Friday, January 25, 2008

Gateway T5450 Laptop M-6750 Review

I recently picked up this laptop on sale at Best Buy (of all places!) for $750.


- 3GB of ram is great. (It means less disk thrashing, which means faster performance)

- 250 GB HDD (minus a bit for some fluff) is a good amount of storage.

- The 1.66 GHz Core 2 Duo seems good enough for my needs. The large memory helps keep it fed.

- Generally, I find performance in Vista to be fine, including with the fancy Aero interface running.

- It's lovely and shiny. The red lid, and wrist rest area look great. It's got a brushed steel look around the keyboard. The screen is one of those high gloss ones (which worried me at first, but I now like). Plus Vista looks pretty. All round, it's a lovely machine to look at.

- It's nice having the built-in webcam and microphone for Skype.


- The 'Fn' key is in the corner of the keyboard, instead of the left 'Ctrl' key, as it is on most normal keyboards. This means I'm constantly messing up copy/paste type operations.

- The built in speakers are really weak, though this is true for most laptops.

- The integrated / shared memory graphics card won't be good for modern games, but it's fine for regular windows. Plus the extra large ram makes up for it using main memory.

- Comes with a bunch of trialware and other junk which takes a while to remove ('PC Decrapifier' got rid of about half).

- The volume slider touchpad doesn't work as well as I'd like.

- The webcam doesn't always work, sometimes requiring a reboot, though that might be due to something I've done.
- {EDIT} A quiet but slightly annoying whistling type noise sometimes comes through the sound card. I've found that it goes away when sounds are made (e.g. MP3 or windows noises), so I think the sound card drivers might be a little off. It annoyed me a little at first, but I'm used to it now.


I'm really glad I bought it. The few niggles I list aren't a big deal for me.

{Edit - Wow, this post got a lot of hits. It seems some people have had a lot of problems with the machine. Mine's still fine 7 months on, but buyer beware...}