Friday, 4 December 2009

Review - Acer Aspire D250

How does the replacement for my Aspire One compare?
[Images for this article coming soon…]
You may or may not be aware that some months ago I damaged my first Aspire One netbook, snapping the screen from the rest of the body, thus killing it completely (follow me on Twitter to stay appraised of these events!).  It’s been sometime but now I have a new netbook, the Aspire D250, a 10.1” screened version of the original AAO.
The D250’s core specs remain largely unchanged from the AAO.  It’s still carries the same Atom N270 CPU, Intel GMA chipset etc.  Whereas my first AAO came with 512MB of RAM and the clunky Linpus Linux OS installed on a 120GB HDD, the D250 came with 1GB RAM, a 160GB HDD and Windows XP Home Edition.
One of the card readers is missing now, which is a shame as I liked using a memory card in one slot for Ready Boost, which left the other free for hot plugging, but I can manage quite happily with only one.  And having a slightly larger screen (large by just 1.2”) really helps; although it is a shame that the resolution was not increased also, but that’s not really that important.
I am able to use the battery and charger of my broken AAO too, which is nice, as the included 3 cell battery doesn’t last very long as standard, while having two chargers means that I can keep the old one at work, saving me from having to lug that around in my laptop bag also.
Performance wise the D250 was little different to the AAO, if anything at all changed for the better or worst I cannot tell.
Once thing that I really like about the D250, and annoyed the hell out of me about the AAO, is the upgradeability.
To upgrade the RAM or the HDD of the AAO required some extremely careful handiwork, removing several screws from the underside, removing the keyboard, a metal plate then the motherboard to get to the underside of which held the RAM and HDD, it was not a simple task.
The D250 however is much more conventional in that it has several easily removable plates on the underside that once unscrewed and removed offers easy access to said components.
So, I did.  I opened up the RAM cover and slotted in a 2GB RAM module from OCZ after removing the original 1GB no-name component.  There is only the one RAM slot in the D250, so 2GB is the maximum capacity.
I also removed the original 160GB SATA HDD, and once again replaced that, as I did in the AAO, with the 320GB drive from my LaCie Little Disk.
Once these components were upgraded, I then installed a fresh copy of Windows 7 Home Premium.
Now I have an Acer Aspire D250 with 2GB RAM, 320GB hard disk drive running Windows 7 Home Premium.  And it rocks!
Now, how does the D250 really compare to the AAO?  In my opinion there is little to compare, however…
  • The upgradeability of the D250 is far superior to the AAO. (+1)
  • The increased screen side is a definite plus. (+1)
  • The missing memory card reader is a minus. (-1)
  • The compatibility with the AAO battery and charger is good (-/+1)
So overall the D250 gets one point over the AAO, which in my rudimentary rating system makes the D250 the winner!
Do you own a Aspire D250? What do you think of it?  Leave your thoughts below.

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