I've had a hankering for a miniPC for a while now. So when the wife started complaining her XP box was running a little slow (8yrs old), I took it as the perfect opportunity to try a miniPC.
I did some shopping around and ultimately settled on the Zotac MAGHD-ND01-U from TigerDirect. I felt it offered a fair amount of specs (above my own), and met my price range. I have never heard of Zotac before, but the consumer reviews on the site and others were favorable, so I opened up the wallet...
Despite TigerDirect's Availability being states at "Order Today, Ships Today," I got a backorder notification email the very next day! Immediately I was discouraged by TigerDirect. I am patient and had a lot going on to distract me, so I never got around to making the "WTF" call. It was a full six days later before I got shipment confirmation and tracking numbers from TigerDirect. The box was waiting on my porch two days later. I hate it when they leave it on the porch.
The box contained the AC Adapter, driver disks, manual, two (count 'em, two!) mounting options.
The PC itself looks classy enough, supporting way too many jacks for a chassis this size. I have not had a SD card reader before, relying on USBing my camera to read the format. Now, I had my very own card reader, woohoo! My only gripe: the headphone/mic jacks should be in the back.
One included mounting option was the bracket that could be used to mount the unit under a desk, on a wall, etc. The bottom of the PC is keyed into the bottom of the bracket and the top snaps in place. A spring-loaded release button on the top of the mount releases the clips and the PC tilts off the mount. Brilliant!
The other mounting option is a stand that, once again, utilizes the keyed slot on the bottom of the chassis. While standing, the PC has a very small footprint.
I was installing the unit in the kitchen-desk-unit-thingy-nook. Previously, a tower PC sat under the desk, complete with wires, dust bunnies, and anything else that would fit. I wanted to hide the unit behind the monitor so used a couple drywall screws in the mounts holes. The holes were in an odd configuration, kinda like a square, I swear I've seen before... OMG!
How clever is this? The mount was made to attach directly to the back of a monitor! Clever! A little cord management, quick Win7 install and...
My kitchen desk makeover is complete!
So far so good, I'm digging the Zotac and have experienced zero problems thus far.