Advertisement
Advertisement

Acer Aspire M3802 review

Kat Orphanides
28 Feb 2010
Acer Aspire M3802
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
690
inc VAT

This smart little PC has 1.5TB of disk space as well as both Blu-Ray and DVD drives, but its relatively small monitor and slow graphics card let it down.

Advertisement

Specifications

2.5GHz Intel Core 2 Quad Q8300, 4.000000 RAM, 20in 1,600x900 display, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit

Acer's Aspire M3802 is a compact and attractive PC which balances power against smart features in both its design and specifications. We were pleased to find that it has 10 USB ports, including four positioned on the top of the case, which makes them much easier to use if you keep your PC under a desk.

At the front of the case is a handy memory card reader and at the back is a FireWire port. Our only concern is that the power switch is on the top front edge, which makes it vulnerable to being hit by accident.

Inside the case are more pleasant surprises. Four of the PC's six SATA ports are used to connect two optical drives - one Blu-ray and one DVD-RW - and a pair of 750GB hard disks. Each hard disk is configured as a separate drive for a total of 1.5TB of storage, but the SATA controller supports a range of RAID configurations if you want to boost performance or sacrifice some space to help protect against data loss.

The 2.5GHz Intel Core 2 Quad Q8300 is a good processor, although it isn't going to break any speed records in competition with the most sophisticated new CPUs. The PC's overall score of 90 shows that this computer can cope with most tasks, although it's significantly slower than a lot of other computers at this price.

A big disappointment is the 512MB Nvidia GeForce G210 graphics card. This is underpowered and we'd really expect an ATI Radeon HD 5750 or 5770 graphics card at this price. It did badly in our tests, scoring just 8.7fps in our Call of Duty 4 test and 3.2fps in our Crysis test. Gaming is definitely out with this PC.

The graphics card can decode HD video from the Blu-ray drive, which you can output via HDMI to your TV, or to the supplied 20in Acer P205H monitor. This has a slightly odd resolution of 1,600x900; it's a touch less space than the normal 1,680x1,050 we'd expect to find on a monitor this size, but not enough to make a huge difference.

We found that the display was bright, with vivid colours and pure white. Only a pale stripe at the bottom due to uneven backlighting was visible at the bottom when displaying dark scenes. There's no HDMI input, but the DVI input is HDCP compliant so can connect a Blu-ray player or games console if you connect the PC to the display's VGA input instead.

There's 4GB of RAM installed (all of which can be used by the 64-bit edition of Windows 7 Home Premium), and memory can be upgrade to a total of 8GB. There's some upgrade potential, with two PCI slots and one PCI-E x1 slot, although the latter would be completely covered if you upgrade the graphics card to a fast model.

There's nothing particularly wrong with the Aspire M3802, but, aside from the Blu-ray drive and large amount of storage, there's nothing particularly exciting about it. The poor graphics card and small monitor let it down. Yoyotech's blisteringly-fast Warbird i650 is a much better PC.

Basic Specifications

Rating***
ProcessorIntel Core 2 Quad Q8300
Processor external bus333MHz (1,333MHz quad-pumped FSB)
Processor multiplierx7.5
Processor clock speed2.5GHz
Processor socketLGA775
Level 1 cache4x 32KB
Level 2 cache4,096KB
Memory4.000000
Memory typePC2-6400
Maximum memory8GB
MotherboardAcer G43T-AM
Motherboard chipsetIntel G43 Express

Ports

USB2 ports (front/rear)4/6
Firewire ports (front/rear)0/1
eSATA ports (front/rear)0/0
Wired network ports1x 10/100/1000
Wireless networking supportnone
Other portsVGA, HDMI

Internal Expansion

Casemidi tower
PCI-E x1 slots (free)1 (1)
PCI-E x16 slots (free)1 (0)
Free Serial ATA ports2
Free memory slots2
Free 3.5in drive bays1

Hard Disk

Hard disk model(s)2x Seagate Barracuda (ST3750528AS)
InterfaceSATA 300
Total storage capacity1,500GB
Spindle speed7,200rpm

Graphics

Graphics card(s)512MB Nvidia GeForce G210
Graphics/video portsHDMI, DVI, VGA

Sound

SoundRealtec ALC888
Sound outputs7.1 line out, optical S/PDIF out, stereo out, mic in
Speakersnone

Removable Drives

3.5in floppy driveno
Supported memory cardsSD, SDHC, CF, Memory Stick Pro Duo, MMC, RS-MMC, microSD, Memory Stick Micro (M2), xD
Optical drive modelAtapi DH16AASH+Lite-On DH401S
Optical drive type(s)DVD+/-RW +/-DL, BD-ROM + DVD+/-RW +/-DL

Display

Viewable size20 in
Screen modelAcer P205H
Native resolution1,600x900
Response time5ms
Screen inputsDVI, VGA

Other Hardware

ModemNo
KeyboardAcer SK-9620
MouseAcer M-SBR-ACR2

Software

Software includedAcer Backup Manager, Acer GameZone, Microsoft Works, Nero 9
Operating systemWindows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
Operating system restore optionWindows disc

Buying Information

Warrantyone year RTB
Price£690
Supplierhttp://www.laptopsdirect.co.uk
Detailswww.acer.co.uk

Read more

Reviews