Acer's new Aspire C Series of all-in-one PCs offers Linux, FreeDOS options

Available in 21.5-inch and 23.8-inch options with ultra-slim bezels, the all-in-ones can be purchased with either Windows 10, FreeDOS or Linpus Simple Linux pre-installed. Prices start at $449.99.
Written by Sean Portnoy, Contributor

Acer Aspire C Series all-in-one desktop PC

Looking to get a jump on the forthcoming deluge of CES news, Acer has released a new all-in-one PC family that adds a couple of interesting wrinkles to the popular desktop category.

With the Aspire C Series, Acer delivers an improved all-in-one (AIO) design while retaining a budget price point. It's worked to create a sleeker look for its full HD display, either in a 21.5-inch (Aspire C 22) or 23.8-inch (C 24) size, by reducing bezel thickness to 0.31 inches (roughly 8mm) and offer either a chrome or gold color choice. (In comparison, Microsoft's new Surface Studio all-in-one possesses a 12.5mm bezel and the Lenovo ThinkCentre X1 AIO has an 11.5mm bezel, though they both possess larger screens. HP has Pavilion all-in-ones with bezels slimmer than 7mm, but at a slightly higher price point.)

The C Series AIOs offer some viewing angle flexibility to their screens as well, allowing you to tilt the display anywhere from -5 to 20 degrees. But befitting their budget price, they lack a touchscreen option and aren't offered in resolution greater than 1,920x1,080. They are likewise limited in the specs department, with the smaller edition's base configuration including an Intel Celeron J3160 processor, 4GB of RAM, and 500GB hard drive, while the base model of the 23.8-inch version doubling the RAM and hard drive space and upgrading to an Intel Core i3-6100U processor. Neither CPU would be confused with a high-performance chip, however, and neither C Series AIO offers discrete graphics or a built-in DVD drive.

But the systems do offer an interesting twist when it comes to operating system. Of course, you get the usual Windows 10 option, but Acer is also providing the choice of FreeDOS or Linpus Simple Linux as a pre-installed OS instead. While these aren't typical options from mainstream AIO manufacturers, it's not completely out of the ordinary for Acer, which has released all-in-ones running Google's Chrome OS in the past.

No matter which OS you choose, the C Series is designed not to break the bank. The C 22 starts at $449.99, whereas the bigger, better-equipped C 24 has a correspondingly higher starting price of $699.99. Both editions are available now at select online retailers.

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