It may be cliché, but in this case good things do come in small packages. And HardwareCentral.com has all the details on the smallest desktop we’ve seen — the Viewsonic PC Mini VOT132.
It’s thin, but it’s no thin client: ViewSonic‘s VOT132 ($449 at ViewSonic’s online store) is one of the smallest PCs you can buy — it weighs a pound and measures 5.3 by 7.5 by 1 inches, about the size of a trade paperback or a bit slimmer than a stack of two DVD cases. But it’s a true PC, not just a terminal, with its own Intel Atom processor and hard drive for local storage.
And while it qualifies as a nettop — a desktop with the innards of a netbook, lately replaced in Intel’s official vocabulary by “entry-level desktop” — the PC Mini packs more power than first-generation nettops like the Asus Eee Top ET1602 and eMachines EZ1601. In fact, it has the specs of a netbook or early nettop, doubled — 2GB of memory instead of 1GB, a 320GB instead of 160GB hard disk, and a dual-core Atom 330 instead of single-core Atom CPU.
And if you begrudge the Mini its few square inches of desktop space, you can reduce its footprint to zero by mounting it on the back of a ViewSonic or other LCD monitor: The PC comes with a plastic cradle that screws into the VESA wall-mount bracket on the back of most flat panels.
(Of course you’ll need to budget some desk room, and a few bucks, for the keyboard and mouse not included in the VOT132 package. We plugged the receivers for a Logitech wireless keyboard and Microsoft wireless mouse into two of the PC’s USB 2.0 ports and the system booted and recognized the devices without a hitch.)
Speaking of USB ports, there are six. Two are up front, along with an SD/MMC/MS flash-card slot, microphone and headphone jacks, and power and sleep buttons. The third through sixth USB ports are at the rear, as is a Gigabit Ethernet connector; DVI and HDMI monitor ports; an SPDIF audio-out jack; and an antenna jack for the unit’s built-in 802.11b/g/n WiFi. A 3.5-inch antenna is included, as is a VGA-to-DVI adapter for connecting an analog monitor. The unit’s 65-watt power supply is a notebook-style external adapter.
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