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In the all-in-one space, it's hard not to talk about design and mention the elephant in the room, that being Apple's iMac line. Love or loathe them, it's hard not to admit that Apple builds its products with design as a central principle, and as such, iMacs look quite good. Most all-in-one PC competitors have struggled in this space with cheap plastic designs, but Dell's Inspiron One 2310 gives Apple's now ageing iMac design something of a run for its money, with a nicely rounded bezel, clear Perspex rear stand and prop feet. Whether or not the design appeals to you is obviously a matter of personal taste, but we rather like it. It's even got a decent wireless and keyboard mouse combination thrown in as well.
Dell's general mantra for its PC lines is customisation above all else, but in the case of the Inspiron One 2310, it's very much a fixed menu item, after a fashion. There is a customisation tab for the product, but all it will let you select are add-on services, and at the time of writing, the option to buy a Kogan Ezinav G4 GPS. Just in case you needed one, and, we noted, at the time of writing, Dell was charging a $10 premium for it.
We mentioned that the Inspiron One 2310 comes in a fixed menu fashion, but there are options within that, and as we trawled Dell's local website, it became clear that if you weren't careful with selection, you might not end up with the system you wanted. The AU$1799 system supplied to CNET Australia for review featured an Intel Core i5 M460 2.53GHz, 6GB of RAM, 1TB 7200rpm SATA hard drive, an ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5470 1GB graphics adapter, Blu-ray Drive/Multi-DVD writer and a 1920x1080 multi-touch-capable monitor.
We were initially confused when heading to Dell's website, because there's a much cheaper Inspiron One 2310 on offer with an Intel Core i3 370M 2.4GHz processor, 4GB of DDR3 RAM, 500GB 7200rpm hard disk drive and 23-inch non-touch monitor. If you are keen on the Inspiron One, check carefully that you're getting the system you think you are, in other words. Dell does make it clear what you're buying, but the layout of the website makes it hard to see all the options all of the time, especially as you can't upgrade individual components within the Inspiron One 2310's shell.
Like many touch-capable Windows 7 systems before it, the Dell Inspiron One 2310's touch capability didn't particularly impress us. Windows 7 remains functional with touch, but not to an extent where you'd omit using the keyboard and mouse instead for any real application. Dell does include some touch-sensitive applications, including screen savers, but they're not enough to make touch a must-have feature as yet.
From an entertainment standpoint the Inspiron One 2310 acquits itself well with 1080p support, although on a screen this size full HD isn't quite as impressive as it could be. In our standard benchmarks, the Inspiron One 2310 returned a PCMark05 score of 6981 but a 3DMark06 score of 3808, which isn't great for a non-laptop system. It's still capable enough for most tasks, but this is in no way a heavy-duty gaming system.
As an all-in-one system for somebody who only needed moderate performance, but the frills of a touchscreen and integrated Blu-ray, the Inspiron One 2310 is a reasonable, but not exceptional purchase option. As always, a desktop system with the same components will cost you less.