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First Look: Asus Eee PC 1015PN

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First Look: Asus Eee PC 1015PN

2:32 /

The compact 10-inch Asus Eee PC 1015PN offers a dual-core Atom processor and Nvidia Ion graphics for decidedly better-than-average Netbook performance, but premium ultraportables that aren't much more expensive can do better still.

-Hi, I'm Scott Stein, senior associate editor at cnet.com and this is the Asus Eee PC 1015PN. Now, a lot of you maybe interested in iPads and tablets, netbooks are still out there and they're getting a little bit faster. This is a 10-inch netbook that we've seen in several different forms. The Asus Eee PC 1015, we've seen it in single-core Atom processors. We've seen it with dual-core. This one has a dual-core Atom N550 processor and it also has graphics. NVIDIA Ion graphics that give you a little bit of game play capability. And that a lot, don't expect this to be like your Xbox 360, but you will be able to play some mainstream games and older games at some passable clips and speeds, so that's nice. It also gives you a little bit of a bump up in graphics capability for video, so full screen video that we've seen streaming looks better than it does on a lot of other netbooks. Now, what is a dual-core Atom processor and NVIDIA Ion graphics get you, price-wise, it's about $429. Now, that's less than an iPad but it's more than a lot of entry-level netbooks that are $299. Will that be worth it? Well it depends on what you wanna get out of it. It's certainly great for any sort of basic usage you wanna have. So as we said $429, that's a little more than we pay for some entry-level 10-inch netbooks and there are 11.6-inch premium style ultraportable netbooks that have faster processors that we've seen that are out there, that are not that much more money than this, that you may wanna consider as an alternative. On the other hand, it's definitely the best performing Eee PC and 10-inch size that we've seen. Now, what does the dual-core Atom gets you, now it doesn't sound really particularly faster on individual tasks, but it is better at doing multiple tasks. Now, how many multiple tasks are you really gonna be juggling on a 10-inch screen like this, probably not that many but it's still nice to have. Battery life takes a little bit of a dip with the included graphics which are a little disappointing but not surprising. And another add in this model is an HDMI port for connection to a larger HDTV or monitor. Overall, really, you're getting what you'd expect out of a netbook, a decent but smaller keyboard, nice size touch pad, a pretty compact form and body, a little thick but it's definitely one of the better constructed netbooks that we've seen and remains. We've always like the Eee PC line and it's not really a tremendous leap forward. It's another small step forward. Well that be enough to get you to be excited to buy it? That's up to you. I'm Scott Stein, and this is the Asus Eee PC 1015PN.

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