eMachines Offers Bare-Bones Media Center PC

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At a Glance
  • eMachines T6532

The eMachines T6532 PC with the optional 17-inch LCD.
The eMachines T6532 PC with the optional 17-inch LCD.
The new eMachines T6532 Media Center PC is a no-frills system designed to handle everyday tasks. Although the $900 T6532 has Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 installed, it's not a home theater system: It lacks a remote control, a TV tuner, and digital audio and video ports.

Our shipping test unit's components included a 2.2-GHz AMD Athlon 64 3500+ CPU, 1GB of Samsung's DDR400 memory, a Toshiba multiformat double-layer DVD writer, and A fairly sizable 200GB 7200-rpm Western Digital hard drive. The system received a WorldBench 5 score of 91, putting it on a par with other desktops with similar prices. Advanced gaming is not its forte, though. For rendering graphics, it relies on an integrated GeForce 6100 graphics chip that siphons off up to 128MB of the PC's main memory. Thankfully, an available PCI Express slot will let you install your own graphics card as your needs grow.

The minimalist MSI 7207 motherboard comes with two open PCI slots (a third slot is occupied by a 56-kbps modem) and provides both a parallel and a 10/100 ethernet port, as well as four USB 2.0 ports. A fifth USB 2.0 port is located up front, along with a five-in-one media-card reader. The system comes bundled with a multimedia keyboard, a rudimentary mouse, and stereo speakers. The accompanying software package includes Microsoft Works 8 and Money 2006.

If you already own a monitor or want to purchase one elsewhere, you can buy the midtower for $580 sans its 17-inch, 1280-by-1024 LCD display with 12ms response time. Either way, you'll get a very serviceable entry-level PC.

eMachines T6532


Inexpensive and expandable PC offers adequate performance for routine tasks, but its Media Center features are lacking.
Price when reviewed: $900
Current prices (if available)
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At a Glance
  • Inexpensive and expandable PC offers adequate performance for routine tasks, but its Media Center features are lacking.

    Pros

    • Inexpesnive and expandable

    Cons

    • Lacks basic Media Center features
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