HP TouchSmart 610-1230uk Review

Pros

  • Beautiful 23in IPS display
  • Class-leading connectivity
  • Well-built and quiet
  • Blu-ray and DVB-T tuner
  • Adjustability allows comfortable touch

Cons

  • No 'Sandy Bridge Inside'
  • Not as slim or sexy as some rivals
  • No HDMI out

Key Specifications

  • Review Price: £1099.00
  • 23in, Full HD, IPS display with touch
  • Core i5 CPU, 6GB RAM, 1.5TB HDD
  • Blu-ray drive, TVB-T TV tuner
  • USB 3.0, dual HDMI-inputs
  • Wireless keyboard, mouse and remote


Touch is a great way of interfacing with products, as
abundantly proved by smartphones such as the Apple iPhone 4 and tablets like the excellent Asus Eee Pad Transformer. Unfortunately, we haven’t found it as useful on most
all-in-one (AIO) PCs we’ve looked at, as on an upright display it’s more
tiring than just using a mouse and keyboard.



HP looks set to change all that with its brand-new
TouchSmart 610, which folds down to a comfortable 30 degrees for extended touch
sessions. As it also throws in a Full HD 23in screen, multiple HDMI inputs, a
Blu-ray player and digital TV tuner, USB 3.0 connectivity, a Core i5 CPU and
1.5TB of storage along with dedicated graphics, we’re hopeful that this PC can
finally take on the mighty 22in iMac for the sub-27in all-in-one crown.


 


As expected, compared to the sharp, aluminium lines of the
iMac, the 610 doesn’t quite hold up. However, as it’s far more adjustable than
the pitiful tilt of Apple’s machines, your fingers will thank you for its lack
of sharp edges – especially when carrying the PC between locations.


 


When put up against less premium rivals like the MSI Wind Top AE2400, its combination of matt black and glossy gunmetal grey is
quite attractive. Only the glossy black stand, which matches little else about
the PC, sticks out like a sore thumb. We wish HP had kept the finish more
consistent. Build quality is excellent, with no unwanted flex or creak in the
panels.


 


Thanks to its unique sliding hinge mechanism, which allows
for its semi-horizontal positioning, the TouchSmart 610 is also
height-adjustable in its upright mode – already a definite advantage over most
AIO rivals. However, this is limited to raising the screen’s base from 2.5 to
5.5cm off your desk. Height adjustments are also quite stiff, and you’ll
definitely need two hands to perform them. Tilt is far more forgiving and very
generous.


 


Sliding the 610 into its ‘easy-touch’ position, meanwhile,
is smooth but still takes a little effort. Also, it’s important to ensure that you
have enough free desk space in front of the machine, and that the mouse and
keyboard are out of the way. We will cover what it is like to use the TouchSmart
with your fingers later on in the review.


 


Last of all, unscrewing a section of the PC’s base and
re-attaching it to its rear allows it to act as a wall-mount. While this will
doubtless have limited appeal, especially since you’d lose out on the machine’s
tilting ability, it’s nevertheless a thoughtful inclusion.


 


Topping things off nicely, the 610 stays very quiet even
under load.

Unlike other sites, we thoroughly test every product we review. We use industry standard tests in order to compare features properly. We’ll always tell you what we find. We never, ever accept money to review a product. Tell us what you think - send your emails to the Editor.