We have a love-hate relationship with all-in-one PCs. They should be something we love. A slick single-unit design can be as glorious as the Apple iMac 21.5-inch model, but then many seem to be vastly expensive. That high price is something pioneered by the Apple iMac 27-inch unit and certainly matched by the Sony VAIO L Series, which we again had mixed feelings about.
A low price didn't put us off the bargain Advent Discovery MT1804, so we're keen to see if the well-priced MSI Wind Top AE2210 can manage to balance a £700 price tag with good performance.
Considering its 21.5-inch size, this all-in-one computer with touchscreen capabilities can certainly fulfil the remit of being a stealth PC hidden in the corner of any room, happily doubling up as a TV, media jukebox or fully-fledged Windows 7 PC.
It comes with a mini wireless media remote, mouse and keyboard, all styled in the same shiny black plastic as the all-in-one body. Part of the styling of the MSI Wind Top AE2210 is its "invisible" clear plastic surround, which gives the display a floating look.
Wire-free is something the MSI Wind Top AE2210 almost achieves - the only lead you actually need connected is the main power supply. MSI has opted for an external power supply unit, which is something to lose and an additional thing to have to lug around. We'd argue that this could help with cooling, but the unit has an obvious cooling fan. While it mostly ticks over at a low level, it's a little disappointing that it's audible at all.
Controls on the body of the MSI Wind Top AE2210 are kept to a minimum, with power and brightness controls tucked behind the outside rim. It's the same for the optical DVD rewriter, too, with the remaining expansion ports - including an HDMI port - hidden around the back.