Monthly Archives: September 2008

Monkey Deals – HP Basic Notebook at Netbook Prices

If you are looking for a little more than a netbook but refuse to pay more, check out this deal at Newegg.com.  In my opinion, I’m not a big fan of the celeron processor, but at these prices, I’ll make an exception. For less than $500, you have a bigger screen and a CPU that is faster than the Intel Atom powering most netbooks.

HP 530 cheap laptop Deal

Here are the specs:

Intel Celeron M 530 (1.73 GHz)
Windows Vista Home Basic
15.4″ WXGA 1280×800
1GB DDR2
120 GB Hard Drive
DVD ROM drive
Integrated Graphics
Up to 2 hours and 42 minutes of Battery Life
Wireless B/G Connectivity
10/100 Mbps
2 USB ports
About 6 pounds

Newegg.com price – $469.99 + $17.20 Shipping

Asus Eee PC 1000H Necessary Upgrades

Right off the bat, you need to modify your new Asus Eee PC 1000H.  Trust me, these are two very welcomed and easy mods.  Well, only one of them is necessary, but the other is considered “nice to have.”

The Asus Eee PC 1000H comes with a meager 1 GB of memory.  I’m not sure why, but memory is cheap.  The bare minimum now is 2GB.  If you haven’t upgraded the memory and looking to buy, look at this deal from Buy.com.  Please note that the 1000H only has one memory slot and the maximum you can install is 2GB.  This is similar to the MSI Wind.

Asus Eee PC 1000H Memory

Crucial 2GB DDR2 PC2-5300 667MHz SO-DIMM for $19.99 after Mail In rebate with Free Shipping.

The other thing you need to purchase is a SDHC memory card.  It’s not necessary, but nice to have.  Since I carry my files with me, I always use a 8gb SDHC flash memory card to transport the files.  Why not a USB thumb drive?  Battery.  The USB drive sucks battery life more than an SDHC card.  A card that I consider cheap, fast, and good (the trifecta) is the Kingston Class 6 8GB SDHC card.

Asus Eee PC 1000H Memory
Kingston 8GB Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) Card – Class 6 for only $27.24 and Free Shipping at Buy.com

Gadget news

Today was a big tech day.

T-Mobile G1
T-Mobile and Google launched the first Android based smartphone called the G1 (HTC Dream).  People are already labelling it the Apple iPhone killer.  The one big thing this phone has over the legendary iPhone is a keyboard.  I’m in the market for a new phone too.  I might have to consider the G1 when that time comes.

T-Mobile Google G1 Android Phone

T-Mobile Google G1 Android Phone

T-Mobile Google G1 Android Phone

Of course, Google decked this little device out with some of their most popular applications, gmail (push), maps, compass, youtube, cal, and more.  It is available for pre order and could be at your door on October 22, 2008 at the earliest.  Oh yea, the price is $179 with a 2 year contract.  $399 for the month to month optional and unlockable after 3 months of use on T-mobile.
Click here for more info.

Sony Vaio TT

Sony also announched their new Vaio TT line, an ultra-portable laptop.  It’s a little bigger than the standard netbook but packs more features, like a Blu-ray drive.

Sony Vaio TT

The 11.1 inch display utilizes Sony’s XBRITE-DualView Technology.  What does that mean?  It makes the display nice and bright for all those high-definition blu-ray movies.  You can outfit a unit with HDMI output, 256GB SSD Hard Drive, up to 4 GB of memory in a little, 1 inch thick package weighing 2.87 pounds.

Sony Vaio TT

The blu-ray variation of the TT will go for about $2750.  OUCH!!!.  Click here for more info.

Asus Eee PC 1000H – Mobility and Productivity

As you may have read already, I am a big fan of netbooks, specifically the Asus Eee PC 1000H.  It perfectly balances mobility and productivity.  The form factor and the weight of the unit allows you to pack it along without being much of a burden.  As for productivity, the 10 inch screen offers usable resolution (1024×600) and enough real estate to work with a couple of windows.  The keyboard is comfortable to type on.  I would recommend getting a wireless mouse for extended use.

Prior to buying this, I read that Asus claimed a battery life of 7.5 hours.  Well according to my experience, on a full charge, I can get away with a little over 6 hours.  That’s a big difference, but if you think about it, 6 hours is really good.  I use a Lenovo Thinkpad X61 at work and get about 5 hours with the extended battery.  Battery life is extermely important for mobility.  Nobody likes having to plug in after a couple of hours.

The Asus Eee PC 1000H is available now at Newegg.com for $449.   Click here to go to the Asus Eee PC 1000H product page at Newegg.com.

Currently sold out on Amazon.com

Power Protection for your PC and more!

With so much hardware that goes in a computer, you sometimes forget about the important things around your computer that can cause damage and/or data loss.  Power spikes and surges are not common, but when it happens, it can do significant damage to your PC or any other electronics, like an expensive LCD TV.

A UPS, not the shipping people, is recommended for computers.  If there is data, you should plug the machine in to a UPS, Uninterruptible Power Supply.  It’s basically a glorified surge protector that provides continuous power, via battery, so that you can save your data and properly shut down.  It also helps smooth out the electricity that is used to power your machine.  Electricity comes in like waves on the beach.  Sometimes it more and sometimes it’s less than what you need to keep your PC running.  Also, when a brownout occurs, your PC is completely fine thanks to the battery power from a UPS.

APC UPS Asus Eee PC
For $50, you can protect your investment.  My recommendation and the one I own is the APC BE550VA.  Click here or the picture for the product page on Amazon.com.  The capacity of this unit is more than enough for home users.  It has 8 outlets available as well as phone line surge protection.  A surge can happen on a phone/DSL line, travel through the DSL modem, then passed to your PC via RJ-45/networking cable.

Surge Protection

belkin concel surge protector eee pc

For your other electronics, i.e. entertainment center, I would invest in a heavy duty surge protector.  Replacing an expensive LCD TV from a surge is adding salt to a wound.  To prevent that, look for a surge protector with 1000+ Joules protection and Max Spike protection.  For the entertainment center, I use a Belkin Conceal Surge Protector to conceal all the wires.  Click here or the picture for the product page on Amazon.com.

belkin 12 outlet surge protector eee pc

Or, you can this Belkin 12 outlet surge protector.  Click here to go to the Amazon product page.

Battle of the Netbooks

A friend was recently checking out my Asus Eee PC 1000H.  He mentioned that Acer had a $400 8.9 inch netbook of their own.  Now, that really doesn’t make me want to ditch my Eee PC and go for the Acer.  I’m thoroughly impressed with the Eee PC and plan on keeping it.  But to be fair, I figured I would review the it.

Asus Eee PC 1000H vs. Acer Aspire One

Specs:
Intel Atom N270 / 1.6 GHz RAM
1 GB (installed) / 1.5 GB (max) – DDR2 533 MHz 1 slot open
Card Reader
120 GB Hard Drive
8.9″ TFT 1024 x 600 ( WSVGA ) – CrystalBrite
Ethernet, Fast Ethernet, IEEE 802.11b, IEEE 802.11g
Intergrated Webcam
Windows XP
$420

Asus Eee PC 1000H vs. Acer Aspire One

It seems that all netbooks are very similar in hardware, except when it comes to screen and keyboard size.  The keyboard size is probably more important than the screen.  Typing on a small cramp keyboard can lead to discomfort.  And that’s where the Asus Eee PC 1000H wins.  The Acer Aspire One suffers from the same small keyboard found on the original Eee PC 701.  It is really hard to type on and mashing multiple keys at once happens all the time.

If you really only had $400 to spend on a laptop, I would look for a full size, 15.4 inch lower model with a big keyboard when they go on sale at your neighborhood electronic store .  Yes, it’s bulky, but your fingers and wrists will thank you.  If you can spend a little more, get the 10 inch model such as the Asus Eee PC 1000H or the MSI Wind.

Happy Computing.

-Monkey