Acer Revo RL100 digital entertainment station review

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We don’t review many tech products on TameBay, but this is one I couldn’t resist sharing. I’ve recently obtained a large wall mounted flat screen TV, and wanted to find a way to use it for Internet services as well. I’m not going to be using it for eBay (well not much), but there are a ton of services I wanted such as BBC iPlayer and ITV Player along with YouTube, streamed media and of course video conferencing with Skype.

This week a friend who knows tech products inside out recommended the telling me it would run iPlayer, Skype etc with no problems and as a bonus is also a Blu-Ray player. The recommendation was good enough for me, especially when I saw the dinky little slide-out wireless mouse touchpad (no batteries required) with a single button to switch from touchpad to backlit keyboard mode. I’m a sucker for neat gadgets!

Getting the unit installed was easy, just connect the cables and turn it on (although I didn’t realise I’d got a Wifi model until I turned it on making the 10m Ethernet cable I’d bought home from work obsolete). The real surprise was to find out that the Acer Revo RL100 actually houses a mobile AMD Athlon II Neo Dual Core processor, has 3Gb of DDR3 Ram and a 640GB hard drive – That makes it more powerful than my current PC and gives plenty of room for music and movie storage. Add to that I was expecting it to be a souped up Linux box so discovering that it’s running Windows 7 Home Premium means it’ll do anything and everything other than make the popcorn.

So what the unit has inside, is a pretty powerful computer with an integrated Freeview tuner, an HDMI connection for your TV or monitor coupled with a Blu-Ray/DVD-RW player, Ethernet and Wifi with a couple of USB ports and a touchpad wireless controller so that you can run everything from the comfort of your armchair.

The only disadvantage so far has been someone trying to Skype me in the middle of watching a film – I must remember to turn Skype off when I’m not wanting to be disturbed, but it’s going to be great with the addition of a webcam for when I want to use Skype for video calls.

Overall the Revo appears to be a pretty amazing piece of kit, and has made my old DVD-RW/Freeview tuner redundant. If you’re looking to make your TV Internet enabled, so long as you have an HDMI port, this is one toy that you shouldn’t resist. If you look at this unit as a top of the range Blu-Ray DVD-RW Freeview tuner with a wireless touchpad controller it’s a pretty good deal. When you consider you’re also getting a full blown Windows 7 computer but in a stylish slim unit that won’t look out of place in your living room it’s a bargain.

There are two models out there, the lower spec only has 2GB of RAM, so if you buy one make sure you buy the 3GB, Wifi, TV Tuner model and although price can be as much as £500-£600 you can currently pick up the with £9.99 carriage.



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