If you’ve ever seen a business desktop, then you’ll know exactly how the Acer AX3300-U1322 Desktop PC looks like. Almost a third of the size for a traditional medium tower computer, this upright desktop is sleek, small and offers a number of convergence functions for your entire home. Going for an all black look with a glossy surface finish on the front cover, the desktop looks great with a tough metal casing full of cooling vents. The bundled USB keyboard and optical mouse look good too, but are a bit generic in terms of overall design.
Running on an AMD Athlon II X4 quad-core processor and NVIDIA GeForce 9200 integrated graphics, the Acer AX3300-U1322 is powerful enough to run most office applications, watch movies, listen to music, surf the Internet and play a few casual games; basically everything a home computer would be able to do. With 4GB of DDR2 RAM the desktop is very stable and can handle memory heavy image editing tasks. A 1TB hard disk drive gives you plenty of space to keep all your home movies, digital images and downloaded content while the super multi DVD drive lets you watch DVD movies, listen to CDs and burn archive disc media.
Connection-wise the Acer AX3300-U1322 offers nine USB ports, one FireWire port, one eSATA port, one HDMI port, one VGA port and 5.1 channel surround sound audio jacks to go with an Ethernet port for wired connections. The system runs on Windows 7 Home Premium and also has an all-in-one flash media card reader for CompactFlash, MMC, RSMMC, SD, xD, Memory Stick and Memory Stick PRO flash media. Expansion capabilities include one PCI-e x1 slot and one PCI-e x16 slot.
Performance for the Acer AX3300-U1322 is good if all you’re using it for are the aforementioned basic home computing tasks. While the system does offer a HDMI port the lack of a Blu-ray drive and the rather low-end integrated NVIDIA GeForce 9200 graphics means you won’t be watching any HD movies on your HDTV. However, thanks to the free PCI-e x16 slot, you can add-on a low-profile discrete graphics card like the ATI HD 5570 which can turn the desktop into a straight-up Home Theater Personal Computer with good gaming capabilities. You can also add-on a wireless networking adapter via the free PCI-e x1 slot so you can connect to your wireless network with ease.
By itself the Acer AX3300-U1322 already offers a great home computing convergence personal computer as it can connect up all your digital cameras, camcorders and play back your images, movies and music on your HDMI capable HDTV. However, its expansion capabilities offer even more flexibility and with the right choices in add-ons you can end up with a high-end HTPC and gaming computer for much less than if you were to buy one outright.