Dell Adamo review: Dell Adamo

While our review unit included a 1.2GHz Intel Core 2 Duo U9300, 2GB of RAM, and a 128GB SSD hard drive, a more expensive configuration with a 1.4GHz SU9400 and 4GB of RAM is also available (and we generally suggest 4GB of RAM for use with Windows Vista).

The dual-core Intel ultralow voltage processor makes a huge difference compared with the Atom/Neo/Nano CPUs we've spend most of our time with lately, and the Adamo handles multitasking chores much more like a mainstream system. The tiny, low-power ULV chips that allow the Adamo to hit that 0.65-inch thickness are expensive, however, which is why you don't find them in Netbooks, and why a basic sub-$1,000 Core 2 Duo 13-inch laptop such as the HP Pavilion dv3510nr, can outperform the Adamo.

While it's not intended to be a speed demon, in anecdotal usage the Adamo worked well, with no slowdown or stuttering during regular usage: Web surfing, working on office documents, and media playback.

One area we'd expect a high-end system like the Adamo to excel at is battery life. It ran for 2 hours and 36 minutes on our video playback battery drain test, using the included battery. Our battery drain test is especially grueling, so you can expect longer life from casual Web surfing and office use, but we had hoped for a more robust battery, especially with the efficient CPU, LED display and SSD hard drive.

Dell wisely includes an enhanced one-year warranty with the system. Called Adamo Premium Service, it includes a special 800 number to call, an average wait time of about 2 minutes, and you can request the same technician every time you call. Upgrading to a three-year plan will cost an extra $349. Dell also has a robust set of online support features, including an online knowledge base and driver downloads.

Multimedia multitasking test (in seconds)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)

Adobe Photoshop CS3 image-processing test (in seconds)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)

Apple iTunes encoding test (in seconds)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)

Video playback battery drain test (in minutes)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)

Find out more about how we test laptops.

System configurations:

Dell Adamo
Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 (64-bit); 1.2GHz Intel Core 2 Duo U9300; 2048MB DDR2 SDRAM 800MHz; 779MB (Shared) Mobile Intel GMA 4500MHD; 128GB Samsung SSD

HP Pavilion dv2
Windows Vista Home Edition SP1 (64-bit); 1.6GHz AMD Athlon Neo Processor MV-40; 2048MB DDR2 SDRAM 800MHz; 512MB ATI Mobility Radeon HD 3140; 320GB Western Digital 5400rpm

Dell Studio XPS 13-163B
Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 (64-bit); 2.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo P8600; 4,096MB DDR2 SDRAM 800MHz; 256MB Nvidia GeForce 9400M G; 320GB Seagate 7,200rpm

HP Pavilion dv3510nr
Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 (64-bit); 2.0GHz Intel Core 2 Duo P7350; 4,096MB DDR2 SDRAM 667MHz; 512MB Nvidia GeForce 9600M GS; 320GB Toshiba 5,400rpm

Apple MacBook (Core 2 Duo 2.4GHz, Nvidia GeForce 9400M)
OS X 10.5.5 Leopard; Intel Core 2 Duo 2.2GHz; 2048MB DDR3 SDRAM 1066MHz; 256MB Nvidia GeForce 9400M; 250GB Toshiba 5,400rpm

What you'll pay

    Pricing is currently unavailable.

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    Where to Buy

    Dell Adamo Laptop Computer (Intel Core 2 Duo SU9400, 128GB HDD, 2GB)

    Part Number: FACWAQ1 Released: Apr 9, 2009
    Pricing is currently unavailable.

    Quick Specifications See All

    • Release date Apr 9, 2009
    • Installed Size 2 GB
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