Advent Discovery MT1804 review

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

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Our Verdict

You still don't actually need a touchscreen PC. But this has taught us not to approach machines with preconceptions based on their features; the touchscreen here is a nice extra tacked on to a very affordable and workable form factor, not the other way around. If there's a room in your house that's lacking a PC of its own, the Advent Discovery MT1804 is there to fill the gap.

For

  • Flexible form factor
  • Responsive touchscreen
  • Bargain price
  • Good enough for HD

Against

  • Cheap peripherals
  • Not much grunt
  • Low-res screen
  • Confusing design

You don't need a touchscreen PC. You just don't.

But perhaps you don't actually need a reason. Maybe all you need is a machine with a compelling form factor, a bright screen and a bargain-basement price, which just happens to have touch tacked on.

Maybe you need the Advent Discovery MT1804. Maybe.

The fold-out hinge means that the Discovery is useful in a host of situations; you can angle it backwards if you're placing it on a kitchen worktop, for instance, or fix it at 90 degrees to your desk. You can even, if you really want, lie it flat on a surface without any discernable loss in stability.

Unlike the Apple iMac there's no upward extension, though, so it's not particularly ergonomic on the desk unless you can find something suitable to place it on.

Continuing the iMac comparisons, only because there's not much of this style in the PC market, the built-in DVD drive is awkwardly placed. On the iMac, the superdrive is in a slot flush with the case; here it's a standard pop-out laptop drive tucked away behind the screen to the left, which faces backwards when ejected. It's not easy to get to at all.

It's the same with its ports - we would honestly prefer the overall thickness of the unit to have been extended and the ports dragged out to the very edges of the screen, rather than hidden away on the Discovery MT1804's rear outcrop.

That said, big points are awarded for the inclusion of a power button for the panel on the left edge of the screen, meaning that you can save power while keeping the Discovery MT1804 in use.