The Asus has plenty of space available inside for upgrades. It has a standard PCI slot for an aftermarket video card, two PCI Express slots, and a single 1x PCI Express slot for further expansion. You can also add two more sticks of memory--two slots are occupied by 2GB sticks already--and another hard drive to the open bay.
To make up for its speed deficiencies, the Asus has more connectivity options than the HP has. The Asus has an HDMI port, S/PDIF digital audio in, 10 USB ports, and the standard analog audio jacks. We connected the system to a standard desktop monitor with an HDMI cable and the Essentio ran full-screen video from YouTube, Hulu, Vimeo, and Netflix without any hiccups and it played full 1080p HD movie trailers from Apple's Web site.
Since we don't normally advocate using full-size desktop towers in the living room, we recommend that you use a slimtower system--such as the Gateway SX2840-01 or the recently released SX2801-01e--if you seriously plan to view your media on a TV in a living room.
|HP Pavilion p6510y||Average watts per hour|
|Raw (annual kWh)||259.33104|
|Energy Star compliant||No|
|Annual power consumption cost||$29.43|
Out of the five desktops in our comparison, the HP Pavilion p6510y costs the most to power during the course of a year at $29.43. With a annual power consumption cost of $19.32, the Asus Essentio won't make as large of an impact on your wallet as the HP over time. Even still, you shouldn't be surprised to learn that neither system comes close to earning Energy Star certification.
According to Asus' warranty card, the Essentio CM5675-07 has 24-7 tech support by phone and one-year of parts-and-labor coverage. Inexplicably, what you won't find on Asus' Web site is any mention of the Essentio brand. Asus has not acknowledged the Essentio name on its Asus Web site since the brand launched last year. That makes the prospects for downloading drivers or finding online support help dismal.
Find out more about how we test desktop systems.
Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit); 2.8GHz Intel Dual-Core E5500; 4GB 1,333MHz DDR3 SDRAM; 128MB (shared) Intel GMA X4500 integrated graphics chip; 1TB, 7,200rpm hard drive
Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit); 3.0GHz Intel Core i3 540; 8GB 1,333MHz DDR3 SDRAM; 64MB (shared) Intel GMA X4500 HD integrated graphics chip; 1TB 7,200rpm Western Digital hard drive
HP Pavilion p6510y
Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit); 2.8GHz AMD Athlon II X4 630; 4GB 1,333MHz DDR3 SDRAM; 256MB (shared) ATI RS880 integrated graphics chip; 750GB, 7,200rpm hard drive
Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit); 2.8GHz AMD Athlon II X2 240; 3GB 800MHz DDR2 SDRAM; 256MB (shared) Nvidia GeForce 6150SE integrated graphics chip; 640GB 7,200rpm Western Digital hard drive