IBM NetVista: Space-saving PC

Acer Veriton FP2: A Compact PC

Slim is In

PCs Get Style

The Latest NetVista

IBM is known for its innovation and the NetVista is a prime example—a stylish PC that saves a lot of desktop space, and yet has all the essential features required by an office.

Design

You could easily mistake the NetVista for a cool-looking LCD monitor and look around for the actual PC. The entire PC is hidden behind the 15” LCD panel in the same box and needs only a power cable. The keyboard and mouse connect through USB cables to ports located on the LCD panel’s side.

However, being so tightly integrated doesn’t mean that essential components are left out. It has an Ethernet port under the LCD panel, and ports for microphone, headphones, and a line-out conveniently located on the side. It also has integrated speakers in its base, and five USB ports and two PS/2 ports. Also present are floppy and CD drives, neatly hidden under the LCD monitor. These slide out gently at the push of a button on the LCD panel’s front bezel.

IBM NetVista
Price: Rs 150,000
Warranty: 3 years limited
Features: Integrated LAN and sound, 5 USB ports, 2 PCI slots, CD and floppy drives
Pros: Well integrated taking very little desktop space; stylish looks
Cons: Average performance
Tel: 011-3702020
Fax: 3730235. 
Contact: IBM India.  
Express Building, First Floor,
9-10 Bahadur Shah Zafar Marg
New Delhi 110002.
E-mail: tdamini@in.ibm.com 

Buttons for brightness control and power have been designed to form a wave, adding to the overall appearance. The PC also offers expansion in the form of two PCI slots, which can take low-profile cards—smaller in height than regular ones. A low-profile modem card already occupies one slot, leaving one free. For security, the NetVista can be locked with a key to prevent misuse. 

The NetVista comes with a three-year limited warranty. It also includes a decent software bundle with SMART Reaction II backup software, Norton AntiVirus, and PC-management software.

Performance

The NetVista model we received was based on a SiS 630 motherboard with integrated sound and video and a 15” LCD monitor with a maximum resolution of 1,024x768. The model was slightly outdated, having only a PIII/667 MHz processor, together with 64 MB RAM and Windows 98 SE pre-installed. With this configuration, the PC didn’t score very well in performance. It gave 19.6 in Business Winstone 2001, and 19.8 in Content Creation Winstone 2001. However, the latest configuration available includes a PIII/1 GHz with 128 MB RAM, and Windows 2000 Professional. This should improve the performance a bit, though 3D performance might still suffer due to integrated AGP.

Overall, the NetVista is a well integrated and a stylish-looking PC that doesn’t compromise on features despite being so compact. However, all this does come at a hefty price tag of Rs 150,000.

Sachin Makhija

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