Originally Posted by assassin
Question for zino fans...
How do you think a mini-ITX with the following would compare to your zinos? How much more would you pay if it were built with all quality parts?
-i3 Sandy Bridge with up to date drivers for all hardware
-Mini-ITX motherboard, case and PSU
-USB 3.0, SATAIII, eSATA, Optical Output, AHCI capable
-DVD or Bluray (including LAV splitter to play retail Bluray)
-2TB Hard Drive
-Optional Tuner Card or recording device
-Windows 7 without all the bloatware
-Mediabrowser, Media Center Master, Codec pre-installed and configured to play all HD sources including bitstreaming HD Audio
Just trying to see if the average Zino user would be interested in something like this off the shelf if it was available.
It would have to be very competitive on price. My Zino is pretty well equipped, and with tax, shipping, and a good 1 year warranty which my AMEX added another year to, I paid $450. I think prices have come down a bit since I ordered mine in March as well.
It's green to red apples for the build you describe, but while I don't love the Dell, I do love having 2 years of full warranty, and I love the form factor of the Zino. It has most of what you'd put in except the tuner card, the 2 TB HD, and the SSD. My Zino also came with a wireless keyboard, remote and wireless mouse which I was able get $40 on eBay which paid for a wireless IOGear keyboard and a Rosewell remote.
FYI - when I started looking at HTPC I was actually cross shopping the Moxi, a TiVo Premier with lifetime, nettops, Boxee Box and Google TV. I came to the HTPC scene when I found out about the HDHomeRun Prime on Engadget and thought I could get rid of all the equipment in my home except for a cable card which justified buying a HTPC.
Price is not the only distinguishing factor - to the average person like me that would buy the Zino first and develop the interest in HTPCs afterwards, what would you offer to differentiate? I'm not too concerned about quality of parts because of the warranty with Dell, and the cost would be difficult to best. Considering a TiVo Premier with lifetime is probably around $500, that is probably the ceiling for what your build would need to cost with tax and shipped to attract interest from a Zino buyer, IMO.