What Hi Fi Sound and Vision Tue, 15 Mar 2011, 10:49am

Acer Revo 100

Tested at £600
40100
2

With HD audio and 3D that worked properly, this clever PC could be a real winner

Write your own review

For

  • Compact
  • ingenious touchpad controller
  • intuitive software
  • good pictures and sound

Against

  • Doesn’t do HD audio as standard
  • 3D seemingly incompatible with current TVs

Boy, did we agonise over this one. Acer’s Revo 100 is in many ways the most properly thought-out media centre PC we’ve seen; but it’s got a couple of crucial flaws that mean we just can’t recommend it.

What does that equate to? Well, sadly, the most positive two-star review you’re ever likely to read.

This is smaller than the smallest standalone Blu-ray player, yet it boasts a 3D Blu-ray drive, 500GB hard drive, dual-core processor, TV tuner and 2GB of RAM.

What’s more, there’s an ingenious wireless touchpad that slides out of the chassis and can be used for both typing and pinchy, swipey finger gestures.
 
A satisfying interface
That touchpad combines with Acer’s new clear.fi software to make for a satisfying PC-on-TV experience. Fonts and icons are clear and colourful, and all of your photos, music and movies are automatically accessed and organised, whether they’re stored locally or on your network.

The performance is impressive, too. Sure, a standalone Blu-ray player will deliver more detail, but pictures here are still sharp, vibrant and controlled, while music is delivered with admirable gusto and weight.

So; the problems. Well, the problems are that the clear.fi software doesn’t
deliver HD audio, and that – despite claims that it should – 3D simply would
not work with any of the TVs we tried, including the Samsung UE65C8000 and Sony KDL-40NX713.

Both of these flaws could absolutely be fixed with software upgrades, so we may well be upping the star rating in the future, but for now we’re in the disappointing position of having to give a poor score to a product we really rather like.

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