Thursday, November 12, 2009

Notebooks : Apple MacBook Pro MB991LL/A 13.3-Inch Laptop

I just got my brand new 13.3" Macbook Pro in the mail. I customized mine with 4GB of RAM and a 250 GB hard drive, but with the entry-level 2.26 GHz Intel processor. I unboxed it in front of my mother and sister, and they were both oohing and aahing about how beautiful and thin it was. They also loved the magnetic connector on the end of the power adapter that snaps the power cord into the computer nearly by itself. I powered the computer up, went through the Leopard setup screens, and within minutes was logged in. While starting up, the light sensor powered on, the screen dimmed, and the keyboard lit-up automatically. Everything about this computer suggests ingenious design and engineering, with great attention to every detail. It is very light, and since I am using this for school, I am very happy with the size and form factor, particularly the charger. Switching from a large Dell that sported a charger that could be used to bludgeon somebody to death, the small white charger that is about the size of a wallet is a breath of fresh air. This laptop will be a pleasure to travel with.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Netbooks : ASUS Eee PC Seashell 1005HA-PU17-BU 10.1-Inch Blue Netbook - 10.5 Hours of Battery Life (Windows 7 Starter)

It's been 2 days since the release of Windows 7 and this netbook. With one-day shipping, I've been playing with the machine for about 6 hours. So, I have some initial thoughts, but no great insights into battery life or use while traveling (I'll try to update after my business trip next week).

My overall impression is very positive. It's small and easy to use. The keyboard and trackpad work as well as my full sized laptop. I've installed a bunch of basic programs like Firefox and have had no problems. The only minor frustration I have is one of the silly limitations of Windows 7 Starter Edition: you can't change the desktop's wallpaper. It's a silly limitation, but not worth paying to upgrade to Home Premium to overcome.

Along with the netbook, I purchased a 2 gig upgrade: Crucial Technology CT25664AC800 2GB 200-pin SODIMM DDR2 PC2-6400 Memory Module and an external DVD burner: ASUS USB 2.0 8x DVD Writer External Optical Drive SDRW-08D1S-U (Black). If you look at the pictures above you can see just how easy it is to install the memory. It did take a little more force than I liked to remove the memory cover after unscrewing the one screw, but everything else went smoothly.

Oct 28 Update: Read the comments on this review for my initial battery impressions as well as some good comments from other folks.

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