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Packard Bell Unveils Stylish Multi-Touch Tablet

Gordon Kelly


Packard Bell Unveils Stylish Multi-Touch Tablet

Yay, it's a portable computer and it's not a Pine Trail netbook!

So thanks go to Packard Bell for announcing the new 'EasyNote Butterfly Touch Edition', a Intel Core 2 Duo SU based tablet with 11.6in 1366 x 768 display and multi-touch. This finger friendliness comes courtesy of a capacitive screen which can rotate 180 degrees while the Windows 7 OS automatically resizes for portrait and landscape modes.

Of interest elsewhere is a spec which includes up to 4GB RAM, WiFi, HDMI, Bluetooth, optional 3G module, webcam, 5-in-1 card reader and 640MB hard drive. Battery life is also a claimed eight hours, which - even if over estimated - should last long enough for most users.

Perhaps best of all is the cost, since Packard Bell is shipping the EasyNote Butterfly Touch Edition in both red and black in February with a starting price of just £499 - a steal in the notoriously overpriced tablet market. Consequently, all you have to worry about now is your mates learning that you bought a laptop called the Butterfly Touch Edition ya big wuss...


Packard Bell I-Can't-Say-It-Again Product Page


December 23, 2009, 7:19 am

Check out that hard drive woah! ;-)


December 23, 2009, 7:23 am

This looks like a damn good laptop! Stick an SSD in, off we go :-)


December 23, 2009, 11:50 am

There seems to be a general mis-conception that SSDs are automatically better than HDDs.

Not for for over 90% of them. They are actually slower in the real world and their performance gets worse with age. The SSDs that can make a difference will bump up the price by over £300 - you can always retro fit if you're keen.

If the price for this laptop is £499, it deserves to succeed - even with a HDD.


December 23, 2009, 3:31 pm

Its a re-brand of the acer 1820/1420 series notebooks (see the acer site for more details). This is basically a tablet version of the acer 1810 TZ that you just reviewed. I found a mini review of the acer 1820PTZ

- http://forums.vr-zone.com/note...

And pre order for the acer 1820PTZ on play.com - http://www.play.com/PC/PCs/4-/...

In other tablet news the asus T101MT ( 10 inch multi touch netbook) has just passed through the FCC


December 23, 2009, 4:48 pm

With a 500GB Scorpio blue drive achieving around 70 MB/s read write costing around £60, considering the processor there really is very few advantages over an SSD, especially if you get one with a free fall sensor. The power consumption isn't too different either (not much effect on battery life).


December 23, 2009, 4:51 pm

Well, if they could have a chat with Wacom to add their pressure sensitive pen technology and put in a half decent graphics card they'd have the ultimate digital sketch pad. I'd buy one without hesitation.


December 23, 2009, 4:59 pm

£499 is not bad at all for what you get. I'm looking for a significant shortcoming like the sluggishness of the interface or perhaps the build quality of the hinge.


December 23, 2009, 4:59 pm

Intel's SSDs are a lot less than 300 GBP and by all accounts they are much faster than HDDs in every situation. Of course for a laptop you'll need a pretty big one, while for a desktop you can just use both a medium-size SSD and a large HDD for bulk data.


December 23, 2009, 5:52 pm

@Andrew Violet

The 70 MB/s is not random access speed, it is sequential data access which will rarely happen.

The SSD I put in my main PC has reduced loading time from about 2 minutes 30 to about 45 seconds. When I used to log in I had to wait at least 1 minute in XP for the system to become usable. With my SSD (240 MB/s Read, 170 MB/s write) the system becomes usable in 3 seconds. My old hard drive(which is now used for data) is a 150Gig Western Digital VelociRaptor which is no slouch.


December 23, 2009, 6:36 pm

@Prem: While it's true that any old cheap SSD can be rather poor there is a wide selection of them that are undoubtedly faster than HDDs (especially the slower laptop ones) and they're nowhere near £300. The top of the pack, the Intel X25-M is around £180 for the 80GB version.

And as for performance degrading over time I've not heard of anything like that. There is a small drop in performance from factory fresh to normal use due to the way they write stuff to the drive but that should happen quickly and won't get any worse and they don't suffer the slow down hard drives have when you start using data from the end of the drive.

@Andrew Violet: Who cares about the sequential transfer speed for laptops. SSDs have far faster access times and random reads, as well as being lighter, using less power and making no noise, all of which are important attributes on small, portable laptops.


December 23, 2009, 9:03 pm

Sorry about that Den and Xiphias bit of a noobish error on my behalf, however when you consider that the entire laptop has a total power draw of well above 30W is reducing the power by a watt or two (no more than two) really worth the extra money? As you say, correctly, it has all but become a myth about SSD's data retention troubles. If fairness to western digital its new whisper drives mean they make as good as no noise - I actually can't hear it but I am told it is about 23Db! My biggest issue though is that £180 for 80GB, for a £500 laptop thats a ridiculous upgrade cost. I could just about justify £120 for 80GB. Personally I would prefer the extra storage rather than the speed but different priorities need different components. I can't wait till SSD's are 320GB for £100


December 23, 2009, 11:10 pm

@ Vivid:

HP already did this with their TX series.


December 23, 2009, 11:43 pm

Andrew is correct.

This is a re-branded Acer 1810TZ. I bought the 1810tz recently and it is truly an amazing laptop, eats ATOM for breakfast. This should be a great tablet.

Do note that the hinge adds some extra weight so the unit is around 1.7kg.


December 24, 2009, 9:47 pm

Just so we're clear when I said SSD I meant Intel 80GB 34nm drive with TRIM, performance does not degrade on Windows 7 - happy days! Its still £165 but maybe in the sales it will drop a bit further, tbh it might actually be a bit overkill considering this is a CULV system.


December 27, 2009, 3:51 pm


Avoid those tx series like the plague.... Just do a search for tx1000 problems or tx2000 problems and you will see but from self bitter experience I own both a tx1000 (just about dead due to know problems) and a tx2000 that its on its way out and both just out of warranty. They cost 800 quid a piece only to just last 1 year.

This one as mentioned does need a wacom digitizer guys if you are after a decent tablet experience :)

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