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Good idea to get a netbook for work, writing, and traveling?


maikeru
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I'm thinking of getting myself a netbook like an Asus Eee, Acer One, or Samsung or Toshiba.

 

I like this Toshiba:

 

Newegg.com - TOSHIBA NB205-N230 Black Onyx Intel Atom N280(1.66GHz) 10.1" WSVGA 1GB Memory 250GB HDD Netbook - Netbooks

 

This Asus Eee model with 10.5 hours of battery life seems decent. Probably I'd upgrade the memory and replace WinXP with Ubuntu.

 

Amazon.com: ASUS Eee PC 1005HA-PU1X-BK 10.1-Inch Black Netbook - 10.5 Hour Battery Life: Electronics http://www.amazon.com/ASUS-1005HA-PU1X-BK-10-1-Inch-Black-Netbook/dp/B002DYIXMI/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1260881653&sr=8-1

 

But this laptop also seems pretty good as well:

 

Amazon.com: ASUS UL30A-X5 Thin and Light 13.3-Inch Black Laptop - 12 Hours of Battery Life (Windows 7 Home Premium): Computer & Accessories http://www.amazon.com/UL30A-X5-Light-13-3-Inch-Black-Laptop/dp/B002P3KMVC/ref=pd_sim_dbs_pc_5

 

More powerful and a little longer battery life. Double the price.

 

Any suggestions? Have personal experience with any of these or others? Or know a way I can pick up a very good netbook or laptop for cheap and with Linux on it, so I can keep costs down and reliability high? :bow:

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how much are you willing to spend? and i have tons of suggestions, if you want a good laptop with solid ubuntu (laptops that haven't been touched by windows) and solid support, i would much more highly recommend Zareason, though they are a bit more pricey, you are supporting a good cause, you get fully linux-supported hardware platform, even if you choose not to run ubuntu, they will help you out with drivers and whatnot, and everything works out of the box, camera, sound, what have you :bow:

Though of most of the main Linux-centric laptop makers, Zareason does seem to be the best priced, i mean have you checked out Emperor Linux, holy moly, cheapest, crappiest laptop is 1200+ bucks...

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how much are you willing to spend? and i have tons of suggestions, if you want a good laptop with solid ubuntu (laptops that haven't been touched by windows) and solid support, i would much more highly recommend Zareason, though they are a bit more pricey, you are supporting a good cause, you get fully linux-supported hardware platform, even if you choose not to run ubuntu, they will help you out with drivers and whatnot, and everything works out of the box, camera, sound, what have you :heart:

Though of most of the main Linux-centric laptop makers, Zareason does seem to be the best priced, i mean have you checked out Emperor Linux, holy moly, cheapest, crappiest laptop is 1200+ bucks...

 

Seeing how cheap netbooks were I had in mind around $300-500 originally. Now that I see this one offered on the Zareason website for $1299 looks tempting.

 

Strata 4660*::*Ubuntu Linux Laptop Computers*::*ZaReason, Inc. :: Linux Laptop and Desktop Computers preloaded with Ubuntu

 

It seems ZaReason's netbook is decent, but I was hoping they might have an Asus Eee 1005HA-P (or whatever it is, the best one with the Intel Atom N280 instead of N270) and done with Linux. Battery life of 3.5 hours worries me a bit, when I'm seeing 7-9 hours of battery life for the Asus ones. It'd be better if it had longer life, so when I'm out on weekends traveling or visiting Europe I don't worry about it dying while I'm talking to friends or family afar.

 

Terra A20 Ubuntu Netbook*::*Ubuntu Linux Laptop Computers*::*ZaReason, Inc. :: Linux Laptop and Desktop Computers preloaded with Ubuntu

 

And I looked at Emperor Linux. I think you're right, prices there are expensive. I'm trying to save money... I sent out gifts for Christmas, need to either fly out to see my girl or help with her visit here (which will cost more than the laptop, I guarantee), and a few other things. It's pretty important that I try to conserve cash, because I'm going to be living on limited funds for a while. Recession is hurting me. I'm not buying a netbook or laptop to replace my desktop. Already have a good one. :) I should've mentioned "light work" along the lines of writing, taking photos, sending files to friends, maybe able to run a few programs, and researching the net while I'm out and about especially if backpacking outdoors or overseas. I don't really expect to play games on a netbook/laptop. Also tired of Microsoft crap. I do not trust them. We use both XP and Linux at home, but our box with version 9.04 of Ubuntu is clearly superior and faster to our XP machines.

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Well, to be honest, a lot of these laptops, you can get 9 cell batteries for, and plus don't trust 7-9 hours bs, my macbook pro, and those have the best battery life of any laptop out there, was deemed as 7-9 hours, and i get 5-6 if i use it in moderation. then again, if you are just typing text, and the proper frequency scaling drivers are installed, then you would get a lot more life out of it then if you are writing and testing code, or working on graphics... And another thing, in the modern world filled with laptops, everywhere you go has a plug, buses, airports, airplanes, hotels, trains, what have you, so get a 9 cell battery or get a second battery, and you should almost never be in a situation when you can't use your laptop if you need it

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What kind of work do you plan on doing with it? Aside from gaming/intense multimedia stuff netbooks perform well even on the low end.

 

I run my entire business on a $300 Aspire One netbook. It's not blazing fast but it definitely does the job. Plugs into my 21" flat panel, external DVD burner, wireless KB/mouse, mic, printer/scanner & iPhone dock in seconds at the office, then I unplug and take it anywhere I need. For business and productivity, especially if you're on the go, there's no excuse anymore to be bound to the desktop. :)

 

For gaming, a $300 netbook will leave you very disappointed though.

 

Personally, I'm running the Aspire One just until a more mature version of the ASUS T91 emerges (netbook + dual touchscreen + swivel screen = bliss B)).

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see, no, that depends on what you do, if you have a 64 bit quadcore with 8 gigs of ram and dual 24" with 5 virtual desktops a piece and you still need more power and desktop space for all the stuff you run, and you run slimmed down linux just so you can keep the box "performy", like i often do, a notebook is nice to have for presentations, and to work at home or whatever (i have a mac book pro), but it really doesnt work as a work computer... But then again, if you are just some web developer or something and all you do is write code, then a $300 laptop is great; take it to the coffee shop, spill coffee all over it, buy a new one, whatever, not like you lost a lot (as long as you keep your stuff backed up).

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alexander - not sure if that was in response to my post, but are you saying that a 1.66GHz w/ 2GB RAM is not sufficient for most business/productivity users? If that's the case, I strongly disagree. Considering that I use many of the major office productivity apps in my job, I'm extremely curious what your opinion is based on. You sound somewhat knowledgeable on the subject, so I can only assume we're disagreeing on what "business/productivity" means. If your job requires two 24" flat panels and a quadcore, I can only imagine you're not the typical office/business user.

 

I can't speak for your example since I do a lot more than programming at coffee shops. ;) Also, I can't speak for Linux performance or Vista. I'm running a moderately optimized version of XP. I'm no stranger to Unix OS' though, and as you probably would agree you could make a quadcore run like a granny if you do a poor job setting up/optimizing the system.

 

Then again, many users run so much useless crap on their computers it hardly runs no matter how fast the rig!!

 

Edit: I just re-read my post and didn't mean to sound so ravenous. :D I definitely get your point, they still don't cut it for a lot of serious work. But I do feel strongly that we're finally reaching a point where many users can do away with the wasteful, energy sucking, wallet draining, desk crushing heaps of hardware that infest nearly every office space you wander through.

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Like i said, it depends on what you do. Most, and by most i mean well over 85% of all work desktops can be eliminated with thin clients, most people use their machines for text processing, email and web, and for those people a thin client would probably be even better then a small laptop, and a lot more energy-efficient. I didn't say i ran business applications either, i just said that what you use for hardware for work should depend on what you do for work...

 

I can speak for Linux performance, Vista, Os X, BSD, XP, Win 7 and Be OS; even a stock ubuntu install (its almost like saying windows in the linux world) will be more performy on the same hardware then windows (anything) even in "optimized" form; though how does one "optimize" a black box? I am not hating Windows here, XP could be made workable-ish, and 7, 7 was a rather welcome surprize, finally they switched their view from bloating their OS with useless crap to what the consumers actually want, now if they could just upgrade the core a little, open it up, drop the stupid registry and secure it a little more... and i still say they should use a Nix kernel, BeOS to be specific, they could be so much more...

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  • 2 weeks later...
What kind of work do you plan on doing with it? Aside from gaming/intense multimedia stuff netbooks perform well even on the low end.

 

I run my entire business on a $300 Aspire One netbook. It's not blazing fast but it definitely does the job. Plugs into my 21" flat panel, external DVD burner, wireless KB/mouse, mic, printer/scanner & iPhone dock in seconds at the office, then I unplug and take it anywhere I need. For business and productivity, especially if you're on the go, there's no excuse anymore to be bound to the desktop. :)

 

For gaming, a $300 netbook will leave you very disappointed though.

 

Personally, I'm running the Aspire One just until a more mature version of the ASUS T91 emerges (netbook + dual touchscreen + swivel screen = bliss :agree:).

 

Light work. I've decided I might take the option of buying both a cheap netbook for travel *and* a decent laptop for more serious work, some gaming, etc. Probably the netbook in the next few weeks and a laptop in the next few months. If I do lose the netbook or something, the loss of a few hundred dollars hurts less than a thousand...

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TOUCHBOOK :phones: I'm so getting one soon...

 

Cool little machine. Can you provide me any more information on this? Does the Texas Instrument processor in it perform much better than the commonly used Atom? And I noticed from a quick net search it appears it was shipped in limited quantities to people who pre-ordered it. I like the concept a lot, though I worry about its stability. Seems it is still getting the kinks worked out of it. :cheer:

 

I've been checking again, and the latest Eee and this ultralight caught my eye, but the Eee has short battery life. I need to find something good before I go and have it shipped pronto. :nuke:

 

Amazon.com: ASUS Eee PC Seashell 1201N-PU17-BK 12.1-Inch Black Netbook - 5 Hours of Battery Life: Computer & Accessories http://www.amazon.com/Seashell-1201N-PU17-BK-12-1-Inch-Black-Netbook/dp/B002ZLOR56/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=pc&qid=1262696133&sr=1-1

 

I think the battery life and price are a bit disappointing for a netbook, but apparently it's pretty powerful.

 

At that rate, why not consider this and this?

 

Amazon.com: ASUS UL30A-X5 Thin and Light 13.3-Inch Black Laptop - 12 Hours of Battery Life (Windows 7 Home Premium): Computer & Accessories http://www.amazon.com/UL30A-X5-Light-13-3-Inch-Black-Laptop/dp/B002P3KMVC/ref=sr_1_6?ie=UTF8&s=pc&qid=1262696133&sr=1-6

 

Amazon.com: ASUS UL30Vt-X1 Thin and Light 13.3-Inch Black Laptop (Windows 7 Home Premium): Computer & Accessories http://www.amazon.com/UL30Vt-X1-13-3-Inch-Laptop-Windows-Premium/dp/B002XZLURC/ref=sr_1_22?ie=UTF8&s=pc&qid=1262696133&sr=1-22

 

Also, I'm thinking of putting in a SSD. I've been reading about them the past few days and their reliability and speed would nicely upgrade a cheaper notebook computer. What are your thoughts on an SSD and one of these Asus UL30 notebooks, Alexander?

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Its an ARM chip which is also supported by linux. Most of the hardware used in the touchbook is pretty open to playing. The hardware on the thing is really accessible and hackable, you wanna replace the wifi card, well its USB, wanna replace the bluetooth, go ahead... its really cool as far as that goes, and with the "dock" that adds to a 6000mAh battery another 12000mAh, total uptime, probably nearing 8-10 hours... comes with most utilities you'd want, im client, word, paint, gimp, apps for reading pdfs, mplayer, gthumb, pidgin, a client for viewing hulu, a selection of games, inclusing Crazy Tanks (3d) that you can play with the accelerometer.

 

It's not fully finished or polished product, but if you are looking for a play machine, this would be the coolest thing to play with, and use for word processing or mobile internet.. on the flip side, this is a machine you'd put time into playing with, and i would recommend having another machine that will just work...

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  • 1 year later...

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