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back to article 2009's Top Netbooks

2009 was the year the netbook really took off, with vendors rushing to release model after model after model, and few of them ending the year with the same selection of machines that they were offering at the start. We looked at dozens of them, all largely matched on performance, but with very different battery lives, prices and …

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Boffin

Updated NC10

Well, the NC10 was "refreshed" this year to the N140 - very similar spec (upgrade to Wireless-N, a tweak of the sound and a smaller webcam) and now available for £285-ish from a well known long-river-like online retailer. Although you can still get the NC10 for £250-ish, too (although there were two models of that one, too). Good battery life and none of that annoyingly glossy screen finish.

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Still too expensive...

It's got to be sub-£200 to be worth considering. as far as I'm, concerned. My Acer Aspire One cost me £175 over a year ago, and I still use it more-or-less every day. But if I were to be thinking of spending over £300, I'd be looking for a "real" laptop.

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Aspire One's...

...are absolutely pants! We've had many of these into our repair shop. The touchpads on them are ridiculous. I've looked at the newer 10 series Eee PC's, and they're nice. But I'll stick with my 901. Surprisingly robust little computer!

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Size

Shame they're all 10" now. 9" is the netbook sweet spot for me but nobody does them any more :(

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Re: Size

So true, i love my nb100 and it would have been nice to stick to something that size when it comes time to upgrade.

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I thought the NC10 was last years model

Was it not replaced with the N110 this year?

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Anonymous Coward

re: I thought the NC10 was last years model

The NC140 is more of the revised model for the NC10 - the NC110 is very hard to find.

With £20 cashback, you can get the NC10 for as little as £209 (including delivery), but generally (as mentioned above, it's around the £250) - the newer models don't offer that much more and it's still a very fine product.

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Idle query

Which is the easiest to Hackintosh?

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WTF?

Linux (not Android)?

Do any of them come with "proper Linux" or is this now another segment bought by Microsoft?

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3G modem?

Do any of these have integrated 3G though? Surely the majority of people use these things for surfing while mobile, and messing around with a dongle gets old fast.

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@Jerome 0

My Eee PC 901 is a WWAN-fitted contract job from Orange. They stopped doing Eee PC's for a while, but have returned now with the 10 series. Not sure if they've got modems too. Worth checking out, maybe?

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I bought an EEE 1000HE

partially on the strength of the Vulture's review, and I'm very, very pleased with my choice. Nicer keyboard than any other netbook I've tried, decent battery life, good compromise between size and screen real-estate and good performance. Enough power to run Homeworld 2 and Warcraft 3 both on max settings which is more than I expected to be able to do on a machine like this.

Comes with XP or Fisher-Price version of Linux of course, but who really cares about that? First order of business was to wipe and reinstall with a real Linux and it's been a solid little device ever since.

Thanks for the reviews, El Reg, helped me find exactly what I needed.

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Still more than happy with my U90

Runs OSX like a dream, Native with EFI, and essentially only needs graphics and audio drivers to work out of the box.. did replace the mini wifi for an N ready card though..

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Linux

@ Admiral Grace

I have an Acer Aspire One 531 that had Windoze 7 Starter pre-installed. Win 7 blue screened 3 minutes into first switch on. It got wiped (despite PCWorld telling I will void my warranty) and I put Ubuntu Karmic remix on. I have not looked back. Works a treat on a daily basis, is an addition to my car stereo (via auxiliary port), has a BT E180 dongle for anywhere internet via broadband. Does what it needs to do with ease.

Unfortunately it is not part of any of these reviews.

BTW. I don't use a touchpad as I prefer using a mouse.

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