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 Post subject: Netbook modding
PostPosted: September 27th, 2012, 7:08 pm 
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So here is where I'm at in my quest to build a nice netbook for not a lot of money.

My plan was to get an Asus 1025C 10.1" with Atom N2600 1.6Ghz, 1gb memory, 320gb hdd. I like the physical aspects of the computer, keyboard etc... and also supposedly Asus has the most reliable netbooks.

and then install 2gb memory and put in a ~60gb ssd.

And make sure I have whatever battery it takes to get the 12.5 hour life (I think it's the 6 cell).



But it may not be that easy, because once I put in the SSD (OCZ Agility 3 SATA III, most likely), I'll need to install an OS, and supposedly the ATOM processor doesn't support the 64 bit Win7 Home, only 32 bit. (But I'm not positive this is true) And then I would still have to purchase whatever version of windows I could handle with 2gb RAM, because the netbook only has 1 memory slot, and only supports a 2gb card.


So I was thinking of Linux, but I'm not sure if I could run/install Microsoft Office programs on that...could I?


So the pricing will come to ~$200 computer +60 SSD (-$10 after mail in rebate :hmm: ) +$12 ram.

What OS could I install for pretty much free? I'll have to look around my house, but I'm pretty sure I still have the Win 7 home premium 64bit disk for my current laptop, and probably Microsoft office disk as well, if they can be loaded on another computer.....

However, my main goals are still to use the netbook for word, excel, etc and web browsing. So if the more basic editions of Windows will accomplish that, then I won't worry about it.

I know the limitations of the netbook, I just want to make one with all day battery life, and that is quick like a Lotus. I don't need a raging bull of a Lamborghini here, just something nice and light.

So I feel like I've hit a bit of a wall.

Any input?


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 Post subject: Re: Netbook modding
PostPosted: September 27th, 2012, 7:14 pm 
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input:

Asus aren't as great as you think they are.
The N2600 has a x64 instruction set so it is not limited to 32 bit.
You will see next to no difference between 32 and 64 bit anyway.
Installing the SSD should allow for a longer battery life.
There are many linux versions, some made for netbooks others not, it should run most versions of linux fine although 2gb of ram is still a limit even in the best of distros.

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 Post subject: Re: Netbook modding
PostPosted: September 27th, 2012, 8:38 pm 
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If you are intending on getting the SSD for a boost in performance, don't bother, the Atom processors don't benefit from them at all as the processor is the weakest link in the system (Tested on my Atom tablet.)
If you absolutely must get an SSD for the extra 10-15 minuets of battery life, go with an Intel 330, Samsung 830 or Crucial M4 SSD as OCZ hasn't had the best track record since the Vertex 2.

If you intend to run 1080P video, buy yourself a Broadcom Crystal HD chip and whack it in, provided if you have space in the netbook. - You will also save allot of power when watching say... Youtube video's, as the processor doesn't have to work nearly as hard.
Or just go with an AMD C-60/E-350/E-450/E1-1200/E2-1800 netbook and enjoy the fact you can run crap like Minecraft on it and all the video you want regardless of size.

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 Post subject: Re: Netbook modding
PostPosted: September 28th, 2012, 1:42 am 
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Pemalite wrote:
If you are intending on getting the SSD for a boost in performance, don't bother, the Atom processors don't benefit from them at all as the processor is the weakest link in the system (Tested on my Atom tablet.)
If you absolutely must get an SSD for the extra 10-15 minuets of battery life, go with an Intel 330, Samsung 830 or Crucial M4 SSD as OCZ hasn't had the best track record since the Vertex 2.

If you intend to run 1080P video, buy yourself a Broadcom Crystal HD chip and whack it in, provided if you have space in the netbook. - You will also save allot of power when watching say... Youtube video's, as the processor doesn't have to work nearly as hard.
Or just go with an AMD C-60/E-350/E-450/E1-1200/E2-1800 netbook and enjoy the fact you can run crap like Minecraft on it and all the video you want regardless of size.



Ninja thanks for clarifying that they can run x64, but what other brand would you recommend over Asus for a similar price ($200 -300)?

Pema, all the AMD processors you listed have similar specs, though none have the same dual core quad thread as the Atom n2600, and only the E2-1800 has a faster processor speed of 1.7Ghz.

Also, all the computers with those processors are bigger, more expensive, and have worse battery life.

I'm still looking around, but I'm really not looking for a machine to watch videos on, especially 1080. And I'm not interested in gaming on it either.


It's so difficult to find what's right, because there are dozens of nearly identical computers. They change one small thing, and boom there is a whole new line up and more model numbers. I really just want to be able to buy the shell, then cram the junk I want into it, but I can't even find any companies with the "build your own" feature, or something like that.


Edit: I just want a device that can last all day, function properly with all the Office programs, and handle web browsing with a few different windows open, and a healthy amount of tabs. Right now in this window I have 18 tabs, and then I have 5 other Chrome windows up with I don't know how many tabs. It's a bit excessive, but I have a lot going on. I know this computer is more powerful than any netbook, but I don't think the same activities are unimaginable for a netbook with a few upgrades. I won't be doing any intense minecraft or any gaming, so that won't drag it down, and If I do watch any movies, they would probably be 720p that I'd have on a flash drive or something. But that would be rare, because I already have a 17" screen :twisted: lol


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 Post subject: Re: Netbook modding
PostPosted: September 28th, 2012, 7:28 am 
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Ninjacat101 wrote:
You will see next to no difference between 32 and 64 bit anyway.

64 bit can address more memory, and becouse it can, it will do.
So if you go for 64 bits software and os, get more memory.

So if your stuck with 'low memory' (2 gb), stick with 32 bits.

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 Post subject: Re: Netbook modding
PostPosted: September 28th, 2012, 5:19 pm 
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Intertoothh wrote:
Ninjacat101 wrote:
You will see next to no difference between 32 and 64 bit anyway.

64 bit can address more memory, and becouse it can, it will do.
So if you go for 64 bits software and os, get more memory.

So if your stuck with 'low memory' (2 gb), stick with 32 bits.


That's what I meant, if hes stuck at 2gb why would he benifit from a 64 bit os.

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 Post subject: Re: Netbook modding
PostPosted: September 29th, 2012, 12:19 am 
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hung_dong wrote:
Pemalite wrote:
Pema, all the AMD processors you listed have similar specs, though none have the same dual core quad thread as the Atom n2600, and only the E2-1800 has a faster processor speed of 1.7Ghz.


Lets get this Cores/Threads thing out of the way.

Firstly, Hyperthreading aka, 2 cores 4 threads doesn't mean it's going to be faster than 2 plain cores, this is advertising at it's best.

Essentially each core splits it's resources up in an attempt to process 2 threads at once, this isn't going to double performance, no where near it, you are at most looking at an increase of about 5-10% in efficiency, in some cases it will even reduce performance.

Secondly, the Intel Atom processor architecture is an In-Order design much closer to what the first generation Pentium processors were like before they went with an Out-of-order design, Out of order designs leverage the fact that it can do extra processing between instructions to drive up efficiency instead of wasting clock cycles.
Essentially a 10 year old Pentium 3's single core is faster than a brand new Intel Atom single core.

AMD on the other hand with the "Fusion" processors aka, the E-350/E-450 etc' are based on a fully fledged AMD Athlon core with full Out-of-order execution and a semi-decent integrated graphics card, each core might be similar/slower in clock speed than an Intel Atom but it can also do allot more work per clock than the Intel Atom can ever dream of.
For example in allot of benchmarks, say... Web browsing, the AMD processors at the same speed as a Dual-Core Atom can be anywhere from 30-80% faster.

If anything that uses the graphics card you end up starting to count how many multiples faster the AMD E-350(Brazos) chips are, things that are leveraging GPU compute these days is increasing, Adobe Flash, Windows user interface, web browsing, image manipulation, video encoding the works...

As for battery life, Brazos is very competitive to the Atom as it works on the "Hurry up and idle" philosophy, if you can get the work done in half the time you can use just as much power as a processor that is twice as energy efficient but takes twice as long to do a task, however Atom isn't twice as energy efficient so in most cases the AMD chips are more energy efficient in the long term as it can complete it's tasks faster.

The bonus with the Atom though is that in heavily threaded situation's like Video encoding it can pull ahead in performance, however considering that you can leverage the GPU on the AMD chip to do the encoding and get it done in a faction of the time while using less power, it's really a non-issue.

As for battery life, I think you will find you will need more than just a 6 cell battery to obtain 12 hours, my Atom tablet can almost hit 8 hours with everything in a power saving state on it's 6 cell battery, if I turn the screen off and let it just play music I can squeeze 8 hours out of it, but it doesn't help that it's awfully slow to the point of being frustrating even for the most basic of tasks like a web browser with a single tab, but I may just be used to my Desktop where everything is "instant".

Intertoothh wrote:
Ninjacat101 wrote:
You will see next to no difference between 32 and 64 bit anyway.

64 bit can address more memory, and becouse it can, it will do.
So if you go for 64 bits software and os, get more memory.

So if your stuck with 'low memory' (2 gb), stick with 32 bits.


Intel placed a hard limit via the chipset on the amount of memory the Atoms can use, anything prior to the D2xxx series it was a maximum of 2gb of Ram, the newer ones all support up-to 4gb, so Windows 32bit if you can get it cheaper would be fine, plus it has the advantage of running old 16bit applications like old Windows 95 games natively. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Netbook modding
PostPosted: December 15th, 2012, 12:29 am 
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Bump!

Still looking for a computer that fits my pickyness :)

I like the looks of this one, though I'm not wild about the 4 cell battery with <5hours, nor the Windows 8 without a touch screen, but everything else comes how I think it should. I know Lenovo lets you customize a lot, but I don't think I could order it with Win 7 since it's from Newegg....


http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 312242-L0B

The processor sounds relatively good

http://www.notebookcheck.net/AMD-A-Seri ... 885.0.html

Quote:
In terms of raw general performance, the A6-4455M should perform significantly faster than the E-Series (e.g. E2-1800), but cannot compete with Intels ULV processors. Nonetheless, CPU performance from the AMD processor should be sufficient for all daily workloads like Office and Internet browsing, but will reach its limits in more demanding applications and multitasking.



Asus and Acer have some pretty cool looking touch screen laptops with win 8 though. :happycreeper:


Another note, in some of my browsing, I saw something about an option of a plug-in SSD card/slot. It sounded like it was an external thing that somehow went inside, I'm not too sure about what this is called, but it sounded interesting. I assume the computer would have to be bigger in order to have this type of slot.


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