Hardware Shift

Random notes of a hardware nature.

My Lenovo S10 might be on the outs… I recently picked up a MacBook Air Rev A from ‘goat who recently upgraded to a MacBook Pro 13″, passing on his MacBook 13″ to his wife, who in turn passed the MacBook Air on …to me. My reason for getting the S10 in the first place was to have an ultra-portable notebook for note taking, light browsing/email, and random usage. As Jolene and I picked up two at the Circuit City Requiem, we got them on the mega-cheap and have been tooling around with them every since. I never expected the S10 to replace my 15″ Lenovo T61p – and it hasn’t – but I’ve been OK with it for what I expected to do with it.

Jolene on the other hand has found some applications that have maxed out the N270 Atom CPU that’s in the thing… that’s started the quest for a new netbook, but even with the new batch of post-Windows 7 netbooks, I’m not seeing much. True, some come with Ion chips that help with HD video, but the issues she’s having is straight up processor… it could be the regular HDD – maybe a new SSD is in order? I’m not sure, but I took a look around… the Sony X is a remarkable piece of equipment: great size but it’s an Atom Z processor – even at 2.0 I’m betting it’s less powerful than the N processor we have in the S10. Most of the other netbooks have the same processors that they did 6 months ago.

The brings us into laptop territory, for power. Lenovo X301 or X200, MacBook 13″ or MacBook Pro 13″, Dell Latitude E4200 are all worthy… great size, weight, and decent battery… but now you’re over $1500, instead of lurking around the $399 price tag.

In other news, the Air is a quite nice Windows 7 machine. It’s got some quirks in terms of speed but it smacks around my netbook with ease in terms of general speed, monitor size, and keyboard comfort… the only downsides is that the Air takes longer to boot and has less multigesture on the Trackpad. Yes, it’s true: if you install the Synaptics driver, the S10’s touchpad will do double and triple finger gestures – runs fine with Windows 7 as well – but this version of the Air only does two finger gestures… and that’s fine, but it’s still a surprise. I’m still considering putting an SSD in it, but the Air Rev A is a unique beast: it’s a PATA interface with a ZIF cable and a 5mm height cap, which limits it to very, very few drives… most of which are pretty damned expensive for 64GB. I could probably get by with 32GB, seeing as I have the drive split in half between OSX and Windows 7, but I’d rather not do that…

What’s next? No idea… probably nothing until after New Years. I’m not even certain where all this news came from aside from that fact that I’m feeling rather… random today. I guess that’s the best word for it, especially with half my mind on the Yankees and the other half completely distracted… doesn’t leave much mind for work – I guess I’ll have to reign in some of that before my first meeting today.


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