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Acer Aspire E300-7NB73
Acer is one of the market leaders in notebooks, but when it comes to buying a PC for the home, I must admit that Acer isn’t a brand name that would immediately spring into my mind. However, considering that it makes some of the best value notebooks around that’s probably short sighted. Indeed, is one of the few companies in the world that can make almost every component in the PC, a fact which is bound to lead to cost savings.
This seems to have paid dividends. With many brand name PCs you usually get high quality design and build, but not the best specification for your money as you would from smaller manufacturers. This package however, is actually pretty fantastic value for money, with a decent CPU, a capacious hard disk and a very generous sized 19in TFT.
If you don’t want a large tower dominating your desk or the floor underneath it, you’ll probably prefer a notebook. However, a regular desktop PC of a similar specification will cost you less and therefore still has a place. And you may simply want to have the benefit of a larger screen, keyboard and mouse.
However, the case on this Acer is pleasingly compact, in the main thanks to the use of a microATX motherboard. Design wise, it’s quite attractive, with a futuristic sort of ‘Star Trek’ look to it (but in a good way) with a pleasing mix of silver and black combined with the seemingly obligatory blue lights. Fortunately, these are done tastefully, with a glowing power switch and the Aspire brand lit up from behind. Unfortunately, the look is spoilt somewhat by the presence of stickers for Windows XP, Athlon 64, and the nVidia graphics, not to mention the Windows code sticker and an Acer code sticker on the side as finally one listing the specifications on the front as well. Enough, with the stickers already!
One oddity about the case is that Acer has rather bizarrely placed a rubberised pad, of the sort you see on foot stools in shoe shops. They don’t tend to feature the Acer logo though. I guess that if you place something on top it’s less likely to slide off.