[mythtv-users] Zotac Zbox vs. MAG for Frontend

Nicolas Riendeau knight at teksavvy.com
Fri Jul 9 00:30:33 UTC 2010


On 7/7/2010 3:23 PM, Robert Shields wrote:
 > Does this imply that the MAG won't be able to output sound via HDMI?

I have one (I have only been playing with it for a few days though) and 
I can tell you it can output sound via HDMI, that's what I am doing 
right now.

 > Is the MAG not capable of outputting surround sound?  Eventually this
 > will be hooked up to a stereo system, so I would like to make sure
 > that is an option down the line.

I can't say... I have plugged it to a small tv/monitor which probably 
only has one or two internal speakers and no way to connect external 
speakers I believe...

> Ideally, I would like to get the MAG because the HD and RAM are
> already included; saving me some setup time.  That being said, if the
> Zbox really is a better choice, I can go in that direction...

It doesn't come with a keyboard or a mouse though (but I don't believe 
the Zbox does either). The Zbox is ION 2 based though so it's probably 
better in some way that the MAG which is ION (1) based.

I have two problems with it at the moment though...

It takes forever to compile and that's partially because of the 
underpowered processor I would guess but greatly in part because of a 
Fedora 13 problem (I have installed Fedora on it just like my master 

For some reason while it's booting it can't seem to be able to process 
the delete key  from two of my wireless keyboards. The only one that 
works without problem is a Logitech MX3200. All three keyboard use a USB 
dongle which I guess pretends to be in itself an HID device.

I also had a weird power cable (apparently the same problem can happen 
with the Zbox). It came with a US two prong power plug that also had a 
small green wire that you are supposed to connect to the center screw of 
the power outlet, just like you were supposed to do in houses built more 
than 50 years ago which had no ground hole in the outlet but the 
electrical box itself was grounded because of the use of BX cable for 

I contacted Zotac and they sent me a replacement cable free of charge...

I only have praises for Zotac support, they were pretty fast to answer 
any question I had and dispatched a new power cable pretty fast...

There is one last thing though, this thing can sometime get pretty hot 
but it's apparently within tolerances of the hardware...

Have a nice day!


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