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Acer Aspire U5-610-UB12 review: Bold looks, blah performance

W. Bryan Hastings | April 23, 2014
Acer's latest Aspire makes a striking first impression. The 23-inch all-in-one features a spacious, continuously smooth flat surface, from the top of its glossy jet-black bezel down to its Lucite stand spanning the width of its display. Call it a boldly minimalist fashion statement. The Aspire U5-610-UB12 is a less clear choice, no pun intended, for those more interested in strong price-to-performance ratios.

Weak gaming performance

The rest of the Aspire U5-610-UB12's component lineup is about what you'd expect in this price range, including an Intel Core i5-4200M CPU and 8GB of DDR3/1333 memory. Its benchmark performance reflects that, chalking up a middle-of-the-road Desktop WorldBench 9.0 score of 69. Our 100-point baseline is a pumped-up home-brew rig with an Intel Core i7-4770K processor, 16GB of DDR3/1600 memory, and a 250GB solid-state drive.

All-in-one PCs are typically not the right machines for playing hard-core games. This one is no exception, given its reliance on integrated graphics. If high-res gaming is your passion, point your joystick somewhere else. The Aspire U5 maxed out at just 32 frames per second, even at low res (1024x768 pixels), and the action herked and jerked at just 12fps when we boosted that up to the display's native resolution of 1920x1080 pixels. There is no slot on the motherboard to accommodate a discrete graphics card.

You'd better shop around 

Acer and its Gateway subsidiary are typically low-price leaders. Tech-savvy shoppers can often save serious green buying computers from them. But I don't think that's as true with the Aspire U5-6100UB12. Unless you're absolutely taken with its modern aesthetic, you'd be wise to take a look at what Dell, HP, and Lenovo offer in this price range before making a purchase decision.


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