet for it.

The alternative would be a used desktop, but I'd like to keep this portable enough to be able to bring it around to tailgates, etc.
It is plenty for a MAME box.

People should note that this does not have HDMI 2.0 and will not output 4k@60
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#14
Quote from Blesbok View Post :
People should note that this does not have HDMI 2.0 and will not output 4k@60
Will this do 1440p@60Hz? I had a similar box with a J1900 and it would only do 1440p@30Hz.
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#15
soldered on to board (CPU?)
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