Gateway LT3103u – Mind Blowing Quality At Rock Bottom Price
Sum n substance:
Thumbs up: AMD athlon processor, the keyboard design, awesome wi-fi connectivity, good audio quality, a decent buy at the price it’s being offered for.
Thumbs down: Low battery life, video streaming not that great, uninspiring muse buttons, slow boot-time, fingerprint attracting glossy finish.
Inside the trunk: Processor: Athlon 64 (1.2 GHz) ; RAM installed: 2 GB DDR2 SDRAM ; Hard drive size: 250 GB, 5 in 1 card reader, ATI Radeon X1270 HyperMemory graphics processor, OS provided: Microsoft Windows Vista Home Basic.
The whiz-kid speaks: Gateway has come up with something truly path- breaking with the launch of this notebook. Though it sounds cheesy I can’t resist saying that finally the netbook is emerging out of the cocoon. Anyways all the cheesy lines apart let me straight away come to the point and start with the review.
Razzle-dazzle: Well, the gateway isn’t known to experiment much with its looks… and the same holds true for this one too. Its got a classy black lid.. kinda boring but then it does look pretty slick. The keyboard and the chassis are matte black. Now the palmpad interested me the most. It’s dimpled like the golfball which offers a totally new experience.
The display is a bit larger than the normal 10 inch notebooks at 11.6inches. as far as the weight is concerned it’s a bit more heavier than the Asus Seashell but is just as snug as bug in a rug when fitted into the messenger bag.
Now the design of the keyboard is almost perfect and provided me with one of the most comfortable typing experiences till date… didn’t have much difficulty writing this review using this it. Though the gateway has tried too come up with something new as far as touchpad is concerned, it’s a single button mouse. but I personally like the older conventional keypad.
Its got three USB ports, VGA, Ethernet, headphone and mic, and a 5-in-1 memory card slot along with a 0.3 megapixel webcam.
Unlike most of the notebooks which use the Intel Atom processor, gateway uses an AMD athlon 64 L110 Single-Core Processor which I found out to be more efficient compared to the Atom. Well, it’s not as fast as the ULV system but it could give the Atom a run for its money anyday.
Also it comes accompanied with the Windows Vista as compared to the Windows XP version which most of the notebooks use and along comes the same sluggishness of the Vista. I tried comparing its boot time with most of the other notebooks and it took almost 30 secs more which was kind of disappointing but then who said that the Vista was fast.
The stereo speakers on the LT3103u provide adequately loud sound for a netbook. While bass was lacking and higher tones are somewhat tinny, the midrange vocals on Weezer’s “Island in the Sun” came through well. Since the speakers are mounted on the underside of the system’s front lip, we found that audio became muffled and distorted when we had the netbook on our lap; placing the system on a hard surface resulted in an improved listening experience.
Also the webcam with a 0.3 meapixel camera wasn’t all that great though its pretty much decent enough for a notebook.
Coming to the graphics, not much impressive. It couldn’t actually play hi definition videos, was almost like watching a slideshow with music.
The wi fi connnectivity is astounding to say the least. The web pages got loaded easily and also video and streaming was quite smooth with no noise at all.
The battery life is a huge dampener. It lasted for almost lasted 4 hours and 38 minutes which is absolutely crappy when compared to the other notebooks in that range.
Nitty- Gritty: Its not a mac nor is it Intel’s baby but for sure its definitely better than both with Athlon. Looks conventionally stylish. I am definitely impressed, the low battery life not withstanding… its definitely got me hooked to it. Kudos to Gateway for this one. Go ahead and give it a shot…definitely worth the money.