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Help! I don't know which netbook to buy

by DelphinusR101 / May 18, 2009 1:56 AM PDT

I am looking for a netbook on which I can surf the internet, watch movies (including HD ones), play games (like World of Warcraft), and type documents and spreadsheets. The problem is that most netbook models have very similar specifications. There are also usability issues such as small keyboards, non-standard viewing resolutions, and ethernet and power jacks on the sides rather than at the back of the netbook. I would like your help in pinpointing a suitable model for me that has the following features in no particular order of priority:

1. HD viewing screen resolution - 10" (a matte screen would help)
2. Wi-fi with the n specification
3. Good keyboard size
4. 3G Modem
5. Good quality speakers located above the keyboard layout
6. Webcam and microphone
7. Minimum 3 USB ports
8. Monitor out ports (VGA/HDMI along with S-Video Out)
9. Good battery life with a 6-cell battery as standard issue
10. at least 1GB of RAM
11. Windows XP (preferably Professional) bundled
12. at least 160 GB of hard disk space
13. 5-in-1 card reader
14. preferably an Intel Atom processor
15. a discrete graphics card (I know this one will be difficult)
16. sleek physical dimensions
17. Bluetooth with EDR profile
18. preferably bundled with a portable DVD writer

Could you also tell me whether the Atom N280 provides a significant performance boost over the N270?

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You need a laptop not a netbook.
by orlbuckeye / May 18, 2009 3:38 AM PDT

Netbooks are able to be cheap because the cost of components is cheaper. A discrete graphics card would drive the retail price above low end laptops which don't have discrete GP's.

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That's a laptop.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 18, 2009 6:06 AM PDT

Your specs push you right into a laptop.

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There are some options but
by leganx / May 18, 2009 7:47 AM PDT

straight out my memory, you got the ASus N10J and the HP dv2 with discrete graphics card and netbook processors. But, of course they come at higher price than most netbooks.

At that price break, you may as well save a little extra money and get the full blown laptop.

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Good netbooks but...
by DelphinusR101 / May 18, 2009 12:46 PM PDT

Thank you for your recommendations. I have heard about the ASUS N10J but it's not available on the ASUS India website. The dv2's really good, but pretty expensive for a netbook. Yes, at that price, I might as well get a full blown laptop but I'm looking for sub-$500 models.

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I would also recommend the dv2
by JonTitor / May 18, 2009 9:31 AM PDT

the dv2 is a bit larger than a standard netbook, but that gives you your HD screen, graphics power, larger keyboard, etc
because of Microsoft's restrictions, HP can't ship it with Windows XP without making it more expensive, but still is a good value, and the standard package does come with a bundled DVD drive

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The dv2's nice but...
by DelphinusR101 / May 18, 2009 12:42 PM PDT

I just looked at the brochure for the HP dv2 and its design and specs make me want to buy it but its price is approximately $760 (without taxes) in India. I'm not sure if that price includes everything advertised as standard equipment.

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by JonTitor / May 18, 2009 3:01 PM PDT
In reply to: The dv2's nice but...

it might seem like its a good idea to just get a regular laptop but along with better specs, light weight and small size are also things that are added to the cost

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A slight change in specs
by DelphinusR101 / May 18, 2009 12:11 PM PDT

Thanks for the replies. Okay, so I guess a discrete card is out of the question so let's ignore that request. I'm trying to keep the price below $500 - otherwise, as you rightly said, I'm better off getting a regular laptop. What makes a netbook appealing to me is its small size and ability to perform essential tasks without costing too much. So I'm looking for good mix of portability and usability.

I heard that the new Dell Mini 10 has a 1366 by 768 display option (you have to pay extra to get that feature) which should be good for 720 HD viewing. I'm not asking for full HD viewing capability.
I doubt this particular Dell Mini 10 is available in India but I'll check.

If anyone can recommend more suitable netbook models (let a discrete graphics cards and full HD resolution be non-issues), please do mention the exact model variant with a 3G modem because most models in India are sold without 3G modems (that should change with time though).

As a little background information, I have two frustrating slow, aging laptops (around 6 years old each, a P4 and a P3). That's right, they are bulky and they have USB 1.1 ports, failing batteries, no Wi-fi, and no Bluetooth. I also have a Samsung 940BW 19" monitor with VGA and DVI inputs and a native resolution of 1440 by 900 so I can always mate the netbook with a larger screen if needed.

Once again, I thank all of you for your help.

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HD videos is non starter with integrated intel graphics
by leganx / May 19, 2009 5:15 AM PDT

I have a core 2 duo laptop with GMA950 integrated graphics, same as most netbooks (if not all) under $500.

I am sorry to inform you that it does not play HD videos without stuttering and eventually becoming a slide show.

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Roger that
by DelphinusR101 / May 22, 2009 1:37 PM PDT

Understood. The netbook's only meant for email and typing, so I better look for netbooks with the best design, usability and longest battery life. I would still like a 3G WWAN modem.

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by Nimishrey / February 7, 2012 8:39 PM PST

Below are the two options that I would like to suggest you: Gateway - Netbook / Intel® Atom™ Processor / 10.1" Display / 1GB Memory / 250GB Hard Drive - River Black - LT2802UToshiba - Mini Netbook / Intel® Atom™ Processor / 10.1" Display / 1GB Memory / 250GB Hard Drive - Blue - NB505-N500BL

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by NehaS12 / February 19, 2012 5:46 PM PST

<span id="INSERTION_MARKER">Below are the two options that I would like to suggest you: Gateway - Netbook / Intel® Atom™ Processor / 10.1" Display / 1GB Memory / 250GB Hard Drive - River Black - LT2802UToshiba - Mini Netbook / Intel® Atom™ Processor / 10.1" Display / 1GB Memory / 250GB Hard Drive - Blue - NB505-N500BL

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Help! I don't know which netbook to buy
by ashutoshets / February 20, 2012 7:28 PM PST

i think You buy dell note book PC

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Re: buying
by Kees_B Forum moderator / February 20, 2012 7:53 PM PST

Dell has so many types and models of notebooks that your advice says nothing at all.


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