Monday, November 5, 2007

Dell Latitude D610 notebook Review

Dell Latitude D610 notebook Review


For almost four years I've been using a Compaq Presario 1710TW (14.1" SXGA+ Pentium III-M; ~5.5 lbs) and wanted something of similar size and portability as a replacement. My main considerations, roughly in order of importance, were:

$2000 maximum budget

"Thin & light" (prefer around 5.5 pounds, or 2.5 kilos)
High resolution SXGA+ screen
I was mulling over my choices when Dell released the Sonoma-based Dell Latitude D610 so I ordered one from Dell's Small Business website and it arrived February 24th. I've had it for about one month now, and overall I think it is an excellent machine. As I will explain below, the audio quality while using headphones is terrible, but otherwise this "thin & light" notebook is perfect for the user who desires a great balance of power and portability. In this review I will make most of my comparisons to the above-mentioned Presario 1710TW.

Dell Latitude D610 Review Unit System Specs

Pentium M 760 (2.00Ghz w/ 533Mhz FSB)

512MB (2x256) PC3200-DDR2 (400Mhz)
14.1" SXGA+ (1400x1050 resolution)
ATI Mobility Radeon X300 w/ 64MB dedicated RAM
Fujitsu 60GB HD (5400RPM)
8x DVD+/-RW (dual layer)
Intel Pro 2200 wireless (802.11 b/g)
Broadcom Gigabit Ethernet; Conexant 56K modem
SigmaTel C-Major audio
Extra AC adapter & extra modular battery
System total was $1940 after shipping & WA state sales tax
Reason for Purchasing

I am currently a graduate student in a biomedical research lab and use my notebook primarily for writing, image editing and data storage. Relative portability is important to me as I frequently transport my machine back and forth between the lab and home. I often have several windows open with a lot of information displayed at once which is why a high resolution SXGA+ is important to me. I would have loved a 15.4-in widescreen SXGA+ screen but couldn't find anything affordable with that screen size that was below 6 lbs.

Build Quality

The D610 is a solid looking notebook -- noticeably thicker and burlier than my old Presario 1710TW, and from what I've read thicker and more durable than the Latitude D600 that it replaced in Dell's business notebook line-up. There is really not any flex when you pick the machine up by a corner, and the screen hinges are solid -- the screen doesn't wobble when you gently shake the notebook back and forth. The bezel surrounding the screen seems to be separated slightly near the bottom (just above the Dell logo -- see picture of keyboard below), although I didn't notice this until after I read about it in online forums. A dust-cover for the ports in back and for the docking port underneath would have been nice. Overall I give the D610 high marks for build quality.

Design & Aesthetics

If you prefer a simple notebook that isn't flashy (as do I), then the D610 is for you. The finish is an attractive silver/grey matte with lighter colored accents around the keyboard and touch-pad. There aren't a bunch of cumbersome quick-launch buttons: just volume up/down and mute, and the power button. Alongside these buttons are indicator lights for num lock, scroll lock, and caps lock, as well as Wifi and Bluetooth indicator lights (I assume it is Bluetooth -- I opted not to get this feature). Wifi is turned on/off via function keys (no physical switch). There are also indicator lights on the right-hand "hinge" of the LCD screen for power, HDD activity, and battery status.

The Latitude D600 apparently overheated on the palm rest -- this problem seems to have been fixed with the re-designed D610. I notice a small amount of heat on the left palm rest (just about where the Fn and start keys are), but nothing out of the ordinary. The bottom left-hand side of the notebook also gets warm, but I wouldn't think it would be enough to bother most people while using the computer on your lap.

The ventilation/cooling system seems adequate, with one large vent on the bottom left and an exhaust on the back left. The fan seems to be always on at a low level, but it is very quiet. Even when it kicks into high gear (which it rarely does) it is still pretty quiet. Regardless -- this is a bit disappointing compared to my Presario which was completely silent when idling (although louder than the D610 when comparing both at high fan speed).

The overall sound emanating from the notebook is fairly minimal, with the following exception: whenever a USB device is attached (a mouse or a USB audio device that I will describe below) there is a faint but perceptible electrical feedback noise. It is not noticeable in a normal work environment, which for me includes background noises from refrigerators, freezers, laboratory equipment, building vents, etc. In a quiet room it is definitely noticeable but faint (and drowned out by the sound of typing).

Overall I give the D610 excellent marks for design, with demerits for the fan being constantly on and the strange electrical feedback with attached USB devices.

Keyboard & touchpad

Ahh...a nice keyboard! The D610 seems to have one, especially compared to the Presario. I've heard a lot about IBM keyboards, but never having experienced one myself I can only say this: I've heard comparisons of the D610 keyboard to IBM keyboards. There doesn't seem to be much flex, and the keys feel firm (and are much quieter) compared to my Presario. I like the layout as well -- the large backspace key is located to the far right, which I've always preferred in a notebook keyboard. I don't use the trackpad or pointing stick much, but they both seem to be well designed. There is no dead-space on the trackpad and the buttons have a satisfying click to them. I would give the D610 excellent marks for the keyboard & input devices.

Size & Weight

The size & weight of the Latitude D610 breaks down as follows:

Notebook w/ "travel-lite" module: 4.85 pounds
Notebook w/ DVD drive: 5.4 pounds
Notebook w/ 2nd (modular) battery: 5.65 pounds
65W AC adapter: 14 ounces
12.44" x 10.3" x 1.5" (closed) or 1.1" (open)
The notebook with DVD drive and AC adapter is therefore about 6.3 pounds. By comparison, the old Presario 1710TW with DVD drive and AC adapter was about 6.7 pounds -- although it was a little thinner. Other than being a little on the thick side, I'd say the D610 has average size & weight specifications for a notebook of its class.

Sound & Audio

The audio system is pretty standard for a notebook computer of this size. Speakers sound a little better than the Presario, but they do lack the bass & oomph that I prefer when listening to music. Personally, I have almost never used the built-in speakers in any notebook, preferring to use external speakers or headphones. However, the D610 has a serious problem in this regard: plug in a pair of headphones and I notice a very annoying background hiss, as if the headphones are picking up electrical feedback from the system. The hiss seems to vary in response to the video system doing work: whenever a window is re-drawn, re-sized, moved, minimized, etc, the background hiss gets worse. Also, the touchpad and pointer stick cause extra feedback. Oddly, whenever the hard drive is accessed, the hiss seems to temporarily abate. I've read quite a lot about this problem in online forums (including Dell's official forums), so I'll list some points concerning this problem here:

This is a common problem for Dell notebooks -- some other models have the same problem
Not everyone has this problem -- either because the problem is not universal, or because only some of us are very finicky listeners

I've heard some people have had Dell replace the motherboard, the audio card, the wireless, even the modem to no avail.
Some have suggested it is a grounding problem. For my system, the problem improves slightly when running off the battery.

There isn't any noticeable hiss through the built-in speakers, or through external speakers. Some have suggested that using headphones with 32-ohm or higher impedance would solve the problem but I don't think this is the case (I've tried four pairs of headphones on my system).

As you can see, I've obsessed a bit about this problem. I enjoy listening to music through headphones while working on my computer so for me this is a big problem. I contacted Dell product support and to make a long story short (see Service & Support for more details) they told me to send the system in for Depot repair. Unfortunately, I cannot send the system back as it is essential for my work right now, but I will definitely be sending it in for repair if Dell ever comes up with an acknowledged solution. I got so frustrated I purchased the Audio Advantage Micro by Turtle Beach, an inexpensive USB audio device that works well. This device solves the problem, although I still don't feel it is right that a brand new, $2000 machine should have such an annoying problem that essentially ruins the headphone-listening experience. Because of this, I have to give the D610 poor marks for sound & audio.

I/O Ports

I personally think the D610 has a great I/O port arrangement: very little on the right side (I use a mouse 99% of the time and don't want any cords in the way); audio jacks & PC card slot on the left, most everything else in the back. Specifically:

A nice feature is the release latch for the modular bay on the side of the machine (see picture) rather than the bottom (as it was for my Presario), making it much easier to swap out the drive, especially with power cord, ethernet, mouse, etc attached.

Four USB ports is a nice bonus in this notebook. I always have a mouse attached, and often have the above mentioned USB audio device attached. That still leaves two open ports for USB drives, peripherals, etc. In my mind the D610 has an excellent I/O port arrangement.

Processor & Performance

The latitude D610 incorporates the latest "Sonoma" version of the Intel Centrino. I had high hopes that this machine would fly, and indeed, the D610 seems very responsive & performs well for what I do. As mentioned above, I'll often have powerpoint, photoshop, deepview (molecular image viewer), word, several instances of firefox, thunderbird, winamp, and a few other applications thrown in for good measure open at the same time. The old Presario would definitely bog-down, especially with graphics intensive apps such as deepview and specific powerpoint slides. So far the D610 has sailed through everything I've thrown at it. It hasn't crashed yet -- although windows explorer hangs from time to time (doesn't it always). I'm not much of a gamer, although I did download a copy of the Quake3 demo to see how it would run. I'll list the Quake3 results in the benchmarks section below

Another common use for my notebook is to rip and encode music. I prefer Exact Audio Copy configured to encode with the LAME engine. My "benchmark" here is that the supplied DVD RW drive seems to be able to rip at up to about 7.5x (although it takes a while to get going that fast), and the encoding occurs at a "play/CPU" of about 10x (meaning a 10 minute song is encoded in about 1 minute). All together an hour-long CD is ripped & encoded to high quality VBR mp3 files in about 15 minutes.

Benchmarks & Battery Life

Super Pi:  1 min 37 sec (calculation to 2M digits) (see other notebook speeds for calculating Pi)

PCMark04: 3663 PCMarks
3DMark05: 722 3DMarks
3DMark03: 1879 3DMarks
Quake3: 87.5 FPS (high-quality settings), 325 FPS (low-quality settings)

dell latitude d610 battery information

Dell latitude d610 series Battery

Net Weight:
127.40 x 77.40 x 19.40 mm

Dell latitude d610 series Laptop Battery fit OEM P/N: dell 1x793 , 310-4482 , 310-5195 , 312-0068 , 451-10132 , replacement for dell latitude d505 , latitude d610 series laptop battery.

The high quality settings for Quake3 were 1280x1024 with high details & all effects. The low quality settings were 640x480 with low details & most effects turned off.

Classic test with primary (6-cell, 48WHr) battery: 2 hours 23 minutes
Idle test with primary battery: 2 hours 51 minutes
Classic test with primary & modular (also 48WHr) batteries: 3 hours 25 minutes
Idle test with primary & modular batteries: 6 hours 0 minutes
I haven't actually timed the machine fully draining the batteries, but after normal use with the primary battery for 30 minutes, there was 83% remaining with a reported time left of 2 hours 24 minutes. I would estimate about 3 hours of light-duty computing from the primary battery alone. You could save a little weight with a 4-cell primary battery if you don't rely on batteries much.

Wireless & networking

I primarily use the Ethernet connection while at work -- no problems there. I don't use the wireless much, but I did hook it up to a nearby access point and it seemed quite fast. The wireless has no physical on/off switch -- it is controlled via the Fn key, with an indicator light that stays on when the wireless is on (doesn't blink with "activity" as do some Ethernet ports).

Support & Service

I ordered an additional AC adapter and Dell screwed up and only sent an additional AC adapter without the power cord. I don't see how you can consider an AC adapter without the power cord (the part that plugs into the wall) a functional AC adapter, so I contacted product support via email to notify Dell of the problem. In less than 24 hours they responded and shipped an entire new AC adapter, letting me keep the extra part.

I have also contacted Dell concerning the headphone feedback noise problem. I received quick responses; it's just that Dell was unable to solve the problem. I was first instructed to reinstall the audio drivers and disable specific system components. When that failed, I was informed I could send the system in for "system board replacement." Dell service personnel never answered my direct question, however, as to whether the problem can actually be solved (or indeed if they are actually aware of it). Not wanting to risk sending my notebook in for "repair," only to have it returned with the same problem, I opted not to send it in. If and when a solution arises, I will definitely have Dell fix the problem.

Overall I would give
Dell latitude d610 average marks for the support & service. They respond quickly and when the problem can be solved, they take care of it right away. However, they tend to give "canned" answers and would sometimes ignore direct questions.


Overall I'm very happy with this machine. I think it would suit the mobile professional or student who needs a portable yet fast and responsive system for business and office applications quite well. I am especially impressed with the build quality and durability and the keyboard, but I am very disappointed with the noisy headphone jack issue, and cannot decide whether I would have avoided this machine had I known about this ahead of time. Given that it is easy to solve with external hardware (PC card or USB audio device) it's more of an annoyance with Dell's quality control than a true grievance. I can accept limitations of the system such as video or processor speeds. I have a hard time swallowing design or aesthetic problems on a machine that is brand new, especially one that requires me to carry around an extra piece of hardware to solve it.

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Friday, November 2, 2007

toshiba satellite p25 review

toshiba satellite p25 review

Toshiba's Satellite P25 series, featuring a 17-inch display, is too large and heavy for frequent business travel. But if you're looking to fit the capabilities of both a desktop PC and a boatload of multimedia gear into a small space, it may be the answer to your prayers. The model we tested--sporting a TV tuner module and a DVD-rewritable drive--proved an excellent performer and a superb convergence portable. (Toshiba is now selling this notebook with Windows XP Media Center Edition 2004.) It has design faux pas, such as overly bright power and status lights that distracted us when watching movies; nevertheless, for dorm rooms, apartments, and RVs, the Satellite P25 series is an excellent space-saving alternative to the traditional computer/multimedia setup.

Design of Toshiba Satellite P25 series

At 16.4 by 11.8 by 1.8 inches (W, D, H), the Satellite P25 series could almost pass for a small surfboard, but it's not as heavy as you'd think--only 8.9 pounds (10.4 pounds including the AC adapter). Styled in Toshiba's familiar metallic blue, the Satellite P25 series is handsome on the outside. Flip it open, and it's still attractive, but the silver-and-white color scheme for the keyboard deck draws your attention away from the screen when you're watching movies. So do the overly bright power switch and front-lip status lights, which we wound up covering for serious DVD watching. What's not distracting is the keyboard itself, which has no undersized keys and a nice, tight feel.

Satellite P25 series notebooks come with all the standard ports and slots: four USB 2.0, mini-FireWire, VGA out, parallel, S-Video, 56K modem, 10/100 Ethernet, line out, microphone, headphone, and IrDA, plus a dual Type II PC Card and one SD card slot. The Satellite P25-S607 model includes a TV-tuner module, installed in one of the two front-facing modular bays. Jacks for a cable hookup and composite video in both require the included adapter cables. Unfortunately, because the notebook's battery and DVD-rewritable drive also use the modular bays, one or the other has to go to make room for the TV tuner.

The Satellite P25's large case has plenty of room for a subwoofer, such as the one in the company's Satellite 5205-S705 model, but the P25 doesn't actually have one. While the sound fidelity and volume are above average, there's not enough bass.

Features of Toshiba Satellite P25 series

Until recently, Toshiba sold three versions of the Satellite P25 series. The company now promotes just one version, the P25-S609, although we tested the P25-S607, which can still be found in some stores. The P25-S609 features Windows XP Media Center Edition 2004; a 17-inch wide-screen display with a 1,440x900 native resolution; a 5,400rpm, 60GB hard drive; a DVD-RAM/DVD-R/DVD-RW/CD-RW drive; and an Nvidia GeForce FX Go5200 GPU. It also comes with integrated 802.11 a/b wireless networking.

Our Satellite P25-S607 test model also included an infrared remote control. However, it works only with the included outboard USB infrared port, not the built-in front-mounted IrDA port--an annoying design issue that Toshiba should address.

For productivity and to support the Satellite P25 series' numerous multimedia capabilities, Toshiba includes a large software bundle: Microsoft Works for business tasks, Panasonic MotionDV Studio for video editing, Intuit Quicken Basic to handle personal finances, Norton AntiVirus 2002, and a month's worth of AT&T Worldnet dial-up Internet service. The S607 model includes Sonic's MyDVD for movie authoring and burning. Toshiba also included several useful configuration and help utilities.

Performance of Toshiba Satellite P25 series

Mobile application performance
The Satellite P25-S607 finished way ahead in mobile performance in this small test group. The system has been configured so that its desktop processor throttles minimally, allowing it to score higher than its competitors. (We test each Toshiba notebook with Toshiba's Power Saver utility enabled. Power Saver regulates how fast the processor runs; the utility is configured differently for each Toshiba notebook.) The Eurocom D470W Impressa's and Fujitsu LifeBook N series' CPU throttling is configured in each system's BIOS; as you can see from the scores, their CPUs throttle a lot lower than the Satellite P25-S607's does. The Eurocom D47W's moderate throttling keeps its mobile score at about midrange. The Fujitsu LifeBook N series throttles its CPU the most, thus its performance drags.

SysMark2002 performance

The Satellite P25-S607 came out on top again, this time in maximum performance, beating its nearest competitor, the Eurocom D470W Impressa by 10 points. The Satellite P25-S607 did its most impressive work in office productivity, where it beat the Eurocom D470W by 12 points. This is not surprising, because the office-productivity test taxes the hard drive, and the Satellite P25-S607's 5,400rpm hard drive is faster than the Eurocom's.

To measure maximum notebook application performance, CNET Labs uses BAPCo's SysMark2002, an industry-standard benchmark. Using off-the-shelf applications, SysMark measures a desktop's performance using office-productivity applications (such as Microsoft Office and McAfee VirusScan) and Internet-content-creation applications (such as Adobe Photoshop and Macromedia Dreamweaver).

3D graphics performance

The Satellite P25-S607 placed second in our 3D graphics performance test. This was surprising, considering the system includes a powerful Nvidia GeForce FX 5200 64MB graphics adapter. The problem is that our 3D benchmark test, 3DMark2001 Pro SE, tests DirectX 8.1 performance. The Nvidia GeForce FX 5200 64MB, a DirectX 9.0 native, would most likely do much better in a DirectX 9.0 environment.

To measure 3D graphics performance, CNET Labs uses Futuremark's 3DMark2001 SE. We use 3DMark to measure desktop-replacement notebook performance with the DirectX 8.1 interface at the 32-bit color setting at a resolution of 1,024x768.

System configurations:

Eurocom D470W Impressa

Windows XP Professional; 3.06GHz Intel Pentium 4; 1024MB DDR SDRAM 333MHz; ATI Mobility Radeon 9000 64MB; Fujitsu MHS2030AT 30GB 4,200rpm

Fujitsu LifeBook N series

Windows XP Home; 2.8GHz Intel Pentium 4; 512MB DDR SDRAM 266MHz; ATI Mobility Radeon 8500 64MB; Hitachi DK23EA-60 60GB 4,200rpm

Battery life of Toshiba Satellite P25 series

battery tech. of toshiba satellite p25

Battery Type: Li-ion

Voltage : 14.80V

Capacity : 6600mAh

Color : Black

Dimension : 151.20 x 131.50 x 22.40

Net Weight : 715.1 g

toshiba satellie p25 series battery code fit part# Toshiba pa3291u-1bas,Toshiba pa3291u-1brs ,can replacement for Toshiba Satellite p20 Series Battery, Toshiba Satellite p25 Series Battery .

The Satellite P25-S607's fast performance came at the expense of battery life. Even its 14.8V, 6450mAh (96WHr) battery couldn't compensate for the huge drain the system's desktop processor imposed. The Fujitsu LifeBook N series, which had the worst performance scores, took sweet revenge here, achieving the highest battery life. This is a direct result of its processor running at a relatively low speed and using less power. The Eurocom D470W Impressa benefited from a throttled CPU as well, though less dramatically; it lasted only 13 minutes longer than the Satellite P25-S607.

To measure mobile-application performance and battery life, CNET Labs uses BAPCo's MobileMark2002. MobileMark measures both applications performance and battery life concurrently using a number of popular applications (Microsoft Word 2002, Microsoft Excel 2002, Microsoft PowerPoint 2002, Microsoft Outlook 2002, Netscape Communicator 6.0, WinZip Computing WinZip 8.0, McAfee VirusScan 5.13, Adobe Photoshop 6.0.1, and Macromedia Flash 5.0).

System configurations:

Eurocom D470W Impressa

Windows XP Professional; 3.06GHz Intel Pentium 4; 1024MB DDR SDRAM 333MHz; ATI Mobility Radeon 9000 64MB; Fujitsu MHS2030AT 30GB 4,200rpm

Fujitsu LifeBook N series

Windows XP Home; 2.8GHz Intel Pentium 4; 512MB DDR SDRAM 266MHz; ATI Mobility Radeon 8500 64MB; Hitachi DK23EA-60 60GB 4,200rpm

Toshiba Satellite P25-S607

Windows XP Media Center Edition; 2.8GHz Intel Pentium 4; 512MB DDR SDRAM 266MHz; Nvidia GeForce FX Go 5200 64MB; Toshiba MK6022GAX 60GB 5,400rpm

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Thursday, November 1, 2007

Sony Vaio T series Laptop review

Sony Vaio T series Laptop review

Sony Vaio T series laptop battery

Sony® T Series notebooks help you stay productive with lightweight, portable features. Widescreen display with XBRITEtrade; LCD technology, long battery life 5 , and unique, compact design deliver a movie viewing experience like no other computer. This complete multimedia package lets you listen to manage your favorite music and organize and share your digital pictures. Integrated DVDplusmn;RW drive allows you to watch, edit and burn professional quality DVDs4 using Click to DVDtrade; software. Enjoy your newfound mobility and expand the number of places where you can use your computer. Distinctive, stylish design and premiumfunctions combine to create the ultimate mobile companion.

How do you follow up on a home run like Sony's diminutive VAIO TR laptop? Easy: make it thinner, more powerful, and throw in a few additional key features. That's exactly what Sony's crafty designers seem to have done with the brand-new VAIO T series, keeping this ultraportable system at about 3.1 pounds but improving its look.

Upside: The VAIO T strives to balance power with portability. It's equipped with Intel's 733 ultra-low-voltage Pentium M processor running at 1.1GHz, a 40GB hard drive, and 512MB of 333MHz system memory; it can hold up to 1GB of RAM. Add in a convenient, built-in multiformat DVD burner, and you have a pint-size laptop that's as functional as a full-size system. Weighing in at 3.1 pounds and measuring 1.3 inches thick, 10.7 inches wide, and 8.1 inches deep, the VAIO T is about as hefty as a hardcover book. Look closely, and you'll see a handy button on the hinge for activating the CD/DVD player, but unlike some other new systems, the VAIO T can't play without booting up first. Finally, this ultraportable laptop offers several ways to get online, including a modem, a 100Mbps LAN card, Bluetooth, and a dual-band 802.11b/g wireless radio.

Downside: Spectacle-wearers, beware: this is not your dream machine. With a wide-view, 10.6-inch WXGA screen, the VAIO T's display will seem tiny next to that of most other laptops, and while the touch pad is larger than the VAIO TR's, the T's keys are tiny and may be troublesome for those with bigger paws. While it has the bare minimum of ports, including a pair of USB 2.0 plugs, iLink (a.k.a. FireWire), VGA, and audio, you'll have to do without a video-out connection. Gone is the VAIO TR's built-in Motion Eye camera; the consolation is a flash card reader that's compatible with Memory Stick Pro media only. .

Outlook: Sony's VAIO T series picks up where the TR left off, offering more power, convenience, and mobility in a thinner package. On the other hand, though it updates the VAIO TR in every major area, at about $2,000, this mighty mite is still on the expensive side.

Expansion / Connectivity

  • Expansion Slots Total (Free) 1 ( 1 ) x Memory Stick, 1 ( 1 ) x PC Card - Type II, ) x Memory
  • Interfaces 2 x Hi-Speed USB - 4 pin USB Type A, 1 x Network - Ethernet 10Base-T/100Base-TX - RJ-45, 1 x Modem - Phone line - RJ-11, 1 x Display / video - VGA - 15 pin HD D-Sub (HD-15), 1 x IEEE 1394 (FireWire), 1 x Headphones - Output - Mini-phone stereo 3.5 mm, 1 x Microphone - Input - Mini-phone mono 3.5 mm


  • Miscellaneous compliant standards
  • Plug and Play


  • Power device form factor External Sony vgp-bps3a, VGP-BPS3
  • Voltage Required AC 100/120 V


  • Technology :Lithium ion sony vgp-bps3a vgp-bps3
  • Installed Qty 1 / 1(max)

Operating System / Software

  • OS Provided Microsoft Windows XP Professional
  • Software type Drivers Utilities

Environmental Parameters

  • Min operating temperature 50 °F
  • Max operating temperature 95 °F
  • Operating humidity range 10 - 90%
  • Max operating altitude 9840 ft

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acer aspire 3000 laptop review

acer aspire 3000 laptop review

Starting at less than $600, the Acer Aspire 3000 is one of the least expensive laptops on the market. Though it has an unremarkable design, the Aspire 3000 features a big 15-inch standard-aspect display and weighs right around six pounds--too heavy for regular travel but fairly lightweight for a laptop of this size and price. That said, the Aspire 3000's measly specs aren't going to set any records, and this machine delivers absolutely terrible battery life; furthermore, it lacks some basic ports and connections. If you're looking for a laptop that's portable enough to move around the house for lightweight computing tasks--e-mail, Web surfing, and word processing--the Aspire 3000 may fit the bill. Still, we recommend that you consider shelling out a few hundred more for one of the stronger systems we profiled in our $1,000 roundup a few months back.

The Aspire 3000 sits right on the edge between thin-and-light and midsize. It weighs 6 pounds and measures 14.3 inches wide, 11 inches deep, and 1.5 inches thick, so it's a bit bulky for regular travel. It's a smidge larger than two other inexpensive laptops--the 6-pound Acer TravelMate 2350 and the 5.7-pound Toshiba Satellite L25. The Aspire 3000's AC adapter weighs 0.8 pound, which is about average for an adapter on a laptop in this category.

Designwise, the Aspire 3003LCi is a dead ringer for the Acer TravelMate 4060 save for its keyboard: the TravelMate's is curved and the Aspire's is rectangular, and we like both just fine. The Aspire 3000 features a nice wide touch pad, two big mouse buttons, and a convenient rocker button for scrolling through documents or Web pages. It doesn't incorporate multimedia controls or external volume buttons, though it has four programmable application buttons and a Wi-Fi on/off button. The system's 15-inch display has a standard 1,024x768 native resolution and is plenty clear and bright, but it doesn't have the wide-screen dimensions you find on more and more laptop displays. The two speakers deliver mediocre sound. For a better multimedia experience, check out the Dell XPS M140, which starts at $999.

The Aspire 3000's limited group of ports, jacks, and connections reflects its rock-bottom price. It offers one VGA port, one Type II PC Card slot, 56Kbps modem and Ethernet jacks, three USB 2.0 ports, and three audio jacks (headphone, microphone, and line-in). Also onboard is a cost-cutting DVD-ROM/CD-RW drive. Absent from this group are common connections such as FireWire and S-Video as well as a flash-media card reader--a key feature for digital-photo enthusiasts.

Microsoft Windows XP Home comes preloaded on the Aspire 3000, though other configurations in the Aspire 3000 series ship with Windows XP Professional. Acer bundles very little software with the system. For viewing and burning discs, Acer includes CyberLink PowerProducer and NTI CD and DVD Maker; it also provides its own utility for managing core system settings, such as passwords. Starting at $989, the Sony VAIO FS series provides a more palatable software package.

Our test unit, the Aspire 3003LCi, features decidedly bargain-bin components: a 1.8GHz AMD Sempron 3000+ processor, a meager 256MB of slow 333MHz RAM, a puny 40GB hard drive running at a sluggish 4,200rpm, and a low-end SiSM760GX graphics chip that steals up to 64MB of main system memory. Both the comparably priced Acer TravelMate 2355LCi and the Toshiba Satellite L25 offer Celeron processors and larger hard drives, and the TravelMate includes twice as much RAM. Many other laptops offer considerably better specs for a few hundred dollars more; check out our roundup of $1,000 laptops and our list of top low-priced laptops for some picks.

We couldn't measure the Aspire 3003LCi's mobile performance precisely, because the system's battery couldn't last the 90 minutes it takes to complete CNET Labs' mobile benchmarks. It consistently cut out after about 70 minutes, which is nearly two hours less than average. Battery life aside, the Aspire 3003LCi displayed enough power in our SysMark performance tests to handle basic productivity tasks such as e-mail, Web surfing, and word processing; it performed on a par with other low-priced systems, including the Gateway NX500X (a.k.a the M360) and the Acer Aspire 5000.

Acer backs the Aspire 3000 with a one-year warranty, which is standard for consumer laptops. Acer's tech-support phone lines are open only Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. and on weekends from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. CT. The company's online support could stand some sprucing up; it currently lacks helpful features such as forums and real-time chat with a tech-support rep.

battery of acer aspire 3000 laptop

tech. of acer aspire 3000 laptop batteries

Battery Type: Li-ion

Voltage : 14.80V

Capacity : 4400 mAh

Color : Black

Dimension : 211.40 x 70.60 x 22.30 mm

Net Weight : 432.00(g)

acer aspire 3000 laptop batteries replacement for oem laptop battery part# Acer Bt.t5003.001,Acer lcbtp03003

,has a capacity of 4400mah,can supply planty of power for your acer aspire 3000 notebook,see more acer aspire 3000 laptop battery in united kingdom or aspire 3000 notebook batteries in United Stated of American.

SysMark 2004 performance

(Longer bars indicate better performance)

BAPCo's SysMark 2004 rating
SysMark 2004 Internet-content-creation rating
SysMark 2004 office-productivity rating

Acer Aspire 3003LCi

129 147 114

Gateway M360

128 143 114

Acer Aspire 5000

124 139 110

System configurations:

Acer Aspire 3003LCi

Windows XP Home; 1.8GHz Mobile Sempron 3000+; 512MB DDR SDRAM PC2700 333MHz; SiSM760GX 64MB; Hitachi Travelstar 60GN 60GB 4,200rpm

Acer Aspire 5000

Windows XP Home; 1.6GHz Turion 64 ML-30; 512MB DDR SDRAM 333MHz; SiSM760GX 64MB; Hitachi Travelstar 60GN 60GB 4,200rpm

Gateway M360

Windows XP Home; 1.6GHz Intel Pentium M 725; 512MB DDR SDRAM 333MHz; Intel 82852/82855 64MB; Hitachi Travelstar 4K40 40GB 4,200rpm

over view

Acer Inc., laptop computer, multimedia, port, travel

Similar products

Acer Aspire 2000

Acer Aspire 3003WLCi (Sempron 3000+ 1.8GHz, 512MB RAM, 60GB HDD, XP Pro)

Acer Aspire 3003WLCi (Sempron 3000+ 1.8GHz, 256MB RAM, 40GB HDD, XP Home)

Acer Aspire 9800

Acer Aspire 4710

The good: Very low price; fairly lightweight case; broad keyboard; big touch pad.

The bad: Dreadful battery life; comes with only 256MB of memory; lacks some important ports and a media-card reader; lacks multimedia controls; limited tech-support hours.

The bottom line: The inexpensive Acer Aspire 3000 delivers bargain-bin components and battery life and lacks some key features; if you desire anything more than absolutely basic laptop functionality, keep looking.

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