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Category Archives: LAPTOPS

Gateway LT32 @DASHING THING REVIEW

Gateway LT32

Netbooks have settled into a comfortable set of stock components, offering basic PC functionality for prices to no avail of even a few years ago. The typical setup of a 10-inch sight, Intel Atom N450 CPU, 1GB of RAM, and Windows 7 Starter is simple to find for as modest as $299, and more than adequate for many tasks, from e-mail to surfing the Web.

LT32But those low, low prices mean that PC makers are keen to upsell, and a handful of akin systems have twisted up, with better HD displays, more RAM, and even better CPUs and graphics capabilities, such as the Asus Eee PC1201, which pairs a better cover with Nvidia’s Ion GPU for what we sometimes call a “premium Netbook” encounter.

A recent logic to offer this mix of a modest more Netbook for a modest more money is the Gateway LT3201u. This 11.6-inch mainframe skips the typical Intel Atom for an AMD Athlon Neo II K125 PC. Even if still a single-core chip, AMD has permanently positioned the Neo as a better architect than the Atom, and all through early subjective hands-on use, that certainly seems to be the case. The LT32 also includes ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4225 graphics–still not a discrete GPU, but a small step up from the integrated Intel graphics found in most Netbooks.

LT32Very near as vital to the end-user encounter is the 2GB of RAM (dual what’s in a typical Netbook) and the Windows 7 Home Premium in commission logic instead of the more run of the mill Windows 7 Starter Journal.

Note, even if, that we’re also early to see dual-core versions of AMD premium Netbooks, counting the Dell Inspiron M101z, which is even closer, but also more high-priced, crossing that vital psychological barrier of $500.

The point of the LT32 is reminiscent of the Acer Ferrari One, an exceptional 11-inch premium Netbook from earlier in 2010. That logic was even better, with a dual-core AMD CPU and 4GB of RAM, but it also cost near $600, putting it in solid mainstream mainframe territory. The Gateway LT32 is more practically priced. Gateway is item it for $449, but hopefully some adventurous retailer will sell it for $399, which would make it a fantastic $100 upgrade from entry-level Netbooks.

LT32The large upright is typical of 11-inch Netbooks, and certainly simpler to type on, even if the wide, flat, closely packed keys felt a modest wobbly, primarily nearly the focal point of the upright. The touch pad is puny and made of the same notes as the rest of the wrist rest, demarcated only by a faint raised line. Like most contemporary mainframetouch pads, it includes some basic multitouch gestures, such as two-finger scrolling, but they were hard to use, fault to register much of the time. At least the left and rightmouse buttons are actual break buttons, skipping the awkward recent Gateway trend of using a single, thin rocker bar in place of buttons.

The 11.6-inch cover has a 1,366×768-pixel native pledge, the contemporary standard for near all laptops with 11- to 15-inch displays. It’s a useful midlevel pledge that allows one to play 720p HD video files with no loss of dependability, and doesn’t make the small 11-inch cover feel cramped.

LT32One of the equipment we like most about this new breed of premium Netbooks is the inclusion of an HDMI productivity, useful for hooking up to a better sight. It very near makes up for the lack of Bluetooth; otherwise this is a standard set of ports and connections.

In our hands-on use, the LT32 felt like a certain step up from Atom-powered Netbooks. We spent less time staring at the growth Windows wait icon, and launching and switching between apps resulted in less hang time. Both the Neo PC and extra RAM liable play a part in this.

The Radeon graphics weren’t much for 3D games (even if some more-basic games are certainly playable; see our list of fantastic games for Netbooks for some examples), but HD video playback was fantastic, counting streaming Flash video in HD, a touch that trips up even Netbooks using Broadcom’sprecious stone HD video accelerator.

LT32One area where the Intel Atom still has a clear subsidy is array life; the LT3201u lasted 3 hours and 28 minutes in our video playback array drain test. That’s nowhere near the 6-plus hours a vastly efficient Atom Netbook can get, but we got quicker to 4 hours in subjective use.

Gateway includes an industry-standard one-year parts and labor warranty with the logic. As the company only sells systems through third-party retailers, total warranties of various types are available from the actual reseller, while a bespoke list of documentation and driver downloads is available by entering your series digit on Gateway’s help site. Gateway also has a terrible habit of hiding its toll-free help phone digit, which is 1-800-846-2301.

The Gateway LT32 excellent:

More commanding than Intel Atom Netbooks; practically priced; huge upright.

The Gateway LT32 terrible:

Still a single-core PC; not noteworthy touch pad and multitouch gesture reins.

The Gateway LT32 underside line:

Offering a modest more Netbook for a modest more money, the Gateway LT32 is a solid step up in power, cover size, and price.

The Gateway LT32 Price: $449

 
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Posted by on July 8, 2011 in LAPTOPS

 

Sony Vaio EB Series @DASHNIG THING REVIEW

Sony Vaio EB Series Assess:

There’s no denying that Sony makes fantastic mainframe hardware. Its Vaio brand is often a go-to scale for point-minded shoppers, and the brand’s relation famine in retail shops (compared with HP, Dell, and others) makes it much loved by those lacking to stand out from the mainframe crowd. Add in the fact that most Vaios are in the upper registers of the price spectrum, and you have one of the only mainframe lines that can make Apple’s MacBook Pro feel populist by comparison.

The Vaio E series is one of the less high-priced Vaios, and this fastidious Vaio Vaio EBEB (the reasoning behind the Vaio naming machinate still eludes us after years of study) clocked in at $799, but can be found for $50 to $100 less online. For the sheer feature of the physical hardware you get–this logic looks slick and feels rock-solid–it’s a fantastic deal. Even if, the EB44FX is sadly saddled with an outdated CPU.

For a mainframe released median through 2011 to have a late 2010 Intel Core i3 CPU is indefensible. This isn’t just a case of maintenance up with the Joneses–the contemporary Intel chips bring not just a reasonable bump to performance, but also much better array life and better integrated graphics. Most mainframe makers have phased out the older parts (except I don’t know for the lowest-end financial statement systems), and for a midpriced mainframe such as this, Sony should do the same.

From our subjective conversations with mainframe buyers over the years, it’s safe to say that next to Apple, Sony is doubtless the No. 1 mainframe brand scale for point snobs (a term we use without prejudice, as it doubtless applies to us). While not as fancy as the high-end Vaio S or Z series laptops, the E series model is still quite a looker.Our assess unit came with a pearlescent white interior, offset by a light gray lid and black base. Sony being a huge fan of mainframe sign that pop, numerous other color options are available, and many contemporary Sony Vaio mainframe models can be dressed up with a custom-fit upright skin.

These modest rubber overlays, which are designed to fit point Vaio mainframe models, come in a wide diversity of sign, and cover the full upright area, edge to edge. To hear Sony tell it, these have been incredibly standard, and near everyone who buys a Vaio mainframe in one of Sony’s retail stores walks out with one or two of these $20 accessories.

Truth be told, it’s pretty fun to change up the look of your mainframe in an Vaio EBfollowing–the swath of color from the upright skins fits the unfilled point perfectly, and if you point out a complementary color, it can look as if the mainframe was designed that way in the first place.

The skins do, even if, make the exceptional Sony upright a modest harder to use. They grip tightly, but not quite tightly enough, and the rubber skin went just enough under our fingers to lead to more typing errors than usual. With do we did get better, and of way the upright skins are entirely discretionary.The usually spaced island-style keys have long been a favorite, with full-sized Shift and Enter keys. This midsize model also has a full digit pad and there’s a trio of quick-launch buttons above the upright (just further than of the area covered by the upright skin). The quick-launch buttons launch a self-help help suite, a Web browser, and Sony’s proprietary CD software.

 

The touch pad, while not as large as it could be on a logic this size, was primarily lovely to use, thankfulness to a vaguely raised dot sample that existing just enough tactile pointer. Huge left and right mouse buttons sit beneath, and the full touch-pad wrap is centered under the upright spacebar, which means it sits vaguely to the left on the skeleton, as the upright is offset by the digit pad on the right.

You may want to jump into the touch-pad settings and shrink the default right-side scroll zone. We’ve permanently found it set too wide on Sony laptops, and are constantly accidentally triggering it while tender the pointer.

The 15.5-inch sight is one of the few areas where the lower price is evident. The cover pledge is 1,366×768 pixels, which is run of the mill enough for Vaio EBfinancial statement-to-midprice 15-inch laptops, but the Vaio EB looks like a more high-priced apparatus, so our eyes guess a higher cover pledge. Off-axis viewing was decent, but the cover is so glossy we straightforwardly elected up glare and reflections from closelights.

As a nice bonus, Intel’s Wireless Sight equipment is included. With it, you can beam your desktop (counting video or photos) to anyclose TV with the help of a sold-unconnectedly receiver box. It’s not quite quick enough for building a bet, but for video playback, it’s fantastic.

Sony Vaio EB excellent:

Sony makes some of the best-looking and best-feeling hardware in the industry, which is primarily welcome in a financial statement-minded logic such as the Sony Vaio EB44FX. Intel’s Wireless Sight is included, and discretionary upright skins add a bit of flair.

Sony Vaio EB terrible:

Why, median into 2011, is Sony still promotion laptops with 2010 versions of Intel’s Core i-series CPU?

Sony Vaio EB underside line:

Sony’s Vaio line of laptops, counting the midpriced Vaio EB series, look fantastic and contain some high-end facial appearance–we just wish the CPU had been simplified for the sake of better array life.

Vaio EB Price: $799

 
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Posted by on July 5, 2011 in LAPTOPS

 

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