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Just above the screen is a rotateable 1.3 Megapixel web camera. It’s fine for video conferencing but the relatively low resolution means that it’s not great for stills. The camera can also be angled slightly upwards or downwards, making it easy to get it in line with your face, while keeping the display at a comfortable angle.
I was generally happy with the keyboard, though it was a touch on the bouncy side. The enter key could be bigger too. Most people though, would not have any issues typing comfortably on the G220 and keyboard layouts tend to be one of those things you get used to. As for the touchpad, there’s not much to comment on, other than the fact that it worked well.
Above the keyboard on the right hand side is a row of buttons, including the power switch and the on/off switch for the wireless antenna. There are three others, consisting of a shortcut to your web browser, your mail client and another that can be programmed to launch an application of your choice.
As far as aesthetics go, everyone in the office agreed that the G220 looked pretty generic. The magnesium alloy cover on the back of the screen does improve its looks, and more practically, provides a degree of protection. A small piece of protective metal has also been added to the bottom of the screen to cover the speakers and a further piece of metal has been fitted around the touch pad. The lid doesn’t use any hooks or latches to keep it closed, but has locking hinges that close firmly. The lack of a fiddly latch also makes it easier to open the laptop.
When testing battery life, I encountered some problems running our usual MobileMark 2002 benchmark, which refused to complete. Further investigation revealed that this was an issue with the benchmark rather than the laptop. Instead we ran MobileMark 2002’s run-down test. However, this doesn’t apply as heavy a load as our normal test, merely running web browsers and such like. As such, it’s not comparable with our normal tests. Nonetheless, the G220 managed a pretty impressive four hours and 17 minutes, which isn’t bad for a budget notebook.
The overall SYSmark 2002 score of 132 is not that impressive, but considering that the G220 is using a Celeron M processor this is in line with the expected performance. At the end of the day the G220 will be able to cope with any standard Windows applications, which is what this machine is aimed at. The AJP G220 might not be the best notebook on the market, but taking into account that it will set you back only £758 plus delivery, it’s a pretty good deal. That said, I would have liked to have seen 512MB of memory as standard, even if that pushed the price up.
AJP has proven that there are affordable lightweight widescreen laptops on the market. Although it might not be able to compete with the likes of Sony and Fujitsu-Siemens in terms of style, it beats them hands down in terms of price, which to many, is what really matters .
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