Shopping for a laptop, 4

If you are shopping for a cheap laptop but does not like the Asus eee PC’s form factor, now is about the right time.

Strolling around Cyberzone at SM Megamall, I noticed that prices of Celeron-powered laptops have dropped considerably. So I looked at the Web sites of PC Corner, PC Express, and Asianic, and saw the following:

* Neo Q-Note Endura 320SU, priced at Php 19999 (contrary to the image shown at the page)
* Neo Q-Note Endura 540SL2c, priced at Php 19999 (not yet shown on Web site, but can be found on the downloadable price list of PC Corner and PC Express)

Both machines are Celeron-powered. Note that both units are available while supply lasts. Most prices have dropped due to the coming of second quarter, and Intel will release dual-core Celerons soon.

You might also want to check out the following:

* Acer Aspire 4715Z-1A0508MI, a Pentium Dual Core at Php 28,999 (PC Corner)
* MSI MegaBook VR330, an AMD Athlon 64 X2 at Php 24999 (PC Corner)

And with the 2nd-generation Asus eee PC priced at estimated Php 30,+++ at PC Corner, I suggest you wait for the eee competiting products from Acer, ECS, and MSI.


Shopping for a laptop, 3 (or how getting one can screw you up)
Shopping for a laptop, 2
Shopping for a laptop


Acer unveils Gemstone Blue

Acer has just announced its Gemstone Blue, an upgrade to its Gemstone laptop series. It got the appelation blue due to the the distinctive shade of the shell, and the fact that it sports Blu-Ray drives.

The display comes in 16″ and 18″, full 16:9 widescreen, and maximum resolution of 1920×1080, with video delivered by INVIDIA GeForce GS processor. It also carries 5 integrated speakers for true 5.1 sound delivered by Dolby Home Theater, Tuba CineBass booster and True5.1 CineSurround.

At the core of the series is the processor, of course. These machines are driven by Intel Centrino processors, Penryn, of course, with up to maximum of 4GB RAM.

The CineDash is the Star Trek-like interface found at the left side of the keyboard. CineDash is just a specialized interface for controlling media apps. Unfortunately, there is no right-side version.

Two models have been announced: Aspire 6920G and 8920G, and both are due next month. Not sure about a Philippine release date. Of course, they won’t come in cheap. The cheapest is priced around US$900 (that’s Php 36900 at US$1=Php41 conversion rate).

Prices of Gemstone laptops should drop by the time these Aspires hit retailers’ shelves.

Technical specifications below:

Aspire 6920G Aspire 8920G
Processor and Chipset Intel Centrino
Intel Core2 Duo
Mobile Intel PM965 Express Chipset
Intel Wireless WiFi Link 4965AGN
Memory DDR2 667 MHz, up to 4GB using 2 soDIMM modules (dual channel)
Hard disk 1 or 2 HDD, up to 320GB each
Optical drive 1X Blu-Ray Disc Super Multi double layer or 8x DVD Super Multi double layer 2X Blu-Ray Disc Super Multi double layer or 8x DVD Super Multi double layer
Video NVIDIA GeForce 9500 GS, up to 12808 MB Turbo Cache (512MB dedicated, up to768MB shared) NVIDIA GeForce 9650 GS or NVIDIA GeForce 9500 GS, up to 12808 MB Turbo Cache (512MB dedicated, up to768MB shared)
Display 16″ Full HD 1920×1080 resolution, 16:9 aspect ratio
16″ 1366×768 resolution, 16:9 aspect ratio
18.4″ Full HD 1920×1080 resolution, 16:9 aspect ratio
Sound Dolby Home Theater, Acer CineSurround with 5 integrated speakers, Tuba CineBass
Ports ExpressCard, 4 USB ports, HDMI, infrared, VGA, RF-in, headphone/speaker/line-out with S/PDIF, mic-in, line-in
Connectivity WiFi A/B/G/N
56K modem
Weight 3.5KG with 8-cell battery 4.1KG with 8-cell battery
Operating System Windows Vista Ultimate or Home Premium