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Netbook Buy - Need Help

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October 3, 2010 8:28:57 AM

Hello everyone.

First off I did not find a netbook category, but felt that my question should be ask here.

I'm in the market to purchase a netbook, but need help in selecting the right one. I have spent some time researching it, but have not gotten myself involved in an Intel vs AMD battle.

Here is what I have settled on thus far. Asus 1015N.
Reason:
10" Display
Intel N550 Dual Core, 1.5Mhz processor
ION II Graphics
Up to 2GB of DDR3
Rated battery life of 8hrs

Now after seeing what AMD has to offer, I don't know which direction to go. I haven't researched the lines that carry AMD guts, and feel that I have exhausted too much time on this venture. So I wanted to ask you guys.

Here is what I am looking for:
10" Display
A fast processor, preferably (assuming) dual-core being the right choice out there now.
On board graphics
A long battery life; 8+ hrs

Please tell me what you guys would recommend in the netbook line. If you have any info on AMD equipped netbook, I would appreciate anything you have to offer.

Many thanks,

More about : netbook buy

October 3, 2010 4:57:46 PM

Well, Asus are the guys who started the whole netbook craze and they still do it better than most.
I would not expect 8+ hours from any netbook, at least not one you are working on. With a dual core and IonII, I'd expect even less. Especially if you plan on gaming or watching video.

The single core, $300 models have long battery life but are slow. My wife loves hers but wishes it was faster. Ultimately mobility is the highlight of these little machines, not gaming or movie watching. And the basic models handle mobility very well. The lighter the better.

As far as Intel vs AMD goes, Intel has been making atom CPU's for a couple of years now and AMD is just entering the game. I'd expect the AMD netbooks to be functional and fun, but I don't think they could touch Intel cpu performance.

I think the model you've chosen sounds pretty nice, although I don't know the price of the 1015N. But it sounds like a solid choice.
October 3, 2010 8:22:21 PM

buzznut, thank you for the reply.

To answer your question. Once the Asus 1015N with the N550 Dual Core Atom (1.5Mhz), and ION graphics hit the market, it is expected to retail at $499.

Now I had the opportunity to look at AMD equiped netbooks and came across the MSI Wind12. Inside; AMD Dual Core (1.70MHz) and ATI graphics (~384MBs of dedicated memory).

I was lucky to find that there are already benchmarks comparing the two netbooks. What I was able to find out is that the AMD, beats the Atom setups in terms of application and computing prowes. Unfortunately, when it came to graphics, the benchmarks were in favor of Atom and ION intigration. Also, due to AMD higher processing power, battery life suffed, but only a fraction in comparison to an Atom/ION setup.

I beliveve that I have made my mind up on what to go for, but would still like to hear what others have to say for their recommendation of netbooks, and possibly what may be to come in the near futuer.

Thanks again,
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October 3, 2010 8:53:16 PM

You didn't mention your budget, or what you wanted to use it for. If you want to "game" your going to have to up your budget quite a bit. The best bang for your buck you can get in that segment will be an alienware m11.

I use my netbook at university and my battery lasts 6-7 hours with the older atom chips, the new ones are supposed to be even better. For what I use it for, taking notes, writing short reports, powerpoints, excel (somewhat, really limited by screen size but manageable on small projects). Most important part is the battery, I choose mine specifically with a 6 cell battery which truly last me the entire day. However I'm not the smallest guy in the world and the keyboard is cramped. If I HAD to buy a new one right now, I would buy something with 11 or even 12". A bigger keyboard is always a plus. In my opinion anyway. When my desktop died I had to type a 30 page paper on the netbook and I was about to shoot myself. I ended up plugging in my 24" screen and using an external keyboard and mouse instead.

If your budget is $500 you might even consider a CULV chip. Anandtech had a nice review of them here http://www.anandtech.com/show/2932

In the end it will come down to your budget. I needed something cheap and would last all day. For that nothing beats an atom. I bought my toshiba for $300 and couldn't be happier. Just gotta understand it's limitations. Limited screen size, small keyboard, useless webcam, no gaming and slow video playback on hulu/youtube nothing over 360 works stutter free, maybe with ION but I don't have that since I went for the cheapest price possible. By the way if you are a student, don't forget to check ultimatesteal.com for MS office on the cheap.
October 3, 2010 11:39:06 PM

Supermuncher85,

To answer your question. I'm not looking at gaming, my main goal is to multitask and applications. I had a chance to try out the Asus Eee 1005HA. Just a simple web surf, and youtube stream of 720, I found it to be horrendous. So my main focus on a netbook has been performance. After performance would have to be battery life. It seems that in order for me to get performance; dual core, I am going to have to sacrifice batter life 5.5hrs vs ~13hrs.

Budget is not really a factor at this point. Yes I could go ahead and buy an 11X, but that is more than what I need. Playing COD MW2 at 30fps isn't a selling point for me.

One other option I would like to consider is upgrade-ability. Example, ability to install up to 8GBs of DDR3 1333Mhz, higher cap batteries, etc.

So to sum it up in order of importance:
1. Performance
2. Battery life
3. Portability
4. Upgrade-ability
5. User comfort (typing, mouse scrolling)
6. Options (Express Gate {or the like}, bluetooth, overclocking software, battery conservation software)
7. Looks/Style

Many thanks for your input on your netbook. Streaming videos for me in a priority, as it is something that I do on the daily on my home desktop. I also feel as though, if a netbook can't stream at least 720 then there is a major bottle neck that would/may also manifest itself in multitasking and applications.

Also thank you for your input on ultimatesteal.com. Me personally, torrent > ultimatesteal.com :whistle:  , my $.02 .

Take care, and thanks again. ,
October 4, 2010 3:45:32 PM

juker008 said:
Hello everyone.

First off I did not find a netbook category, but felt that my question should be ask here.

I'm in the market to purchase a netbook, but need help in selecting the right one. I have spent some time researching it, but have not gotten myself involved in an Intel vs AMD battle.

Here is what I have settled on thus far. Asus 1015N.
Reason:
10" Display
Intel N550 Dual Core, 1.5Mhz processor
ION II Graphics
Up to 2GB of DDR3
Rated battery life of 8hrs

Now after seeing what AMD has to offer, I don't know which direction to go. I haven't researched the lines that carry AMD guts, and feel that I have exhausted too much time on this venture. So I wanted to ask you guys.

Here is what I am looking for:
10" Display
A fast processor, preferably (assuming) dual-core being the right choice out there now.
On board graphics
A long battery life; 8+ hrs

Please tell me what you guys would recommend in the netbook line. If you have any info on AMD equipped netbook, I would appreciate anything you have to offer.

Many thanks,



This thread is very pertinent to my present concern. I too am looking for a netbook. I travel a lot and light weight is top priority for me, followed by functionality/performance and batter life, in that order.
At BestBuy the other night I looked at several different models and was drawn to the Asus 1015N. It's light and seems well designed and solid (some of the others looked cheap and flimsy), but I have no way of evaluating performance. It comes with Windows 7 (starter), IGb ram and 250 Gb hard drive. price $349. They also have a refurbished Asus 1005N for $239. The specs seem to be the same but there must be some difference that is not apparent. I'm temped to go for the latter unit.
October 4, 2010 5:40:12 PM

I had the opportunity to try out the 1005N in the store. I found it to be unreliable for the minimal tasks; opening up multiple FireFox browsers, streaming 720 from YT. I would really lean more towards a 1015N.
October 4, 2010 6:44:12 PM

It's not clear what you found that was unreliable. I often have many tabs open in Firefox. Was that not possible?
Was the YT streaming chunky?
October 4, 2010 7:08:17 PM

I'm sorry that I was not clear before. What I found unreliable was the computing power of the unit, the 1005 that is. The first thing that I tried was going to YT. As I typed in YT into the address bar I found it to be slow entering the text into the address bar. Think of using your system when your RAM is at 80% usage. Finally when I got to YT, it was slow to process the page; pictures and text. Nothing too disappointing about the speed that it loads pages. On par with what I think a netbook like that should do. When I got it to steam a 1080 video, I let it load about 25& of the video then let it play. Almost impossible, something like 1 frame every 2-3 seconds. Then tried 720, that was disappointing, something like 4 frames a second.

Hope that clears things up.
October 5, 2010 1:38:36 AM

Yes, but couldn't that be the network connection rather than the netbook?
October 5, 2010 1:40:45 AM

Have you made a similar test with the 1015N?
October 5, 2010 2:06:40 AM

As I said before, I let the video load 25% before I let it play. I do not believe that it was the connection.

No, I had not tried the 1015N.
October 6, 2010 4:09:57 AM

Supermuncher85 said:
You didn't mention your budget, or what you wanted to use it for. If you want to "game" your going to have to up your budget quite a bit. The best bang for your buck you can get in that segment will be an alienware m11.


I disagree,

I'm posting this from my m11x and I think there are better options out there for people who aren't looking for the very smallest core i7 (culv on R1) notebook with a 1gb graphics card.

What I would recommend would be the Asus U30JC-A1, you get a much larger display (large bezel around the screen on the m11x), it doesn't weigh much more, it isn't considerably larger. You get a quad core clocked higher, 4gb memory, similar hard drive options, an internal optical drive, a 512mb video card, and much more battery life. (my computer is slightly optimized and I see from 4 1/2 to 5 hours if I don't fire up the discrete gpu) The Asus is also about $300 less.

I'm looking at the 1015n for my wife, she's looking for a subnotebook to supplement her main work laptop. The benchmarks on the n550 are positive, it's power consumption isn't much different from the single cores. It doesn't have the performance of even the slowest culvs but it is better than the first and second gen atom chips. I am eager to see how touchy optimus is in this implementation.
October 7, 2010 10:47:36 PM

juker008 said:
As I said before, I let the video load 25% before I let it play. I do not believe that it was the connection.

No, I had not tried the 1015N.


Well I went ahead and bought the 1015PEB and so far I love it. It's small and light but the keyboard is no problem at all, and it has style.
Now I need to figure out how to copy all my programs and settings from my Toshiba laptop that has a failing hard drive.
That one has bad sectors that prevent making a drive image or even a full backup.
Any suggestions?
October 15, 2010 1:53:30 AM

Tomazg, try "GetDataBack". Make sure you don't write in that drive or you will write over any of those sectors. In other words, do it now. BTW way to go on that purchase.
October 15, 2010 6:19:41 PM

Thanks, I managed to get all my files transferred over to the netbook using Belkin easy transfer cable and windows Easy Transfer program.
I'll get a new hard drive for the Toshiba and later on copy everything back to it.
October 15, 2010 7:13:42 PM

I just noticed that you went with the single core Atom, and not the dual core? Why?
!