In pictures: HP Z1 all-in-one workstation PC

HP's Z1 offers high-end processing power, as well as a user-serviceable case

  • Here you can see the bay for the hard drive, which supports either one 3.5in drive, or two 2.5in drives (hence the two SATA 6Gbps connectors).

  • HP has released what it claims to be the world's first all-in-one workstation PC, the Z1 Workstation. It has a 27in IPS panel with 10-bit colour support, and it features a native resolution of 2560x1440 pixels, making it perfect for graphics professions. Behind the screen is where all the compute power sits, and it can be customised depending on your needs.

  • The motherboard (which uses the Intel C206 chipset) is customised so that the full-sized graphics card can sit flat inside the case. The hand is on the graphics card, and here you can also see the four DIMM slots, the hard drive bay, and the two fans that sit atop the CPU. There are no components stacked on top of each other.

  • There are many fans installed throughout to keep the high-end components cool, but HP assures us that the noise level from the machine is not loud. The air is designed to escape up through the top-rear of the chassis.

  • It's unlike other all-in-one systems on the market due to the stacks of power that lie inside it, and also because it's designed to be user serviceable. It's a tool-less case that allows all components to be removed and replaced only with your hands. Locking mechanisms keep all the modules in place and everything can be easily unlocked and slid out of the case.

  • The motherboard layout, as shown on the print-out to aid maintenance.

  • HP offers entry-level and high-end CPUs: from the dual-core Intel Core i3-2120, to the quad-core Intel Xeon E3-1245 or E3-1280. Up to 32GB of error corrected DDR3 memory is supported via four regular DIMM slots; there is support for either one 3.5in, 7200rpm or 10000rpm hard drive, or two 2.5in drives, including 160GB or 300GB solid state drives; high-end graphics can be selected in the form of a full-sized NVIDIA Q4000M graphics adapter. You also get a slim-line Blu-ray writer, integrated 802.11n Wi-Fi, a Full HD wecbam, dual-cone, stereo speakers, and a large array of connectivity features: Gigabit Ethernet (rear), USB 3.0 (two ports on the side), USB 2.0 (four ports on the rear), FireWire (side), microphone and headphone ports (side), a six slot memory card reader (side), line in and line out ports (rear), a sub-woofer port (rear), and a DisplayPort for input or output (rear). Time to take a breath.

  • This is the Intel Advanced-N 6230 wireless module installed in the mini PCIe slot.

  • HP supplies the unit with Windows 7 Professional, and there is Linux support, too. A warranty of three years is standard, and includes next business day support, as well as 24x7 phone tech support. The HP Z1's price will start from $2499 and will vary depending on the configuration you choose.

  • One of the other neat things about the Z1 is that it can support a secondary display panel through its DisplayPort, and it also has a VESA mount so that it can be installed on arms if you wish.

  • The screen folds back down, flat over the base, and lifts up easily thanks to a pressurised arm to reveal all of the internal goodness. It also protects the screen from dropping quickly and slamming down onto the chassis.

  • The power supply is internal (it's the silver part in the foreground of the photo), which makes the entire system look very neat -- only one cable protrudes from the system, rather than an entire power brick, such as in consumer all-in-one machines. It has a rating of 400W and 90 per cent power efficiency.

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