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Acer Pushes Envelope With Innovative Modular 'Revo' Mini PC

Acer revealed a pair of Windows 10-based desktop systems at IFA Berlin in Germany; one is an intriguing modular design, and one is an AIO. Wait, what was that about a modular PC?

Revo Build: A Modular PC

Acer also revealed a completely new spin on mini-PC design. The Revo Build Series is a modular mini-PC system that allows you to add what the company is referring to as "blocks." Acer said the modular system allows users to quickly -- without the hassle of cables and need for tools -- add features to the system.

The base block is 125 x 125 mm, taking up one cubic liter of space. It comes with options for an Intel Pentium or Celeron processor and is paired with 8 GB of memory that can be expanded. Acer said one screw must be removed in order to add memory. Different "blocks" can be added to bring additional features and capability to the PC.

The blocks are connected to the base unit using magnetic pogo-pin connections, which means there are no wires, and the "blocks" never have to be opened up in order to add them to the PC. Acer said the blocks won't be limited to use with the Revo Build series base unit -- they can apparently also be used with other computers.

Acer plans to launch 500 GB and 1 TB hot-swappable hard drive blocks along with the Revo Build Series M1-601, and said that other blocks will be released in the future. A wireless power bank block is planned to enable wireless charging of mobile devices, as well as an audio block that contains speakers and a microphone. The company said more blocks will be released over time.

Aspire U5 Series

Acer also announced the Aspire U5-710 all-in-one desktop PC, which comes housed inside a 37 mm-thick chassis with a 23.8-inch IPS display featuring 10-point multi-touch built-in. Acer said the Aspire U5 series desktops feature a minimalistic design, keeping all the essential I/O, such as the HDMI and power jacks, tucked away with the network and USB connections. The system also features a built-in TV tuner card.

The Aspire U5 series desktops come equipped with 6th Generation Intel Core (Skylake) processors, with the option of either an i5 or an i7 CPU as well as discrete graphics from Nvidia. Acer has included 16 GB of memory in the system, but the company did not indicate the size and type of hard drive included. The company has also squeezed in an Intel RealSense camera, which enables users to unlock their PC using Windows Hello.

Not In North America (Yet)

Acer plans to release both the Aspire U5-710 and Revo Build M1-601 in October in Europe, Africa and the Middle-East, but has not mentioned when, or if, they will be available in North America. The U5-710 will start at €999, while the M1-601 will start much lower at €199.

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  • blackmagnum
    I hope this takes off big time. No more hassle upgrades!
    Reply
  • kcarbotte
    16564600 said:
    I hope this takes off big time. No more hassle upgrades!

    It will be helpful for many people, but this takes away all the fun of the hobby for all of the enthusiasts.
    for that reason, this concept will never take over as the status quo, but it could certainly enjoy a space in the consumer market.
    Reply
  • alexandergc
    I can't help but feel that this is taking a page out of the Razer modular PC concept.
    Same kind of tool-less interconnects.
    Same concept of mixing and matching whatever you need, as you need it.
    Reply
  • thormejh
    I can't help but feel that this is taking a page out of the Razer modular PC concept.
    Same kind of tool-less interconnects.
    Same concept of mixing and matching whatever you need, as you need it.

    Its just like razers thing except razer just makes stuff and never actually brings it to the public, one of the many reasons ill never own razer again :P
    Reply
  • alexandergc
    16571971 said:
    I can't help but feel that this is taking a page out of the Razer modular PC concept.
    Same kind of tool-less interconnects.
    Same concept of mixing and matching whatever you need, as you need it.

    Its just like razers thing except razer just makes stuff and never actually brings it to the public, one of the many reasons ill never own razer again :P

    Razer is like the Apple of the PC gaming industry.
    A lot of what they do is less innovation and more polish, but boy do they get a good shine on.


    IMHO, builder culture will never die, (if/when this modular technology becomes mainstream) because people just love tinkering with stuff :P
    Reply