eMachines budget desktop airs some stank

At first glance, the eMachines ET1161-07 seems like a decent setup, but a laundry list of sub-par components running on 32-bit Windows Vista just can't keep up with other similarly priced systems.

Do not attempt to adjust your monitor: yes, the eMachines you see to the left of this copy is just as boring as it appears. It's a budget system that costs $380, so we're not expecting world-class design, but eMachines doesn't even make it pretty on the inside. There's ample room for expansion, but the core components aren't blowing up skirts:

  • 2.1GHz AMD Athlon Dual Core Processor 4050e
  • 3GB 800MHz DDR2 SDRAM
  • 128MB shared NVIDIA GeForce 6150SE integrated graphics chip
  • 320GB, 7,200 rpm hard drive
  • dual-layer DVD burner
  • Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 (32-bit

The 32-bit Windows is really the final nail on this machine's coffin. With so many other systems in a price comparison ship with the 64-bit OS, that can speed up your machine by utilizing its memory to full capacity, especially in a busy multitasking environment. Check out the full review if you want to experience the ET1161-07's shameful performance scores, but if you really want to stretch your dollar the furthest, we actually recommend Acer's newest machine, the Aspire X1700. We don't have a full review up, but it's in the works to publish next week and trust us when we say that it's worth ponying up the extra $100.

Read our full review of the eMachines ET1161-07.

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.


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