Grudge Match: NETBOOK v/s NOTEBOOK

In this comparison we've chosen a laptop and a netbook, yes, they belong to different categories and their performance would differ too. However this comparison is mainly about the price, where both these machines are priced similarly and serve very different purposes. So let's see which one bags it this time.

Category

MSI CR420 - Laptop
This an entry-level laptop with a 14-inch screen, which is ideal for daily computing needs, for home as well as office. Powered by an Intel Core i3 processor, this laptop trounces most others in the Corei3 segment , in terms of its attractive price point. If you’re looking to buy an entry-level laptop at a very good price, this one should top your list.

Asus EeePC 1201N- Netbook
This, on the other hand, is a netbook, and not a laptop. However, it’s got the latest hardware in the netbooks segment. Powered by a dual-core Intel Atom processor, the Atom N330 (a rarity), it is based on Nvidia’s Ion platform, which means you get powerful discrete graphics even in comparison to the onboard GPU on the MSI CR420. Over and above, it has an upper hand in terms of portability, aesthetics and battery runtime.

Form factor
MSI CR420
Dimensions (W x H x D): 344 x 30 x 221
Weight: 2.2 kg

Asus EeePC 1201N
Dimensions (W x H x D): 297.18 x 33 x 208.28
Weight: 1.4 kg
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Hardware

MSI CR 420
Chipset: Intel HM55
Processor: Intel Core i3 (Max TDP: 35 W, dual-core, Hyper-Threaded, 2.13 GHz, 3 MB cache)
RAM: DDR3 4GB
Hard drive: 250 GB
Graphics: Intel Onboard
Screen / resolution: 14-inch / 1366x768
Optical Drive: DVD writer
Operating System: Windows 7 Home Premium

Asus EeePC 1201N
Chipset: Nvidia MCP79
Processor: Intel Atom N330 (Max TDP: 35 W, dual-core, Hyper-Threaded, 1.6 GHz, 1 MB cache)
RAM: 2 GB DDR2
Hard drive: 250 GB
Graphics: Nvidia Ion (GeForce 9400m)
Screen / resolution: 12.1-inch / 1366 x 768
Optical Drive: Not present
Operating System: Windows 7 Home Premium

Features
MSI CR420
Connectors: 2 USB, HDMI, VGA, audio jacks
Others: built-in mic, 1.3 megapixel webcam, 6-cell battery pack
Connectivity: Wi-Fi N, Bluetooth, gigabit Ethernet

Asus EeePC 1201N
Connectors: 3 USB ports, HDMI, VGA, audio jacks
Others: built-in mic, VGA webcam, 6-cell battery pack
Connectivity: Wi-Fi N, Bluetooth, gigabit Ethernet
Color options: Brush Metal Silver and Black
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Price and Status
MSI CR420
Rs 33,500
Available

Asus EeePC 1201N
Rs 29,000
Available

Verdict

MSI CR420 (Click here to see the review )
Upper hand: More power, larger screen, tougher build, better ergonomics, presence of an optical drive.

Compromise: No discrete graphics (no HD-playback), bulkier, heavier in weight, average looks, comparatively lesser battery runtime.

Asus EeePC 1201N (Click here to see the review )
Upper hand: Gaming on a netbook (a first), easier to carry, slim and sexy looks, good discrete graphics (seamless HD-playback), better battery runtime.

Compromise: Smaller screen, comparatively low on ergonomics, no optical drive, lower on CPU performance.

Yes we are comparing a laptop to a netbook, but it is for some very good reasons, the first and most crucial one is the price point. Besides that, the 1201N offers the form factor that matches an ultra-portable laptop, and the portability and usability of a powerful netbook.

Let’s say that one has a budget of around Rs 34,000. Now, when someone with a fixed mindset of buying a ‘laptop’ will certainly opt for the MSI CR420. However, if you’re open to options, then chances are very high that you’ll choose the thin-and-light Asus 1201N, especially if you prefer aesthetics and portability over performance. On that note, we are reminded of what Sivakumar, General Manager-Toshiba, mentioned. He said that, ‘customers today are only looking at what they like, not the specification of an Intel Core i5 or i7’.

So what’s your pick?
A standard Core i3 laptop or a netbook that’s likely to perform better than all other netbooks out there, and offers superb portability and aesthetics at a slightly lower price.

UPDATE: The Asus EeePC 1201N is available in India through Asus' select channel of partners in the IT Market throughout India. Here's the toll free number 1800-2090-365


Published Date: Jul 01, 2010 12:33 pm | Updated Date: Jul 01, 2010 12:33 pm