Sponsors
Hosted by Gradwell
Powered by Eclipse
Shop
Compare UK prices
Compare US prices
Sections
Homepage
Reviews
Opinions
Guides
News
Web news
Competition
Tracking
Top news
Top reviews
Top opinions
Top guides
Editor's Choice
Categories
Apple Mac
Audio
Business
Developer
Design
Digital camera
Gaming
Graphics card
Input device
Internet
Linux
Mobile phone
Monitor
Multimedia
Networking
Operating System
PC Systems
PDA
Printer
Processor
Projector
Scanner
Security
Server
Storage
Tuning
Utilities
Video
Miscellaneous
Admin
About
Contact
Advertise
Disclaimer
Terms
Competition rules
Reader survey
Help us improve
Feeds
RSS
Twitter
 
Dell Studio Slim Desktop PC
 
 
VERDICT
Compact yet relatively powerful performer
PROS
Small & slim footprint; 802.11n wireless & TV tuner; Blu-ray support; HDMI
CONS
No Core i7 support; lack of upgradability
COMPANY
Dell
http://www.dell.co.uk

Earlier this year Dell added new models to its compact Studio desktop range. Unlike the eye-catching and diminutive Studio Hybrid (from £429), the Studio Desktop (from £349) and Studio Slim (from £429) go for boxy rather than curvy. Still a lot smaller than a regular desktop PC, inside lurks a choice of above-par features including Core 2 Duo or Core 2 Quad CPUs, Blu-ray drive and discrete ATI Radeon graphics card with HDMI. The larger Studio Desktop has more expansion room in the shape of an extra 5.25-inch drive bay free, while the power supply is bigger too: 350W on the Studio Desktop while the Studio Slim makes do with 250W. Both have an array of front-mounted ports, including USB 2.0 and audio, and the Studio Desktop also has a multi-format card reader.

The Studio Slim certainly isnít as sexy as the Studio Hybrid, but its piano black finish is passable - especially for home workers and small businesses wanting to slot the machine neatly on a desk or next to a coffee table in either a vertical or horizontal orientation. Consumers looking for eye candy will probably have to look elsewhere. On the plus side, Dell packs an enormous amount of technology inside the relative compact box and doesnít charge a price premium for its efforts.

The entry-level Studio Slim (100x435x362mm) packs an Intel Core 2 Duo E7400 processor (2.8GHz, 1066MHz, 3MB cache), discrete 256MB ATI Radeon HD 3450 graphics card, 3GB of 800MHz dual-channel DDR2 SDRAM, 500GB (7200rpm) SATA hard drive, DVD+/-RW drive, and Windows Vista Home Premium (SP1). If youíre feeling flush you can customise the Studio Slim with an Intel Core 2 Quad-Core Q9400 processor (2.66GHz, 6MB cache, 1333MHz FSB), 8GB of 800MHz dual-channel DDR2 SDRAM, 1.2GB (7200rpm) SATA storage (dual 640GB drives), and Blu-Ray burner. However, the top-of-the-line specification will cost over £1100 - and thatís without a monitor!

The Studio Slimís connection options are very good for a slimline computer, comprising eight USB ports (two front, four back, two internal), a single 1394a port, 10/100/1000 (Gigabit) Ethernet LAN, integrated 7.1 surround sound, headphone and microphone jacks, VGA and an HDMI port. With the wireless Draft-N LAN card you can easily connect to the Internet without messy wires holding you back, and built-in digital TV tuner lets you sit back, relax and watch your favourite television shows right from your desktop. Sadly there is no eSATA port to accommodate the growing number of external storage solutions, nor is there an integrated media card reader.

This narrow PC sports a practical design for those short on space, but the compact design also means that the notion of upgrading is merely wishful thinking. The tight space and Dellís proprietary interior design makes accessing the slingle PCI, two PCIe x1 and single PCIe x16 slots tricky, not to mention that the PCI slots are covered by a giant retention bar that you have to remove prior to any upgrades. On the drive side, there are three 3.5-inch bays (two internal, one external) and two 5.25-inch bays.

Dellís Studio Slim is a solid value desktop PC and offers an impressive mix of storage and connectivity. Intelís Core 2 Quad chips are no second-rate processors, but theyíre also no next-generation Core i7. In addition, the 8GB of DDR2 memory isnít as productive under this systemís 32-bit version of Windows Vista as it would have under the 64-bit edition. But at least you get 500GB of storage space as standard (an above-average amount for the value-PC category) to store your ever-growing range of multimedia, and ATIís Radeon HD 3450 graphics card is no slouch, either. Sure itíll struggle with the latest 3D games, but casual gamers have nothing to worry about. Overall, the Studio Slim is above-average value PC for general Windows performance. Just remember to budget for a monitor. [7.5]

Comments page 0 of 0








image verification



 
There are currently 0 comments to display.

 
Have you read these related articles?

Dell XPS One 24 Desktop PC
Dellís 24-inch XPS One all-in-one computer is a pleasant antidote to Dell's ghastly new Optiplexes, with sleek, severe lines and unpretentious trim. Though the huge 1080p screen is the centrepiece, it also comes with a quad core ...
03.02.09
Dell XPS 730x Gaming Desktop
Dell has got its game on once more (it does so every year or so) with the XPS 730x. Replacing the XPS 730, the highlight of the machine is that it features Intelís spiffy new Core i7 processor, making the XPS 730x one the worldís most ...
02.02.09
PC World Advent AIO-100
PC World recently started selling a new range of all-in-one Advent desktops. The 22-inch Advent AIO-200 and the 18.4-inch Advent AIO-100 (reviewed here), which retail for £849 and £399 respectively, and both available exclusively at ...
22.01.09
Lenovo ThinkCentre M58p
Lenovo is doing great things in the business computing market. Actually, the company range of IBM-inherited ThinPad laptops and ThinkCentre desktops are still the best money can buy if your needs are strictly corporate. No other ...
19.01.09
ASUS Eee Top ET1602
Computer maker ASUS is now offering a PC in the style of Appleís iMac: all hardware is contained within the monitor. However, the Eee Top features a touch-sensitive 15.6-inch widescreen (16:9) display, making it more akin to HPís ...
10.11.08

This entry was posted on Feb 26, 09 and is filed under PC Systems




   
      © 2003-2009 Black Letter Publishing. ITreviewed is not responsible for the content of external Web sites