A mere day after introducing a new version of its Revo Media Center PC, Acer is expanding its desktop line with the M and X Series systems, both of which offer configurations starting under $500.
The M Series features the more traditional tower form factor, complete with room for expansion through open PCI Express x1 slots and an open 3.5-inch hard drive slot. These desktops will come with either Intel Core i3 dual-core or AMD Athlon II X4 quad-core processors, up to 6GB of RAM, a 1TB hard drive, and a DVD burner (but apparently not a Blu-ray option). Some configs will include a discrete graphics card, though Acer hasn't detailed which ones are among the options. The M Series systems come with a whopping 12 USB 2.0 ports, though apparently no USB 3.0 connections. The lowest-priced model will start at $499.99.
A slightly sexier design graces the X Series (pictured right), which Acer claims is one-third the size of a traditional desktop. A door on the front panel conceals USB and audio ports, along with a memory-card reader. Processor choices include Intel Pentium dual-core and Athlon II X4 chips, with 4GB of RAM and a DVD burner standard and either a 500GB or 1TB hard drive available. While no configuration includes a discrete graphics card, there is an open PCI Express x16 slot to add one, as well as a PCI Express x1 slot. The X Series starts at $398.
For not much less, Acer will sell you the T231H 23-inch LCD. The monitor can be tilted backward and adjusted up to 60 degrees on its hinge to let you take advantage of its Windows 7-based touch-screen capabilities, including the ability to rotate and pinch images and draw on the screen. The T231H offers full 1080p resolution, an HDMI interface (in addition to the typical DVI input), and a 2ms response time. You'll pay a bit more than for the average LCD to get those touch-screen features: The T231H is available for $329.99.