Acer Nvidia Ion PCs now available for pre-order

Written by Ben Hardwidge

April 15, 2009 | 14:35

Tags: #16ghz #3d #aspire #aspirerevo #atom #controller #ion #play #pre-order #price #revo

Companies: #acer #game #nvidia

It’s now been four months since Nvidia first unveiled its Atom-based Ion platform, during which Intel dismissed the pint-sized motherboard setup, pointing out that “Nvidia claims that many OEMs are exploring the Ion, but as of this writing, no customer has publicly disclosed plans to design Ion-based products.” However, those claims were countered when Acer revealed the AspireRevo, and Play.com has now started taking pre-orders for the Ion-based PC.

Four different versions are available, which all feature a 1.6GHz Atom N230 CPU and come with no optical drive. However, they have different specifications when it comes to RAM, storage, operating systems and extra features. The prices start at £179.99 inc VAT for the basic Linux model, which features 1GB of DDR2 RAM and an 8GB SSD, as well as a multi-card reader and support for wired and 802.11b/g wireless networking.

Meanwhile, the cheapest version with Windows Vista Home Premium comes in at £249.99, and also features 2GB of DDR2 RAM and a 160GB hard drive. Finally, the £299.99 and £329.99 models also feature the new 3D game controller, which looks as though it was very much inspired by the Nintendo Wiimote. Acer says the device can be used as a remote control for the PC, while also acting as a game controller that can emulate steering, shooting, flying and sports activities.

To complement the game controller, the top two models also come with a games bundle, which includes Tiger Woods PGA TOUR 08, Crazy Taxi III, House of the Dead III, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2 and Crystalize 2. Unlike standard Atom-based PCs using Intel integrated graphics, the addition of Nvidia’s GeForce 9400M will allow the machine to play basic games at decent frame rates. In our tests, we found that the Ion platform could handle relatively recent games, such as Lego Star Wars, Trackmania Nations and even Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, at 1,024 x 768 at an average of 25-30fps.

According to Play.com, the Acer AspireRevo is due to be released on 18 May 2009. Will you be pre-ordering an Ion PC for your lounge, or is the price too high? Let us know your thoughts in the forums.

Thanks to Steven Richardson (Veryevil) for bringing this to our attention.
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