A bloggers/writers dream PC
This was my early christmas present to myself a couple of weeks ago and I now feel happy to review the ACER ASPIRE ONE ZG5. It's a netbook, one of those teeny-tiny PC's you can carry in your handbag (ladies) and it'll still weigh less than the rest of the contents all put together! This little beauty weighs 2.2lbs, measures 9.75" x 7" with battery, and yet packs a powerful punch.1.6 GHz Intel Atom N270 Processor, 1GB DDR2 SDRAM, 160GB Hard Drive, 1.3 Megapixel Webcam, Microphone, 802.11b/g wireless catcher, XP Home and a 6 Cell battery,plus software.The big thing with the Atom processor is it uses just 2.5 watts of power, 1/10th of the power used by the Intel Core 2 Duo, ensuring excellent battery management. I am easily getting 6.5 hours of battery use on a charge. Due to it's size there is no CD/DVD drive, but 3 USB's and an Multi-in-One card reader, so transferring from a digital camera or external device is easy. It comes with a trial version of Microsoft Office Student, which I removed as it also comes with Works and therefore a Word Processor, Spreadsheet and anything else I might need. I am using Picnik for photo processing, thereby negating the need to download a space eating photo processor. I have ESET Nod32 virus protection and so removed the McAfee free trial to save disk space. Others recommend AVG but definitely not Norton which eats mountains of space. It will boot up in about 15 seconds, it's fast, the wireless catcher is superb and even found me a connection in my Dr's waiting room, usually a dead-spot. The keyboard is about 80% the size of a standard one, but I have had absolutely no issues adjusting to it. Other reviewers have said the mousepad is hard to adjust to, again I have had no issues. The other big advantage is it runs Windows XP or Linux, both superior and glitch free compared to Vista. I am totally enamoured with my Acer after 2 weeks, I just cannot fault it. I have used the webcam with family abroad and it's excellent, no delay or break-up, plus light enough to give them a tour of the house! It plays online video seamlessly, the sound is just okay, but this is not for watching movies. This is for checking email or the internet anywhere, anytime and total mobility. Blogging or writing whenever and wherever you feel like it, and just having the convenience of carrying your PC with you everywhere. Since I got it I have only turned my 17" Dell laptop on about 3 times, this is what I gravitate to all the time now. And for those of you who have seen the Dell Mini 9 and thought about it, I did too and this is far superior at a lot less money, with far better reviews (see Amazon). The Dell has tiny storage capabilities, weighs more and you pay extra for the webcam etc. This little beauty cost me $379 and considering some Blackberry's are now over $200, I'd rather have a full working PC like this. Just one thing though, this model with the 6-cell battery and Intel Atom doesn't seem to be out yet in the UK and the 3-cell battery has a short life, so wait for it, as going on the reviews there's a big difference. I cannot recommend this Netbook highly enough, if you get one you will rarely use your other PC!