Netbook confusion [solved]

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Netbook confusion [solved]

Postposted on Sat Jan 29, 2011 3:51 pm

Hi all

My wife has been wanting a simple netbook for general internet surfing (a tertiary machine) and I'm thinking of getting one for her birthday in a couple of months time. There is so much choice I'm getting a bit confused.

Screen size isn't too important, but I think the 10.1" models look on the sweet spot. What's really confusing me is what processor to go for. A simple Atom N455 should be fine as we wouldn't do anything strenuous on it, but if I can get a Dual Core N550 for the same money, I'm not going to complain about the extra processing power (I have an Atom 330 in a nettop and that would be fine). Of course there is the AMD route. So far I've seen the AMD V105, which is a 1.2GHz processor with out of order execution, but would it be any better than Atom, would it's graphics be any better that what's in the N455, which would do us fine anyway. I wonder if there's going to be any Bobcat processor based netbooks coming out at this price range in time?

I don't want to spend any more than $300 on the machine, plus I'll get a Win 7 Starter to Home Premium anytime upgrade at amazon for about $68, so total cost around $368. Maybe there are decent netbooks at lower than $300, in which I could get an extra 1GB RAM.

A 6 cell battery would be good to, for decent battery life.

thanks!
Last edited by srg86 on Wed Mar 09, 2011 2:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Netbook confusion

Postposted on Sat Jan 29, 2011 4:19 pm

Any of the various Asus or Acer 10.1" netbooks should be within your ballpark usage profile and price range. Acer sometimes has the better price relative to the hardware but can be difficult to deal with on support issues (got to save the money somewhere). If your wife is likely to have a color preference, that would also be worth digging into. Both white and black chasses are pretty common but some other colors are floating around, too.

Something like this or this on the Asus side, or maybe this unit from Acer?
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Re: Netbook confusion

Postposted on Sat Jan 29, 2011 5:18 pm

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Re: Netbook confusion

Postposted on Sat Jan 29, 2011 5:20 pm

I don't have anything specific to recommend (I lied, see edits at bottom), but the new Fusion APU processors from AMD are highly recommended. They have much better graphics than the Intel IGP and while their processor isn't comparable to a full x86 core it's a huge improvement from an Atom. I think the model number to look for is the E350. It's a dual core clocked at 1.6GHz with the Radeon 6310 graphics core.
http://www.shopping.hp.com/webapp/shopp ... m1z_series
I know that's a bit out of what you were looking to spend, but it's a nice looking system, already comes with Home Premium, has 2GiB of RAM, an 11.6" screen and has an HDMI port (not sure if that's needed, but it is a nice extra that the AMD platform has).

EDIT: This is interesting. It's a system from Toshiba with a 15.6" screen, and the single core Fusion chip clocked at 1.5GHz. Other than that it's the same as the HP. http://www.officedepot.com/a/products/9 ... -Computer/ (Edit #3, the system is $50 cheaper on Office Depot. Puts it easily in your range).

EDIT #2: The HP is rated for 9.5 hours battery (I've seen a review that actually placed the figure at 9 hours, can't think of which one it was though) and has free upgrades to 3GiB of RAM and a 320GB hard drive.
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Re: Netbook confusion

Postposted on Sun Jan 30, 2011 7:23 pm

lonleyppl wrote:I don't have anything specific to recommend (I lied, see edits at bottom), but the new Fusion APU processors from AMD are highly recommended. They have much better graphics than the Intel IGP and while their processor isn't comparable to a full x86 core it's a huge improvement from an Atom. I think the model number to look for is the E350. It's a dual core clocked at 1.6GHz with the Radeon 6310 graphics core.
http://www.shopping.hp.com/webapp/shopp ... m1z_series
I know that's a bit out of what you were looking to spend, but it's a nice looking system, already comes with Home Premium, has 2GiB of RAM, an 11.6" screen and has an HDMI port (not sure if that's needed, but it is a nice extra that the AMD platform has).


It's too much more than i wanted to spend to be honest and what what we need the machine for, even if it already as the upgrades that I'm looking to give the netbook. The AMD processor does look great, but it needs to be in a netbook of ~$300, maybe I'll stretch to ~$350.

lonleyppl wrote:EDIT: This is interesting. It's a system from Toshiba with a 15.6" screen, and the single core Fusion chip clocked at 1.5GHz. Other than that it's the same as the HP. http://www.officedepot.com/a/products/9 ... -Computer/ (Edit #3, the system is $50 cheaper on Office Depot. Puts it easily in your range).


This is a great notebook at about the price of what I'd end up spending on the netbook, but it's too big, I already have a 15.6" Arranale based notebook so that's why my wife is looking for a netbook for herself. Great price, but it's not a netbook.
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Re: Netbook confusion

Postposted on Sun Jan 30, 2011 7:47 pm

How about something like this? It checks off all of your boxes except for price and battery life. I am actually surprised that battery life is listed at five hours since the other, Intel based Acer 11.6" laptops all get eight hour specs on what I presume is the same six cell battery. As far as price, it comes with Vista home premium, 2gb of ram and has a higher resolution which is a big plus for internet browsing. Personally, I would never use a netbook when I can get an equivalently sized laptop for almost the same price. FWIW, I have an older Acer 11.6" laptop and I wouldn't think twice about recommending it.

Have you considered getting a tablet if it is just for internet? Granted I have no opinions on those and I don't even know if a good one exists at your price point (probably not).
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Re: Netbook confusion

Postposted on Mon Jan 31, 2011 12:49 am

srg86 wrote:Thanks!

Think my two choices are:

http://www.amazon.com/ASUS-1001PXD-MU17-BK-10-1-Inch-Netbook-Black/dp/B004AWEZ82/ref=dp_return_2?ie=UTF8&n=541966&s=pc
plus
http://www.amazon.com/Crucial-CT25664BC ... pd_cp_pc_3
To bump it up to 2GB RAM

or this:
http://www.amazon.com/ASUS-1015T-MU17-B ... =de_a_smtd

Based on what it's going to be used for, I may go for the first option.

The first one would be my choice, too. The second unit appears to be using an Athlon Neo processor, which is (roughly) on par with the Atom N455 but offers less battery life. The first unit hits most of the features you were shopping for, at the best price.
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Re: Netbook confusion

Postposted on Mon Jan 31, 2011 9:21 am

imtheunknown176 wrote:How about something like this? It checks off all of your boxes except for price and battery life. I am actually surprised that battery life is listed at five hours since the other, Intel based Acer 11.6" laptops all get eight hour specs on what I presume is the same six cell battery. As far as price, it comes with Vista home premium, 2gb of ram and has a higher resolution which is a big plus for internet browsing. Personally, I would never use a netbook when I can get an equivalently sized laptop for almost the same price. FWIW, I have an older Acer 11.6" laptop and I wouldn't think twice about recommending it.


It's nice but still too expensive. For this use she wants the lightness and extra portability of a netbook which is where the 10.1" form factor is idea, although 11.6" is close. I've never been a fan of Acer notebooks, I've seen too many fall apart after normal use (poor build quality).

imtheunknown176 wrote:Have you considered getting a tablet if it is just for internet? Granted I have no opinions on those and I don't even know if a good one exists at your price point (probably not).


We both loathe the tablet form factor.

ludi wrote:The first one would be my choice, too. The second unit appears to be using an Athlon Neo processor, which is (roughly) on par with the Atom N455 but offers less battery life. The first unit hits most of the features you were shopping for, at the best price.


Yeah this is the one I'm going to go for, thanks for the suggestions!! :D
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Re: Netbook confusion [solved]

Postposted on Wed Mar 09, 2011 2:57 pm

Hi all

I posted here a little while ago about a Netbook choice for my wife's birthday, well I didn't go for the Atom based netbook in the end, I went for something much better!! I'm so impressed with it I wanted to give some feed back (so no this isn't some troll advert)

http://www.amazon.com/Gateway-LT3119u-1 ... 851&sr=8-1

Gateway LT3119u, I was amazed such a nice little machine was around!!

It has an Athlon 64 X2 processor at 1.2GHz, which i realise is a bit long in the tooth, but it feels really good to use. The ATI Radeon X1270 IGP feels good too. I didn't notice how long the battery life is as my wife normally runs it plugged in, but setting it up with updates etc it seemed to last a good 4 hours at least. That's good enough for our uses.

The best part is the screen, 11.6" with a resolution of 1366x768, which is the same as my 15.6" notebook. It also comes with 2GB RAM as standard and Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit (none of this Starter Nonesense).

It has a 250GB 5400RPM SATA hard disk drive which feels fine for a machine of this ilk.

Anway in case anyone else is confused by the netbook situation, I'd hightly recommend one of these. The only thing is you probably will get better battery life with an Atom based machine. At $299 I wouldn't turn it up and with the money I saved (from not having to get extra RAM and Windows anytime upgrade) I also got her an external USB DVD burner. We're both very happy with the machine!

Hope that helps!
srg
Athlon 64 X2 4200+, UT nF4 Ultra-D, 4GB RAM, 128GB m4 SSD, 500GB HD, 9600GT 512MB, Intel 1000PT, Corsair TX650V2, Customizer 105 USB Blk. kubuntu 11.10 x64.
HP G62t, Pentium Dual-Core P6100, 3GB RAM, 320GB HD1, Intel HD IGP, kubuntu 11.10 x64, Win 7 x64.
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