AOpen Mini XC Cube MZ855-II

  • Review
  • Specs
  • Images
  • User Reviews
  • Buy Now
AOpen Mini XC Cube MZ855-II
  • Expert Rating

    2.50 / 5

Pros

  • Quiet operation

Cons

  • No provision for 5.25' CD/DVD drive or floppy drive

Bottom Line

With the Mini XC Cube, AOpen uses notebook technology to deliver a desktop that is both tiny and quiet.

Would you buy this?

AOpen's newest barebones (motherboard and case) small form factor PC is the first we've seen to use an Intel Pentium M (notebook) processor--perfect for reducing noise and heat. Processor installation was easy enough, but the circuit board to which the external 19V DC adapter connects needs to be removed. The PCI and AGP slots both require low-profile cards; the latter could be useful for installing a graphics card with TV-out.

We appreciated the MZ855-II's quietness, a result of it using just one side-firing processor fan and plenty of ventilation along both sides, assisting the escape of warm air throughout.

This MZ855-II has two IDE hard disk ports, but we felt the system would benefit from easier-to-manage SATA cables. This is more a limitation of the 855GME chipset (400MHz frontside bus, 2GB maximum memory). This small form factor design doesn't provide room for a 5.25" CD/DVD drive, so you'll need to obtain a slim, notebook-style optical drive, nor does it have provision for a floppy drive. Only one 3.5" device can be installed in this unit, and that device is your hard drive.

The front-left fascia of the MZ855-II flips open to reveal a seven-in-one media card reader, while a front-bottom lip pops down, allowing easy access to connections (optical audio, headphone, microphone, two USB 2.0, six-pin and four-pin FireWire).

It's taken a while for notebook technology to creep into small form-factor PCs and we can't wait to see further and more positive approaches from AOpen, particularly those based on Intel's 915PM Express chipset with SATA and PCIe controllers.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?