Acer's tiny Veriton L460 business PC is one of the best options for businesses with cramped working environments, or those looking for a PC with lower power consumption and will run quietly, too.
This small form-factor PC looks similar in size to a large hard-cover book, mainly because it can be seated on its end in a vertical fashion, as well as being able to sit flat. Its small size is possibly due to the fact that this system uses a lot of notebook technology. Although an Intel E4500 2.2GHz desktop CPU has been installed, and a desktop-sized 3.5in 320GB hard drive (7200rpm) is installed, the Veriton L460 runs on a notebook motherboard with an 800MHz front side, and has a total of 2GB of DDR2 667MHz notebook RAM. It also uses a notebook DVD re-writer and more importantly it uses an external power supply, like you'll find with a notebook, allowing the chassis to be considerably smaller.
The CPU is cooled with a passive heat sink (no fan), but is supplemented by two tiny fans on the rear of the case. These fans are installed primarily to cool the case, but are positioned right next to the CPU's heat sink, aiding in its temperature control. As these are the only fans on this PC it tends to be very quiet during use. This is important as the Veriton is designed to sit on the desk within arms reach.
Although there is no room to upgrade, except perhaps for RAM, the system is reasonably easy to open and work on should the I.T department need to do any internal maintenance. It's not quite as straightforward as Lenovo's ThinkCentre A61e, or even HP's Compaq dc7800 (GV709PA) Ultra-slim Desktop PC, but a quick couple of flicks with the screwdriver and you'll have all the innards out on the table.
It's a fairly simple but functional design, offering four USB 2.0 ports on the front of the machine and a pair of audio jacks (headphone and microphone). At the back you get a full 7.1 audio output, another four USB 2.0 ports and a gigabit Ethernet connection. Both DVI and D-Sub are available, supporting both older and newer monitor connections.
Although it's mainly aimed at business users, the Veriton isn't totally devoid of entertainment functionality. As part of the package you get a wired keyboard and mouse. Although they are fairly plain in most respects, the keyboard does offer some volume and media controls to easily navigate your MP3 or video collection.
Performance wise it's not a V8. The 2.2GHz CPU has a smaller bus speed than most desktop CPUs today as well as having a fairly low frequency for a desktop machine. Still, it's a good little machine for word processing, e-mailing and other daily tasks.