ZT Affinity 7334Ma (Phenom 2 X4 945 3GHz review: ZT Affinity 7334Ma (Phenom 2 X4 945 3GHz

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CNET Editors' Rating

3.5 stars Very good
  • Overall: 7.4
  • Design: 7.0
  • Features: 8.0
  • Performance: 9.0
  • Service and support: 7.0
Review Date:
Updated on:

The Good Quad-core performance trounces competitive systems; Blu-ray drive included; wide range of display outputs; performance-enhancing AMD CPU; a lot of room for internal expansion.

The Bad Boring design remains unchanged from previous model.

The Bottom Line The $799 ZT Affinity 7334Ma's stellar performance benchmarks, Blu-ray drive, and plenty of room for expansion give it a step up from the competition. ZT still needs help in the external design department, but this system certainly earns our recommendation as a workhorse do-it-all system.

Editors' Top Picks

Apparently, ZT Systems didn't get our memo asking for a complete redesign of its Affinity series desktop computers. Earlier this year, we bemoaned the blase styling of the Affinity 7308Ma, and although this new $800 Affinity 7334Ma looks just as generic, it still offers a robust set of components including a Blu-ray drive and a quad-core AMD Phenom II X4 chip that boost it far above the competition. While midtowers are now forced to share the spotlight with Netbooks, Nettops, and all-in-one PCs, the ZT Systems Affinity 7334Ma will definitely make a worthy addition to your home or office.

As we said, the ZT Affinity 7334Ma probably won't win any design competitions; in fact, we're not sure if it would even make it through the qualifying round. The case is so generic that we're even getting tired of describing it. The front of the tower is covered in a semi-shiny black gloss paint with the exception of a small strip across the center that houses two USB ports and the standard set of audio jacks. You also get a media card reader above it as well as an empty media bay in addition to the combination Blu-ray/dual-layer DVD burner.

While we don't recommend using the midtower 7334Ma as a home theater PC, the back of the computer certainly has all the ports you need to watch Blu-ray movies on many modern displays. You get HDMI, DVI, and VGA ports, but ZT leaves out the DisplayPort video output that we saw on the 7308Ma; however, we suspect few of you will miss it. The back of the case also has a generous amount of ports for S/PDIF digital audio, Ethernet, FireWire 400, eSATA, PS/2, and six USB 2.0 ports. We can think of few inputs we'd add to this PC.

  ZT Affinity 7334Ma HP Pavilion Elite e9120y
Price $799 $830
CPU 3GHz AMD Phenom II X4 945 2.6GHz AMD Phenom II X4 910
Memory 8GB DDR3 SDRAM 8GB DDR3 SDRAM
Graphics 384MB (shared) ATI Radeon HD 4200 integrated graphics chip 512MB ATI Radeon HD 4350
Hard drives 1TB, 7,200rpm Seagate 1TB 7,200rpm
Optical drive Blu-ray drive/dual-layer DVD burner Blu-ray drive; dual-layer DVD burner
Operating system 64-bit Windows Vista Home Premium SP2 64-bit Windows Vista Home Premium SP1

The ZT Affinity 7334Ma shares many similarities with the Pavilion Elite e9120y, HP's "Swiss Army PC" that also includes a midrange AMD Phenom II quad-core CPU, 8GB of DDR3 RAM, a large 1TB hard drive, and even a Blu-ray drive. The HP costs roughly $30 more, likely for its discrete 3D card. However, as you can see from the charts, the ZT actually delivers a faster computer for less money.

Adobe Photoshop CS3 image-processing test (in seconds)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)
ZT Group Affinity 7334Ma
100 

Apple iTunes encoding test (in seconds)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)
ZT Group Affinity 7334Ma
133 

Multimedia multitasking (in seconds)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)
ZT Group Affinity 7334Ma
461 

Unreal Tournament 3(in frames per second)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
1,280x1,024  

Cinebench
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
Rendering mltiple CPUs  
Rendering single CPU  
ZT Group Affinity 7334Ma
12,742 
3,502 
HP Pavilion Elite e9120y
11,010 
3,037 
Asus Essentio CG5270-BP003
10,435 
2,961 
Dell Inspiron 545
9,670 
2,749 
Gateway DX4300-03
9,367 
2,452 

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Where to Buy

ZT Affinity 7334Ma (Phenom 2 X4 945 3GHz, 8GB RAM, 1TB HDD, Vista Home Premium 64-bit)

Part Number: 7334Ma

MSRP: $799.00

See manufacturer website for availability.

About The Author

Justin Yu covers headphones and peripherals for CNET. When he's not wading through Web gulch or challenging colleagues to typing tests, you can find him making fun of technology with Jeff Bakalar every afternoon on The 404 show.