I've had this notebook for 2 months now. It excels beyond my dad's Vaio sz (bought one month previous) on boot time, game fps and program speed enormously.
The plastic is certainly not 'cheap'. Perhaps with the influx of shiny plastics in recent months in new laptops, it could be considered on the lower end of the scale, but even then it is of considerable quality at this price point.
The port layout i've found is quite efficient. Considering the size of flash drives nowadays, the card reader on the front and the length of optical mouse cables, it makes sense to have just one usb on the side with additional ports on the back. Who uses a tv tuner with a 13.3" screen anyway?
This article reads like Jeremy Clarkson when he's scrutinizing a car. 'Nothing is right about this laptop, everything is lacking. But despite our "grumbles" its "great value" '. These grumbles seem to include a lack of built in "HSDPA 3G" (which is laughable at this price range), and the distinct lack of the only real criticism you can level at this laptop, one that you would find almost immediately if you'd actually got an example of the notebook for review (which I sincerely doubt at this point), fingerprints. The super shiny polish on the plastic makes them more visible after a day's work than the super super shiny Samsung logo on the front.
While I agree with the slight lack of viewing angles (which for anyone who wants to work privately will agree isn't necessarily a bad thing), the subsequent statement is a complete stereotype, which certainly isn't based on this laptop, having used it on the deck of a boat in the bright sunshine of the Solent when I first bought it: "as with all glossy displays, it’s a magnet for reflections". Bollocks.
"Unlike the three-antenna Wi-Fi Link 5300, this card only has two antennae". Oh dear. I've had no issues with the wifi whatosever, running off of my girlfriend's ancient 802.11b router from 30 metre's distance, running off my 802.11n router from my garden (the router is located some 40 metres away, inside a study which is separated from the garden by 2 brick walls and another room), or at uni, where the 802.11g wireless no better on my friend's £1100 Vaio, with the Intel 5300, than on my merely 2 antennae equipped 5100, at all distances).
The gaming laptop. At 700 pounds, what do you expect? I certainly didn't buy this laptop on the grounds that I could run high-end games. It will happily run Counter-Strike Source on native res at 50fps. COD4 will also run in native res at 25fps, naturally without any added texture settings and with AA off, but again, what could you expect at this price point with the new cpu?
Given the price point I would say this is a brilliant laptop, one that is quite portable (I walk to and from university with it (2 miles each way), 4 days a week, and carry it in addition to a suitcase with me on the train every month or so home). Graphics are to an extent limited, but I didn't buy it with a view to play tf2 let alone COD4. Next el reg will be criticising the Eee 701 because it won't play Crysis.
This article does make me wonder if el reg had the laptop at all, not for the lack of finger print grumbles, but for the distinct inaccuracies and the contradicting verdict.