PROS / It boasts plenty of features and incredible speed, and the monitor can be tilted back for easy touchscreen use.
CONS / The base graphics card, though not low quality, isn't enough for serious multimedia use.
VERDICT / This is a quality media center computer with heaps of features and free software.
The HP TouchSmart 610 Quad Series is an ideal media center computer that offers a variety of features and multimedia functions, including a 23-inch 1080p HD monitor that doubles as a touchscreen. It also ships with a fast processor, a solid graphics card and much more, making it a fast machine, ideal for doing everything from word processing and internet surfing to gaming and viewing movies. Compared to our top two media centers, the graphics card is lower end. However, it earns our TopTenREVIEWS Bronze Award for its advanced features, impressive processing speed and responsive touchscreen monitor.
The 23-inch 1080p full HD monitor can be tilted back 60 degrees to be more comfortable for the user, and video games, movies and photos look great. This media center computer also features a touchscreen, so you can control what’s on the screen with your fingers. Because you can tilt it back, you can rest your arms while using the touchscreen features. This ergonomic design feature makes it easier to use for extended periods.
This media center computer ships with plenty of great software and games, many designed specifically for the TouchSmart 610’s unique multitouch screen. It runs on Windows 7 Home Premium and has enough horsepower with its Intel Core i7 quad-core processor for work and play. This machine will have no problems running video or photo editing software, and games run smoothly, though certain games may require a faster graphics card.
Making the most of the device's touchscreen capabilities, it features access to some pretty cool web-based applications like Netflix, Twitter and Hulu. A couple of HP apps of note include TouchSmart Canvas for editing and sharing photos and HP Recipe Box which allows you to scrape recipes from just about any cooking website and import them to one central location.
While we don’t expect the touchscreen to replace the keyboard and mouse, at least not yet, it does offer a handy way of interacting with many programs. It’s also a good way to control the media functions of the computer. Fortunately, a wireless keyboard and mouse are also included with the system for more demanding computing chores.
Standard on the 610 is a slot-loading SuperMulti DVD burner – with a Blu-ray disc option. An integrated TV tuner is available as an option; this acts as a DVR, allowing you to pause, record, rewind and watch live TV.
For home networking and accessing the internet, there is a Gigabit Ethernet port as well as built-in high speed Wi-Fi connectivity. Other ports include several USB 2.0 ports, HDMI and composite inputs and more. It even ships with a PCI 3 slot and two MiniCard sockets.
Though it's a minor feature, we like the integrated webcam for online chatting better than most in that it can be tilted up or down via a little lever near the top of the screen. It makes for a simple adjustment while engaged in online video chatting. The feet of the device can be removed to facilitate mounting on a wall or mounting arm. An adapter is required for mounting. Ambient lighting flows from the screen's underside. While it’s largely for cosmetic effect, it does provide a bit of illumination for the keyboard for those who fancy typing in dim light.
The HP TouchSmart 610 media center computer features a fast Intel Core i7 quad-core processor featuring Intel TurboBoost up to 3.8 GHz. It ships with 6GB of DDR3-1066 MHz RAM, and it can handle up to 16GB of memory. The base graphics card is good, a 1GB AMD Radeon HD 6450A, but we recommend stepping up to the better 2GB Radeon HD 6550A or the 2GB NVIDIA GeForce GT 425M card. It also comes with an enormous 2TB hard drive, or you can pay a little extra for a 3TB drive.
Ease of Use
The free software and games that come with the system are easy to use, and the Windows 7 operating system is as pleasing to the eye as it is intuitive.
Help & Support
The HP TouchSmart 610 media center computer ships with a standard two-year warranty, something you don’t need to pay extra for. However, they do provide extended warranties for an additional cost. This all-in-one media center PC comes with a user manual and several guides to get started. On their website you'll find a FAQs and troubleshooting section, a drivers and software page and support communities. If you need further help, you can reach HP 24/7 by telephone, email or live chat.
The HP TouchSmart 610 Quad Series is a versatile all-in-one unit ideally suited as a media center computer. Its 23-inch full HD 1080p monitor leans back so you can get your hands all over the sensitive touchscreen for a satisfying tactile experience. The included software and games take full advantage of the multitouch features. The graphics card is the only minor complaint we have, but with its quad-core 3.8 GHz processor, this is a powerful system for any purpose.