Acer Aspire One 533 review
The new Atom N475 isn’t revolutionary, but it’s at least a step in the right direction for netbooks. It runs at 1.83GHz, supports Hyper-Threading and has the standard Intel GMA 310 graphics onboard, but its most notable strength is that – along with the recently launched 1.66GHz N455 – it finally supports DDR3 memory.
Acer is the first to take advantage with the Aspire One 533, pairing the N475 with 1GB of DDR3 in its single DIMM socket. If we expected that move to DDR3 to have an impact, though, we were left deflated. In our benchmarks it scored just 0.34, no higher or lower than the vast majority of netbooks we’ve tested.
The Atom has never been about speed, however, and with each new iteration we’re far keener to see how battery life fares. The 4,400mAh six-cell battery has enough juice to keep you working throughout the day. In our light-use test, with wireless disabled, the screen brightness dimmed and no applications running, the Acer kept plugging away for just ten minutes short of ten hours. Even when running our intensive multitasking test it still managed 4hrs 15mins before dying.
The Aspire One’s design has been tweaked, with the thin battery making for a thin and portable netbook – just 1.2kg and 27mm at its thickest point. The base is robust and well-finished, and the hinge feels like it’s built to last; only the lid feels slightly weak and plasticky, with a bit too much give to be comfortable tossed into a bag.
The keyboard is well laid-out, with a large right-Shift key making up for the slightly cramped cursor keys, and the touchpad supports multitouch gestures. We’re generally not fans of the one-piece rocker-style buttons, but here they proved responsive.
The 10.1in screen has a glossy finish that adds vibrancy and brightness, but it has some notable flaws. The individual pixels of the 1,024 x 600 resolution are clearly visible, giving the desktop a mottled appearance. It’s clearly not a top-quality panel.
When you consider the Aspire One 533 costs £255 exc VAT, that’s a little disappointing. The battery life is a huge strength and it has the latest Intel parts inside, but it’s still essentially the same as the pack, with a 250GB hard disk, 802.11n wireless and three USB ports. With the A-Listed Asus Eee PC 1001P just as capable with few compromises for around £70 less, the Acer can’t justify the extra outlay.
|Warranty||1 yr return to base International|
|Dimensions||259 x 187 x 27mm (WDH)|
Processor and memory
|Processor||Intel Atom N475|
|Motherboard chipset||Intel NM10 Express|
|SODIMM sockets free||0|
|SODIMM sockets total||1|
Screen and video
|Resolution screen horizontal||1,024|
|Resolution screen vertical||600|
|Resolution||1024 x 600|
|Graphics chipset||Intel GMA 3150|
|Graphics card RAM||256MB|
|VGA (D-SUB) outputs||1|
|Hard disk usable capacity||219GB|
|Internal disk interface||SATA/300|
|Hard disk||Western Digital Scorpio Blue|
|Optical disc technology||None|
|Replacement battery price inc VAT||£0|
|Wired adapter speed||100Mbits/sec|
|802.11 draft-n support||yes|
|Integrated 3G adapter||no|
|Wireless hardware on/off switch||no|
|Wireless key-combination switch||yes|
|PC Card slots||0|
|USB ports (downstream)||3|
|PS/2 mouse port||no|
|9-pin serial ports||0|
|Optical S/PDIF audio output ports||0|
|Electrical S/PDIF audio ports||0|
|3.5mm audio jacks||2|
|SD card reader||yes|
|Memory Stick reader||yes|
|MMC (multimedia card) reader||yes|
|Smart Media reader||no|
|Compact Flash reader||no|
|Pointing device type||Touchpad|
|Speaker location||Front edge, base|
|Hardware volume control?||no|
|Camera megapixel rating||1.3mp|
Battery and performance tests
|Battery life, light use||9hr 50min|
|Overall application benchmark score||0.34|
|Office application benchmark score||0.37|
|2D graphics application benchmark score||0.36|
|Encoding application benchmark score||0.33|
|Multitasking application benchmark score||0.31|
Operating system and software
|Operating system||Windows 7 Starter 32-bit|
|OS family||Windows 7|
|Recovery method||Burn own recovery discs|
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