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With Intel expected to announce its new 'Pine Trail' Atom processors at CES 2010, now may not be the best time to buy a with a specification set firmly in 2008. At around £230 though, the Windows 7 version of the 10.2-inch Advent Milano is temptingly priced for a pre-Christmas purchase (the Windows XP model costs about £10 less).
Doesn't look its price
By our reckoning, the Milano is one of the cheapest 10-inch netbooks available at the moment, but it doesn't look much like bargain-basement fare. It's well-proportioned for a netbook, and both thin (it's 30mm thick) and light (it weighs around 1.2kg). So far, so good.
The glossy black lid has the same pattern of pale concentric circles that we last saw on the laptops, and this motif is repeated on the silver interior. There's nothing remarkable about the design, but the Milano looks much more attractive than you might expect for this amount of money.
Netbooks with roughly a 10-inch chassis are usually the best option if you want a half-decent keyboard in the smallest-possible space, and Advent hasn't squandered the opportunity with the Milano. Its keyboard is nearly full-size and, while the old-school keys aren't quite as broad as those on some more modern keyboards, they're still comfortable to type on.
There shouldn't be any trouble with the trackpad, either. It's big, and a lack of support for multi-touch gestures is no great loss on a netbook. The only problem is that it's made from the same shiny silver plastic as the Milano's wrist rest and, as ever, this makes for a less-than-smooth mousing experience when your fingertip is anything less than bone-dry.