RM's new all-in-one PC is stylish, robust, secure and powerful; just about everything you need in the classroom, says Desmond De Araujo
Not keen on laptops or bulky PCs? Then take a look at the new RM One. If you have limited space but still want a high specification PC then this machine is a leading contender.
The One has been designed specifically for use in the classroom, although it would also be welcome in most modern offices, or even in the home.
RM has consulted with those that know best to design this machine, including teachers, technicians and network managers. The RM One takes up about half the space of a regular PC, freeing up desk space for creative class work, or textbooks, folders or other important documents.
Worried about lots of confusing wires? Don't be; setting up the One couldn't be easier. Just connect the keyboard, mouse and power cables and switch on.
The machine is relatively easy to transport as it's one unit weighing in at 16kg. There's also a strong built-in carry handle and rollers on the base, making it even easier to move around.
You can choose from a range of specifications, from a basic model at one end of the spectrum, to a fully featured, powerful PC at the other.
Whichever specification you choose you get good value for money - the RM One starts at just pound;549 (ex VAT).
The machine has a sleek, professional and, above all, clever design. It's not until you actually use it that you'll appreciate this fully. Although the PC is one unit, you can still tilt the TFT screen with ease to the required viewing angle. RM resisted the urge to fix the screen permanently to the processor unit so it can be whipped off and replaced in the event of a fault or accident - a sensible approach. Connectivity is excellent with both front and back USB and FireWire ports.
There are handy monitor-off and speaker-mute buttons on the front for instant quiet in a classroom. The DVD WriterCD-Rom drive opens sideways just behind the screen. Although CDs and DVDs are entered upright there are tiny clips to stop them falling out. All very well thought out.
One of the most impressive features of the PC is its superb17-inch TFT screen. Unlike some other screens, the viewing quality doesn't deteriorate from wider angles.
The One is extremely robust for classroom use. What's more, the base plastics are the same colour as their paint finishes, so scratches won't show. The machine also has hard-glass protection for its TFT screen. And juvenile "taggers" certainly won't be impressed with the One: it has an anti-graffiti (ballpoint-resistant) finish.
Security features are also good: a hole in the centre of the base of the PC's chassis and an optional security pack allow it to be attached to a desk using a coach bolt and padlock. There is also a useful cable clamp to prevent the mains, keyboard, mouse and Ethernet cables being disconnected by mischievous hands.
The One has surprisingly few disadvantages, but it has to be said expansion is limited. There are only three expansion slots and even these are limited to half-size PCI cards. You can upgrade some of the system components yourself, but for others you have to consult RM. Another slight niggle is that it's not that easy to access the rear ports.
Having said all this, RM has produced an excellent all-in-one PC that will be hard to beat - stylish, professional, sleek, clever, powerful, robust and secure.
All-in-one PC with choice of specifications
Basic package: Intel Celeron processor (2.4GHz); Windows XP Home; 128Mb memory; 40Gb hard drive; high resolution (1280x1024 pixels) display; stereo sound; front access for two USB ports, one FireWire, rear access to one FireWire and Ethernet networking. Drive bays for optical and 3.5-inch drivesPrice: Pounds 549 (ex VAT)
Tel. 08709 086 989
Fitness for purpose *****
Ease of use *****
Value for money ****