Last week we published an in-depth article looking at the NVIDIA ION Linux Performance using a nettop device that contained this chipset with GeForce 9400M graphics rather than the usual Intel 945 graphics. From video playback to 2D to 3D, the graphics performance with the NVIDIA ION was wonderful. For that testing, the nettop we were using came courtesy of ZaReason and it was their new Ion Breeze 3770. In this review we are taking a closer look at the ZaReason Ion Breeze 3770 hardware.
Before we begin, the company ZaReason may not be as well known to Linux desktop users as say System76, which is not much of a surprise considering that the company is just about two and a half years old. This company actually began as a volunteer organization when they began recycling old computers in Berkeley, California, but then since moved into creating computers for the financially able. With the ZaReason founders being large advocates on recycling, besides offering Linux-compatible PCs they also aim to deliver the most energy-efficient products and work with many recyclers in an effort to get most of their old hardware recycled.
The ZaReason Ion Breeze 3770 consists of an Intel Atom 230 processor, a NVIDIA ION chipset, NVIDIA GeForce 9400M graphics, and most of the other hardware in this nettop is customizable when ordering from their web-site. The base package is $399 USD and it includes 1GB of DDR2 memory, a 250GB Serial ATA 2.0 hard drive, and no optical drive. Should one be interested in getting the highest-end Ion Breeze 3770, the most expensive configuration at over $600 with 2GB of RAM, a 1 terabyte SATA 2.0 hard drive, a CD-RW/DVD-RW optical drive, and USB-based 802.11b/g WiFi. The Ion Breeze 3770 can also ship with Ubuntu 9.04, Kubuntu 9.04, Edubuntu 9.04, Ubuntu Studio 9.04, or no operating system at all. The system we were testing was equipped with 3GB of RAM (we were sent this unit prior to the public launch of the product, and evidently they must be working on a 3GB version) and a 1000GB Seagate ST31000333AS HDD with Ubuntu 9.04 (x86_64).