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VeryPC Nano Sketch review

Kat Orphanides
29 Nov 2013
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
549
inc VAT

This tiny PC is a great buy if you need something more powerful than the average compact computer

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Specifications

1.8GHz Intel Core i3-3217U, 4GB RAM, N/A display, Windows 8

We've reviewed quite a few ultra-compact mini PCs over the years. Most of them have been low-cost, low-power Atom-based systems designed for nothing more challenging than connecting to a TV to watch videos. Not so the Very PC Nano Sketch. Although it comes in the same kind of compact chassis, about the size of a hardback novel, this mini PC is equipped with an Intel Ivy Bridge Core i3-3217U processor.

VeryPC Nano Sketch

While still not what you'd call blisteringly fast, particularly when it comes to multitasking, the Nano Sketch is a great deal more powerful than your average mini PC. It scored 30 in our benchmarks, despite taking a long time to complete our challenging multitasking test, which called upon it to simultaneously play an HD video, modify image files and transcode a video file. The Sketch is easily powerful enough to handle standard desktop computing and multimedia entertainment tasks.

The processor’s integrated Intel HD Graphics 4000 graphics processor couldn’t run Dirt Showdown smoothly at low quality settings, so you won’t be able to play the latest play 3D games at anything other than the lowest settings, if at all. However, you should have no trouble playing casual games such as Plants vs Zombies, or many strategy games at low detail settings.

The Nano Sketch is equipped with 4GB of DDR3 RAM running at 1,333MHz. This is a Kingston laptop module. The Foxconn AT-7300 NanoPC barebones chassis on which this PC is based has two memory slots, each of which can take an 8GB module, so there's plenty of room to upgrade. An extra 4GB of RAM would be a worthwhile investment if you plan on using the PC to view or edit large photos, for example.

VeryPC Nano Sketch

Although it isn’t terribly powerful, the Nano Sketch felt nippy when we used the Windows 8 Desktop. This is partly due to the installed Seagate ST1000LM014-1EJ164 hybrid hard drive, a 1TB disk that uses built-in flash memory to boost access and boot speeds. When it comes to external storage, the mini PC is surprisingly well equipped. At the front of the chassis, you'll find an SDXC card reader and two USB3 ports. At the back are another two USB3 ports and a couple of standard USB ports. You'll probably use the latter for your mouse and keyboard.

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