This is finally it. HP has come up with a business PC that doesn’t look like a massive grey brick. All In One PCs have been in and out of the market for some time now, and they’ve been a mixed bag. Either they’re too bulky and take up too much space, or have middling performance for what they were designed for. The HP EliteOne 800 G3 by contrast, sports a fantastic design aesthetic, and can be configured to suit most business needs.
Build quality & design
The G3 is fairly easy to assemble from its box – just snap and tighten the base and supporting arm, and then slide it into the back of the G3 to lock it into place. The first thing you’ll notice about the G3 is of course the gorgeous display. An extremely thin bezel runs around the screen, with only the bottom edge being the widest to accommodate the front-facing speakers. The full HD screen measures a close 23.8”, and you can configure your G3 to have touch input or not, or even to have an ant-glare panel to make it easier to use in harsh office lighting. Resolution-wise you’re only getting a Full HD display here, which honestly would be more than enough for general office use – if you need more screen space, you’ve always got the option to connect up additional displays.
Tucked away under small removable panel you have ports for power, Ethernet, HDMI, DisplayPort, and a host of USB ports. All of these are meant for connecting devices that you aren’t going to be changing often, so if you need to access USB ports regularly, then there are two separate ports towards the bottom edge that you can use. Personally I would have liked these to be on the side of the unit just so I can see where I’m plugging things into. On the other side you’ve got an optical drive that sits flush with the back of the display – I know it’s a bit weird to still be dealing with optical media, but there are plenty of businesses that still do, so this is a nice addition to have. Right at the top is a 2 megapixel camera that can be used for Windows Hello, or Skype. When not in use, you simply press it down to hide it from sight. There’s also an optional camera at the back, which HP says is for scenarios such as kiosks where a photo of the customer would be required. Around the side of the unit you’ll find a discrete fingerprint reader, just for an added layer of security.
Finally, the G3 is bundled with a wireless keyboard and mouse – a standard pair that you’ll find in most of HPs lineup. There’s nothing special about them, but I do have to point out that they need to be paired via a USB dongle, rather than Bluetooth.
The G3 can be configured in a number of different ways, depending on what you need it to do. Our review model was a bit on the barebones side, with an i5 processor, 4GB of RAM, and 512GB of mechanical storage. You can beef this up all the way to an i7 processor and 32GB of RAM, along with 2GB of discrete AMD Radeon graphics, as well as a 1TB HDD or 512GB SSD. For everyday office tasks such as word processing, emails, remote desktop, our base model would do just fine.
Despite initially feeling that we had a unit with pretty average specs, the G3 was able to handle my day’s workload without too many problems. Light photo editing was not too difficult, despite running on integrated graphics, and connecting to a remote Citrix server to launch apps was done without any issues. Scrolling through a complex spreadsheet was easy to do using the touch display, and taking a quick break to watch a few YouTube videos on the gorgeous screen was certainly enjoyable. The front-facing Bang & Olufsen speakers were surprisingly flat when listening to media, but really came into their own during a Skype call, producing clear and crisp voices. To be fair, I don’t suspect anyone will be using speakers right at their desk in an office environment, so the rule of thumb here would be to stick to headphones.
As mentioned before, the G3’s screen really is the star of the show. With support for both DisplayPort and HDMI, you could technically connect two extra monitors into a seamless (and near bezel-less) workspace. The system is powerful enough to drive all three displays (even with a basic configuration), so if you’re a fan of multiple monitors, then this is a no-brainer. You can choose between a recline stand or a standard adjustable height stand – our model came with the adjustable height stand, but the recline stand would be good for scenarios where you want to keep the G3 as close to the desk as possible, such as at a hotel check-in or a point-of-sale. The base is quite well built, so there’s no wobbling when you move the screen or adjust it.
The G3 did run a little warm towards the sides when I had used it continuously through the day. This is somewhat expected, given how everything has been crammed into such a sleek design. The internal fans do their best to keep the unit cool without sounding too loud, so chances are that general ambient noise in your environment will drown out any noises the G3 does end up making.
For IT personnel, the G3 is easy to upgrade or service. Simply pop off the stand, lie the G3 on a flat service, and the entire rear panel comes off without the need to use any tools at all. You can then upgrade elements such as the HDD or RAM, and then put everything back together in a matter of minutes.
With the EliteOne 800 G3, HP wanted to build an AIO that not only looked good, but could be adapted to various business scenarios. It’s a flexible PC that will do the job for everyday office tasks, and its sleek design takes up much less space on your desk than previous AIOs. It’s great for handling your average office workload, and the ability to seamlessly add additional monitors to create a larger workspace is a definite bonus.