Acer Revo One Desktop Mini-PC Review

White mini-tower PC with very large storage capacity

Acer Revo One RL85 Mini-PC
Acer Revo One. ©Acer

The Acer Revo One is a solid little mini-PC for those looking at something for their desktop or a home theater system. The large hybrid hard drive and higher performance Core i5 processor make this great even for 4K video. There are a number of quirks to it though that hold it back including fewer high-speed peripheral ports and a less than perfect mouse and keyboard.

Pros

  • Spacious Hybrid Hard Drive
  • Attractive Mini-Tower Design
  • Performance to Handle 4K Video

Cons

  • Larger than Many Mini-PCs
  • Only Two USB 3.0 Ports
  • Cheap Keyboard and Mouse

Description

  • Intel Core i5-5200U Dual-Core Mobile Processor
  • 8GB PC3-12800 DDR3 Memory
  • 1TB 5400rpm SATA Solid State Hybrid Drive
  • Intel HD Graphics 5500 Integrated Graphics
  • HDA 5.1 Audio Support
  • Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11ac Wireless, Bluetooth
  • Two USB 3.0, Two USB 2.0, mini-DisplayPort, HDMI, SD Card Reader
  • 6.1" x 4.19" x 4.19"
  • Windows 8.1

Review - Acer Revo One RL85-UR45

The Acer Revo One is the company's latest attempt at a low-cost mini-PC that would be used either with a home theater system or as an unobtrusive desktop system. It consists of a white glossy plastic cube that is larger than most mini-PCs such as the Apple Mac Mini or the HP Pavilion Mini. It would almost be comparable to the size of the Apple Airport Extreme but a bit shorter and with more rounded corners.

The only problem is the color does not tend to match the black and silver colors used with most home theater system and monitors which means it will stand out somewhat on a desktop or cabinet. It does feature a matching wireless keyboard and mouse with the unit but users may want to look into other options as the devices feel very poorly made.

Powering this high-end version of the Acer Revo One is the Intel Core i5-5200U dual-core mobile processor. This is a fairly strong processor that lets the Acer be more than just a streaming box and web browser. In fact, if you want to stream 4K video, it is certainly good to have this level of performance. It is still not the equivalent of a traditional desktop computer but equivalent to a laptop system. The processor is matched up with 8GB of DDR3 memory to provide it with a smooth overall experience with Windows even when multitasking heavily.

What really sets the Revo One apart from other mini-PCs is the storage. Acer packs in a large one terabyte drive into the system that provides lots of space for applications, data and especially media files as many people are likely to use this with a home theater system. In addition to this, the drive is a solid state hybrid drive that features 8GB of solid-state memory cache to help boost the performance somewhat. The drive still does spin at 5400rpm but it does better than most hard drives in frequently used applications but still not nearly as fast as a full SSD. If you need additional space, there are two USB 3.0 ports for use with external hard drives.

It would have been nice if all four of the USB ports used the faster standard rather than just two.

The graphics for the Revo One rely on the Intel HD Graphics 5500 that are built into the Core i5 processor. This is fine for your basic usage including if you want to stream video to a 4K or Ultra HD display panel. If you are using such a display, there is a mini-DisplayPort connector to ensure 60Hz refresh support. The only problem with this solution is that it does not provide a high level of 3D video support. It can play some older games at lower resolutions and detail levels but that is about it.

Franky, this is a problem that plagues most of the mini-PCs that are completely reliant on integrated graphics.

Pricing for this high-end version of the Acer Revo One is $500. This puts it slightly more expensive than the Apple Mac Mini which has dropped to $499 in the recent refresh. Apple's system may be less expensive now but it also features half the storage space and does not come with a mouse and keyboard. The other primary competitor is the HP Pavilion Mini. It is nearly half the cost of the Revo One but it sacrifices a lot of performance by using a Pentium dual core processor and half the memory of the Revo One. Now there is a ​Core i3 version of the Revo One that keeps the same hard drive and drops the memory to 4GB that is around $480 for those wanting to spend a little less.