Saturday, February 06, 2010

Thinking about a netbook

I've been thinking about getting a portable computer recently. In considering what I need, I realized that about all I use my computer for on a regular basis is internet and Office.

With that in mind, it seems like a netbook would be a good choice.

But where to start?

Looking around Newegg, I'm familiar with some brands (Asus and I have always gotten along), but I seem to remember reading somewhere awhile back that the companies that have typically dominated the desktop/laptop market have been slow to embrace netbooks and many of the smaller companies have specialized in netbooks and have better products.

Another question is how much RAM is enough? I see many of these netbooks starting at 1 GB, but the reviews frequently suggest upgrading to 2 GB. Given most of them have Win 7 as their OS, and Windows is known for having a large memory footprint, what's left if I only get 1 GB?

Any thoughts? I'd like to get one here in very short order! (Preferably before Naka on the 18th!)

9 comments:

Planeten Paultje said...

I'm waiting for the iPad to go on sale. Very slick and loads of interesting physics, astronomy, etc. stuff that runs on it. Plus a nice office suite. I'll also wait some weeks more for the one with GPS for field work. But I'm severely biased ;-)

Broan said...

I got the Acer Aspire One and put Ubuntu on it. This was a good and terrible choice as the graphics aren't well supported for linux.

But if you are putting Windows 7 it should run fine I would think.

I get about 6-7 hours of battery life on it too! It has 250 gigs of space and 2 gigs of ram. The 11 inch also has a full keyboard (not a scrunched one) Just under 400.

Anonymous said...

I picked up an Asus Eee Pc with 1 gig ram, 140 gig hard drive. Being a windows guy I left the stock XP on it. It functions fine for everything I do, which is just reading blogs, facebook and such.
It doesn't appear to have working webcam drivers yet, altho I have yet to really look hard for them.
Nothing really stands out as broken, its solid feeling, doesn't get to hot and has no dead pixels on the screen. I would say this tho, make sure you get the model with 8 hour battery life, it really is 8 hours.
Hope this helps.

Noadi said...

If all you're going to use it for is internet and office then I'd get one with 1gb of ram and dump windows for linux (I prefer Ubuntu it's quite user friendly). Open Office is excellent and you probably already use Firefox.

Brontodon said...

I have a Gateway netbook with a 10 inch screen. It's lightweight, compact, and works remarkably well. I needed internet access at work where I cannot get any other ISP, so my netbook uses the cell phone network from Verizon Wireless. Its access speed is good and I can get internet access anywhere there's a cell phone signal. The computer cost only $100 after rebate. There are other choices from Verizon but for me this was the best combination of speed, price, utility, and portability.

s.espo said...

I have a Dell Mini 910 and I absolutely love it. I originally had XP running on it, but have recently updated to Windows 7. With the OS upgrade I also slipped in an extra gig of RAM (now 2GB). It runs W7 very well and Dell is a pretty good company with good products as far as I'm concerned.

Andrew said...

I custom ordered my Linux netbook from Zareason, 16 gig solid state drive, 2 gigs of ram, and the thing runs like a dream. HIghly reccommended.

aaron said...

Hi Jon. As a long-time Computer Guy, my first suggestion is to consider actual computer makers (ie Acer, Asus) over electronics makers (ie HP, Hitachi), and especially stay away from Package Artists (ie Gateway, Dell). Unfortunately, I don't have enough experience to recommend specific models.

Specifically, I do know that my Acer Aspire 5520 ran Vista in a business/personal environment for over a year before I had to reinstall (also duel-booting Ubuntu), and the dual WiFi antennas on the top of the monitor make for awesome connections (I do all my my downloading via the WiFi(b) connection). Plus, Acer and Asus seem to do a more consistant job of having decent amounts of RAM and hard-drive space preloaded for decent prices. And, if you're not a geek like me, let me say that when a computer needs speed upgrading, the first things to look at are RAM and storage, then video and CPU.

Just my two cents,
Aaron Wyatt, Oshawa ON

aaron said...

Hi Jon. As a long-time Computer Guy, my first suggestion is to consider actual computer makers (ie Acer, Asus) over electronics makers (ie HP, Hitachi), and especially stay away from Package Artists (ie Gateway, Dell). Unfortunately, I don't have enough experience to recommend specific models.

Specifically, I do know that my Acer Aspire 5520 ran Vista in a business/personal environment for over a year before I had to reinstall (also duel-booting Ubuntu), and the dual WiFi antennas on the top of the monitor make for awesome connections (I do all my my downloading via the WiFi(b) connection). Plus, Acer and Asus seem to do a more consistant job of having decent amounts of RAM and hard-drive space preloaded for decent prices. And, if you're not a geek like me, let me say that when a computer needs speed upgrading, the first things to look at are RAM and storage, then video and CPU.

Just my two cents,
Aaron Wyatt, Oshawa ON