Summary: If HP's TouchSmart 600 won't at least get you thinking about the idea of bringing a PC into your kitchen, the concept truly has no hope. With well-thought-out touch apps, a wide, easy-to-use array of digital media features, and an attractive, flexible design, HP's new all-in-one is not the fastest new all-in-one, but it has the most comprehensive and compelling set of features of any all-in-one launching alongside Windows 7.
Pros: Matches Sony in capability to connect and switch between external video sources easily; Recipe Box touch program best kitchen app we've seen; smart touch app partnerships with Hulu, Twitter, and Netflix; loud enough to fill a room.
Cons: Slow performance; touch input suffers from occasional unresponsiveness.
Excerpt: When we heard HP was building its latest TouchSmart with Intel’s Core i7 processor, we figured it was game-over for the competition: Lenovo and Sony use quad-cores, too, but they both tapped Intel’s Core 2 Quad. MSI picked an even less capable Core 2 Duo (and priced its machine accordingly). But when the benchmarking dust had cleared, HP sat in third place across the board. What happened?
Pros: Best-in-breed touch-screen; excellent webcam; IR emitter; 6GB DDR3.
Cons: Relatively slow CPU; relies on external power brick.
Excerpt: Evaluating successive generations of HP’s TouchSmart series reminds us of shopping for a new car. If you fall in love and buy this year’s model, you must never, ever visit the showroom to look at next year’s model or you’ll be hit with a bout of buyer’s remorse faster than you can say “planned obsolescence.
Excerpt: HP’s top-of-the-line third-generation TouchSmart touchscreen PC should keep the line front and center for consumers looking for an all-in-one running a Microsoft operating system. Its sharp design, surprising utility, and inspired suite of touchscreen applications makes it an ideal choice for any family looking to place a stylish computer in a common area.
Pros: Huge, gorgeous, 16:9 1080p screen., TouchSmart suite delivers some excellent programs., Svelte and attractive design., Doubles nicely as a PVR/TV, complete with HDMI input for game consoles.
Cons: Touchscreen is still just a smidge finicky., Middling processor and graphics card could do with an upgrade., It’s still a bit costly.