VeryPC Broadleaf BL5220e review
The Broadleaf BL5220e certainly stands out from the crowd. It’s a squat, cube-like black box measuring 220 x 220 x 115mm (WDH) with a small desktop footprint. The utilitarian design might not be to everyone’s taste, but for most schools this won’t be an issue. The PC is designed to be used horizontally, with two large fan holes sitting on the sides of the case, although an optional mounting kit is available.
The Broadleaf BL5220e is constructed of brushed aluminium, resulting in a PC that’s lightweight, at just below 2kg, and easy to carry around. It uses an external PSU, and there’s a fair-sized power block attached to the plug lead. The Broadleaf’s case feels reassuringly robust, and it comes with a five-year collect-and-return warranty.
The PC’s front panel is clean and uncluttered, consisting of two USB 2 ports, headphone and microphone jacks, and a large power button. This arrangement is convenient for students wanting to connect various devices to the PC, although the addition of a memory card reader would have been useful. It also lacks an optical disc drive.
On the rear you’ll find two more USB 2 ports, plus USB 3 ports, a PS/2 port, parallel port, audio and microphone jacks, as well as Gigabit Ethernet, DVI and VGA ports. The supplier, VeryPC, can also laser-etch your school’s logo onto the front panel to personalise the product (and deter thieves); the sample we received looked very smart.
Our review unit came with Windows 7 Home Premium and OpenOffice.org 3.3 installed, and it ran all the applications we threw at it without any problems. The PC specifications include a 3.1GHz Intel Core i3-2100 CPU, 4GB of RAM and a 250GB hard disk, so there’s a decent amount of processing power and memory under the bonnet. The Broadleaf BL5220e is quiet in operation and the PC generates little heat, even when the processing power is cranked up.
The benchmark score of 0.68 indicates that this is a good all-round PC that will be able to handle a wide range of ICT tasks.
|Warranty||5 yr return to base|
|Total hard disk capacity||250GB|
|CPU family||Intel Core i3|
|CPU nominal frequency||3.10GHz|
|Graphics chipset||Intel HD Graphics 2000|
|Dimensions||220 x 220 x 115mm (WDH)|
|USB ports (downstream)||4|
Operating system and software
|OS family||Windows 7|