Which of the following netbooks should I buy?

Mishaal August 8, 2012
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I have low budget ($300) and I want to buy netbook which can perform following functions:

  1. High speed internet
  2. HD video
  3. Small amount of photo and video editing
  4. Small amount of gaming (like Age of Empires 3, Angry Birds, Resident Evil 4 and similar)

I have searched some netbooks and laptops on the Internet, I don’t know much about these things. Can any of the following netbooks perform these things?

  • Dell Inspiron 11z
  • Dell Mini 1012
  • Acer 5733Z
  • Acer Aspire 5749
  • Acer Aspire One AOD725
  • Dell Inspiron N5050 – B960
  • Hp Mini 110-3800tu

Any advice would be great!

  1. Declan Lopez
    August 25, 2012 at 11:30 pm

    I wouldn't get a netbook if you are going to be gaming.

  2. Dalsan
    August 11, 2012 at 8:25 pm

    If you happen to go with an AMD APU system, which gives you a better value for the money, I can tell you that you should use Brazos Tweaker to under volt your CPU to allow longer battery life and lower operating temperature to extend the life of the APU without any drop in performance. With the right tweaking, you can have up to 11 hours of battery life per charge with mild use, or 9 hours of moderate use on an AO722+ series netbook, and can add a couple hours battery life to other APU systems. If at all possible, try to find a system with no lower than an e-350 for better performance, the A series would be even better, but the c-60 does ok. The i series Intel chips would be the lowest I would go for the Intel based systems.

    • Dalsan
      August 14, 2012 at 9:23 am

      As far as the AO722 and AO725, it may come with 2GB memory and says up to 4GB supported, but 8GB is actually supported on their single slot bank (second bank is not connected, so it is a dummy slot).

  3. Oron
    August 9, 2012 at 10:43 am

    Mishaal, you expressed your requirements very well, but most of the machines you listed are not netbooks. Netbooks are very small laptops (typical screen size 7"-11") with a slow processor and no optical drive - almost the opposite of what you need!

    On a more happy note, network speed is unlikely to be an issue (all modern PCs, laptops and tablets have fast connections). You need pretty good graphics performance though, so Dalsan's advice (an Intel "i" processor or an AMD APU, preferably an A4 or better) is very sound.

    The Acer 5733Z and the Acer Aspire 5749, are fine laptops for the money, but the screen isn't great and the loudspeakers are rubbish - not what you want for a "media experience"! The Acer one and the HP mini are "classic" netbooks and as such underpowered for AV editing. As for the Dells, I have no first hand experience of these models so can't comment.

  4. Alan Trinder
    August 9, 2012 at 1:02 am

    I can't comment on the ones listed above but I would comment from experience that you need to get the most powerful processor you can. I made the mistake of looking for battery life over this (which for sure is important) but the speed of the one I purchased is terrible, loading windows and programmes takes for ever, internet transfer is slow and the photo editing etc, one of my main reasons for purchase is also slow. Sure it had a decent hard disk so I do not need to be storing over the airwaves but I am totally put off with the speed. If you work on-line how about going tablet with the Google?

  5. jamesbirtwistle
    August 9, 2012 at 12:55 am

    Google Nexus 7 tablet. I know it isn't a netbook , but it is $200, has a decent screen, Netflix capabilities (I believe) and access to Google Play. It won't play Windows games (but Android games are okay), but with a bit of third-party software, you can probably do [very] basic video and photo editing. Good luck.

  6. dave
    August 9, 2012 at 12:46 am

    Netbook Eee PC 1025C
    -nice chassis
    -nice specs
    -great battery

  7. Steve Trockman
    August 8, 2012 at 3:46 pm

    Have you considered an iPad?

    • Mishaal
      August 8, 2012 at 6:08 pm

      I cant afford an ipad :(

      • Lee
        August 9, 2012 at 2:01 am

        What about something like a Nexus 7?
        I think it can do most of what's on your list.

        -High speed internet
        It can connect to wifi, so it should work as fast as a netbook (maybe faster since it would probably load mostly mobile versions of websites).

        HD video
        The screen itself is HD, so it can at least play 720p video. I believe it can play 1080 as well but it will be scaled down.

        Small amount of photo and video editing
        You can do basic photo editing (like cropping, rotating, and filters) with apps from the Google Play store (maybe even some more advanced things with Photoshop Touch). I think there are a few basic video editors on Google Play as well.

        Small amount of gaming (like Age of Empires 3, Angry Birds, Resident Evil 4 and similar)
        You can definitely play Angry Birds, but I don't think there are Android versions of the other games you listed. There are many games in Google Play, but they're touch-optimized. That being said, I wouldn't expect a netbook to play games too well anyway, as the specs and cooling aren't nearly as good as a desktop (or even some more powerful laptops).

        The big advantage of the Nexus 7 is the price. You can get one for $200 for the 8gb model and $250 for the 16gb.
        It's thinner and lighter than a netbook, has a front-facing camera for video chatting while travelling, and I'd say easier to use while on something like a bus or train too, although it doesn't run Windows so it can't run programs like MS Office (even though there are some MS Office-compatible apps in Google Play that would allow you to view/edit documents and such) so if you absolutely need to use programs that are strictly Windows only (with no alternative for Android) then a netbook would probably be a better choice.

  8. susendeep dutta
    August 8, 2012 at 10:03 am

    Don't go for any laptop which has outdated hardware such as Acer 5733Z as it's using Intel's 1st generation processor and now Intel has launched 3rd generation processors.Also,if you are planning for even slight image manipulation,playing high definition games and videos,then stay away from Intel atom based netbooks like Dell and HP minis.

    Under this budget,you might not be able to get a netbook which has good processor to handle all your needs.SO,if possible try extending your budget and get a notebook.

  9. Dalsan
    August 8, 2012 at 8:13 am

    The netbooks with the AMD APUs (c-60, e-450, etc.) have better graphics capabilities than most of the others in your list, but the processing power is lacking a good bit. The Core i3 is good at processing, but lacks the graphics capabilities. For overall performance, the Core i3 processor will get you through many of the things you want except some games. The AMD APUs handle more games, but lags badly for intensive games, and also requires lots of tweaking.

    I own an Acer AO722 and doesn't cease to amaze me in its capabilities in games like Burnout Paradise and Need for Speed, World of Warcraft, and I know that it can handle Resident Evil 4 decently, but each of these games will lag at times when the games have too many things going on on the screen (intense scenes). Loading large programs take a while longer, but are usable. Watching 1080p streams are not much problem either, but requires tweaking the settings and turning off features like Aero and theme styles, basically turning the Windows interface to 7 Basic or less. There is, however, a problem with using Silverlight since it does not allow hardware acceleration (unless it has changed), so Netflix HD streaming doesn't work so well. Overall, I am more than pleased with my purchase.

  10. ferdinan Sitohang
    August 8, 2012 at 4:47 am

    advice from me is i am not recommended you buy a netbook if you want to play a heavy game such as age of empires 3, etc. Netbook is designed for a mid to low work load such as internet and word processing. Buy notebook with a little high specification than netbook and it will meet your need.

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