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Acer X3200 low profile desktop (not quite a nettop)
Acer X3200 low profile desktop (not quite a nettop)

I’ve never been quite as impressed with the idea of nettops as netbooks. While I value small size, light weight, and power saving features that provide extra battery life in a laptop, those features don’t matter as much to me in a desktop. But if you’ve got a small office space, or want to stick a small computer in a small space (like in your TV cabinet), or just don’t need a computer that consumes 65Watts of power when all you need it to do is surf the web, I supposed a nettop might be the way to go.


Asus and MSI have already released low cost, small form factor nettops that are sort of like desktop versions of the Asus Eee PC or MSI Wind netbooks. Now DigiTimes reports that Acer is preparing to launch a nettop. But unlike Asus and MSI, the Acer computer will likely use an AMD or VIA processor isntead of the seemingly ubiquitous Intel Atom processor.

Acer hasn’t ruled out the Atom CPU altogether. But the chip is in high demand for netbooks from Acer and other computer makers. So it’s possible the company could choose an alternate processor to miniize the imapct on Atom availability.

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5 replies on “Acer could launch a nettop next year”

  1. I am interested in something like the Nettop from MSI, at least their cheapest barebones model.

    Gigabit ethernet, the ability to jam 2/1TB drives in there (one in the 3.5 bay and one in the 5.25 bay) and run freenas or ubuntu through the CF adapter that they have under the motherboard.

    Nice little NAS system, small and cheap.

  2. For me, a “nettop” would be a useful device to keep on and stay online for… “downloading” where I wouldn’t rack up the power bill nor feel guilty about the carbon footprint.

  3. My next desktop, if any, will definitely be going in the direction of this form factor. I have been caught up in the bigger-faster-more-powerful thing for decades, but finally see the fallacy in this thinking. My latest desktop, a Dell Gen III XPS, is embarrassingly huge, with fuchsia back-lit front plate. I’m now looking to get more use out of my old PCs, with Linux. I’m even considering a Damn Small Machine (eBox III) (here) just for grins.

    This whole thing is beginning to look like a metaphor for the computer story in Isaac Asimov’s “Nine Tomorrows,” (pubished in 1959) where computers got bigger and bigger, then smaller and smaller; except that they haven’t yet started building themselves or re-started the big bang 🙂

    1. with a price tag of $375.00 eBox III can’t be taken seriousky… I mean, come on! almost four hundred bucks for THAT??? You can build something a little bit larger, but still passively cooled and silent w/ much less money… tom’s hardware has a nice writeup of using nano/atom/athlon 2k+ as a low power (and relatively low-cost) machine. It was linked to in the comments of the post on AMD netbook plans if I recall correctly

      1. Yes, it’s definitely overpriced–that’s why I’m just “considering” 🙂 but, even with its limitations (and because of them), I think it makes an interesting statement. Still, it would be tempting if they would include a tiny monitor at that price…. I’ll look for the tom’s hardware link.

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