Our tests illustrate our biggest disconnect with the Nettop category. Next to traditional $399 and $499 desktops, as well as a $599 all-in-one from Averatec with a full-fledged desktop CPU, the Atom-based eMachines and Asus Nettops look just plain pathetic in trying to perform actual computing work. We agree that not everyone needs a fast computer. However, we'd submit that a Netbook, like HP's $499 Mini 5101 or Asus' $375 Eee PC 1005HA, offers a better deal with identical (if not faster) performance than a Nettop, as well as portability for the same price.
As it's both a budget desktop and an all-in-one, we don't expect much from the EZ1601-01 in the way of an upgrade path or general connectivity. eMachines provides no obvious means to access the case internals, so making memory, hard drive, or more ambitious upgrades is left to the truly dedicated. The external connection options offer only the basic, with only five USB 2.0 ports, an SD Card reader, and a pair of analog audio jacks. There's no Webcam on the EZ1601-01, and the only extra touch is a pair of buttons for controlling screen brightness.
|eMachines EZ1601-01||Average watts per hour|
|Raw (annual kWh)||50.3043|
|Energy Star compliant||Yes|
|Annual energy cost||$5.71|
While we hope we've made it clear that we hold Nettops in low regard, we are at least glad to see their power consumption is in keeping with their low performance. The eMachines EZ1601-01 has the lowest annual power cost of any PC we've tested so far, which is impressive considering it comes with a built-in display.
Finally, if you're still intent on purchasing a Nettop and the eMachines feature and value advantages over the Asus system haven't already swayed you, perhaps its customer service will. The two vendors share a one-year parts and labor warranty, but unlike Asus, eMachines offers 24-7 toll-free tech support, and has an easy-to-navigate support Web site with useful features.
Find out more about how we test desktop systems.
Windows XP Home SP3; 1.6Ghz Intel Atom N270; 1GB DDR2 SDRAM; 32MB (shared) Intel GMA 950 integrated graphics chip; 80GB, 5,400rpm Seagate hard drive
Averatec D1113 All-in-One
Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 (32-bit); 1.5GHz AMD Athlon X2 3250e; 2GB 800MHz DDR2 SDRAM; 512MB ATI Radeon HD 3200; 250GB 5,400 rpm Samsung hard drive
32-bit Windows Vista Home Premium; 2.2GHz Intel Pentium Core 2 Duo E2210; 3GB 800MHz DDR2 SDRAM; 256MB (shared) Nvidia nForce 620i integrated graphics chip; 320GB, 7,200rpm hard drive
Windows XP Home Edition SP3; 1.6GHz Intel Atom N270; 1GB 533MHz DDR2 SDRAM; 128MB (shared) Intel GMA 950 integrated graphics chip; 160GB 5,400 rpm Western Digital hard drive;
Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 (64-bit); 2.3GHz Intel Core 2 Quad Q8200; 4GB 800MHz DDR2 SDRAM; 32MB (shared) Intel GMA X4500 integrated graphics chip; 640GB 7,200rpm hard drive