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Request: Ultra-portable under $550
11-20-2012, 10:05 AM,
#1
Request: Ultra-portable under $550
My old ASUS netbook (ha) is "on the way out" and I want something cheap (maybe a black friday / cyber monday deal), preferably under $550. I noticed the article hasn't been updated in a while, but was hoping someone could point me in the right direction. I really don't need anything fancy; I just use it when I'm not at my desktop for browsing and such, but I also use it at school and to take exams (plus, I'll need it for the big, bad bar exam that's upcoming.)

Thanks in advance!

~Pisto3
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11-20-2012, 10:45 AM, (This post was last modified: 11-20-2012, 10:45 AM by ichigeki.)
#2
RE: Request: Ultra-portable under $550
Greetings,

http://www.amazon.com/Acer-Aspire-V5-171...57&sr=1-15

This is a great buy right now. I'm not sure how it will look like on black Friday however.

It has one of the fastest processor available considering price/size, and 6 whopping gigs of RAM. The only thing poor that I can see about the Acer is its battery life. Reviewers state up to 4 hours only.

Another laptop to consider...

http://www.amazon.com/VivoBook-X202E-DH3...57&sr=1-16

Compared to the Acer, it has less power and RAM, however its lighter and thinner. Additionally, the ASUS comes with the famous 1-Year Accidental Warranty. Reviews state the ASUS to have around 5 hours of battery life, about 1 more hour than the Acer. The ASUS is also equipped with a capacitive touch screen, which you may find gimmicky or not.

Cheers
Desktop: CPU: Intel Core i5 2500 3.30GHz RAM: G.Skill 8GB MOBO: ASRock P67 Extreme4 Gen3 Video Card: SLI MSI Nvidia GeForce GTX 460 768 SSD: Corsair Force 3 60GB HDD: Samsung F3 1TB Sound: Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium Mouse: Storm Sentinal Z3RO-G Keyboard: Das Keyboard Silent/Filco Majestouch 2 Speakers: Behringer MS-16 Headphones: Alessandro MS-1/Shure SRH440 modded Router: D-Link Xtreme DIR-655 Monitor: Dell Ultrasharp U2312HM De-anti-glared Laptop: Lenovo Thinkpad X120e/Thinkpad T430
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11-20-2012, 11:11 AM,
#3
RE: Request: Ultra-portable under $550
This was an awesome, fast, concise response. Thank you SO MUCH for the info. It's easier when buying individual desktop components to compare specs, but it's nearly impossible for me to compare these laptop packages, especially since I'm only in the market for a new laptop every few years. Thanks again!
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11-20-2012, 11:57 AM,
#4
RE: Request: Ultra-portable under $550
No problem! Good luck!
Desktop: CPU: Intel Core i5 2500 3.30GHz RAM: G.Skill 8GB MOBO: ASRock P67 Extreme4 Gen3 Video Card: SLI MSI Nvidia GeForce GTX 460 768 SSD: Corsair Force 3 60GB HDD: Samsung F3 1TB Sound: Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium Mouse: Storm Sentinal Z3RO-G Keyboard: Das Keyboard Silent/Filco Majestouch 2 Speakers: Behringer MS-16 Headphones: Alessandro MS-1/Shure SRH440 modded Router: D-Link Xtreme DIR-655 Monitor: Dell Ultrasharp U2312HM De-anti-glared Laptop: Lenovo Thinkpad X120e/Thinkpad T430
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11-20-2012, 02:41 PM,
#5
Re: Request: Ultra-portable under $550
Also let us know what you end up getting and how you end up liking it. :-)

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11-28-2012, 10:46 AM,
#6
RE: Request: Ultra-portable under $550
Ordered the ACER yesterday, should be here today (amazon prime is being crazy-fast lately; this and a book have both been delivered to my door in well under 24 hours using the Prime Free 2-day shipping). Will report my impressions in the next couple days after I get rid of all the bloat-ware, etc.
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11-28-2012, 10:59 AM,
#7
Re: Request: Ultra-portable under $550
Awesome. Look forward to it. :-)

Sent from my rooted evo 4G using tapatalk.
Here are some links you may find useful.
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11-30-2012, 08:32 PM,
#8
RE: Request: Ultra-portable under $550
First impressions:

- Laptop is thin, but the materials feel a bit flimsy. About the build quality i expected for this machine, although would have paid $50 more for a "real" metallic lid a la the Air. Instead, they opted for some kind of plastic that's easily scratched - I scratched the lid from putting a ringed notebook on it. Also, they didn't include a case, which meant to transport it anywhere without scratching it, I had to run on over to Marshalls and pick up a clearance Targus ($10).

- The 11 inch screen doesn't bother me, but it's very reflective and the machine is light. Still thicker than the Air, but also 1/2 the price.

- Out of the box with one decharge/charge I got about 5.5 hours of working time. Pretty good, but I'll probably spring for a higher cell-count battery later, even at the cost of a bit extra weight.

- Keyboard is standard, but the clickable trackpad is quirky, especially when trying to click and drag anything, or even select something and click elsewhere, an action that's very necessary in Windows 8 without a touch screen. I'll probably use a usb mouse.

Software/setup

- This is my first Windows 8 machine, and it's so obviously built for touchscreens - it's really trying to emulate the experience on a tablet. On one hand I'm a bit upset I didn't get a touchscreen, but then I realized I don't use the silly Windows 8 "apps" and stuff anyways. I downloaded Classic Shell from sourceforge immediately.

- Windows 8 also provides opportunities for even more bloat-ware than usual. Acer put all kinds of "apps" on the new "Start" menu (which I dislike). I must have uninstalled or deleted about 40-50 programs / "apps".

- Also, since Windows 8 is relatively new, the selection of "apps" for it aren't as robust as those for, well, Android or iPad, and I feel like the customization of something like Rainmeter fits my needs a bit better. It's like if iOS and Piet Mondrian had a digital child. Again, Classic Shell to the rescue.

- The biggest drawback, at least for me, was the choice of Windows 8 and the Qualcomm Atheros AR5BWB222 Wireless Network Adapter. This combination (even with the latest driver) does NOT function on WPA2 networks. I had to delete the driver and replace it with the windows 7 driver (and change some other settings so it wouldn't automatically update), which seems to be functioning alright for now. The other option, obviously, is a USB Network Adapter, but who wants that hogging a slot.

I will be putting the laptop through its paces processing-wise soon.
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