(Pocket-lint) - It's not the first time we've seen a mini PC, but the Acer Revo One RL85's dinky one-litre scale means you can wave goodbye to the bulky tower of old, while its versatile feature set means it's more than just a PC.

Indeed, by default it comes boxed with a remote control with touchpad on the front and QWERTY keypad on the rear (a mouse and keyboard alternative option will be stocked in some retailers), aiming for the media streaming and casual gaming market.

Which makes sense if you're looking for a little number that won't dominate heaps of space in the living room, office, or elsewhere around the home. But is it any good? We've had a little time to explore the RL85 to find out.

With Windows 8 on board, the One RL85 doesn't restrict what's possible like a dedicated media streamer might. Sure, the lowest-spec Intel Celeron 2957u processor, at 1.4GHz and here paired with 2GB RAM, isn't the nippiest thing in the world, but it worked just fine for browsing and the media streaming demo that we saw. In the future there will be faster (and pricier) Intel Core i3 and Core i5 options available too, if you're more interested in using the device as a casual Steam gaming vessel.

Key to the Revo One's concept is a balanced price tag. At £239 with a 1TB HDD on board, and a spare slot for a second drive should you choose to add an additional one, there's plenty of scope for expansion.


The exterior shell of the device pops off easily - it's released by popping a pen or similar into a release hole, then simply dragging the exterior off, as shown in our picture gallery - for full access, including the option to swap the wireless card should you wish to upgrade it from the Wireless 802.11 /a/b/g/n standard. Bluetooth is on board as standard.

There are plenty of external ports tucked around the back: four USB ports (two of which are the faster 3.0 variety), mini DisplayPort, HDMI-C, 3.5mm audio, and Ethernet. That's plenty enough to cater for a decent display (Celeron output is up to 1920 x 1080; Core i output can cater for 3840 x 2160) whether a TV or monitor.

Perhaps most interesting of all is the included remote control. It's not the nicest looking, nor the best made remote we've ever seen, but its practical implication makes a lot of sense. To the side there are separate microphone and cursor buttons, which toggle between voice- and touchpad-based input. We found the touchpad to be a little fiddly to use at first, but with the mouse cursor set the right speed it moved around the associated screen well. That full QWERTY keyboard on the rear of the remote also makes searching through applications quicker.


Choose to shun the remote and pick-up the Revo One RL85 with the mouse and keyboard option and you can always use your Android or iOS tablet as a controller instead, via the Acer Revo Suite app. For many this may make more sense, as a familiar and more responsive interface.

The Intel Celeron version of the Acer Revo One RL85 will be available from 6 April in the white finish, priced from £239. The Intel Core i processor versions will be available at a later date, in black or white options, with prices anticipated to range from £299 to £399.

As it can remain switched on for ongoing durations of time, this Acer makes sense as a media streamer - but only if you're intending to utilise the further application of Windows 8 and related apps. If you're just looking for a media streamer, however, then there are cheaper options out there.

Writing by Mike Lowe.