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Discussion Starter #1
Motorcycle NetBook

I just got my new MSI U120 Netbook for traveling with me on the road. It is replacing my 12 inch Del 700m, which weighed over 5 lbs with the travel charger, and nearly 6 lbs if I took the 4 hour extended (6 cell) battery.

This new Netbook only weighs 2.3 lbs with a 6 cell battery, and runs almost 5 hours on a charge. It also is about 2 inches smaller in both width and length and is slimmer as well. It takes up quite a bit less room in the trunk, which is always at a premium when I travel two-up.

It has a 10 inch screen, which I decided was as small as I could go and still have a usable screen, and a 160gb hard drive and 1gb of ram, Wifi, Blutooth, SD slot, 3 usb ports, and it only cost $370 (from New Egg).

I have loaded all my normal applications on it for use on the road (Garmin Mapsource, Google Earth, Microsoft Office, Itunes, etc) and it handles all of them with no problems. I really like the smaller size and lighter weight and longer battery life than the Dell. The 10 inch sceen hasn't presented a problem yet, and the keyboard is actually spaced good enough that I can touch type on it.

I'll take it out on the road in a day or two and let you know how it works, but so far, I think this is a keeper.

 

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Thanks for the updates Fred. I'm still looking at these mini PCs as well. I will follow this thread to hear your thoughts as you get more time to use it.
 

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I read through all the reviews I could, and came to the conclusion that the three top 10 inch models were the Samsung NC-10 ($450), the MSI Wind ($380), and the Lenovo S10 ($300 - $350).

The MSI Wind seemed to get consistently better reviews, but some folks actually liked the Lenovo better. The Samsung beat them both with around 7 hours of battery life, but it cost almost $100 more.

If you can live with a slightly smaller screen, the 9 inch models are quite a bit cheaper, as well as smaller and lighter. The Acer posted above would be a real good pick in a 9 inch model, and can be had pretty cheap.

Whatever you buy, pay close attention to the hard drive size. Some of them put in a really small solid state hard drive (8mb). I would steer clear of those models, simply because they don't have enough space on them for you to load your applications. Personally, I wouldn't get anything with a drive under 80mb, and really would rather have at least 120mb. This way I can put photos, and music, and Garmin Mapsource and all my applications on it without running out of room.
 

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:congrats:
We just purchased the Acer Aspire 1 netbook. Office Depot has them on sale for $199. Things great and I may go back and get another.

WOW you found a better deal than I did. I have been using my Acer 1 for a week now and am on it now in the living room. Great little machine.. I got the 120GbHD in mine. Once you sort of get use to the thing it isn't bad at all, and will almost fit in your coat pocket. I don't have a Office Depot anywhere near me, but if I did I would be there tomorrow :!: Want to pick me up another ???;)
 

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Remember the lockups with the disk-drive-equipped ipods? The flash-based ones don't have that problem.

For my own purposes, the SSD (solid state drives) are definitely the way to go. NO MOVING PARTS. On the Asus EEE model 1000, the SSD is 32GB in size and you can plug in SD cards to add more storage.

Look at the difference in battery life with the SSD vs a normal disk drive and you will likely find the SSD machine runs almost twice as long. Having to spin an electric motor for the drive chews up battery life and the moving parts cut down on MTBF.

For a roadie laptop, running mapsource, open office, and ssh, a small 9 or 10 inch laptop with SSD storage is a good choice. If you use a cellular modem with usb connector, you can connect almost anywhere. I hate being held hostage to some "daily" rate for wifi, since they're not secure anyway.
 

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Ours came with the 160gb HDD and 1gb RAm. I was surprised as I thought it would be the 120gb as the ad didn't mention the disk size. NO additional software was provided but I loaded Office '03 and MApsource now it's good to go. Oh, it came with an adequate little USB mouse too.

Send me the $199 + tax and a slight handling and shipping fee and I'll pick one up fer ya. :lol:

Good luck with the new netbooks.
I checked the Office Depot's out around here and they Don't have that sale here in Washington DC area. Maybe its coming this way.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Remember the lockups with the disk-drive-equipped ipods? The flash-based ones don't have that problem.

For my own purposes, the SSD (solid state drives) are definitely the way to go. NO MOVING PARTS. On the Asus EEE model 1000, the SSD is 32GB in size and you can plug in SD cards to add more storage.

Look at the difference in battery life with the SSD vs a normal disk drive and you will likely find the SSD machine runs almost twice as long. Having to spin an electric motor for the drive chews up battery life and the moving parts cut down on MTBF.

For a roadie laptop, running mapsource, open office, and ssh, a small 9 or 10 inch laptop with SSD storage is a good choice. If you use a cellular modem with usb connector, you can connect almost anywhere. I hate being held hostage to some "daily" rate for wifi, since they're not secure anyway.
I read some reviews that did testing on both battery life and access speeds of Netbooks with SSD drives versus hard drives. There was no difference in either battery life or access speeds in the test reports I read. The hard drive drain on the battery appears to be minimal when compared to the screen, which is what really drains the battery.

Also, the hard drive heads are parked when you shut it off, so that really doesn't make any difference when it is in the trunk of the bike and turned off.

Don't get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with SSD drives, but I would just rather have the size of the larger hard drive myself.

I am currently down in the Texas Hill country after a 350 mile day, and I am using my Netbook by the river at the hotel where I am staying. So far, so good. This is the first overnight trip for me on the new bike and I am doing some OPS checks on several items, including the Netbook and the Honda GPS.
 

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Will be looking forward to future reviews. :yes1:
 

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It was $299. My bad :oops:

Well now I dont feel so bad, my deal was better :lol: ( My deal was better than your deal Alert ;) )

I found my blue one on Tiger Direct for $284, and $4.60 shipping, and shipping was for all 5 things that I ordered including 2, 17 LDC monitors
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Day three on the road with the new Netbook.

So far, no real complaints. I can indeed touch type on it, and the WiFi seems to have decent range. I'm still adjusting to the smaller screen, but it really hasn't caused any problems. When I stopped for lunch today, I took it into the restaurant and pulled up Garmin MapSource to check over my route options. The battery really seems to be holding up good, and I am getting close to 5 hours out of a charge with no problems.

It sure packs up small in the trunk and takes up very littel space.
 

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My HDD is bigger than your HDD

:lol:

I've noticed the Acer batt lasts about 3.5 hrs. It has the standard batt pack. They are proud of the upgraded pack @ $129 :eek:

To be honest I really dont know????? I have only ran it for about 1.5 or so, and plug it in. I guess I should condition the battery. $129 does seem a tad out there, :shrug: But for me it really dosent matter, I have a 135 inverter on the Trike anyway, and 1500's in the cages, so if it last thats good, and if it dosnt I plug it in :shock:
 

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I picked up an Acer Aspire with the 160G HD. It seems to work great and does evrything that I've asked of it so far.

Now just waiting for the Zumo 550 that I ordered Friday night to arrive.
 

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I'm using the original eeePC with 4gigs of RAMDISK space, 2gigs of main memory and XP. I've installed Mapsource on a thumb drive as well as S&T 2008. It's working well for me and will get a test in a bit when I head out on some trips.

Last year I used it with LINUX as the operating system and it worked well as an internet appliance. This year I switched over to XP so I could have Mapsource running on it.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Day four with the new Netbook.

I get home today and check Deal News, and see the same model I bought listed for $50 less, and in a better color. Oh well, guess you can't win em all..

2.6-lb. MSI Wind Atom 1.6GHz 10" Netbook

Shop Now$330
+ free shipping



ZipZoomfly.com offers the MSI Wind Intel Atom 1.6GHz 10" Widescreen Netbook in Gray, model no. U120-001US, for $329.99. With free shipping, that's $50 under last month's mention and the lowest total price we've ever seen for a U120-series MSI Wind netbook. This 2.6-lb. laptop features an Intel Atom 1.6GHz processor, 10" 1024x600 LED-backlit LCD display, 1GB RAM, 160GB Serial ATA hard drive, 802.11g wireless, 6-cell battery, 1.3-megapixel webcam, memory card slot, and Windows XP Home.
 

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Our choice was the Acer Aspire one with the 6-hour battery. $400 delivered from Newegg. Very satisfied although I believe that MSI would be another good choice.

Wireless connections are not what they are touted. But we're used to the fast Comcast cable at home. May try the ATT cellphone connection; you can stop the charges when you want.
 

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Thanks Fred......the SO was just asking about one of these smaller computers today so I just placed the order.:thumbup:
 

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Remember the lockups with the disk-drive-equipped ipods? The flash-based ones don't have that problem.
.
Vibration from motion causes lockup. Hopefully you won't be using a laptop while riding. Therefore, no lockup problems.
 

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i have at least 80,000 miles of goldwing , lap top carring miles

and at least another 40,000 in the vehicles

and never had an issue

i just couldnt get comfy with a mini laptop

i need my 15.4 inch widescreen for tv shows on the road
 
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