Toshiba has just released its first ever all-in-one PC, while Apple has recently upgraded its own tried-and-true iMac. These aren’t the only two PC packages on the market, so we’re looking at some of the latest and greatest in the all-in-one market (plus a little scoop on how to create your own mobile office).
Forget the large tower – an all-in-one puts the innards behind the monitor in one clean package – usually cheaper than you’d get in a typical all-out desktop set up. It’s not the most mobile experience, but multi-touch controls splayed across most touchscreen units gives that tablet feel and more control than the average desktop.
$1399/$1949 | apple.com/au
The iMac has been a staple of the Apple range for a decade, blending simple beauty with functionality and performance – it’s essentially what an all-in-one is meant to be. The software is simple and typical of any other Mac, and runs smooth.
The tech giant’s new iMac All In One offering runs with the more powerful Intel Core i “Sandy Bridge” quad-core processors and 10Gbps Thunderbolt I/O data connections.
|THUNDERBOLT & LIGHTNING: Not only is it an eye catcher, but everything on the screen will grab you at high def resolution (which is stretched beyond typical HD on the 27-inch model) with high picture quality and extra-wide viewing angles.|
As before, the iMacs come in two screen sizes: 21.5 and 27 inches. Both now have quad-core i5 processors with an option to step up to Core i7 chips, with speeds up to 3.4GHz.
The 21.5-inch iMac has a single Thunderbolt port while the 27-inch model has two. The new models also have built-in HD cameras for making video calls using Apple’s FaceTime technology in high definition to other FaceTime equipped macs or standard def to iPod, iPad and iPhone.
OS: Mac OS X
CPU: Intel Core i5 or i7/4GB
Graphics: Advanced AMD Radeon HD discrete graphics
Screen: 21.5in, 1920×1080/27 inch 2560 x 1440
Storage: 500GB/1TB hard drive
$1899 | toshiba.com.au
This high-powered, stylish device is Toshiba’s first all-in-one offering, and it isn’t a shy first appearance. Apart from top hardware, it houses handy features like facial recognition, in-built TV tuner and a USB sleep-and-charge function.
|SMART, ON AND OFF: This clever package works on and off the field, with settings to charge USB devices while switched off and a function that turns the PC into a set of speakers while it sleeps.|
Preloaded CyberLink PowerCinema brings the whole entertainment system together, while HDMI input and six USB ports and Blu-ray player give it the whole connectivity range. Audio is top quality with Onkyo speakers pushed out in Dolby. On top of that is Resolution+ technology that automatically converts standard definition to HD to make the most of the 21.5 inch screen.
OS: Windows 7
CPU: Intel Core i7 or i5
RAM: 6GB DDR3
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 3000
Size: 531x190x405mm, 9kg
Asus Eee Top ET2400IGTS
$1899 | asus.com.au
This monster of an all-in-one system tops the range with the latest high-end processor, high-end RAM (and lots of it), multi-touch functionality on the touchscreen and a whole heap of storage to boot. Two USB 3.0 ports plus 4x 2.0 and HDMI input add the most current connectivity on the all-in-one market.
|ULTIMATE IN MULTIMEDIA: Built-in Blu-ray reader on a 3D screen with Asus SonicMaster audio technology, all on a 1920 x 1080 resolution screen, makes this an audio-visual powerhouse to compliment your home cinema.|
Touted as the first all-in-one PC that can be upgraded, you can top up RAM and other internal components via an opening on the back of the monitor – customising your PC is as simple as tinkering with the tower of an ordinary desktop PC.
OS: Windows 7
CPU: Intel Core i5-2400S
RAM: Up to 8GB DDR3
Graphics: AMD Radeon HD6470
Screen: 23.6in multi-touch screen, 1920×1080
Size: 582x495x~50mm, <13kg
HP TouchSmart 610-1030a
$2699 | hp.com
This desktop goes up against the Asus for built-in power, with an Intel Core i7 processor, 8GB of DDR3 RAM and 2TB of storage in the boot. It’s also one hell of an entertainment hub with its stocked Blu-ray player, eight USB ports, audio line-out with a dedicated port for a sub, two separate headphone and two separate microphone jacks.
|FEEL THE BEAT: HP has jumped onto the Beats marketing trail by tying the brand into their latest TouchSmart model. Only available on HP computers, Beats Audio ups the sound quality on laptops and PCs.|
The screen is more malleable than most, reclining back to a 60-degree angle for a comfortable, personal computing experience.
High-end Beats audio output and a TV tuner in-built means you can enjoy your own movies and some live TV in the highest quality.
OS: Windows 7
CPU: Intel Core i7-870
RAM: 8GB DDR3
Graphics: ATI Radeon HD 5570
Size: 58.5×10.3×45.1cm, 11.2kg
Dell Vostro 330
$899 | dell.com/au
Connectivity is right at home with Dell’s 7-in-1 media card reader, six USB ports, 2 megapixel webcam and HD audio speakers. The multi-touch widescreen display sits atop an Intel Core i3 or i5 processor and is designed to be strictly business, not featuring Dell’s multimedia launching utility or any other trial software of the like.
|WORK THE WEBCAM: Security features include facial recognition software, letting you tailor control to your own handsome mug. The deal gets sweater with cyber threats protection.|
A slew of business support utilities come in tow, and a removable rear cover allows the end-user to service their own product unlike most fixed-enclosure all-in-one PCs. Design-wise, it’s similar to the Inspiron One 2305, but the business professional angle sets it apart.
OS: Windows 7
CPU: Intel Core i5
RAM: 4GB DDR3
Graphics: 1024MB ATI Radeon HD5470, Integrated Intel HD
Screen: 23in, 1920×1080
Size: 420x570x90mm, 8.95kg
Lenovo ThinkCentre M90z
$1939 | Lenovo.com/au
Lenovo pushes its business edge with Lenovo Enhanced Experience configuration that speeds boot up and shut down times. An onboard DisplayPort lets users increase their screen space by attaching a second monitor. The PC doubles as standalone monitor that can be used as a second screen for a ThinkPad laptop.
|THINKING SMART: If you fork out an extra $300, you can pick up multi-touch control and an in-built camera on the same model, but it makes this a pretty pricey option.|
A digital array of microphones aid voice clarity alongside noise suppression and echo cancelation, and a HD 2 megapixel webcam make for high quality video conferencing – physical buttons for sound and picture power make controlling these settings extra simple.
OS: Windows 7
CPU: 3.2GHz Intel Core i3-550 Processor
RAM: 2GB DDR3
Graphics: Integrated Intel
Operating a home business or working in the corporate world means you’re constantly on the go. You can’t take your all in one with you, but who needs a PC with wireless internet, smartphones and tablets?
Here are the five essentials for the office on the go:
Virgin WiFi Modem
$ plan | virginmobile.com.au
A small device that houses a SIM card links up to three WiFi-enabled devices to the internet at once, so you can take the internet with you on your laptop, smartphone, or any other portable device you have with you on the run with a WiFi hotspot. It’s password protected just like your home router, so you’ll be mobile but protected.
$840 | Motorola.com
This dual-core smartphone boasts PC power in a small phone package. Webtop, a web-based application used with optional docks, mobilises the office desktop in a device that’s smaller than any tablet PC on the market. It doubles as a miniature laptop, in-car navigation and entertainment centre. Custom widgets display as much (or little) info as suits.
Hitachi Portable Drive
$94.50 | hitachi.com.au
Designed sleek for portability and fast with USB 3.0 inter-face, the Hitachi Touro Mobil Pro is a 500GB storage device tailored to the mobile user. Better yet, cloud access to all backed up data means you don’t even need the portable hard drive with you to access your data on a notebook, smart-phone, tablet, or any other device with an internet connection.
Apple iPad 2
$579 | apple.com/au
With intuitive controls, a wealth of apps, slim build and a healthy ten hours of battery life, the latest iPad makes for a lightweight, long lasting and functional addition to the mobile office. While not fit for any labour intensive jobs, it’ll tackle presentations, word processing and online interactions with ease – and just a little bit of style.
Livescribe Echo 4GB
From $259 | Livescribe.com.au
A computer in a pen? Making sharing, capturing and organisation simple, the Echo smartpen from Livescribe lets you record everything you hear and write. Giving clear recordings that can be replayed on the go, or transferred via a micro USB onto your desktop, it is available in two models, 4GB and 8GB, recording 400 or 800 hours.