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Toshiba Mini NB205-N210

>> Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Toshiba Mini NB205-N210's footprint (10.4 by 8.4 0.8 inches, HWD) would have been roughly the size of the Samsung N120 (12GBK) (10.7 by 7.4 by 1.2 inches, HWD) and Asus EeePC 1000HE (10.3 by 7.3 by 1.1 inches) had it not been for the extended battery that sticks out by about an inch (The other two have extended batteries that protrude downward from the base). It's as thin as the Acer D250-1165 (10.3 by 7.4 by 0.8 inches) and exactly the same size as the more expensive NB205.

The glossy black plastics aren't breaking any molds, design wise, and the design even has a name Fusion Edition which Toshiba uses to exaggerate a basic In mold process (plastics infused with patterns) used in netbooks like the HP Mini 110 (1030us) and Lenovo IdeaPad S12. The money you save buying Toshiba Mini NB205-N210 instead of Toshiba Mini NB205-N210 won't get you the choice of colors (Brown, Pink, and Blue) and textures that are available with the latter. The common 10 inch widescreen is another reason why Toshiba Mini NB205-N210 is more affordable than most netbooks (It's rumored that Intel charges extra for straying from this size).

Case in point

There's a price premium for 12 inch netbooks like the Lenovo Ideapad S12 and Samsung NC20 (21GBK). This size also means that the screen is limited to 1.024 by 600 resolution, like you'd find on other netbooks with 10 inch screens such as Toshiba Mini NB205-N210, Asus EeePC 1000HE, and HP Mini 110. There areexceptions, though the HP Mini 5101 has an option for a 1.366 by 768 resolution ($25), and the Sony VAIO VPC-W11XX comes standard with it, but at a cost ($500 for the entire netbook).

Paying slightly less for Toshiba Mini NB205-N210 than the NB205 also means a smaller keyboard. The 93% keyboard isn't terrible and brings back the classic look when every other netbook is trending to those that have isolated keys. My only gripes are that the Control, Alt, and Fn keys (I'm a big Windows shortcut guy) are half the size of the main ones (adding the tilda key to the same row caused this aberration), and it pales in comparison to full size typing experiences found on Toshiba Mini NB205-N210, Samsung N120 (12GBK), and Lenovo IdeaPad S12.

Both it and Toshiba Mini NB205-N210 have the best navigating experiences on a netbook. The 1.67GHz Intel Atom N280 processor is the natural progression for netbook makers that used Atom processors in earlier products, and 1GB of memory, 160GB, 5400rpm hard drive, and Intel GMA 950 graphics are nothing out of the ordinary. That said, performance scores video encoding and SYSMark 2007 Preview ones, specifically were in line with those of Toshiba Mini NB205-N210, Samsung N120, and Asus 1000HE. There's really no performance advantages here until netbook makers make 2GB of memory standard, or include Nvidia's Ion graphics platform (for better 3D graphics).


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