• AMD X4 A6-3600 processor @ 2.1GHz
  • 4GB RAM
  • Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit)
  • 20-inch Widescreen HD LCD display
  • Storage: 1TB
  • Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, 6 x USB 2.0, Ethernet, Card Reader
  • Webcam, Card Reader, Touchscreen, Beats Audio
  • Pros:
  • Full-featured
  • Great touch interface
  • Beats Audio
  • Cons:
  • No USB 3.0 and HDMI
  • No Full HD display

A Touch of Intelligence

By all means of appearance, the HP TouchSmart 320 is the smaller brethren of the TouchSmart 520. It looks similar, too, sporting the unique stand that connects to a matte base (that is easy to tilt). All that’s really different is the smaller screen, and a different set of interior hardware. But don’t dismiss its diminutive stature; the TouchSmart 320 is smarter than it looks.

The TouchSmart 320 is well stocked with I/O ports, with 6 USB 2.0’s, Wi-Fi and Ethernet connectivity plus a keyboard/mouse bundle. It comes with Beats Audio and the 20-inch screen displays brightly and crisply enough. If you counted, what’s really missing are just USB 3.0 support and HDMI connectivity. It’s not a huge loss, but they’ll be sorely missed.

Being a smaller counterpart does make it lose some of bulk, though. The screen, for instance, only manages up to 1,600 x 900 resolution, where Full HD would’ve made it a better multimedia device. Still, the Beats Audio integration more than makes up for it.

The TouchSmart 320’s insides is also very much different. It runs on an AMD X4 A6-3600 APU, which has an embedded Radeon HD 6530D graphics. The performance doesn’t match up the TouchSmart 520’s, but the TouchSmart 320 is well capable of running HD videos and performing day-to-day tasks of surfing, work and multimedia.

The TouchSmart 320’s strength is the experience of using it. More specifically, we refer to the touchscreen, which works excellently. We’ve had various Windows-based touchscreen AIOs, but none has come close to the responsiveness and accuracy of the TouchSmart 320’s experience. While it’s not a genuinely intuitive inclusion (there’s not much use to it, outside of HP’s Magic Canvas software), it works well enough for us to utilise it more than the mouse.

CHIP CONCLUDE: The HP TouchSmart 320’s smaller stature means it loses a few of its brethren’s muscles, both in terms of performance and some features. But its great touch experience and well-stocked features makes it well worth a recommendation for anyone looking for a cheaper, touch-based multimedia device.

(previously published in issue August 2012)