Once upon a time, an all-in-one PC meant weak specs with a high price. They were more like a piece of furniture than a computer. These days, with much more energy efficient CPUs and GPUs around, all-in-one computers don’t necessarily equate to something simply to look nice in your living room – they’re useful too.
Pioneer Computers (no, not the Pioneer you’re thinking of, a different Pioneer) new DreamVision 32-inch Curved All-in-One VR PC X32 aims to be a gaming powerhouse without the big bulky tower clogging up your home’s Feng Shui.
The model tested contains a B150 chipset motherboard, Intel i5-6500 CPU, Nvidia GTX1050 Ti GPU, 16GB of DDR4 RAM and a 240GB SATA SSD. The LCD is a 1080p 32-inch curved panel. All fairly stock standard stuff. There’s loads of configuration options on the Pioneer Computers website, including a variety of CPUs, upgrades to RAM and range of additional hard drive options to suit your needs.
It’s not surprising there’s so many configuration options, as unlike most all-in-one computers, the guts are not some unique motherboard or parts designed to keep the size down. It’s literally an ITX motherboard screwed in behind an LCD. The GPU isn’t even internally connected to the LCD - a short DVI cable runs out from the monitor’s enclosure, into the GPU’s external monitor socket. There’s a regular SFX power supply and a full size PCIe GPU too.
There’s nothing particularly wrong with this setup, but it is a bit tacky and ergonomically, accessing the ports is a massive pain, as everything faces down towards your desk. At least there’s two USB ports on the side of the display. There’s also no VESA mount options for anyone who would like to hook this up to a monitor arm or mount it on a wall with a bracket.
The upside of this approach however, is that replacement parts should be a piece of cake to find, as there’s nothing proprietary. You can go to your local PC store and pick up bits to replace or upgrade it.
An unusual surprise with the DreamVision is a little lever that can be pulled out of the side of the case, which one could assume is an antenna for Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, but no, it’s simply a place to rest your headphones. Rather oddly, there’s no built-in Wi-Fi or Bluetooth.
The LCD’s quality is nothing to write home about. It looks fine, but it’s a rather low resolution 1080p. Good for TV and games, but not so much for day to day web browsing and productivity. Curved screens are primarily a gimmick at this size, so besides looking cool there’s no real benefit here.
Performance wise, there’s also nothing particularly special. In the PCMark 8 Home Conventional 3.0 benchmark, the DreamVision scores a respectable 3975 and in 3DMark Cloud Gate benchmark, it performs on par with other GTX1050 Ti machines, achieving a score of 17542.
Pioneer’s support options are worth a mention too. The standard 1 year return to base warranty is typical of the industry, but for $49 extra, you can add on-site pickup, so you don’t have to pack this big boy up and worry about it in the back of some courier’s van.
There aren’t that many big screen all-in-one PCs on the market. There’s plenty of 24-inch and 27-inch units, but when it comes to displays over 30 inches, the Pioneer DreamVision’s only competition is the very impressive HP Envy 34-A001A, which retails for $3,999 - much more than the Pioneer’s $2,826 for an X32 configured like the HP.
Despite the initial cheap feeling of the DreamVision 32-inch Curved All-in-One VR PC X32, it is great value for money if you’re after a big screen all-in-one computer. The 32-inch display makes it perfect to use with a USB TV tuner to sit in a bedroom and be a television, as well as a competent games machine.
Pioneer also sell a non-curved 32-inch LCD all-in-one computer, the DreamVision 32-inch All-in-One Gaming PC 6X, that is a few hundred dollars cheaper, making it a much better buy than this machine. Curved displays just aren’t that amazing to justify the extra cost. But if you actually want an all-in-one computer with a curved LCD it’s going to be hard to find one any cheaper than the DreamVision 32-inch Curved All-in-One VR PC X32.