Friday, June 26, 2009

Lenovo S10e Netbook Review (vs. Asus Wind vs. Acer Aspire One)

Before I continue on with the Apache/Django series, I thought I'd post a review of the Lenovo S10e netbook. Netbooks still seem in their infancy that it's hard to pick the right one without wondering what smashing new feature is just around the corner.

Just to be clear this entire review is being typed on the netbook.

Initially upon seeing the Lenovo S10e I dismissed it. At a glance it didn't seem special, and compared to all the netbooks around it, it wasn't shiny and eye-catching. However, there were a few things that brought me back for a second look, and why I decided on this book for my Philly '09 trip:

  • It was the lightest (compared against an Asus Wind-120U and Acer Aspire One)
  • It had a 10.2" screen, again the largest of the comparasion models
  • It was black/dark so I didn't need to worry about the dirty-factor
In addition to that, I have discovered that...
  • Initially I was worried the right-shift key (which is moved to the right of the up arrow) would be problematic for typing. It's not. I haven't even noticed it.
  • I was also worried the keyboard would be way too small and would get in the way. Again, it doesn't. It's a comfortable size.
I've been using it now for a week, and there are definatly some factors that I do not care for...
  • The fan. Oh my gosh. It sounds like this "brrrr... (wait 2 seconds) brrrr... (wait 2 seconds) brrrr.... (wait 2 seconds) brrr...." On-off-on-off-on-off. It gets annoying.
  • When you close the lid the laptop just kinda, I'm not sure what it does. But when you re-open the lid hours later tapping the power button or hitting the space bar does... nothing! Maybe it's Windows or maybe I just don't use it right, but I end up having to hold the power button down, let it go completely off, and then reboot again. I wish it was more mac-like where I can just close the lid when I'm done, the netbook turns off in power-save, and then when I re-open it it powers up again.
  • The battery has two rear rubber feet, which when on a desk are nice, but when on your lap while sitting tend to jab into your thighs.
  • I miss having a "home" and "end" key, but I suppose that's the price you pay for a netbook. To be fair, there are home and end, but you have to press Fn+PgUp or Down to get them. It kinda defeats the quick home/end purpose of those keys.
Overall this netbook is a viable contender in the $400 market.


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