HP has come out with a very popular line of space saving desktops called the “slimline”. In this review I have gotten my hands on the S3420F Slimline and given it a spin. I will let you know if the reduction in size has reduced its abilities (which is unfortunately so often the case). Finally I’ll let you know where this multimedia desktop will get the most use – in the office, living room, or a dorm room. First let me start with a few of the basics.
Processor: 2.8 GHz AMD Athlon 64 X2 5400+ dual-core
Storage Space: 500GB hard drive
RAM: 3 GB (Expandable up to a 4GB maximum)
Optical Drive: a CD R/RW with integrated DVD +/- R RW burner
Tuner: Both ATSC and NTSC
Video Card: Nvidia GeForce Go 6150
Operating System: Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium
Also Included in the box: Wired keyboard and mouse
This is another one of HP’s slim line desktops. This desktop is designed for those that need a powerful PC but are concerned with saving space. This particular slim line has more integrated multimedia components than the typical slim style PC. This means it can seamlessly be integrated into the entertainment center and have a similar look and profile when compared to the other components. With the integrated Tuners this also allows a typical monitor to become a television, this is particularly appealing to a dorm room type of situation where space is at a premium. The video card is adequate however I would have liked to have seen something a little stronger. It does play moderately graphically intensive games just fine though.
Integrated WiFi (for connecting to wireless networks)
1 Ethernet port (to connect to wired networks)
6 2.0 USB ports (to connect to any number of peripherals, like mice, printers, digital cameras, and iPods)
1 FireWire (This is used for high speed data transfer between other PC’s or your digital camcorder)
15 in 1 card reader (so you can remove your solid state memory from your portable devices and insert it directly into your desktop)
2 PS/2 ports (this is an old school peripheral input for mice and keyboards)
1 VGA output (this is a typical monitor connection)
1 mic in and 1 audio out
The connectivity of this small desktop is fairly standard. I would like to see a little more here in the way of video out. Especially with the integrated tuner and the more multimedia angle they’ve applied to this little space saving S3420F slim line. Otherwise this is a nice little PC. It is currently going for around $700. I like it at this price and don’t expect any drastic price drops. You may look out for some sales this summer when the rebate checks come out and the computer sales slump. This would be a great option for a college student or for the office. I don’t really like this as an entertainment center without a high definition output, but it is a great standard desktop.