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Dell chases Mac mini with official Zino HD

updated 08:55 am EST, Thu November 12, 2009

Dell Zino HD uses AMD to undercut Apple

Dell this morning officially unveiled its most direct attempt at claiming the ultra-compact desktop space currently held by the Mac mini. Shown after multiple teases, the Inspiron Zino HD occupies roughly the same footprint as its Apple counterpart but uses AMD processors to keep the costs low while still supplying options its rival doesn't have. The micro PC is seen as a home theater PC and comes with native HDMI output as well as options of discrete Radeon HD 4330 graphics and a Blu-ray drive.

They can also carry up to 1TB of disk space, dual-core Athlon X2 or Athlon Neo X2 processors, and one of several top-side colors and patterns.

A base model starts as low as $359 with a single-core 1.6GHz Athlon, 2GB of RAM, a 250GB hard drive, a DVD burner and integrated Radeon HD 3200 video. Buyers can even strip out the optical drive altogether to lower the price to $229. Dell's best pre-configured system sells for $649 on discount and upgrades to a 1.8GHz Athlon, 4GB of RAM, a 500GB disk and the Radeon HD 4330 video option. Orders ship before the end of the month.

by MacNN Staff



  1. mullum

    Joined: Dec 1969


    comment title

    lil' hackintosh candidate no doubt

  1. LouZer

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Os x doesn't support athlon.

  1. bjojade

    Joined: Dec 1969



    It's funny how Apple pioneered the 'color' thing on desktop machines in a major way with the iMacs, but has since switched to a sleeker, classier aluminum look. The PC makers are still trying the colorful plastic look that the higher end customers are less likely to care for.

    The ONLY design problem I have with the mini is the stupid external power brick. Make the thing an inch bigger and put the power supply inside already.

    Additional features such as blueray playback, or SD card reader would be nice. Instead of HDMI output, I'd LOVE DisplayPort output with audio support. Then it could be adapted to HDMI if necessary.

  1. eddd

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Wondering how much noise that fan puts out...

  1. mytdave

    Joined: Dec 1969



    OSX will run on any x86 CPU if the computer has EFI support (native or hacked in), unless it's an Atom CPU where Apple intentionally breaks support.

    As for this Dell box. Finally, a PC product that somewhat competes with the Mac mini. I would still prefer the Mac mini, as it is significantly smaller and more powerful with a 2.5GHz Core2Duo & nVidia 9400, not to mention dual head, Firewire, optical audio I/O, etc. But just try to natively install Linux on a Mac mini - go ahead try it.

  1. mytdave

    Joined: Dec 1969


    The nice stuff

    There are only two things this Dell mini has which I would love to see on the Mac mini - the various ports on the front including the SD card slot, and the option of Blu-ray.


    Oh, and I agree with bjojade - audio support in the existing mini DisplayPort connection would be highly desirable.

  1. groucho

    Joined: Dec 1969



    so now Dull has copied the Air and now the mini. Michel who once said that Apple could pack up and give the shareholders their money back. Now they follow Apple, I was about to say shamelessly but I'm not sure that's all true.
    The only innovative thing they'd ever done was BTO only selling through internet/telephone order. When will they open "Dull stores"??

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: Colors

    The PC makers are still trying the colorful plastic look that the higher end customers are less likely to care for.

    Except that this is a cheap computer, and it isn't geared towards higher end customers, what you say is exactly right!

    Instead of HDMI output, I'd LOVE DisplayPort output with audio support. Then it could be adapted to HDMI if necessary.

    Why? This is obviously geared towards the home media market. Most of the displays you're plugging into this thing would have HDMI. Very few even support DisplayPort.

  1. solefald

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Doesn't Dell understand that it's 2009 and 802.11b/g is not enough anymore. And what happened to FireWire?

  1. Sean John

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Blu-Ray Option is Luv

    We currently have a Mac Mini serving as our DVD playing system at home. I honestly thinking of replacing it with a Blu-Ray enabled Dell Zino.

    Right now I have a DIGISTOR external Blu-Ray player (this one -> ) hooked up to it, and I have to go the long way around booting up to a Windows-based OS.

    The Dell Zino might just be worth it to rid myself of all the hassle.

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