ZaReason MediaBox 4220
The ZaReason MediaBox 4220 arrived in its APEX MI-100 box, which serves as the chassis for this unit being a mini-ITX enclosure that measures up to about 30 x 22 x 13 cm and is made of steel. This though is not a completely stock chassis with ZaReason having their logo engraved into the front panel. There is also an Ubuntu sticker on the front. Ideally, we would love to see a SilverStone chassis since they have made some of the best computer cases we have seen, but the APEX MI-100 is decent.
Included with the computer was the Zotac motherboard manual, a copy of Ubuntu 10.04 LTS 32-bit, an eVGA graphics card manual, and various peripherals normally included with the motherboard (dongles, WiFi antennas, extra Serial ATA cables, etc). We received an eVGA graphics card manual but in fact, our review unit had integrated graphics with the CPU/motherboard and the lone expansion slot was occupied with a TV tuner card. ZaReason also includes a screwdriver with every PC it ships as a sign you can open up your computer case, tinker around, and change any hardware without voiding the ZaReason warranty.
Our review unit for the MediaBox 4220 consisted of an Intel Core i3 530 CPU, a Zotac H55-ITX WiFi motherboard, 2GB of system memory, a 320GB Hitachi HDP72503 motherboard, Intel Core IGP graphics, and a Hauppauge WinTV-HVR-1250 capture card. To no surprise coming from ZaReason, all of the hardware worked on Ubuntu 10.04 LTS without issues. For reference, included in this article are a few simple tests of this Core i5 media center PC compared to the ASRock Core 100HT and ASRock Vision 3D NetTop systems. The hardware's different as to get an idea for how these different media-oriented PCs perform that commonly carry the Core i3 and Core i5 CPUs when not using Atom hardware.
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