Fanless Mini PC Review: The Minix Z100-0db

My latest mini PC review takes a look at the Minix Z100-0db, a fanless Mini PC powered by an Intel N100 Alder Lake processor.

Minix’s new offering stands out for its silent operation, courtesy of its robust heat sink that radiates out to the top of the case. The PC feels like a solid block of metal weighing in at over 2 pounds or 900+grams.

It performs surprisingly well given its price point thanks to the N100 inside. Our review unit came with 16GB of DDR4 RAM on a single stick along with a 512GB NVME. RAM, storage, and the WiFi card can be upgraded. It comes equipped with an Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX201 card.

Port selection on the Z100-0db is adequate, featuring a data only USB-C port along with two USB-A ports running at USB 3 Gen 2 speeds, another pair at USB 2.0 speeds, a microSD card reader, dual HDMI outputs for 4K 60hz displays, and a single 2.5 gigabit ethernet port. The ethernet port worked at the full 2.5 gig bandwidth but the WiFi was running about 300 megabits per second below what was expected on the downstream. Upstream Wifi speeds were fine.

Windows 11 Pro comes pre-installed, providing a clean, bloatware-free experience right out of the box. Given some security issues we’ve seen with other MiniPCs I ran a few full malware and virus scans and everything came up clean here.

The Mini PC handles web browsing and office tasks with ease, demonstrating the capability of the Intel N100 processor to manage day-to-day activities efficiently.

Gaming and emulation tests were also good. This isn’t a gaming powerhouse by any means, it handles older games and emulation remarkably well, running titles like Half-Life 2 and PlayStation 2 games smoothly. Its performance in benchmarks and stress tests further underscores its stability and efficiency under load with no thermal throttling detected.

The Z100-0db also excels in running Linux, with Ubuntu detecting all hardware out of the box and providing a seamless experience for users interested in a dual-boot setup or dedicated Linux machine.

I’ve been looking at Mini PCs for the better part of a decade now. It’s great to see not only performance increasing year over year but also how it’s still possible to get great performance out of a completely silent fanless PC.

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Disclosure: The Z100 was provided to the channel free of charge by Minix. However they did not review or approve this video before it was uploaded, nor was any additional compensation received. All opinions are my own.