The Acer Veriton VZ2640G-UP2117X ($599.99 list) is an inexpensive business all-in-one desktop. Its main claim to fame is that it can be set up out of the box with either Windows 7 Professional or Windows 8 Pro (more on that below), and that it is very well suited to VESA mounting on an arm or wall mount. If you need a specialized business all-in-one PC, then this should be on the short list. However, if you are a consumer looking for an inexpensive desktop or if you have a cash-strapped business that needs a number of identical, yet flexible systems, then other choices may be more attractive.
Design and Features
The VZ2640G-UP2117X is somewhat utilitarian looking, with a simple matte black plastic chassis with a removable back stand in an easel configuration. The back stand lets the system tilt over a decent range to accommodate both sitting and standing users. The 19.5-inch 1,600-by-900 resolution screen has an anti-glare coating, allowing you to use the system in a bright environment. Contrast this (pun intended) with more expensive systems like the Acer Aspire AZ3-605-UR23 ($999.99), which has a somewhat reflective piece of glass covering the screen. Granted, the Acer AZ3-605-UR23 uses the glass as a part of the touch screen mechanism. Like an old-school all-in-one desktop, Acer omits the glass in the VZ2640G-UP2117X to save both weight and cost. Since the VZ2640G-UP2117X can be configured with Windows 7 Professional, as on our review unit, the lack of touch is fine.
The system comes with an Ivy Bridge based Intel Pentium 2117U processor, 4GB of system memory, a DVD burner, 802.11 a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, and a 500GB 7,200rpm SATA hard drive. These are very respectable specs, particularly in the lower price band that the VZ2640G-UP2117X resides in. The system’s 1,600 by 900 resolution screen is adequate for normal Office activities, but you will find a much higher full HD (1,920-by-1,080) screen resolution on the Editors’ Choice for entry-level all-in-one desktops, the similarly priced Gateway One ZX4970G-UW308 ($598.00). The main benefit the VZ2640G-UP2117X has over its Gateway rival is the fact that the VZ2640G-UP2117X comes with an option for Windows 7 Pro, while the Gateway is stuck with Windows 8 (regular). Depending on your business needs, Windows 7 may be the only option you want to consider.
The VZ2640G-UP2117X has a decent number of I/O ports, though some of them are inconveniently located. The left panel has the system’s tray-loading DVD burner, mic and headphone jack, SD card reader, and one USB 3.0 port. The rest of the ports are on the back of the system: a VGA port, HDMI-in port, one USB 3.0 port, two USB 2.0 ports, and an Ethernet port. All of the ports in the back, including the one for the included AC adapter, are in a recessed shelf area. Since they are recessed and oriented vertically, the ports are hard to get to, particularly if you are plugging/unplugging the wired USB keyboard and mouse into the two USB 2.0 ports. This is likely so the cords don’t get in the way if you use the system’s VESA mounting system. If you use the system on a desk, however, the ports are very annoying.
One plus when you mount the system on an arm or wall mount is that the screen automatically rotates when you orient it in portrait mode. This is an unexpected pleasure for the user, provided you use a movable mount system. Another unexpected plus is that the webcam can be tilted up independently to turn it off, or all the way around so it can focus on a person or object on the other side of the screen. This is a boon for product demos or informal Web conferences in your office.
When you first set up the system, it will ask you if you want to use Windows 7 Professional or Window 8 Pro. This is important, because some companies need Windows 7 for backwards-compatibility for their applications, while others will want Windows 8 for future compatibility (Windows 8 will likely be supported by Microsoft for a longer period of time from today). If you have no preference, we recommend starting with Windows 7, since it is more compatible with older programs, and since this system doesn’t have a touch screen that is needed for Windows 8. Since it’s a business oriented system, the VZ2640G-UP2117X is free of pre-loaded software, something entry-level consumer systems like the Lenovo C540 ($499) and HP Pavilion 20-b010z ($449.99). The VZ2640G-UP2117X comes with a one-year warranty.
The VZ2640G-UP2117X is certainly adequate for day-to-day business tasks. It scores reasonably on the day-to-day PCMark 7 test, though systems like the Editors’ Choice for entry level business systems Lenovo ThinkCentre M92p Tiny ($580) and the Gateway One ZX4970-UW308 far outpace the Acer. Likewise on the multimedia tests like Handbrake and Adobe Photoshop CS6 the VZ2640G-UP2117X lagged by up to a minute or more compared to rivals. The takeaway is that the VZ2640G-UP2117X won’t win any speed awards, but it should be a competent performer and won’t feel slow for a few years, but faster machines will certainly last even longer.
The Acer Veriton VZ2640G-UP2117X certainly has the chops to earn our recommendation. It’s a competent all-in-one business system with a lot going for it, like the pivoting webcam, mount-friendly features, and a nice price. However, for the same money, the entry-level AiO Gateway One ZX4970-UW308 has a higher resolution screen, more memory, more performance, and a larger hard drive. The main advantage the Acer has over the Gateway system is that it includes Windows 7 for business users. Likewise, the entry-level business desktop Editors’ Choice Lenovo ThinkCentre M92p Tiny is more flexible, has more performance, and is more medium to enterprise business friendly. If you’re in the niche that must have an inexpensive All-in-one running Windows 7 instead of 8, then the Acer Veriton VZ2640G-UP2117X is worth a look. Otherwise, there are other choices.
|Operating System||Microsoft Windows 7 Professional|
|Graphics Card||Intel HD Graphics|
|Type||All-in-one, Touchscreen All-In-One|
|Processor Family||Intel Pentium|
|Monitor Type||LCD Widescreen|
|Primary Optical Drive||Dual-Layer DVD+/-RW|
|Screen Size||19.5 inches|
|Storage Capacity (as Tested)||500 GB|
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