Zotac IONITX-A-U Mini-ITX Ion Motherboard Review

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Zotac IONITX-A-U Mini-ITX Ion Motherboard Review

Postby Apoptosis » Tue Dec 08, 2009 8:10 am

Zotac IONITX-A-U Mini-ITX Ion Motherboard

Zotac's Mini-ITX motherboard platform, based on Intel Atom's low-power cpu and Nvidia's ION graphics platform, packs a full feature set in a tiny package. With built-on wireless internet, HDMI, high-def audio, and the ability to playback Blu-Ray content with ease, the IONITX-A-U motherboard stands to push HTPCs to a new realm of capabilities.

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Zotac's IONITX-A-U Mini-ITX motherboard stood up to a battery of tests and proved itself fully capable of all it promised, from its HDMI output and high definition audio to its built-in 802.11n wireless card and low-power. In almost all benchmarks, the Intel ATOM N330 and NVIDIA ION based motherboard stood head and shoulders above mobile variations of similar configurations. Provided with two sticks of RAM, I think the motherboard would continue to show improvements in all benchmarks, and the ability to overclock the motherboard offers an even more substantial boost in performance. Costing around $179.99, this motherboard is well priced to serve as the ultimate core of a versatile and efficient HTPC.


Article Title: Zotac IONITX-A-U Mini-ITX Ion Motherboard Review
Article URL: http://www.legitreviews.com/article/1148/1/
Pricing At Time of Print: $179.99 plus shipping
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Re: Zotac IONITX-A-U Mini-ITX Ion Motherboard Review

Postby FeRaL » Tue Dec 08, 2009 11:48 am

Wow, look like a nice little combo for a HTPC setup. I'm going to go home and run PCMark05 and Cinebench on my Athlon 2500+ Mobile just for kicks and see how it compares....
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Re: Zotac IONITX-A-U Mini-ITX Ion Motherboard Review

Postby Apoptosis » Tue Dec 08, 2009 1:21 pm

awesome, be sure to post up the numbers... Interested in seeing how it compares.
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Re: Zotac IONITX-A-U Mini-ITX Ion Motherboard Review

Postby FeRaL » Tue Dec 08, 2009 3:12 pm

Will do.
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Re: Zotac IONITX-A-U Mini-ITX Ion Motherboard Review

Postby FeRaL » Wed Dec 09, 2009 2:22 am

Cinebench : 1530
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Re: Zotac IONITX-A-U Mini-ITX Ion Motherboard Review

Postby Apoptosis » Wed Dec 09, 2009 7:25 am

FeRaL wrote:Cinebench : 1530


wow, so the Zotac IONITX-A-U with the Intel Atom 330 processor is faster than an Athlon 2500+ Mobile... good to know as that was a very popular processor back in the early 2000's.
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Re: Zotac IONITX-A-U Mini-ITX Ion Motherboard Review

Postby FeRaL » Wed Dec 09, 2009 2:27 pm

Yeah, it's even overclocked to 2.1 GHz with 2 gig of RAM, Win7, and HIS Radeon X800. Could not get results for PCMARK05 though for some reason.

I'm going to run Cinebench on my MP3 Jukebox PC I have in my garage.... (Athlon XP 1700 @ 2Ghz, 1 gig of RAM, Win XP)
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Re: Zotac IONITX-A-U Mini-ITX Ion Motherboard Review

Postby AbyssNOLF » Wed Dec 09, 2009 4:01 pm

Did you run PCMark 05 with admin privileges? If you haven't, give that a shot and see if it works out.
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Re: Zotac IONITX-A-U Mini-ITX Ion Motherboard Review

Postby stopthekilling77 » Wed Dec 09, 2009 8:15 pm

Shame it won't be able to do 3D Blu-Ray
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Re: Zotac IONITX-A-U Mini-ITX Ion Motherboard Review

Postby hnzw_rui » Sat Dec 12, 2009 1:31 pm

Question, what temps are you getting on your board and what's your room temp? Did you install the included 60mm fan? On mine, it was 65~70C at 22C ambient so I had to install the fan. Temps dropped down to 23~25C but the included fan was just too darned loud.
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Re: Zotac IONITX-A-U Mini-ITX Ion Motherboard Review

Postby AbyssNOLF » Sun Dec 13, 2009 9:41 am

I did use the fan, and, at least in our test setup, the fan wasn't that loud that it was annoying at all. It's possible that perhaps they have included a new fan in the version that we tested. On the other hand, I will admit to owning an Xbox 360 that has more cooling than a nuclear reactor and sounds like a dull roar trying to knock down my house, so take my subjective conclusions on the volume of the included fan with a necessary grain of salt.

In my tests, even overclocked and after running benchmarks, my processor sat between 26 and 32 degrees celsius. However, another grain of salt to this dish is that the tests were run without the case being completely closed (as in, the lid was off). This means there would be a much greater amount of general air flow over the heatsink and absolute ventilation, even without the fan.

Also, it's winter here.
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Re: Zotac IONITX-A-U Mini-ITX Ion Motherboard Review

Postby graysky » Sun Jun 06, 2010 9:52 am

I have this board and wondered if anyone else tried bumping the FSB from 533 to 667? Runs stable, but the sensors get messed up.
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Re: Zotac IONITX-A-U Mini-ITX Ion Motherboard Review

Postby Kaos Kid » Sun Jun 06, 2010 11:14 am

Since you have this board, how accurate are the claims of Blue-ray decoding over the hdmi? I heard that the ION even with a dual-core mighty mite (my name for the n330's) still is only effective for 720p on medium-sized TV's. I was jonesing for one of these when they first came out because I thought they would do 1080i/p on a 47" Sony, I'm glad now that I didn't get it. I can't believe they are still going for $200 on yolkster.
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Re: Zotac IONITX-A-U Mini-ITX Ion Motherboard Review

Postby hnzw_rui » Sun Jun 06, 2010 2:48 pm

Kaos Kid wrote:Since you have this board, how accurate are the claims of Blu-ray decoding over the hdmi?

1080p Blu-ray works just fine but considering you can get a GF9300-G-E + Celeron E3300 for less than this costs, it doesn't really make much sense anymore. The E3300 also makes for a snappier WMC interface.
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Re: Zotac IONITX-A-U Mini-ITX Ion Motherboard Review

Postby Kaos Kid » Sun Jun 06, 2010 3:54 pm

Yeah, my reason for wanting it at the time is I was looking for a mini-itx board with an onboard grpahics solution to fit in my old flex-atx shuttle box (or old Ice Cube, either one) to use as an htpc but I found a MicroFly Cube the fits in my entertainment center (barely) so I am able to move up to mATX.
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