Asus ups the ante (and resolution) with new multi-touch All-in-One PCs
Asus has announced that it has updated its range of iMac-alike all-in-one flat-pack PCs with two new models, the 23-in ET2311 and the higher-spec "ultra high-resolution" ET2702. Though both support multi-touch, of the two, only the ET2702 supports 10-point gestures.
The step up from the ET2700 to the 2702 is most evident in the 27-inch display, which has received a hike in resolution from bog-standard HD up to a 2560 x 1440 WQHD IPS screen, which Asus says retains brightness and clarity at viewing angles of up to 178º.
Under the hood there's now a choice between a fourth-generation Intel Core i5 or i7 processor and AMD Radeon HD 8890A which should provide sufficient heft to run new games well, if not with the prettiness knobs turned all the way up.
The ET2702 is equipped with 867 Mbit/s 802.11ac Wi-Fi, USB 3.0, Thunderbolt and HDMI connectivity. The latter can be used to connect the PC to up to three external monitors, though the display can also be used to connect games consoles and Blu-Ray players. This is a particularly thoughtful touch, especially given the support for wall-mounting the computer.
The finishing touches are a mode which Asus calls Device Share, which allows a notebook PC connected by USB and HDMI to share the ET2702's multitouch screen, webcam, speakers and connected devices. Smartphones and tablets can be charged more quickly with Asus' in-built Ai Charger II, apparently in about half the time, including when the PC is turned off.
ET2311, home phone
The new 23-in ET2311 is a lesser PC next to its impressive sibling, but it sounds like a perfectly able Windows machine. This time the display is limited to an HD resolution (1920 x 1080) and support for five-point touch gestures. There's the same IPS technology for viewing at 178º angles, if you like that sort of thing.
The processor is a fourth-generation Intel Core i5 with no option to upgrade to i7, and though there're NVIDIA GeForce graphics under the hood, don't expect outrageous flop-chucking performance.
The 802.11ac Wi-Fi is optional rather than standard, and though there is USB 3.0 connectivity, Thunderbolt has left the building. The HDMI in/out ports mean that, again, consoles and Blu-ray players can be hooked up.
Prices are yet to be announced, but it looks as though whether you're looking to splash out on a versatile, high performance, pixel monster; or invest in a capable Windows desktop for a limited workspace, Asus will be vying for your business.
Specs update: The ET2702 will support up to 32 GB of DDR3 RAM, and up to 3 TB of HDD storage. E2311 models will be available in hard disk storage capacities up to 3 TB, or a hybrid 128 GB SSD and 1 TB HDD.