"Picking the perfect laptop"
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Picking the perfect laptop
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>> I'm Dan Ackerman and when they asked me to be a part of this Editors Office Hours project, I really just had one question for Chris Barter who's producing the show. I asked him if we could put an age gate on the page cause I'm kind of known for words in blue. But, fortunately, Wilson Tang is here to help me keep this on kind of a PG-13 level. He's also gonna help us take a look at the questions that people are asking. There's a couple of different ways you can ask questions. There's a chat box right below you, right here. You see that, Wilson, it's right down here?
>> Yeah, it's right down there.
>> And you can just chat with other people and we're gonna pick questions out of there to answer. But there's also a whole question box all the way on the side over there. It's white box. If you type a question in there, Wilson's gonna see it and he's gonna ask me. I'm gonna answer it, and then, you're gonna know whatever it is you were trying to find out. You do have to be a registered CNET member to ask one of these questions.
>> But it's not that hard.
>> It's pretty easy to do. I think you can register right from the box.
>> Yeah, I think so. Just don't make your password, password.
>> That's right. You see, like, an email address and a password and then you're registered. Just don't make the password something too easy to get.
>> CNET password.
>> So, let's take a look and see if anybody has got a question yet.
>> Right in the question shoe, we've got one from Frat Sumer and he wants to know about these crazy net books. He wants a rundown on the latest ultra-portable laptops.
>> Ultra-portable laptops.
>> Now, is that different than a net?
>> Ultra-portables are different than net books. Ultra-portable laptops, what we thought was really cool, maybe a year or two ago. These were small, twelve inch, eleven inch laptops.
>> Like the MacBook Air. Like, that's an ultra-portable.
>> Smaller than the MacBook Air. The MacBook Air is more thin and light. Ultra-portables were things like the Sony VAIO TZ and they had eleven or twelve inch screens. They were very thin. They used ultra-low voltage CPUs. They were also very expensive. They were like two thousand dollars, fifteen hundred dollars, and they didn't run very fast but they were just cool. Everybody liked them. They were good, executive toys.
>> Now, since then, starting about a year ago, maybe a little bit more, they started coming out with Netbooks.
>> That was ASUS.
>> Yeah, ASUS kicked that off and then EPC and everyone has followed suit. They basically do most of what ultra portable laptops do except for their smaller nine and ten inch screens, but they're like five hundred bucks.
>> Yeah, they're like an impulse buy.
>> They're almost an impulse buy.
>> Like, I see them all the time and, you know, given the size.
>> Best Buy has a lot, K and R has a lot. Dell's got one out now. Notebook just released theirs. HP had one. They're not as fast as regular laptops. They don't have a lot of hard drive space or a lot of RAM, usually. They actually run Windows XP because they're kind of underpowered and they can't really run Vista.
>> And for a lot of people, that's actually a good thing.
>> A lot of people do prefer XP and that's the only way you can really get an XP license right now is with laptop. I think it's like eleven inches or smaller or ten inches or smaller. But these Netbooks, I mean, you're searching the web, you're writing emails, maybe you're working on a word document or something, that's 90% of what you do with your laptop anyway. These Netbooks are find for that.
>> Yeah, you don't need to carry around a six or seven pound laptop. You just need something small. You can even slip it into your purse.
>> That's right, that's right. And if you leave it in the back seat of a cab or in the seat pocket on the airplane, you lose four hundred bucks. It's not really the end of the world. It's like leaving your iPod on the plane.
>> Yeah, yeah. So that happens all the time now. All these manufacturers are getting into the Netbook game. There's probably ten, fifteen new models.
>> There are a ton of new models. But there are lots of you guys, there are also a few guys who are still working the ultra-portable market and those are those more high end versions and they're almost more restricted, the only people who want these now are super, you know, conspicuous consumption buyers.
>> People who can burn money, right?
>> That's right. There's a couple of them, one that I know people have been asking about and we had a couple of questions in the chat room about this is the Toshiba Portege R five hundred. It's a little bit bigger than a Netbook. It's got like a twelve inch screen, but it's super light. See how light that is.
>> Wow, I mean, you guys can't feel this at home but -
>> But trust us, it's quite light.
>> I you go to, you know, the Best Buy or Wal-Mart, they always have these demo units. And this is just as light as one of them. I honestly feel like I could drop this and -
>> This is the new version with a bigger solid state drive and it actually has an optical drive in it. But I had a version last year of the R five hundred that had no optical drive and just a solid state hard drive and it felt like a piece of plastic. It felt like a photo mockup dummy that, like a shell laptop they sometimes send you for photography. But it's actually a magnesium chassis. It's pretty sturdy even though it feels very light.
>> And this one's running Vista, right?
>> This one is running Vista because it's got a regular Core Two Duo CPU so it's not a Netbook. It's like a two thousand dollar -
>> So it's pretty fast, too, right?
>> Uh, reasonably fast.
>> Reasonably fast. You're not gonna -
>> When you get stuff this small, they're never that fast. But it's definitely faster than a Netbook. But I always say, again, surfing the web, email, it doesn't matter if your machine is fast or slow.
>> It'll be fine either way. You can spend five hundred; you can spend two thousand.
>> Any other recommendations in the ultra portable kind?
>> You know, Lenovo, you know how they make the Thinkpads that everybody has in the office?
>> I like the X300. Is that an ultra portable?
>> That's more of a thin in line. It's a thirteen inch.
>> Thin in line, okay.
>> But they have a new line at Lenovo. It's called the IdeaPad Line and that's sort of their consumer laptop. They're trying to get, like, regular people who are not in offices to buy their laptop so they made an IdeaPad ultra-portable, I think it was the U one ten, and that was very cool, but again, very expensive.
>> And from what I understand, I guess the innovation that they're pushing with this is that it's less boxy, right, like they're more curvy than -
>> They're definitely very nicely designed. They definitely put a lot of effort into that because, I'm gonna let you in on a little secret right now and this is something we could say about almost any laptop that we could talk about. They're all basically commodity items. The components inside are 90% of the time exactly the same. It's really only the shell it's in and maybe any extras it comes with and the price that really differentiates one laptop from another.
>> But that's the other half of it, too, like, laptops are as much of a style accessory than they are a functional unit.
>> That's what you're doing now. Since the parts are largely the same, within categories, a lot of people are buying based on what they want to be hanging out at the coffee shop with.
>> Okay. So let's get back to some -
>> Who has questions, who else have we got?
>> Well, I want to know about these Netbooks. Like, we've got ten or fifteen, you know, new models coming out. What are, you know, the top models that you sort of recommend? Best value for the dollar, best styles, cause a lot of these Netbooks -
>> They're boxy; they're not very attractive, they're plastic-y.
>> They're kind of boxy and they're actually from manufacturers like MSI and ASUS who are typically known for, you know, designing motherboards, right? Not exactly, you know, home -
>> Top of the consumer mind when they go into a shop
>> So, you know, I've got five hundred dollars to burn. What computer should I buy?
>> I got a couple of stock tips for you. You meet me after the show. Okay, we're gonna make some investments. Everything is deeply discounted this week in case you haven't noticed. You know, a lot of the Netbooks are basically built off the same parts. They're all built off of that Intel atom processor and it's usually got one gig of RAM. They've usually got Windows XP. Some of them have, like, a sixteen gig or twenty gig solid state hard drive. Some of them have a regular eighty or one sixty gig platter hard drive so it's really if you want more space or you want a lighter weight and perhaps more security because people like the solid state drives because they don't have any moving parts.
>> So they may not, you know, fall apart as quickly. Dell's got one out right now called the Inspiron Mini Nine that a lot of people like.
>> Now, I've seen this. We have one in the studio.
>> Oh, wait, we do have that right here, actually. Thanks for reminding me. This is the Dell Inspiron Mini Nine.
>> It's so small.
>> It is quite small. It's an eight point nine inch screen, we call that nine inch, got to little keyboard. They keys are actually pretty big.
>> Yeah. No, I remember seeing a [inaudible] on this. For a Netbook, that was one of my issues with using the Netbooks was that my hands -
>> The keys were so tiny.
>> It was hard to type on [inaudible].
>> Exactly. It'd almost be easier to type on iPhone that some of these little Notebooks.
>> They made a couple of compromises to kind of get a bigger keyboard in there. What they did was, they took the function key row out.
>> You see that, there's no function key row.
>> And how do you get to it?
>> The mapped it to one of the other rows as like an alternate key.
>> F one, F two, F three, like that. And they made the letter keys nice and big but see the caps lock key and tab keys, they're just tiny slivers.
>> Keys that you don't normally use, you know.
>> Well, maybe.
>> The alt tab, maybe, a little bit.
>> That's the thing, you got to make compromises. This is a decent sort of compromise.
>> I like how it's got, it's got the built in web cam [inaudible].
>> Right, a lot have built in web cams. It's kind of plastic-y, doesn't feel that sturdy.
>> But this is actually one of the better designed, especially if you look in the back, like -
>> Well, Dell puts a lot of their industrial design and they really want to make this a mainstream product. There's a thing, a couple of months ago, there was a New York Times story.
>> Where every major PC maker said, this Netbook thing, we're not really that interested in it because these are low margin items cause they don't sell for much more than they cost to make and we want to try to sell people more expensive systems. A couple of months later, everybody's hawking a Netbook cause they saw the writing on the wall.
>> Wasn't that at ASUS? ASUS sold, like, ten million Es, right?
>> They sold a lot of Es. [Inaudible] if you go on Amazon right now.
>> And you look under the computer section, under laptop, you look at the top ten or twenty best selling laptops on Amazon right now, I think like eighteen out of the top twenty are Netbooks.
>> Nice, nice. Now, the function of these are great. One thing I personally want to know about is when are these computers gonna have three G connection speed?
>> Mm-hmm, that's what everyone always asks and it's tough to put that in to a machine that's so cheap. A lot of Netbooks start at, like, three-fifty, they go to maybe five-fifty and to take a hundred fifty dollar three G antenna and stick it in there, now, that's gonna be a problem. Especially because a lot of these are not configurable and when you go on Dell's website or something, you want to add a mobile broadband antenna, you have to go to the list and pick, do I want Sprint or do I want AT&T, and they just make your laptop for you. These generally just come right off the assembly line fully baked.
>> Got you.
>> However, I'm sure we're gonna see that real soon. I think Dell does have plans, at least in some foreign markets, to start with that, and hopefully, they'll bring that here but I'm not sure who the carrier is gonna be on that yet.
>> And one thing I want to mention about the three-fifty price point -
>> A lot of people don't realize that's Linux only, right? Most of them.
>> Most of the time, when you get the super cheap ones that are three fifty or three ninety-nine, that's usually Linux, usually five twelve megs of RAM not one gig, a smaller hard drive. To get a decently outfitted Netbook, it's four ninety-nine, I mean, it just is. And that's still pretty cheap.
>> Now, moving on in the question cube.
>> We've got a couple -
>> What else we got here? MacBooks coming up, that's the big rumor on the internet.
>> That is what everybody's talking about.
>> You got any scoops on it?
>> You know, Apple is one of those companies where it's really hard to get anything out of them, even though I've been working these guys for years, they always keep everything very tight-lipped, very under wraps. Do you know what they slipped up on? On the iPod Nanos that just came out, we all kind of knew what they were gonna look like because they had to give the specs to the guys who make the cases, the third party cases.
>> And that's how we knew what the new Nano was gonna look like.
>> Any slipups like that now?
>> There was a photo somebody posted on a French website yesterday and we actually blogged about this over on Crave, our wacky CNET Blog. We got a ton of comments.
>> I believe that is the URL. We put this picture up, and then, the French website took it down but everyone had already screen shot it and stuck it back up. And then they came back up and it's a blurry picture. Kind of looks like it might be a MacBook Pro, maybe not. 99% of these leaked shots from Apple are always fake. But it's good to talk about and see. What people are saying right now is they're an aluminum version of the regular MacBook so the MacBooks and the Pros are all gonna look much more alike.
>> The Air and the Pro are aluminum. Not the regular MacBooks are -
>> Right, is gonna also be aluminum. I don't know if that's true or not but that's the current educated guess thinking. And we're gonna find out, probably, on October 14th because that is when Apple is supposedly gonna have their next big press conference.
>> Is that for sure? Have you gotten your press release?
>> That is not for sure but that is the date people are throwing around. With certain jobs, you can never tell. It's very secretive.
>> Any special features you think are gonna come out in the new MacBooks? Are we gonna see any multi-touch, any [inaudible] processors.
>> They might add more multi-touch, just like the MacBook here had that multi-touch track pad where you could, like, zoom in on stuff or flip forward or backwards with three fingers to go forward and back in your web browser history. Then they took some of that functionality and they moved it onto the Pros. We might see more of that in the regular MacBooks. There could be some surprises or there could just be a slight chassis upgrade and new CPUs.
>> Could be nothing that big at all.
>> No, I think a lot of people are particularly interested in this cause these things are the number one seller.
>> This is, too, that's everyone's favorite laptop, and then, it's hard to better. It's a fantastic machine.
>> Now, moving on from like these small, my kind of laptops, the MacBooks, you know, a thirteen inch, we standard, I can't even say, T, I, J, D wants to know about laptops accord to quad processors, desktop level. I remember these, like, desk notes from a year ago.
>> Right, right. Every once in a while, somebody gets some OEM cases and shoves in some desktop parts, although there are some quad four processors coming down the pike. I don't think that's the kind of thing that the average user are gonna be interested in. People want systems that are thinner, lighter, less expensive. Power users are always gonna be there. They're always gonna want to trick out their systems, to over clog their processors, but it's always gonna be a very small minority of the audience out there.
>> You use, like, I've seen on your desk, an HTS. This is a monster laptop.
>> But it's just got a regular old laptop CPU in it. It's just got a really big screen.
>> And, in fact, speaking of big screens, one of the things you're gonna start seeing next year, and I saw a question about this fly by, are more laptops instead of fifteen inch screen and seventeen inch screens, we're gonna have sixteen inch screens and eighteen inch screens. Now, eighteen may seem very big but there's a reason for this. Because the screens, most laptop screens now are widescreen, right? Now, they're in a sixteen by ten aspect ratio. That's not quite the same as your plasma TV up on your wall or your LCD screen, those are sixteen by nines.
>> You could have black bar when you play films at the bottom.
>> That's right, that's right. And, they're not quite the same resolution as the HD video content or Blu-Ray but the thing is, the guys who make the glass for the laptop screens are the same guys who make the glass for the plasma TVs and LCD TVs.
>> They don't want to make two different types of glass. They don't want to make sixteen by ten glass and sixteen by nine. And it turns out, if they cut the laptop screens to be sixteen by nine, they get a couple more screens out of every big sheet of the glass. So this is what you're gonna see, and I happen to have one right here.
>> Oh, nice. We are going to see a lot more of these eighteen inch laptops, this gigantic [inaudible] right there.
>> Oh, wow. This is massive.
>> And it's a little bit bigger than a seventeen. It's not massively, massively bigger but you can see, when we open it up, the screen is a little bit shorter but it's wider because this is a true sixteen by nine screen, exactly the same. It's basically a ten eighty P screen. Exactly the same as on your plasma TV and most of these have Blu-Ray drives to they fit the Blu-Ray format perfectly and this is what you're gonna see, this year, starting next year, going forward, everyone is gonna be switching over to these sixteen by nine formats.
>> Now, who is buying this because this is massive and if you look at it from the side, this is pretty thick. But the thing closed is almost -
>> It's also pretty thick. It's a desktop replacement. You're not gonna take it to the coffee shop. You're not gonna take it on the plane. Imagine you're in coach. You're like, excuse I need a little more leg room for my eighteen inch laptop. I'm trying to watch Terminator Two over here.
>> This is more space than you get on the plane, right?
>> This is more space than you get on the plane. People who want to have, like, a home entertainment set up in their dorm room or in their den. They want to have an all in one machine, they can use for watching movies, for working on stuff, or surfing the web, that you buy these big desktop replacements. So basically, if you don't want to bulky CPU and a monitor any more, you just get one of these. The screen is just as big as your old monitor was anyway and everything's just in one package. And if you need to move it over there, you can, and they just look nicer.
>> I feel like a lot of people are buying these are gamers, right?
>> A lot of people buying big systems are gamers. These eighteen inch systems aren't particularly game ready yet. They usually have a mid level processor and to get a super gaming machine, you still need to go with a standard seventeen inch, something like the Alienware M seventeen X which has two G force ninety-eight hundred processors in it or there are a few other big gaming machines out there. But, you know, PC gaming, obviously, is largely dead and that's that. That's a very small sliver of the market these days. I'll give you an example. I took the one big game of the fall season; the one big PC only game is what, Crisis Warhead, probably.
>> I took Crisis Warhead, I tried to play it on a three thousand dollar Gateway gaming system, I tried to play it on one of these eighteen inch systems, and I tried to play it on the Alienware M seventeen X which is live a six thousand dollar system. The game was unplayable on all three.
>> I'm kind of in the biz. I think I kind of know how to set up a computer to play a game.
>> I hope so.
>> It's the gap of PC gaming, that's really where we're at.
>> Speaking of PC game room, before we take our little break, resistance to, someone wants to know [inaudible] play this.
>> Oh, okay. I have played a lot. I just played some Resistance, too, earlier this week. Sony had an event here in New York where they brought it out and people sat around and played it. Resistance One was the PlayStation III exclusive, kind of, launch style, like a first person shooter. It was sort of mediocre. It was perfectly fine. It wasn't really that exciting It was just like, you know, they had to have a Halo style first person shooter game. I think Resistance Two is really a lot better. It's one of those new sequels that's better than the original, largely because they set up some really big battles. Like, you're in, like, Chicago and it's half under water and there's a big Godzilla like monster and you and your buddies have to fight him, and just, the big battles are really what make it fun. Remember Shanna with the Colossus?
>> I haven't played that one but it -
>> With the big monsters? They kind of have a couple of big boss battles like that. So I think it's actually gonna be one of the few key first person shooters this holiday season. And we do have to take a quick break here. Since we're talking about gaming, why don't we role the video for Rock Band Two where we just actually went in the other room and we got the new Rock Band Two wireless set up, played it. Let's take a look at that and we'll be back in a few.
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>> Dan Ackerman here in the CNET AV room, and of course, next week brings us Rock Band Two, the sequel to last year's big hit Rock Band for the Three Sixty, PlayStation Three, and Wii. That was one of the best fake music games out there. We just got our box of the new hardware. We're gonna pop it open and see what's different about this version of Rock Band. First, we've got the new Rock Band Two drums. These drums are wireless, that's the main difference from last years. The base and the stand and even the drums actually look pretty similar to the previous model. I think that we're gonna find that the main difference is the drums themselves have little rubber pads on them. Because last year's drums, you'd hit them and they'd really clunk a lot and people bought these little aftermarket rubber pads to stick on the drums. Now, the drums have those built right in. And you're also gonna find a couple of expansion ports on the back of the drum kit. They're gonna be aftermarket cymbal pads so you can plug in a sturdier kick drum pedal. Last year's kick drum pedal, a lot of people broke them by stomping on them really hard. Also new for Rock Band Two is a brand new guitar. Now, the guitars for the original Rock Band were wireless on the PlayStation Three. They were wired on the Xbox Three Sixty, now, they're wireless all over the place and your guitars have kind of a sunburst finish. They still got the Fender Strata Caster branding, otherwise, the guitars are mostly the same. These new ones have a small electric eye right here that you can actually use to calibrate the guitar with your TV in case you have some sort of lag between the game, the guitar, and your big screen, plasma TV. And the next step is to take a Rock Band Two disc, stick it in the Xbox Three Sixty, grab the USB microphone from our original Rock Band and we are ready to rock.
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>> Hey, I'm Dan Ackerman and that's Rock Band Two.
>> And we are back. We're taking questions from the audience, your [inaudible] for that little white box right on the side. Wilson, what do people want to know?
>> Well, we've got a question from Manacore [assumed spelling] and he wants to know, he's found an XPS fifteen-thirty.
>> Okay, I know that.
>> And also, a Gateway P seven eight eleven FX.
>> Yeah, yeah.
>> And he wants to know which one can play War Hammer online. The Orange Box or are there any other mid end games that he can play on them.
>> Well, if you want to play some games, if you don't want to spend a lot of money, this guy actually picked out probably the best laptop you can buy and that is that Gateway P seventy-eight eleven FX. Since about the beginning of the year, Gateway has been putting out a series of these FX laptops. They've got the higher end three thousand dollar version but they've had, for each generation, like a fifteen hundred, fourteen hundred dollar version. They usually sell them exclusively at Best Buy that are just fantastic. They have kind of slightly slower CPUs but they have super high end graphics cards. They got like the G force eighty-eight hundred. This new one has the G force ninety-eight hundred. It's got like three or four gigs of RAM, it's got a massive seventeen inch screen. I don't know how they sell these things and still make money. They put so much into this box, it's like thirteen ninety-nine at Best Buy. It's shocking. If you want a gaming machine and you're not gonna spend six grand on an Alienware, just get that Gateway P seventy-eight eleven FX.
>> And CPUs are not so important like as far as like performance because [inaudible].
>> Well [inaudible] even in mid range CPUs. But the seventy-eight eleven, they actually took the CPU that was kind of like a mid range one in the older systems from that line and they actually bumped it up for this new one and they took the screen and made it a nineteen by twelve screen. They bumped up the screen resolution, too. It's just a fantastic bargain.
>> Okay. All right. So, we've got another question from James Bond double O seven, he wants to know whether we have any recommendations for laptops for mature adults, fifty or older.
>> That is an odd question because nobody named James Bond. They've just got be older Sean Connery James Bond. You know, if an older adult wants to get into computing and they want to get a laptop, if they don't have a lot of experience, they should probably start with something that's easy to buy, easy to maintain, and fairly easy to use. Obviously, a MacBook is a good choice for that. People always talk about how user friendly MacBooks are and how you don't really need to know a lot about computers or setting up your system or to use them.
>> Because it already comes with the iLife suite for you.
>> It comes with a lot of the software you're gonna need. It lets you get online fairly easily. They do a lot of handholding while you're setting stuff up. If you don't want to go the Mac route, then you can really just get a nice, good generic middle of the road, not too complicated machine. Dell is not a bad choice. I know people like to slide it on Dell but they make nice, middle of the road, very generic machines.
>> And you have a recommendation for a midrange Dell. What is it, N thirteen -
>> I think that people should, if you're looking, if the average person says, what laptop should I get? I know no other information about them. They should probably either want to get a MacBook.
>> Cause everyone just loves those. Or two, Dell's fifteen twenty-five.
>> Fifteen twenty-five.
>> They start at like five hundred bucks. You can configure them all the way up to, like, fifteen hundred, two thousand dollars. They're just the most flexible, configurable laptops I think I've ever seen. You can just put any kind of part in here. They're kind of chintzy, they're kind of plastic-y but they've got cool touch control buttons here on the top, like your finger turns on the quick launch buttons and the volume buttons. They got an HDMI out, which is nice.
>> So you can watch Blu-Rays if you choose to have that option.
>> If you get a Blu-Ray drive in it, you can output the signal to a bigger TV. But they're just fifteen inches. It's a middle of the road size. They're fairly inexpensive. They're super configurable. You can break any part you want. If there's any laptop that personifies just a generic laptop, it's this Dell Inspiron fifteen twenty-five. You know, it's not super big, either. You see, it's kind of tapered.
>> How heavy is it.
>> Feel, it's not even that heavy.
>> I mean, it's a little bit clunkier but it's a little -
>> It's probably about six pounds-ish.
>> Not that heavy.
>> But for a fifteen inch laptop, that's pretty good.
>> You know, one thing that I love about a lot of these PC laptops is that they have these SD slots.
>> A lot of them, the Macs, I don't know if Apple wants to keep it minimalistic but everybody has SD cards from their digital cameras and sometimes you don't want to carry around.
>> But, that's the generic format now. These have compact flash cards and this and that. It just [inaudible] to where its at than any laptop. Even the little NetBooks have SD card slots because a lot of them work off of Flash memory. So if you have, like, an eight gig Flash memory hard drive inside and you throw in another eight gig card, you've doubled your NetBook hard drive for like fifty books.
>> Nice. Nice. Now, this one's not so laptop related.
>> We've got another question from Hammerson [assumed spelling].
>> And he wants to know, is it time to buy a PS three or an Xbox three sixty?
>> Now, since you're asking that, I assume that you probably already have a Wii and you're just trying to figure out what the second console is going to be. That's what these two guys are doing right now, they're fighting over who gets to be the second console in your living room. Obviously, the Xbox three sixty has a lot of fans. They've had another year on the market to build up an audience. They've obviously got the best sort of online experience with Xbox Live, which you do have to pay a little extra for, but it's really a nice, cohesive experience. They have a lot of good exclusive games like Years of War is exclusive and Mass Effect and stuff like that. But the PS three, you know, they've knocked the price down to a decent level. It comes with a Blu-Ray player.
>> That, for me, I feel like it's the biggest value. Cause I just now got my HDTV. I feel like a lot of people switching to this system.
>> And now that they've sorted out the Blu-Ray versus HD DVD thing.
>> I'm actually considering getting one. It's three fifty, right, for -
>> I think two ninety-nine.
>> Two ninety-nine.
>> For the lowest end model. Three fifty, I think, for the mid range.
>> They're always switching up the model of different hard drives and stuff. But what you get is, you get a fairly decent Blu-Ray player that we have rated just as good as pretty much any other, you know, under a thousand dollar, Blu-Ray player out there. And, obviously, they got a lot of good games coming out this holiday season.
>> Finally, right?
>> Finally, finally getting stuff like Resistance Two. They're finally getting Bio-Shot which is probably one of last year's best games for the three sixty, they're finally getting ported over. And they've finally taken that controller, and they put the rumble back in.
>> I [inaudible] the rumble.
>> Cause they couldn't do that with [inaudible] some sort.
>> Ah, they could do it. They were just shitty, but, come on, be honest here.
>> Well, back to laptops.
>> We've got a question from The Shirk.
>> The Shirk.
>> And he wants to know about these atom processors how accurate, these main stream processors of these Core series and they're pretty fast. But the atom on these new -
>> The atom is really designed for these small devices like NetBooks. It's really much more similar to the chips you'd find almost in SmartPhones. They're not that quick. They're good for, again, surfing the web, emailing, but they're really meant to expend your battery life as long as possible by not using a lot of power. And they're meant to be cheap and to be small and fit in these small systems. So, you're not gonna do a lot of multi-tasking with these. There's actually a dual core atom that will, hopefully be hitting systems fairly soon that should make things a little bit better. But I think for basic use as a secondary or travel laptop, I can't complain about it too much. Bia [assumed spelling] also has a Netbook chip just hitting now that people say good things about. I have not seen it in a system yet.
>> As far as, like, regular browsing and what not, I mean, does it work? I mean, like word processing, can you have more than one application open on a processor.
>> What I like to do is when I write a review of a laptop, I like to write it on that laptop itself. So, for NetBooks, I've got to go down to the coffee shop, I've got to open up the laptop, I got to get the web browser going, I got to get Microsoft Office going, I use Office 2003, so I'm able to run a couple of web browsers, an email program, and Word at the same time and I usually do fairly well on a NetBook. It's got to have at least one gig of RAM. I think that is point. Don't get the five twelve.
>> Okay, okay. Well, we've got another question from Leon Carpenter, speaking of NetBooks, and he wants to know about how the MSI Wind.
>> Ah, the MSI Wind, that's a NetBook a lot of people were excited about because it kind of looked a little nicer than a lot of the other NetBooks and it had a good design, it had some decent component specs to it. I love the Wind. It had a great keyboard, the screen was really nice, here was the problem. Apparently, this was the story that was floating around, they couldn't get the six cell batteries they wanted to put in there so they had to put in three cell batteries.
>> So what does that mean as far as the battery life?
>> The battery life was really, like, two hours.
>> Two hours.
>> And that's just not, if you're traveling with this thing, it's got to last, you know, a while. Like, the ASUS NetBooks have big six cell batteries, they usually last, like, five hours. But I'll take three, I'll take a hundred and eighty minutes, that's my cutoff. Below that, no good. However, MSI should have the six cell batteries by now, if not, very soon, and you'll be able to start getting those with the six cell batteries, should be an extra fifty bucks, maybe, and that will make the Wind a really, really, really great NetBook.
>> Are there any other compelling features as far as the Wind that separate from the match?
>> Here's the thing with the NetBooks, and we actually did a great video you can look up on CNET called Building the Perfect NetBook where we took, like, five or six different NetBooks and we compared all the specs, all made from the same parts, for the most part. They've all got XD to compliment Linux, they've all got one gig of RAM, they've all got solid state hard drives, a couple of them had the platter hard drives, so you jusst want to go down the list and pick out the parts that you want and that add up to the price you want, because functionality wise, they're really all kind of the same.
>> Okay. All right.
>> Lenovo's actually got a really good one called the S ten that just started shipping this week and that has an express card slot, which I like a lot.
>> Sounds like a, we've been really informed today. I think that's all of our time.
>> I think we are running out of time. And we still have to tease our buddy Caroline McCarthy is gonna be doing this on Monday talking about social networking.
>> And Facebook and how to keep your job.
>> And what you should or should not put on these sites in order to keep your job. It's called over sharing, people, don't do it.
>> Too much information.
>> So, Wilson, thank you for joining me here today.
>> No problem, any time.
>> I'm Dan Ackerman. Wilson Tang has been here with me and we've been answering your questions on Office Hours here at CNET. We will see you around the web.
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