Advent Roma 1000 review: Advent Roma 1000

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The Good Very low price; good keyboard.

The Bad Terrible battery life; awful sound quality.

The Bottom Line The Advent Roma 1000's slow single-core processor makes it unsuitable for demanding tasks, and its battery life is terrible, but it's fine as a low-cost secondary computer, or even as a main computer if you don't ask too much of it. The Roma 3000 offers better performance for only about £80 more, though

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6.5 Overall

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When people complain that some netbooks cost as much as a laptop, they're talking about laptops like the Advent Roma 1000, which runs on Windows 7. At about £350, it's about as cheap as a brand-new laptop gets on the high street, and it's easy to see how it could be a tempting proposition when sat next to something that's the same price but half the size and half as well specified.

Cheap but tasteful
Inexpensive laptops are seldom much to look at, but the 1000 is slightly more appealing than most. Its 15.6-inch screen means the 1000 is a fair slab of plastic, and it's not particularly light, at 2.9kg, but it's tastefully presented. The all-black case is complemented by a glossy lid with a subtle pattern of concentric circles moulded into the plastic, and the mirrored plastic strip that runs along the front edge of the base masks various status LEDs.

The lid is held shut with a sliding catch. Although stiff, the single hinge allows for plenty of wobble, so you may have problems using the 1000 on a train or plane. The screen has a 1,366x768-pixel resolution, and is as clear and bright as any glossy display we've seen. In other words, no corners have been cut here.

The low-profile keyboard is full-size and, although all the flat keys sit flush against each other, they're wide enough to make typing comfortable. The layout means the cursor keys are squeezed in at the bottom right of the keyboard, though.

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