Gateway One ZX6810-01: 23-Inch Multitouch AIO Has Great Performance, TV Tuner
At a Glance
Gateway One ZX6810-01 All-in-One PC
Gateway's 23-inch all-in-one has the best performance this side of Apple's iMacs, and has the multi-touch display and TV Tuner that they lack.
The Gateway One ZX6810-01 ($1400 as of December 8, 2009) packs a punishing amount of gaming prowess and extras into its 23-inch frame. Its 1GB ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4670 graphics are the best we've seen from an all-in-one outside of the pricier Apple iMacs, and like its similar-looking $900 Acer Aspire Z5610 cousin, that big screen is multitouch-enabled and runs Windows 7.
The ZX6810-01 also includes an HDTV tuner and a remote control--bonuses we've seen on the 23-inch HP TouchSmart 600xt ($1460), the 21.5-inch Lenovo IdeaCentre A600 ($1149), and the 24-inch Sony Vaio VPCL117FX/B ($2000) as well. But those systems also include Blu-ray drives--the Gateway doesn't. Instead, it runs rings around them at gaming (and has a DVD writer).
The ZX6810-01 managed 71 frames per second in our Unreal Tournament 3 test (run at 1680-by-1050 resolution, high quality). That's pretty amazing for an all-in-one. Sony's Vaio VPCL117FX/B did the next best at 41 fps, but both trail way behind the 27-inch, Core i5 and Core i7 Apple iMacs. Equipped with 512MB ATI Radeon HD 4850 graphics, those Apple machines both achieved 112 fps in the same test.
Of course, it's those new Core i5/i7 processors that push the iMacs out in front, though it's not like the Gateway One ZX6810-01 isn't wonderfully decked out itself. It's got a 2.33GHz Core 2 Quad Q8200S processor, 8GB of DDR3-1333 memory, and dual hard disks: a 64GB Samsung solid-state drive (the boot drive) and a 1TB Western Digital drive (for general storage).
These specs almost look like they were ripped straight out of a gaming desktop. They helped the ZX6810-01 achieve a score of 105 in our WorldBench 6 benchmark--a score equal to the Sony Vaio VPCL117FX/B, but again, behind the new iMacs. Tested using 64-bit Windows 7 and Boot Camp, the $2200 Apple iMac (27-inch/Core i7) scored 128 in WorldBench 6, while the $2000 iMac (27-inch/Core i5) notched 123.
In use, the ZX6810-01's display delivers good saturation and contrasts, but a discernible backlight glow on the top and bottom of the screen becomes apparent during darker scenes. Similarly, the glossy coating produces a reflective glare that admittedly improves the vibrancy and richness of the colors and grayscales, but it comes at the cost of a powerful reflection that turns viewers and nearby light sources into unwanted extras in the scene.
The system's integrated wireless-N and gigabit LAN connectivity does much to bolster its ability to function as a multimedia-streaming device in an existing high-speed network. You also get six USB ports and an eSATA connection for external hard drives. But as I mentioned: no Blu-ray drive, a shame given the system's 1080p-compatibility.
The bundled keyboard and mouse are average, with no greater functionality than what you'd find on a standard keyboard and two-button mouse. They're wireless devices, which at least conserves ports. And Gateway's inclusion of a remote helps the ZX6810-01 bridge the gap from desktop to "living room PC." A lack of upgradability--or, at least, a lack of any mention of upgradability in the manual--means that you're stuck with what you get in this all-in-one system.
That said, there's not much we'd change about the inside of this PC. Gateway's ZX6810-01 is an absolute killer in both general and gaming performance--the latter being quite rare in the all-in-one category. A few quibbles with the system's overall display quality and the lack of Blu-ray are our chief reservations about this all-in-one desktop. The ZX6810-01 isn't as fast as the iMacs, but if you want the fastest multitouch all-in-one PC out there, the ZX6810-01 is the system to beat.