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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.