Acer Veriton 3700GX review

Price when reviewed

Acer would have you believe the Veriton is the ultimate space saver, but against machines such as the HP dc7600 it’s positively large. You do get the option of vertical as well as horizontal mounting for a small footprint, however. Being 101mm wide, the four free slots will only accommodate half-height expansion cards.

Acer Veriton 3700GX review

There’s no shortage of power on tap from the 3GHz Pentium 4 630 CPU, supported by Intel’s 915G Express chipset and 512MB of PC2-3200 RAM. This combination saw it take second place in our 2D application benchmarks with a score of 0.78.

Unlike the Dell and Fujitsu Siemens, the motherboard has a conventional layout rather than BTX. It’s no disadvantage, though. The CPU has plastic ducting over the fan to direct air out of the rear grille. With the fan covered, there’s hardly any noise out of the side: in our tests, we measured an idle noise of 29dBA.

The 3700GX on review has a part number ending in U06, meaning it has a DVD-ROM beside the floppy (the U07 has a CD-RW/DVD-ROM drive). Although the Lenovo also has a DVD-ROM and the HP just a CD-ROM, it’s still short of the three CD-RW drives and the DVD writer elsewhere. The hard disk, though, is the same 80GB seen across all PCs with the exception of the generous 160GB Evesham. The disk has a Serial ATA/300 interface, but even though the motherboard supports only Serial ATA/150 this doesn’t hamper performance.

Acer isn’t particularly generous with warranty: only the first year is on-site cover, with the final two return-to-base. It’s worth noting that the Acer isn’t the easiest to work on either. Three thumbscrews have to be unscrewed before the case comes off. All three drive bays are part of one assembly, which pivots and lifts out in one. Cabling is a mess, though, with plugs and wires behind the optical drive restricting access to the memory slots.

The hard disk is difficult to remove, and we also discovered that the edges of the steel cage are razor-sharp. Plus, this is the only PC here without WEEE compliance.

On the positive side, the case has an intrusion switch, and four of the eight USB ports are at the front. Oddly, 7.1-channel audio is integrated – unnecessary for business use. Acer bundles a comfortable keyboard and optical mouse set, though.

As long as nothing goes wrong, the 3700GX is an attractive PC with good performance, but more rounded offerings elsewhere limit its appeal.

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