Editors' note: This review is part of our 2009 Retail Laptop and Desktop Holiday Roundup, which covers specific fixed configurations of popular systems found in retail stores.
The Averatec D1130 All-In-One is a stripped-down version of the D1133 we reviewed last month, and while this version cuts the price down to only $399, it also strips away many of the features that gave the higher-end model some value. With its puny 1.6GHz Intel Atom chip, 1GB of memory, and integrated Intel graphics chip, this self-contained desktop offers little appeal in terms of specs and performance. The generous 18.4-inch LCD is a nice bonus, but not enough to offset the price performance of traditional budget desktops, like the Gateway SX2800-01, which offer a far better value for the same price.
The D1130 retains the same shape and design as the models that came before it. A large silver arm extends from the base and attaches to a 18.4-inch LCD monitor that offers a wide range of vertical motion. You can even bend the display back so it lies parallel to the tabletop with its face up toward the ceiling. Although impressive, as stated in the D1133, we fail to see the benefit in this feature without a touch screen, but we look forward to future versions that take advantage of Windows 7's multitouch capabilities. The D1130 ships with Windows XP Home Edition, a necessary step down from Windows Vista that came on the D1133 given the D1130's modest specs.
Although Lenovo's 20-inch C300 has the largest display we've seen in a sub-$600 Nettop, its 1,600x900 resolution and black levels can't keep up with Averatec's crisp 18.4-inch, 1,680x945 screen. DVDs and streaming video look sharp and clear, and Averatec offers an added VGA port on the side if, for some reason you want to connect it to an external display. Finally, the audio output is so low that you'll likely need external speakers to enjoy a movie at a reasonable volume.
That actually raises a few questions for us about the utility of either system as a home entertainment device. If you can see the screen but not hear the sound from either the Lenovo or the Averatec without sitting in front of it or adding speakers, then neither system can claim that it's convenient to install, kiosk-style, as a movie watching device in a kitchen or some other high-visibility area in your home. At best, these systems work as Web terminals, with light-duty media playback an added bonus. And if all you're doing in browsing the Web, where screen size isn't always the primary consideration, why even bother with a fixed device? For our money, a portable Netbook makes much more sense.
|Averatec D1130||Lenovo C300|
|CPU||1.6GHz Intel Atom N270||1.6GHz Intel Atom N330|
|Memory||1GB 667MHz DDR2 SDRAM||4GB 667MHz DDR2 SDRAM|
|Graphics||224MB (shared) Intel GMA 950 integrated graphics chip||512MB (shared) ATI Mobility Radeon 4530 integrated graphics chip|
|Hard drives||160GB, 5,400rpm||640GB, 7,200 rpm|
|Optical drive||dual-layer DVD burner||dual-layer DVD burner|
|Networking||10/100 Ethernet LAN, 802.11b/g wireless||Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11b/g wireless|
|Display size||18.4 inches||20 inches|
|Operating system||Windows XP Home Edition SP3||Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 (32-bit)|
The value and price differences between the Averatec and the Lenovo C300 make for an obvious buying decision, even for shoppers on a budget. The two systems share a similar 1.6Ghz Intel Atom chip, but the Lenovo enjoys four times the memory, twice the video memory, four times the storage space, Gigabit Ethernet, and an extra 2 inches of display for only $150 more. In the Nettop space, the Averatec falls short of the Lenovo's propensity for media consumption and storage. If you're shopping to get the most bang for your buck in performance and features, we recommend you turn away from the Nettop space entirely and check out a more fully featured option like the Gateway SX2800-01 slim tower PC.
|Rendering multiple CPUs||Rendering single CPU|
If a side-by-side feature comparison didn't do it for you, take a look at the less-than-flattering performance benchmark results. While a dual-core AMD chip gives the D1133 an edge over the competition, the D1130 has no such luck and finished dead last in three out of four of our tests. It's almost universally slower than the lowly eMachines EZ1601-01 but more importantly, every Nettop in this chart is disappointing compared with the Gateway SX2800-01, which benefits from all the robust features you would expect from a $450 system. Averatec also includes a few useful features on the otherwise spare exterior of the D1130, although they're difficult to locate. We're always glad to see hard controls for display power, brightness, and volume on an all-in-one, but we wish Averatec hadn't obscured them under a ledge of plastic sticking out from the D1130's base unit.
Although the D1133 struggled to redeem its paltry performance ratings with semi-useful DVI and eSATA outputs, the D1130 removes any chance of redemption with a simple offering of five USB ports, a VGA port, and a standard collection of headphone and microphone jacks.
|Averatec D1130 All-In-One|
|Raw (annual kWh)||47.7828216|
|Energy Star compliant||Yes|
|Annual operating cost (@$0.1135/kWh)||$5.42|
As you can see by the power consumption chart, both Averatec systems maintain a relatively low power cost per year. Given its low-wattage CPU, we expect the D1130 to draw power sparingly. We can't say many good things about this system, but at least its power consumption doesn't give another opportunity to say something negative.
Averatec's parent company, Tri-Gem, backs the D1130 All-in-One with one year of parts-and-labor coverage, in keeping with the industry standard. Its phone-based support is a toll call, and is only open on Monday to Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. PST. Online support for technical issues is basically nonexistent.
Find out more about how we test desktop systems.
Averatec D1133 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 5,400rpm Samsung hard drive
Averatec D1130 All-in-One
Windows XP SP3; 1.6GHz Intel Atom N270; 1GB 667MHz DDR2 SDRAM; 224MB (shared) Intel GMA 950 integrated graphics chip; 160GB, 5,400rpm 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 5,400rpm 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
Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 (32-bit); 1.6GHz Intel Atom 330; 4GB 667MHz DDR2 SDRAM; 512MB ATI Radeon HD 4350; 640GB 5,400rpm Western Digital hard drive