The ASUS ExpertCenter D3 D300TA is a budget addition to their growing line-up of desktops intended for corporate use and has features in terms of its design and features that will endear it to enterprises looking for a reliable and affordable rig for mass deployment.
To be clear, this desktop isn’t designed as a cutting edge rig intended for demanding tasks like 3D rendering, video editing or crunching a massive spreadsheet. What it does have in its favour is that its built in a sturdier fashion than a generic off-brand desktop, is relatively affordable especially when you get them in large quantities to kit out an entire office and it benefits from ASUS’s enterprise-level customer support.
These perks don’t look like much to the average individual user but for a small to medium sized outfit, every cent counts and where reliable uptime is worth its weight in gold.
ASUS ExpertCenter D3 Tower D300TA – What’s on the outside
Externally, the ExpertCenter D3 D300TA comes in a matte black finish akin to the ExpertCenter D6414SFF that we reviewed earlier this year though some concessions were made to keep costs down on the inside and in terms of its interior layout. Of note is that the chassis is rated for MIL-STD 810G levels of durability which means its a good deal tougher than the average desktop though it’s still good advice not to punt it across the room or use it as a doorstop.
The D3 D300TA tower can be stacked vertically or horizontally and they fortunately did not skimp in terms of connectivity or ergonomics as the chassis has a diverse array of ports on the front and even more on the rear that can cater even to legacy hardware.
Up front, you have the rather quaint addition of an 8-speed DVD writer. Perched just below it is a headphone jack, a microphone jack, a pair of USB 2.0 ports and a pair of USB 3.1 Gen 1 ports.
The rear has a far more comprehensive array of ports that include a pair of USB 2.0 Type A ports, a pair of USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type A ports, a HDMI port, an Ethernet port, dedicated line-in, line-out and microphone jacks and a VGA port. The desktop also has space for an optional serial port and a parallel port but our review unit did not have them installed.
ASUS ExpertCenter D3 Tower D300TA – What’s on the Inside
Gaining access to the interior is fairly straightforward via a side slide-out access panel. The interior is a bit roomier than the earlier D6414SFF with plenty of ventilation space though it is not as ergonomically optimised for easy maintenance and access. The side access panel does not have tool-less access like the D6414SFF and you’ll still need a Phillips screwdriver to pop the screws open as the chassis lacks thumb screws. Fortunately, the side access panel does have a hand hold to make it easier to yank out. Another modest omission for cost is the hinged hard disk bay in the D6414SFF with a more conventional layout that offers a fair amount of after-market customisation.
You have space for up to two 3.5-inch hard disk drives and our test unit was issued with a 1TB hard drive out of the box. You also get the aforementioned 8-speed DVD writer, two SODIMM RAM bays with one already taken up by 8GB DDR4 RAM, an empty M.2 slot to add in an additional SSD along with an unused PCIe 3.0 x 16 and PCIe 3.0 x1 slot. All this is powered by a 300W power supply unit and ASUS took the effort to ensure that connection management is done up in a neat fashion.
Other than the desktop itself, ASUS has also thrown in a free full-sized membrane keyboard, a mouse and an external WiFi/Bluetooth extender which is a pleasant bonus. The keyboard and mouse are fairly typical examples with a polycarbonate casing, a USB-A port with plastic-sheathed cables and feel somewhat plasticky when held. They’re serviceable but they aren’t exactly premium. The product package itself also does not ship with a monitor so you’ll need to factor that cost in separately.
ASUS ExpertCenter D3 Tower D300TA Specifications And Performance
Our review unit of the ASUS ExpertCenter D3 Tower D300TA comes with the following hardware:
|Price||Variable based on configuration|
|Processor||Intel Core i5-10500 (i7 and i3 10th Gen available)|
|OS||Windows 10 Pro|
|Memory||8GB DDR4 RAM (upgradeable to 64GB)|
|Graphics||Intel UHD Graphics 630 (upgradable to NVIDIA GeForce 1650)|
|Connectivity||802.11ax WIFI, Bluetooth 5.0|
|Optical Drive||DVD-RW 8X|
|Front I/O Ports||1 x headphone, 1 x microphone, 2 x USB 2.0, 2x USB 3.1 Gen 1|
|Rear I/O Ports||2 x USB 2.0, 2 x USB 3.1 Gen 1, 1 HDMI, 1 RJ45 LAN, 1 x D-sub, 3 x audio jacks, 1 x COM Port/Serial Port (Optional), 1 x Parallel Port (Optional)|
|Size/Weight||160 x 380 x 355mm/7kg|
In theory, you’re able to kit out the PC with up to 64GB DDR4 RAM, up to a 1TB SSD and two hard disks, up to an NVIDIA GeForce GTX1650 and up to a 10th Gen Intel Core i7 processor.
Our review unit is a lower-tier budget variant with specifications optimised for general office use. You get a 10th Gen Intel Core i5-10500 CPU paired with integrated graphics, a single stick of 8GB DDR4 RAM and a 1TB hard disk running Windows 10 Home. This setup is more than sufficient for web browsing, sorting through emails, word processing and basic photo editing.
When subjected to benchmarks, the ASUS ExpertCenter D3 Tower D300TA yielded the following:
|3DMark Night Raid||5141|
|3DMark Fire Strike||1030|
|3DMark Fire Strike Extreme||487|
|3DMark Fire Strike Ultra||273|
|3DMark Time Spy||430|
|3DMark Time Spy Extreme||182|
|PCMark 10 Extended||2538|
|Unigine Superposition 720P Low||2256|
|Unigine Superposition 1080P Medium||739|
|Unigine Superposition 1080P High||525|
|Unigine Superposition 1080P Extreme||247|
|Geekbench 5.2.3 Single Core||1172|
|Geekbench 5.2.3 Multi Core||4970|
These benchmarks aren’t considered stellar by any means but it offers enough performance to get your average office worker through the day.
The PC was able to comfortably handle Open Office with a dozen browser windows in Chrome along with a windowed instance of YouTube running in the corner. It was also capable of some basic photo editing too.
Unfortunately, it’s incapable of tackling any current-gen games so Cyberpunk 2077 is definitely impossible on this rig, which isn’t a bad thing seeing its intended mission profile but it can handle simpler or retro games like Kingdom Classic seeing as it relies on integrated graphics.
Where the Asus ExpertCenter D3 Tower D300TA shows its charms, especially to IT managers, is the plethora of software features that ASUS has added to it that make it much easier to manage a fleet of them. Via the ASUS Control Center software, IT managers are able to handle a fleet of ExpertCenter desktops and for the matter other ASUS issued hardware like servers, workstations and the like remotely rather than having to sort common technical issues out in person.
The desktop is also issued with the MyASUS app that is now preinstalled on all ASUS notebooks and desktops. This app allows for basic diagnostics and enables users to quickly sort out basic issues, do storage housekeeping and get updates for installed drivers and hardware. It’s a surprisingly effective solution that tackles basic troubleshooting even for non tech savvy users.
The provided keyboard and mouse aren’t what you’d consider responsive or stunning by any means but do the job with more than sufficient sensitivity to tackle work related tasks.
ASUS ExpertCenter D3 Tower D300TA – Verdict
The ASUS ExpertCenter D3 Tower D300TA desktop makes for an affordable platform that is ideal for office work while retaining a sufficiently low and broad enough price point in tandem with its customisability that let aspiring owners tailor it to their needs. What gives it the advantage over buying ad hoc rigs is a suite of ASUS related apps that help make it easier to manage a fleet of them like their Control Center app for remote management and their MyASUS app that helps with basic troubleshooting.
The addition of a free keyboard and mouse also makes it a tad bit easier on the pocket. If you’re looking to kit out large numbers of employees with reputable hardware, the ASUS ExpertCenter D3 Tower D300TA is well worth a look.
What we liked Generous array of ports, roomy and sturdy chassis for upgrades, comes with a free bundled WiFi extender, keyboard and mouse, ASUS Control Center makes managing a fleet of ExpertCenter towers much easier
What we didn’t Plasticky bundled keyboard and mouse, looks rather plain
We say Sturdily built with a modest amount of customisability, the ASUS ExpertCenter D3 Tower D300TA desktop PC is part of the growing ASUS range of Expert series desktops and laptops with features that make it ideal for enterprise use and others looking for a basic office desktop.
Review unit courtesy of ASUS Malaysia. For more details visit https://www.asus.com/my/Tower-PCs/ExpertCenter-D3-Tower-D300TA/
For inquiries and a price quotation please visit https://www.asus.com/my/event/ContactUsCommercial
ASUS ExpertCenter D3 Tower D300TA
SummaryASUS ExpertCenter D3 Tower D300TA
Sturdily built with a modest amount of customisability, the ASUS ExpertCenter D3 Tower D300TA desktop PC is part of the growing ASUS range of Expert series desktops and laptops with features that make it ideal for enterprise use and others looking for a basic office desktop.