The netbook segment just got a little more interesting. It looks like the Intel Atom CPU is not the only one on the block. Sure VIA came out with the Nano, but it suffered low adoption from manufacturers.
MSI Wind U210
The MSI Wind U210 will be powered by the AMD NEO MV-40, operating at 1.6 GHz. This is a 12 inch model with a screen resolution of 1366 x 768. An AMD Radeon X1250 will be handling graphic duties. The higher end model will, unfortunately, come loaded with Vista. It’s still too early to know if this will qualify for the free Windows 7 upgrade. This might be a good competitor to all the Intel Atom powered netbooks out there.
In my opinion, it’s good to have come competition to the Atom because consumers will benefit. AMD is not so restrictive as Intel when it comes to netbooks. Most netbooks running the Atom N-series processor cannot exceed certain screen resolutions. That is why you see many of the bigger netbooks running the Atom Z processor to get around this rule.
The MSI Wind U210 is available at Amazon.com for $430. Click here to check it out.
MSI Wind12 U200
It looks like the 12 inch models are being the star of the show. The latest models comes from MSI. They officially announced the Wind12 U200. But unlike other 12 inch models, the Asus EEE PC 1101 or the Acer Aspire One 751H, the Wind12 is not powered by Atom. Instead, MSI opted for an Intel CULV Processor.
Initials Specs are:
Intel CULV CPU
up to 4GB of Memory
12.1 HD screen that has a 16:9 aspect ratio
320GB hard drive
The release date is still unknown at this point. If you can’t wait for it, I would recommend the Asus EEE PC 1101 or the Lenovo S12 with Nvidia ION.
Lenovo Ideapad S12 Ion Netbook
Yes, the ION S12 is finally launching soon. However, the price will be an issue. I can’t recommend the Acer Aspire One 751H until they fix that freezing issue.
The Netbook bandwagon has become the netbook big rig truck. It seems everyone has a netbook these days. They’re all about the same price and have almost the same specs. For about $350, you get a 10 inch, 1.6 Ghz Intel Atom, 1GB, 160GB hard drive, running Windows XP Home.
Asus Eee PC 1000HE
The problem is that all the manufacturers are making the same thing with no product differientiation. When it comes to netbooks, I think of 3 brands, Asus, MSI, and Acer. Since everything else is the same, the keyboard and battery life is a huge factor when it comes to picking out the right one. Unfortunately, there isn’t a place that lets you have any hands on time with the netbooks.
Acer Apsire One AOD 150
So my recommendations:
Asus: Asus Eee PC 1000HE $385
Acer: Acer Aspire One AOD150 10.1 Inch $330
MSI: MSI Wind U120 $330
If you’re looking for something a little bigger, I would wait for the Lenovo S12. It’s a 12 inch, Atom powered netbook with the Nvidia ION GPU. ION brings 1080P capabilities to a netbook. That also means it can handle games at a decent frame rate. Read about it here.