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Advent Discovery MT1804 review

Low-cost and low-powered - a great price touch PC

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The Discovery MT1804 is not a performer, that's for sure. It wouldn't be unreasonable to call it weak, at least in appearance, because its single-core Celeron 900 processor isn't anywhere near the level of modern Core CPUs.

However - being realistic - at 2.2GHz it's not completely without processing merit, and the latest Core line goes above and beyond the call of duty. The Celeron 900 is about as beefy as the current range of Atom chips, perhaps a little more so, which should put it into a little bit of perspective.

That processor isn't helped by the rest of the core components. There's not much muscle in the graphics department, since the Discovery MT1804 sports an XXX integrated chipset, so you can forget about playing 3D games or doing anything particularly high-end on it.

There's a bog standard 320GB HDD spinning at laptop speeds, so storage is reasonable but not remarkable, plus the standard 3GB RAM that you'll find on most cheap notebooks.

So, specification wise, this really is halfway between a laptop and a netbook, wrapped in an all-in-one shell. There's not actually a standard for the PC all-in-one, so there's no point in complaining that it's underpowered: we doubt you'd get much more in a Windows 7 tablet, which would cost a lot more for a lot less.

It's actually pretty well-designed, and we think it hits the intended note, bar a couple of heavy flaws - primary of which is that you're stuck with the standard number of laptop outputs. Use the wired peripherals included and you'll have filled two of the three USB ports immediately, which isn't ideal, particularly because said peripherals are pretty cheap and plasticky.

But most important in this package, given its flexibility and the fact that you'll be smearing your fingers all over it, is the screen. And it's good, a bright widescreen 18.5-inch panel with unusually decent viewing angles, lacking only in resolution at 1366 x 768. It's the perfect size for a bedroom, neat enough for a kitchen counter and adequate for the desk.