There’s a new iMac competitor in town from Averatec. It’s name is incredibly bad if not descriptive: All-In-One PC.
Regarding other iMac wannabes, Gateway’s One was rather unimpressive in the specs department, but Dell’s One (yes, the same name as the Gateway) seemed to be a worthwhile machine. I wrote up the Dell here, but as you can see in that post’s subsequent updates it turned out to be a bit of a bust.
So let’s look at this latest entrant in the iMac ring.
It’s clear the strong points are supposed to be design (looks like a black iMac from the front), non-iMac features, and price. But it’s hard to examine this box and be very impressed.
Let’s consider what they tout:
Unlike the iMac, the AIOPC uses a desktop class Core 2 Duo instead of the mobile version, After the Dell, however, I’m not falling for that again.
First, it only runs at 2GHz; the iMac’s processors soundly beat that. Second, the desktop models run hotter, which should be obvious by looking at the sides and back (above) of this thing. It’s deep, and the back is ugly with three sets of holes. Needs to be, though, in order to support the larger thermal envelope of the desktop CPU.
So why use a desktop processor? I’m assuming cost.
Sounds nicer than the 20-inch Apple offers at the same price, but it’s just 1680 x 1050, same as the iMac.
2GB RAM expanadble to 4GB.
It’s a shame that Vista can only use 3.12GB of RAM. (Another dirty little Microsoft Windows secret no one talks about.)
TV tuner and remote.
This is something Dell also pushed, and it doesn’t seem to be helping the Dell any. Further, it’s listed as optional but I cannot find a price for it on the web site.
Now let’s consider what they don’t tout:
- No Bluetooth.
- Wireless is b/g, not the “n” variety.
In my opinion, these are pretty big communications drawbacks for a “modern” machine today.
- No Firewire
I guess you can watch movies with the built-in tuner, but there’s no sense importing your own video because your kids are too ugly to film anyway (and don’t even get me started on your pets).
- Unknown amount of video RAM
It’s an nVidea chipset, but how much video memory is a mystery.
Built-in 6W amp for the speakers? Please. Sure, the iMac is no powerhouse but it’s 24W amp drives the speakers pretty darn well.
- No software.
At least Dell tried to counter iLife via an Adobe software suite. Averatec doesn’t try to compete here at all. They include nothing. Ouch!
I just don’t see the attraction in this thing, especially at the price. It starts at the same $1199 as Apple’s iMac, and doesn’t offer much. A few more USB slots, a media reader. These are nice to have maybe, but over a better processor, firewire, audio and networking? I don’t think so. Heck, even if they threw in the TV tuner I’d still feel the same way.
Regarding performance, at the same price Apple’s base model — with it’s 20% faster processor — will likely beat this thing pretty handily. And moving to Apple’s next in line for $150 will crush it. Totally, completely, crush it. And you’ll be able to do more in both cases because you have the great iLife suite right out of the box!
If you must have a TV tuner on your next computer, get an iMac and add one of the external tuners available.
If you must have a TV Tuner on your next computer and it must be a PC, look at Dell’s One.
In my view, the AIOPC just doesn’t cut it.