Acer Aspire One 522 netbook has a very sharp and glossy display packing 1280 x 720 pixel resolution and runs on a not-so-common AMD C50 processor. Those just-mentioned features alone make this netbook unique from inside because from outside, it looks just-another 10-inch netbook.
Just like any netbook out there, it has 3x USB 2.0 ports, a VGA port and a built in webcam to handle those video chats over Skype. On the connectivity front, it boasts an 802.11n Wi-Fi and the range is truly impressive – at par with my Macbook Pro which is famous for strong Wi-Fi radio. Of course, you get Bluetooth too and HDMI port to output 1080p video to an HDTV or a bigger monitor.
Yes, it can handle 1080p video with ease as the included GPU – ATi Radeon HD 6250 is much more powerful than what you usually get on 10.1-inch netbooks – Intel GMA 3150. The 3150 was not even able to handle 720p videos but this ATi GPU handles those easily. Some more information about the processor. AMD C50 processor runs at 1GHz clock speed and consumes almost same power as the Intel’s single core processors. If you are a techie, you will adore its crystalmark score:
Here is its windows experience index (for those who care about it):
Gaming Graphics: 5.5
Hard Disk: 5.5
In short, I am impressed with its performance as this amazing Acer netbook is able to handle Office apps, web browsing, YouTube, video playback and even light weight gaming with ease.
The keyboard and touchpad has not undergone any change compared to the Acer Aspire One Happy netbook and Acer eMachines netbook (e350 to be specific). I did not like the keyboard on the first day of my testing as my fingers could not figure out where each key ends, but after a couple of days or so, I was able to type with my normal speed which is 60 WPM. You also have to appreciate Acer for not shrinking any key like Asus who have a habit of squeezing the right shift key in their netbooks (see my Asus 1015PEM review for that).
Touchpad works fine and I love using the “two finger scrolling” gesture to scroll web pages. The mouse buttons do not require a lot of effort to register a click (which is a good thing).
The display is glossy and sets itself apart from other 10.1-inch netbooks by boasting a 1280 x 720 pixel display. I loved the screen as you can see so much at once compared to the netbooks with 1024 x 600 pixel displays. It has decent brightness and saturation levels but since it is glossy, you would not able to see what is on the display on a bright day.
Battery Life – From its 6-cell battery, I was able to get 6 hours and 10 minutes while doing wireless web browsing and brightness set to 50 percent. However, if you planning to play games, expect it to drop dramatically.
Specs of the unit tested:
- 10.1-inch display
- 1280 x 720 pixel screen
- AMD C50 processor
- ATi Radeon HD 6250 GPU
- 3x USB 2.0 ports
- HDMI, Ethernet, VGA
- Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
- Windows 7 Starter operating system
- 6-cell battery
Price – Acer is selling Aspire One 522 for 350 dollars. Model without Bluetooth is available for 330 dollars. Update – Price is now down to just 289 at Amazon.
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